SHILL AWAY: Maine has the potential to power itself through wind

This article is wrong on so many levels.

Maine has the potential to power itself through wind

.......As of 2018, Maine was harvesting 923 megawatts of wind-generated power, meeting 21 percent of the state’s overall power needs of 4,615 megawatts. “There is plenty of wind in Maine,” Thaler said. “Does Maine have the potential to meet its own energy needs through wind power? The short answer is yes.”..................

Dan Burgess, director of the Maine Governor’s Energy Office, acknowledges the goal of 8,000 megawatts of Maine wind generated power is an ambitious one, but one he believes is obtainable, despite the fact the state is still far from its 2020 production goal.

According to the United States Geological Survey, since the passage of the Maine Wind Energy Act, 625 megawatts of wind produced energy have gone online in Maine produced by 14 separate wind turbine farms with a total of 386 turbines built between 2009 and 2017............................

“We think there’s a real opportunity for Maine’s energy future, for its environment and for the economy to produce homegrown clean wind power,” Burgess said, “This is especially true in those areas of expedited zoning regulations”

In those zoning areas, which cover much of the state, proposed wind-generated power projects would be eligible for streamlined permitting and zoning considerations. All of the wind power generating sites developed since 2009 were constructed in areas of expedited zoning.....................................“The bottom line is, we can’t wait to have clean power,” he said. “We are seeing sea levels rising, warming of the oceans, increases in tick populations, changes to vegetations, death of species and it goes on. We can’t sustain our current energy production lifestyle without renewable energy, and that means wind.”..............................

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Comment by Stephen Littlefield on January 31, 2020 at 3:28pm

Yes, a wind turbine on the state house lawn would be perfect so all those within the sound on it could experience the constant drumbeat that effects so many! Let it drive them insane!

Comment by Penny Gray on January 30, 2020 at 8:57am

I like the idea of a six hundred and fifty foot tall wind turbine on the state house lawn.  That way if it goes up in flames from all that hot hot air, it would be difficult to ignore.  Though I doubt it would get any coverage in the press.  UMPI turbine died a very quiet death, hardly a peep or a photo of the scorched remains of what is to beome our renewable future.

Comment by Kenneth Capron on January 29, 2020 at 9:55pm

One wind tower in the middle of the State House should do the trick.

Comment by Penny Gray on January 27, 2020 at 5:43pm

With the media spouting AWEA information as if it's gospel, how does one find the truth in this mess?  How do you illuminate what's really going on, and why it's going on? And how do you get this information out there?  People from towns who've been preyed upon by wind developers are up to speed, but the media has never reported objectively on this industry.

Comment by Willem Post on January 27, 2020 at 5:33pm

Pineo Girl,

How are you doing collecting the data of the GSHP system?

See my note regarding production and consumption of electricity.

Comment by Willem Post on January 27, 2020 at 5:28pm

Any electricity generated by any generator connected to the NE grid will instantly distribute itself at near the speed of light all over New England.

There is no Maine mix, Vermont mix, New Hampshire mix.

This was confirmed to me by energy systems engineers when I visited the headquarters of ISO-NE a few years ago.

Maine may physically GENERATE the wind electricity, but does not CONSUME it.


Dan Burgess definitely is not an energy systems analyst.

He a sloganeer, not an engineer.

Comment by Thinklike A. Mountain on January 27, 2020 at 1:29pm

I wouldn't be surprised in the least if an article like this gets written at this time to assure all the greenies that it's OK to try and kill the CMP corridor as panacea wind will save the day.

Comment by Pineo Girl on January 27, 2020 at 1:08pm

EIA stopped reporting wind turbine production in Maine 2018, except for annually!  And there is a reason for that! Hide the truth! EIA management is contracted out to a private organization, which is clearly  pro wind. We all know thanks to Dan McKay, that in the third quarter of 2018, the Record Hill project produced less than to percent of its stated capacity!  The Yale endowment, who bought the Record hill project from Angus must be "sucking wind"  on that purchase!  And according to US DOE records, the Stetson Wind II project in Penobscot county, also known as Evergreen II, is Emera Maine's largest retail energy purchaser!

EIA is now reporting that Maine received 12% of its electrical energy from wind power, even though most of that power goes to out of state users in southern New England through long term power purchase agreements.  The State  of Maine Office of Energy is now using that statistic as gospel!

This is indeed all very discouraging! Just when we thought the truth about wind power in Maine was finally being understood!

Comment by Willem Post on January 27, 2020 at 1:05pm

Wind and Solar as Dominant Electricity Sources Would be Too Expensive


Very High Turnkey Capital Costs for Wind and Solar: New Englanders will need traditional generators for at least several decades while RE would become the major energy source of the NE grid.


