Apex Clean Energy handed big ‘blow’ in Van Wert, Ohio

 

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The Van Wert county overwhelmingly said NO to a county commissioner who strongly supported  Apex Clean Energy!  The same occurred, across the border, in Cass County, IN…

The TRUTH is hard to hide and it is out. BigWind is a bully across America. It divides families and communities and damages our energy security b/c it is an intermittent energy source that must be backed up 100% of the time. People are becoming educated….

Do you think our legislators are paying attention???? Columbus should be, particularly before they sign a new law that shortens our setbacks!!!

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Is BigWind as sneaky as Sylvester the Cat?

The wind industry has been hard at work and so have we. You will recall that the setbacks for wind turbines were changed a year ago in the Mid Biennium Budget Bill. The change required that setbacks be measured from the property lines of non-participating landowners instead of their homes. The old setbacks essentially forced property owners to “donate” their yards and fields as part of the safety buffer zone. This enabled the wind developers to use land without paying for its use. Senate President Faber and Governor Kasich supported the revised setbacks. The eleven wind projects that had received certificates of approval from the Ohio Power Siting Board (OPSB) were grandfathered in under the old setbacks unless they amended their certificate, in which case, the new setbacks would apply. The wind industry has gone around to communities and newspaper editorial boards saying that Ohio unreasonably lengthened setbacks making it impossible to develop renewable energy in Ohio. This was not true because they all had the option of negotiating a setback waiver with the landowner and compensating him for use of his land.

Currently under consideration in the Ohio House is HB 190. The wind industry-backed HB 190 would give County Commissioners the power to overrule the OPSB and change setbacks. HB 190 would also extend the life of the PILOT program. It appeared that rough sailing might be ahead for HB 190 when the House Public Utilities Committee understood what was really happening. The wind developers had framed the issue as giving “Local Control” back to communities. In reality, they were proposing to use County Commissioners to take property rights away from property owners. HB 190 has not had a hearing for opponents but it could be shoved into the Budget Bill. This would be terrible as HB 190 does not provide for a referendum if County Commissioners decide to take the property of people in the community. We understand Rep. Brown of Bowling Green in Wood County is pushing this idea. It is an awful bill, reflects the worst of a predatory industry and harms rural communities and their families.

Just in case HB 190 might be in trouble, the wind lobbyists went to work on the state Budget Bill. An amendment was proposed to extend the life of the PILOT program for five years. We are uncertain if this extension is in the version of the bill now being considered by the Conference Committee. One other wind-related amendment was inserted as a favor to at least one developer. This amendment would grant an exemption to the requirement that an approved project be subject to the new setbacks if the approved project was amended. There is a list of criteria the wind developer must meet in order to obtain the exemption:

1. The sole purpose of the amendment is to change the turbine model that was previously approved by OPSB.

2. The number of turbines is not increased.

3. The exemption must be sought within 90 days of the budget bill’s enactment.

4. The new turbines to be installed are technologically more advanced or efficient than the originally approved models.

5. The new models are not more than 8% taller than the approved models.

6. The developer is obligated by contract to supply energy to a mercantile customer that uses at least 7 million kilo-watt hours a year.

7. The turbines will be placed in the same locations as the originally approved turbines.

We do not know which approved Ohio wind project this special provision is designed to help. We think it is wrong to increase the height of a turbine and not re-examine the shadow flicker, noise and safety issues related to the new models. We are guessing that the projects most likely to benefit (if more than one apply) are Timber Creek and Hog Creek. This is a GUESS.

Late last night/early this morning, an additional amendment was accepted by the Conference Committee. We are working to understand what the substance of the newest amendment is. It is possible that the provisions of HB 190 are in this amendment. We recall that just a year ago, Governor Kasich was quoted in the Columbus Dispatch when asked about the revised setbacks: “Private property rights are important. People choose to live somewhere. You just don’t go in there and disrupt their life.”…

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Will Governor Kasich follow the ‘green’ trail to destruction?

