Maine Governor LePage imposes moratorium on new wind energy permits

Gov. Paul LePage imposed a moratorium on new wind energy permits in much of Maine on Wednesday while establishing a commission that will meet behind closed door to study the economic impacts of wind turbines on the state’s tourism industry......The governor is also expected to unveil legislation in the coming days aimed at changing Maine’s controversial expedited permitting system for wind energy projects throughout rural Maine.

https://www.pressherald.com/2018/01/24/lepage-imposes-moratorium-on...

Governor LePage blocks new Maine wind energy permits (Bangor Daily News)

Gov. Paul LePage on Wednesday placed a moratorium on permits for new wind energy generation facilities. He also said he will submit legislation this year that would eliminate an expedited permitting process that is currently in law.

An executive order issued by the governor Wednesday also creates the Maine Wind Energy Advisory Commission to study the impact of turbine farms on the environment, property values and tourism and to produce a report on those issues. In his executive order, LePage asserts that the commission will be exempt from Maine’s public meeting and access law.

http://bangordailynews.com/2018/01/24/news/state/lepage-blocks-new-...

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Comment by Long Islander on January 25, 2018 at 4:14pm

I'd also say that if one googles or bings "Scenic Vistas of Eastern Maine" images, there's no place where industrial wind would not have consequences for outdoor tourism, present and potential. We really have a good thing here. Let's keep it that way.

Comment by Dan McKay on January 25, 2018 at 4:06pm

If one "googles" or "bings " "Scenic Vistas of Western Maine" it becomes immediately apparent that there is no place within the "Area" that wind development won't have consequences to tourism.

Comment by Deborah Andrew on January 25, 2018 at 1:27pm

How interesting that the commission will be exempt from Maine's public meeting access law.  Why do this behind closed doors?????

Comment by Penny Gray on January 25, 2018 at 1:14pm

Thank you, Governor LePage, and thanks to all who did their research and who worked to inform a generally uninformed public about what was really going on behind closed doors. The media has failed to provide any objective coverage of wind development in the state, so unless a wind project is planned for your own town or township, most Mainers don't have a clue what it's really all about.   Worse, they're being constantly green washed with wind industry propaganda.  Tourism is one of the states biggest and most reliable economic engines and has been since the early 1800's.  The tourism department should be promoting Maine as a premiere outdoor recreation destination, and they should get the wheels turning on a dark skies designation.  Economic development can and should take place without trashing the natural beauty and quality of place Maine is known for.  People come here from all over the world because what we have here is really special, and I'm grateful that Governor LePage understands that we need to keep it that way.

Comment by Frank J. Heller, MPA on January 25, 2018 at 10:59am

Tourism may not be the best hook on which to hang our concerns; environmental impact statements cover habitat, forest loss, etc. The media are already poo-poohing this aspect, although it could highlight ancillary development of previous inaccessible wilderness areas and both snowmobile and ATV/mtn. bike trails. The outdoor recreational industry will lobby to get on the task force, so as to influence siting decisions to reflect their desire for networks of trails, access points, etc.  Subdivision sales at access points may already be happening, so you have recreational real estate interest and only need to visit Sunday River Valley to see how these develop and the load on water and sewer systems. 

Comment by Monique Aniel Thurston on January 24, 2018 at 10:22pm
Comment by arthur qwenk on January 24, 2018 at 9:59pm
Comment by Monique Aniel Thurston on January 24, 2018 at 7:55pm

Absolutely Brad Blake and in July 2011 , when we testified for better night time noise regulations in Maine , all wind developers representatives  present threatened the BEP that such change would chase developers away from Maine or would decrease their profit margin. Not an ounce of empathy vis-a vis all the noise victims who were present in the room to explain their case to the BEP. An unbelievable shame .

Comment by Brad Blake on January 24, 2018 at 7:18pm

Regarding the BDN & PPH coverage:  Jeremy Payne whines that Gov. LePage is ruining the billion dollar wind industry. How ironic, since the wind turbines that he promotes ruins a portion of the $10 billion per year tourism industry, lowers property values, and imposes deleterious health impacts on wildlife and humans. Out of State import Voorhees admitted to me at the Rollins wind project hearing in Lincoln in 2009 that his experience with rural Maine was a "drive up to Baxter Park"--ONE TIME! He arrived in Lincoln Lakes after dark for that meeting to promote the destruction of an area he never even saw.
These people are ENEMIES of our beautiful state and should go back from were they came!

Comment by Steve Thurston on January 24, 2018 at 6:13pm

Thank you Governor LePage for restoring sanity to Maine's comittment to "Quality of Place".  Baldacci used Maine to enrich himself by forcing the Expedited Wind Act down our throats, and then becoming Vice President of Iberdrola's wind turbine spin-off - Avangrid.  This brazen act of destruction to Maine's landscape also enriched his cronies - PUC head Kurt Adams, who quit to work for First Wind and Angus King, who needed the wind law to build his Record Hill Wind project. 

 Please run against Angus King.  He used Maine to enrich himself,  first by pushing for renewable subsidies (RPS) as governor, then by becoming a wind developer so he could reap the subsidies.  His wind project in Roxbury is a poster child for everything that is wrong with putting wind turbines on Maine's mountains. (see pic taken from Bald Pate on the Appalachian Trail)  As US Senator you would help to right all the wrongs that people like Angus King have perpetrated on our country.  

 

Hannah Pingree on the Maine expedited wind law

Hannah Pingree - Director of Maine's Office of Innovation and the Future

"Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine."

https://pinetreewatch.org/wind-power-bandwagon-hits-bumps-in-the-road-3/

 

Maine as Third World Country:

CMP Transmission Rate Skyrockets 19.6% Due to Wind Power

 

Click here to read how the Maine ratepayer has been sold down the river by the Angus King cabal.

Maine Center For Public Interest Reporting – Three Part Series: A CRITICAL LOOK AT MAINE’S WIND ACT

******** IF LINKS BELOW DON'T WORK, GOOGLE THEM*********

(excerpts) From Part 1 – On Maine’s Wind Law “Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine if the law’s goals were met." . – Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting, August 2010 https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/wind-power-bandwagon-hits-bumps-in-the-road-3/From Part 2 – On Wind and Oil Yet using wind energy doesn’t lower dependence on imported foreign oil. That’s because the majority of imported oil in Maine is used for heating and transportation. And switching our dependence from foreign oil to Maine-produced electricity isn’t likely to happen very soon, says Bartlett. “Right now, people can’t switch to electric cars and heating – if they did, we’d be in trouble.” So was one of the fundamental premises of the task force false, or at least misleading?" https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/wind-swept-task-force-set-the-rules/From Part 3 – On Wind-Required New Transmission Lines Finally, the building of enormous, high-voltage transmission lines that the regional electricity system operator says are required to move substantial amounts of wind power to markets south of Maine was never even discussed by the task force – an omission that Mills said will come to haunt the state.“If you try to put 2,500 or 3,000 megawatts in northern or eastern Maine – oh, my god, try to build the transmission!” said Mills. “It’s not just the towers, it’s the lines – that’s when I begin to think that the goal is a little farfetched.” https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/flaws-in-bill-like-skating-with-dull-skates/

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