The current plan is to increase solar from 2390.5 MW to 5832.9 MW by 2027.

The turnkey capital cost would be about (5832.9 - 2390.5) x $3.5 million/MW + 10% for transmission = $13.2 billion.


The current plan is to increase wind from 1279 MW to 8493 MW by about 2035.

The turnkey capital cost would be about $36.2 billion.


Very High Electricity Costs for Wind and Solar: Renewable energy proponents want to close down existing coal, gas, oil and nuclear plants; all produce electricity at less than 5 cent per kilowatt-hour. They continue to obstruct increased, domestic, low-cost natural gas supply via pipelines and increased gas storage capacity.


NOTE: According to her press release: Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey concluded in 2016 “no new pipelines are needed” and that we “can maintain electric reliability through 2030 even without additional new natural gas pipelines”. See Appendix. 


The prices of heavily subsidized wind and solar paid by NE utilities to owners of wind and solar systems are much higher than in the rest of the US, because of New England’s mediocre wind and solar conditions.


 The prices would be about higher without the subsidies, and even higher without cost shifting to ratepayers and taxpayers, such as for:


1) The filling-in, peaking and balancing, due to wind and solar variability/intermittency;

2) Grid-related, such as grid extensions and augmentations to connect and deal with wind and solar;

3) Utility-scale energy storage, which is presently provided by the world’s fuel supply system.

Comment by Willem Post on January 27, 2020 at 1:05pm

Wind and Solar Conditions in New England: New England has highly variable weather and low-medium quality wind and solar conditions. See NREL wind map and NREL solar map.



- Wind electricity is zero about 30% of the hours of the year (it takes a wind speed of about 7 mph to start the rotors)

- Wind is minimal most early mornings and most late afternoons/early evenings (peak demand hours), especially during summer

- Wind often is minimal 5 - 7 days in a row in summer and winter, as proven by ISO-NE real-time generation data.

- About 60% is generated at night, when demand is much less than during the late afternoons/early evenings

- About 60% is generated in winter.

- During winter, the best wind month is up to 2.5 times the worst summer month

- New England has the lowest capacity factor (about 0.262) of any US region, except the US South. See URL.



- Solar electricity is strictly a midday affair.

- It is zero about 65% of the hours of the year, mostly at night.

- It often is minimal 5 - 7 days in a row in summer and in winter, as proven by ISO-NE real-time generation data.

- It is minimal early mornings and late afternoons/early evenings

- It is minimal much of the winter months

- It is minimal for several days with snow and ice on most of the panels.

- It varies with variable cloudiness, which would excessively disturb distribution grids with many solar systems, as happens in southern California and southern Germany on a daily basis. Utilities use batteries to stabilize their grids.

- During summer, the best solar month is up to 4 times the worst winter month; that ratio is 6 in Germany.

- New England has the lowest capacity factor (about 0.145, under ideal conditions) of any region in the US, except some parts of the US Northwest.


NOTE: Even if the NE grid had large capacity connections with Canada and New York, any major NE wind lull and any major NE snowfall likely would affect the entire US northeast, i.e., relying on neighboring grids to "help-out" likely would not be prudent strategy.


Wind Plus Solar:

ISO-NE publishes the minute-by-minute outputs off various energy sources contributing their electricity to the grid.

All one has to do is add the wind and solar and one comes rapidly to the conclusion both are minimal many hours of the year, at any time during the year.


Wind plus solar production could be minimal for 5 - 7 days in summer and in winter, especially with snow and ice on most of the panels, as frequently happens during December, January and February, as proven by ISO-NE real-time generation data.


If we were to rely on wind and solar for most of our electricity, massive energy storage systems (a few hundred GWh-scale for Vermont, multiple TWh-scale for NE) would be required to cover multi-day wind lulls, multi-day overcast/snowy periods, and seasonal variations. See URLs.


Wind and solar cannot ever be expected to charge New England’s EVs, so people can get to work the next day, unless backed up by several TWh of storage, because wind/solar lulls can occur for 5 - 7 days in a row, in summer and in winter. BTW, the turnkey capital cost of one TWH of storage (delivered as AC to the grid) is about $400 billion.


Shortcomings of Wind and Solar


Variable and intermittent wind and solar electricity cannot exist on any electric grid without the traditional, dispatchable generators performing the peaking, filling-in and balancing. Battery systems could be used, but the battery system turnkey capital cost would be about $400/kWh, based on AC electricity delivered to the high voltage grid. See Note.


NOTE: Wind and solar (before and after the meter) were 2.7 and 1.97 percent of all electricity on the NE grid in 2017, per ISO-NE. Total RE electricity was 10.17 percent (including before and after the meter solar), after about 20 years of subsidies. It should be obvious, past RE development was very slow, and future development likely will be just as slow. See URL.


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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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."

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