MAINE VOICES Posted 4:00 AM Maine Voices: Proposal to revive offshore wind project does not pass the smell test

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Comment by Willem Post on June 3, 2019 at 10:47am

Highly subsidized wind blows at random.

There is NONE, ZERO, NADA reliability.

Here is a diagram of 1600 MW offshore when it was very windy.

The output VARIED from 1600 MW to ZERO.

It is less than 200 MW during FIVE DAYS of the 24 Dec 2017 to Jan 8 2018 period.

And those 5 days occur at random, i.e., they could have happened AT ANY TIME during that period.

That is reliable?

Go sell that nonsense to idiots.

It would be easy to simulate a diagram for the SAME period, when it is not windy at all, which happens in winter (and summer), even offshore.

The graph would be hugging the bottom most of the time.

THE TRADITIONAL GENERATORS would needed to fill in the generation gap.

Wind is a cripple.

It needs crutches.

Comment by Willem Post on May 29, 2019 at 12:11pm

Mills is 100% in the pockets of the Maine RE fanatics.

She spouts one wacko idea after another.

Totally lacks experience in energy and therefore lacks judgment in that area.

It will cost Joe and Jane Worker, ratepayer and taxpayer, big time

Maine folks need to read this articles

Comment by Art Brigades on May 29, 2019 at 12:04pm

Well written piece. The fact is, the PUC did its job. The three outstanding commissioners - all apolitical as they are supposed to be - simply acted soberly.

Politicians in an election year depicted it as a debacle instigated or orchestrated by the former Governor. He messed up a lot of things in his eight years, but one of the things he did right was open the door for StatOil to flee, and nobody can dispute the fact he appointed three excellent impartial commissioners to the PUC.

Now the new governor has just announced her choice for a new commissioner AND the Chair, to boot. He is as political as they come. He is actually more political (and less competent) than the king of conflict (Kurt Adams) was in his stint on the PUC.

The nominee served as a state party chair and as the partisan majority leader in the Senate. Before that he was Chair of the legislature's Utilities Committee, where he had his hand on the wheel during the unprecedented wind buildout.  He was instrumental in doing the Wind Lobby's bidding, writing heinous laws while squashing citizen outcry in the form of some 2 dozen killed bills presented to fix the Wind Law. He is an activist and green energy zealot who is smart enough to know better, but who, like so many Ivy Leaguers, eschews reason and fact in favor of idealism and crony capitalism.  

A miserable pick and step backwards by the new governor.    

Comment by Frank J. Heller, MPA on May 29, 2019 at 11:50am

This DER SPIEGLE article is a very damning and damaging portrait of the off shore wind industry in the N. Sea......bankruptcies, renewable energy corps. refusing to bid or build off-shore wind, spiraling costs of maintenance and replacement costs. And this lesson is from a 3(?) decade old industry with hundreds of wind turbines and a country toying with nuclear power and relying more and more on natural gas.

Comment by Willem Post on May 29, 2019 at 10:19am

Mohegan Resident,

Mohegan Island would be severely impacted if the turbines were located 2 miles east of the island.

In Scotland, the UK, Denmark, the Netherlands and Germany all such 600 ft tall wind turbines must be at least 15 miles from land so as to have minimal visual impact on people. The nighttime red flashing beacons would still be visual at the horizon.

Thank you for posting that PPH article, which appears to take issue with PROCEDURE.

On 20 May there was a pro-floating turbine article in the PPH, to which I responded with this op-ed

It likely was not printed.

Dear Mr. Greg Kesich, Editor Portland Press Herald.

Please read this URL to learn a lot.


(Mr. Greg suggested I write an op-ed regarding the referenced PPH article, so here it is.)


This op-ed is in reference to an article on floating wind turbines off the coast of Maine in the Portland Press Herald, dated 20 May 2019.


The article states, Statoil had proposed a $120 million demonstration project for two 6 MW Hywind turbines ($10,000/kW) off Boothbay Harbor, but that Governor Page had rejected it. As you recall, his main reason was the higher electricity prices Joe and Jane Worker/Ratepayer would have to pay for 20 years.


The article states, Statoil instead took its project to Scotland, where it has invested more than $200 million for five 6 MW Hywind turbines. After some checking, the actual turnkey cost turned out to be $263 million.


Scotland got the turbines at $8,767/kW in 2017, but Maine would have gotten the same turbines at $10,000/kW.


The article states, “.....and given that country (Scotland) a head start on establishing itself as developer, manufacturer and exporter of offshore technology. Such potential was recognized by the wind energy task force, which was created in 2008 by Gov. John Baldacci and released its findings in December 2009.”


That statement is highly naïve and unrealistic. Norway has invested billions of dollars in infrastructures to develop specialized facilities and seagoing ships for shallow-water and deep-water wind turbines during the past 10 - 15 years. Norway has absolutely no intention of establishing Scotland and Maine as competitors.


The Scotland/UK actual contributions to the project were:


1) Scotland making some parts that were shipped to Norway for assembly

2) Scotland providing the site 18 miles from shore to minimize visual impacts from shore.

3) The UK providing a subsidy of 18.5 c/kWh, plus Statoil selling electricity at about 6.5 c/kWh on the wholesale market, for a total wholesale cost of 25 c/kWh for 20 years. This compares with New England wholesale prices averaging about 5 c/kWh since 2008.

4) The Scotland people paying higher prices/kWh for low-value, variable/intermittent electricity for 20 years that requires the services of other generators for peaking, filling in and balancing year-round. Statoil had to provide a 1.0 MWh li-ion battery system, at a capital cost of about $700,000, to help smooth the flow of the variable electricity from Hywind to minimize disturbances of the Scotland grid.


NOTE: If Maine government would have insisted Statoil would build significant infrastructure in Portland, ME, or elsewhere in Maine, Statoil, if willing to do so, would merely have increased the cost of the electricity, c/kWh, to cover its additional costs.


NOTE: Massachusetts has signed contracts for 800 MW of offshore wind turbines south of Martha’s Vineyard. If the state government would have insisted the consortium of European companies would build significant infrastructure in New Bedford, MA, or elsewhere in Massachusetts, the consortium, if willing to do so, would merely have increased the cost of the electricity, c/kWh, to cover its additional costs. However, Governor Baker insisted on lowest electricity cost, as that would benefit all of Massachusetts, not just New Bedford, etc. Counting votes is important. See URL.


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."


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


(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 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?" 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.”

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