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Even though Ohio may not seem important to your local or regional cause, AWEA feels the state of Ohio is PIVOTAL to its future in the US (according to the executive summary of their recently released state of the market report), and with John Kasich having White House aspirations, we need to hold his feet to the fire on this issue NOW. 

There is tremendous pressure from the ‘green’ lobbyists for our Governor to STOP Senate Bill 310. If the bill is revised, we feel it must contain, at a minimum:

1. the elimination of the Unconstitutional in-state mandate for renewable energy;

2.revised setbacks measured from property lines; and

3.change the definition of “renewable” to “clean” energy to include hydro-electricity, natural gas, nuclear, combined heat and power, and other affordable and reliable forms of clean energy.

Our current renewable mandates violate the Commerce Clause of the US Constitution. We hope that Governor Kasich will be a bold, honest politician and speak the truth about this industry and the harm that it will bring to our state in the form of higher electricity rates, health and property problems. Wouldn’t it be refreshing to hear a politician speak the truth??? Wouldn’t it be refreshing to hear a policitican educate the public about what the media will not??? There is a reason that manufacturers have lined up in favor of SB 310- Ohio manufacturing can’t survive if it must continue to pay for expensive renewable mandates!!!!!!! (Well, actually, some like Honda can because their co-ops are ‘exempt’ from paying the fees!)…..

“You can make windmills with cheap, reliable electricity but you can’t make cheap, reliable electricity with windmills.”

 

Are you ready to pay $75-$100 MORE for YOUR electricity, Ohio?

Ohio co-op talks energy

The EPA and the ‘green’ lobby have become some of the most powerful people in Washington, D.C.  Unfortunately, they are brainwashing many elected officials and creating an enormous disconnect between real America and D.C. Some of our politicians, though don’t drink the ‘kool-aid’ and are learning about the realities of the energy policies of this administration. Are you also in denial? Then we encourage you to utilize the calculator on our home page or check out the multiple links, for yourself, about the very serious drawbacks behind our current support for the ‘green machine’…Bravo, Ohio, for holding such a wonderful, informative forum.  Why can’t you get fellow Senator Cliff Hite to see the truth, though? Something isn’t right. And his reaction to opposition to his unending support of BigWind? He’s sending flyers to the Indian Lake area, touting his ‘other’ accomplishments in the Ohio Senate. Well, guess what, electricity rates affect ALL OF US- irregardless of our political leanings, color of our skin, religion, sex or economic stature….

Affordable and reliable. That’s the goal of the electrical co-ops throughout the state of Ohio when providing services to their rural customers.

Changes in Environmental Protection Agency regulations and other legislative issues may have an impact on how Midwest Electric continues to serve its customers….

The EPA is changing the greenhouse gas rules, he said. There will be a new source performance standard that all operating plants will have to meet. The second portion of the new greenhouse gas rules deals with existing plants, he said.

 

“This is the big enchiladas for cooperatives in Ohio,” Keylor said. “This could cost households an additional $75 to $100 per month.”

 

Keylor said no one knows if the current plants will be retrofit to meet the CCS. He said this may take on the look of the failed cap and trade bill, which called for regulations for greenhouse gases nationwide.

 

“Ninety percent of the electricity to our homes comes from coal plants,” Keylor said.

 

The trinity of co-ops, he said is afforabable, reliable and safe/responsible.

 

“One half of the world lives in energy poverty,” he said. “We don’t. 99.99 percent of the time, when we flip a switch, our electricity comes on.”…

“Ninety percent of the coal plants were running full out,” Keylor said. “In two years, we’re going to lose them [coal plants] because of the EPA mandates. Would you care to guess what’s going to happen in two years” if there’s another polar votex?

 

State Rep. Matt Huffman, R-Lima, said Jan. 20, 2017, will be Independence Day for Americans because that’s the day President Barack Obama is leaving the White House….

“We have an Ohio energy program that works,” he said. “If energy isn’t affordable, then it’s not accessible.”

Since 2009, Faber said, $1.1 billion has been spent on energy efficient programs.

