When one accounts for the facts that wind is intermittent and unreliable, grid-scale electricity storage is virtually non-existent, capacity payments for conventional generators are required, massive transmission expansion is required to add wind turbines, the effects on property values, the massive subsidies and the interest on the money borrowed to fund the subsidies, what is wind's real cost, i.e., the one that wind advocates don't want you to know?
By Rep. Steven Foster, R-Dexter
In a Jan. 22, 2020 presentation to the Maine Legislature’s Energy, Utilities, and Technology committee, Dr. Richard Silkman presented his roadmap for Maine meeting its zero carbon clean energy goals by 2050 requiring an estimated 15000 MW of electrical energy. His plan, which has been adopted by the Governor’s Energy Office and the majority party in Augusta, would do so using solar and wind power generation, with battery storage. When asked, he said this plan laid out in his publication, A New Energy Direction for Maine, would require 40,000 to 45,000 acres of solar panels, 400 to 500 on shore 600-foot wind mills, and over 400 off shore 12MW wind mills. These numbers have never been disputed when I’ve brought them up during committee deliberations, House floor debate, or discussions with the Governor’s Energy Office.
Solar power in Maine is at best 26 percent efficient due to length of day, average cloud cover, latitude, etc. Solar panels lose up to 2 percent efficiency per year of service with an expected life of 20-30 years. Although the Legislature rescued Mainers from the threat of single use plastic bags, there was little to no majority party interest in two bills put forward to address recycling the approximately 2.1 million pounds of material required for 45,000 acres of panels.
On shore wind power in Maine is about 40 percent efficient due to wind patterns, days without sufficient wind speeds, days with too high wind speeds, etc. Numbers I’ve seen on current Maine wind farm production fall below that. Offshore windmills in the Gulf of Maine are projected by supporters to be 60 percent efficient due to better wind patterns, wind speeds, etc. I understand this is based on numbers achieved in the extreme weather area of the North Sea.
Hydro power is not only capable of supplying power to meet cyclical demand 24/7, but is 80 to 90 percent efficient, with larger generation facilities above 85 percent. Contrary to wind or solar, no other energy storage is required besides the potential energy provided by the water and gravity.
The Clean Energy Corridor is planned to supply 1,200 megawatts of hydro power to the ISO New England grid, which Maine generation facilities supply power to and most Maine consumers receive power from. Some generators in Maine, such as the 56 windmills near Bingham connecting to a sub-station in Guilford and supplying power to Connecticut, were built by and for other states to meet their green energy goals.
Replacing the energy the NECEC will carry to our grid through the 1,200 acres of newly cleared right of way would require an equivalent 7,200 acres of solar panels plus land for spacing, roads, power lines, substations, etc. An equivalent amount of power from onshore wind farms would require 112,500 acres. These numbers come from Dr. Silkman and wind energy proponents.
We’ve all heard many so-called facts from both sides of Question 1. As a member of the EUT Committee in Maine’s Legislature, I thought it important to provide this information to those who may not have it, as they consider how to vote on this important matter. Because I find it difficult to support occupying so much of Maine’s farmland and hill tops with highly subsidized solar and wind power versus other more dependable and much less expensive forms of energy generation, I’ll be voting no on Question 1.
Foster, a retired engineer, represents House District 104, serving on the EUT Committee. He holds a Maine 1st Class Engineer’s License and was a USCG licensed chief engineer.
Mail: 2 State House Station, Augusta, ME 04330
Legislative Office: (207) 287-1440
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No matter now, seems as usual the masses have voted with their 'feelings' rather than facts. You can lead a Lemming to the edge of the cliff they'll all follow the first one with no coherent thought. Thus the state of Maine spirals even lower as the Lemmings follow their 'feelings' of hate for Mills and CMP, facts be damned.
It was not written, or reviewed, by an energy systems engineer
The power factor of solar, CF, in New England, is at best 0.145, as measured by ISO-NE, the NE grid operator.
That CF is for large, field-mounted, fixed axis, clean, new, south-facing systems, which cost about $3.5 million per MW of solar panels, turnkey.
Each MW of panels would need about 7.5 acres.
There would be about 6,000 MW of panels on 45,000 acres
Each kW of panels produces about 1,250 kWh per year
6,000 MW of panels would produce 6,000,000 kW x 1,250 kWh/kW = 7.5 billion kWh per year.
They would need to be located at least 30 miles from any island or shoreline to ensure strobe lights would not adversely impact aesthetics.
Electricity production would be about 4,800 MW x 8,766 h/y x 0.50, CF = 21,038,400 MWh per year
GRID-SCALE BATTERY SYSTEMS
If you think $21 BILLION is humongous for the impoverished State of Maine, wait until you see the cost of site-specific, grid-scale, utility-grade, custom designed, battery systems, that operate 24/7/365, at a turnkey cost of about $650 per kW, delivered as AC.
BTW, battery systems last about 15 years, if you take good care of them.
Such battery systems have a loss of at least 20% of any electricity passing through the system, on a high-voltage to high-voltage basis.
Most folks forget about that expensive detail.
BATTERY AND PV PANEL LAND-FILLS
After about 25 years, almost all of these aged PV panels would need to land-filled as hazardous waste.
1) It would be prudent, to find sites to build hazardous-waste land-fills, for batteries and PV panels, and to determine their turnkey capital costs and the fees that need to be charged to Owners, to recover all O&M costs, plus amortizing costs.
2) It would be prudent to immediately set up a fund into which owners would make deposits, starting on Year 1 of operation.