“The Faber house put in the squiggly lights. Then went to LED lights,” he said. “Is it fair that we’re paying for someone in New Jersey for their LED lights?

“I like the way you do it [co-op]. You can opt into the program. You don’t charge me $25 per month when I’ve already paid for it,” Faber said.

 

via Officials talk to co-op about energy policy –.

Senator Faber favors an Ohio “freeze” of renewable mandates

Today is a big day!  Senator Faber is leading an effort to freeze the Ohio renewable mandate.  Legislation is scheduled to be introduced today and hearings will begin soon with the stated goal of enactment before June. Please call his office and thank him for this support!

What does this mean?  We consulted with Tom Stacy, Ohioan for Affordable Energy and Lisa Linowes, Executive Director of WindAction. They believe a freeze at 2014 levels would result in a “need” to generate a total of about 117 MW of in-state renewable energy.* When that amount of new generation is attained, there will be no further requirement to generate more in-state renewable energy.  The current mandate is filled by a variety of sources: Biomass, hydro, wind and coal mine methane (CMM).  Tom Stacy developed the pie chart (url at bottom) to show the amount each source currently provides: Biomass (45%); Hydro (15% ); Wind (37% ); and CMM (3%).   If wind has a CF (Capacity Factor) of 30% and, if it fulfills about 37% of the in-state requirement for wind, only 43.29 MW’s of wind would be needed before the mandate is capped or “frozen”.  

There are many more than 43 MW’s of wind that have been approved in Ohio by the OPSB.   The question becomes, if only 43 MW of in-state generation would be needed, would any Ohio utility buy the excess?  If Ohio generated wind is not the most affordable choice, it is doubtful that a utility would buy it absent a mandate.  If there is no market for in-state wind,  there would not be a compelling reason to build it.  The risk to a lender would increase substantially. We can expect furious pushback from the renewable industry, mostly wind, against freezing the mandate at 2014 levels.  We will be there as we have been for the past few years to report on the legislative battle.  But this time, having the support of Senator Faber will very likely enhance the prospects for passage. 

 (*According to the 2012 filings by the utilities and suppliers, Ohio’s RPS load (load subject to the RPS) was 131.2 million MWhs,  Assuming the same RPS load for 2013 and 2014, and assuming wind provides ALL of the in-state obligation, Ohio will need an incremental increase in installed wind for each year of 117 MW at a 30% CF. This number is still inflated because Ohio’s law calculates RPS load as the average in sales for the preceding three years. Electricity sales for most utilities dropped off precipitously from 2009 to 2010 and dropped further in 2011. In 2013, the 2009 sale numbers were no longer part of the baseline RPS calculations and you should see the RPS load drop by 20+% for most suppliers.

Ohio Senate Republicans will release a plan today to call a halt to annual increases in “green” energy standards.

The proposal, first reported by The Dispatch on Sunday, would cancel the next 11 years’ worth of increases in the requirements. The rules apply to electricity utilities’ purchases of renewable energy and programs that help customers improve energy efficiency.

Opponents say the plan will lead to a pullback on clean-energy investments, which will cost the state jobs and lead to dirtier air.

This is the latest attempt by House and Senate Republicans to respond to the concerns of utilities and business groups that say parts of a 2008 energy law have unreasonably high costs.

Ohio would remain among the 30 or so states that have requirements for renewable energy, but its benchmarks would be some of the lowest in the group.

Senate President Keith Faber, R-Celina, was involved in writing the bill and said he hopes to see it pass the Senate and House before legislators begin a summer recess in late May.

“What we want to do as a legislature is put procedures in place that are based on evidence and science, not based on ideas that happened back when we thought Solyndra was going to be a good investment for the federal government,” he said.

Solyndra was a solar-panel maker in California that went bankrupt in 2011, even after government aid. Its problems are often cited by critics of renewable-energy requirements and subsidies.

via GOP drafts plan to freeze Ohio ‘green’ energy rules | The Columbus Dispatch.

chart is at http://dis.puc.state.oh.us/TiffToPDf/A1001001A14A14B02242C15874.pdf