BTW, Maine Legislators have no interest in two bills put forward to address recycling the approximately 2.1 million pounds of PV solar materials from 45,000 acres
RESERVOIR HYDRO POWER PLANTS
Reservoir hydro power plants, with the reservoir water surface at least 50 to 100 ft above the power plant intake, can provide steady, low cost, near-zero-CO2 electricity, 24/7/365.
Such plants can easily vary the water flow through the turbines, to vary their output, to counteract any variations in wind and solar outputs.
HIGH COSTS OF WIND, SOLAR, AND BATTERY SYSTEMS IN US NORTHEAST
WIND AND SOLAR TO PROVIDE 30 PERCENT OF FUTURE NEW ENGLAND ELECTRICITY CONSUMPTION
THE VAGARIES OF SOLAR AND WIND IN NEW ENGLAND
This election victory in Virginia is an important FIRST step to END the Socialist-style, Globalist-style rampage perpetrated by SOCIALIST Dem/Progs in Washington, DC, during the past few months.
Dem/Progs are promoting open borders and government give-a-ways, for vote buying purposes
Dem/Progs are giving HUNDREDS of $BILLIONs to MILLIONS of NEW illiterates, unskilled, sickly, often criminal, illegals, from a multitude of countries, walking across the US border, for vote buying purposes.
Dem/Progs are maliciously fostering government DEPENDENCY, instead of promoting PRIVATE ENTERPRISE, for vote buying purposes.
The US people have a Constitutional right to hold such “Legislators” accountable.
Legislators, such as the Dem/Prog cabal of Pelosi, Schumer, Sanders, at al., are hell-bent to foist a $1.75 TRILLION SOCIALIST-STYLE SHAM onto the US People, regardless of what it does to:
1) US INFLATION and CONSUMER PRICES, and
2) The already outrageously high US NATIONAL DEBT, and
3) The already outrageously high GOVERNMENT DEFICITS
4) The already outrageously high US TRADE DEFICITS
5) The viability of US Social Security Trust Fund
6) The viability of the US Medicare and Medicaid Trust Funds
Sanders was sneaking in Eye care, Hearing care, and Dental care, and a host government gifting, which would further increase US government deficits and national debt, and burden various Trust Funds.
All three funds are on a glide path to bankruptcy in a few years.
Manchin said, it would not be prudent to further increase US national debt and further burden these Funds.
BTW, that sham would greatly increase Dem/Prog CENTRALIZED COMMAND/CONTROL of the federal government, and, by extension, the SOVEREIGN US PEOPLE, because all of the SHAM bill government programs would be set up and run by career Dem/Progs.
Remember, the SOVEREIGN states created the federal government, not the other way around.
The cost of the SHAM bill would be MORE THAN TWO TIMES the $1.75 TRILLION, if all its provisions would be financed the full ten years, says Senator Manchin.
Manchin has been consistent for MONTHS, saying the $1.75 TRILLION had to be fully paid for with revenues from NEW taxes, and savings from existing government programs.
However, the Wharton School of Business, the best business school in the US, claims the tax revenues and savings assumed by the SHAM bill writers are $400 BILLION short of the $1.75 TRILLION COST.
Such chicanery by LEGISLATORS, perpetrated behind closed doors, as part of “the process”, is intolerable, and should be impeachable, as determined by the STILL-FREE, UNCOWED, SOVEREIGN US PEOPLE.
Senator Manchin calls the $1.75 TRILLION SHAM bill a “shell game” and “smoke and mirrors”.
Legislators should be held to ACCOUNT, and not be allowed to hide behind MASKS, PR releases, scare-mongering, and SMOKE AND MIRRORS.
BTW, that also applies to Vermont’s unconstitutional, GWSA sham, perpetrated by Dem/Progs, using “Fighting Global Warming” as a foil, to benefit the politically-well-connected, heavily subsidized, Vermont renewable energy sector, and, by extension, financially screw all other Vermonters FORE DECADES.
The GWSA sham would have NO, ZERO, NADA EFFECT on the climate
The GWSA sham is merely “feel-good” and political payoff.
ENOUGH IS ENOUGH
Watch the Manchin video regarding the SHAM bill, aka RECONCILIATION bill. See URL
Manchin states, the cost will be almost DOUBLE the $1.75 TRILLION.
Efforts to pressure Manchin to support the massive SOCIALISTIC safety net expansion, aka, the SHAM bill, prompted him to make his two dramatic declarations:
1) Don't rush the package
2) Don't link it to the separate, BI-PARTISAN infrastructure bill.
Why it matters:
Manchin's surprise press statement Monday, November 1, 2021, didn't just disrupt the glide path to a vote envisioned by House leaders; it created a major PR nightmare for the White House.
Manchin said the $1.75 TRILLION SHAM bill was financed by "shell games"
Manchin believes it will cost closer to $3.9 TRILLION, if all its provisions would be financed for ten years.
That estimate comes from the Penn Wharton Budget model, which has been helping Manchin sort through how much each program costs. It includes easily digestible tables, showing the costs per year, and over the usual 10-year window.
The same Wharton experts estimated last week, the revenue increases the Dem/Prog cabal proposes to finance the spending — which the White House put at $1.9 TRILLION — may only generate closer to $1.5 TRILLIION.
BTW, why is the White House using $1.9 TRILLION, and others are using $1.75 TRILLION. Which is more correct?
Manchin has been consulting with Penn Wharton experts throughout the process and trusts the model.
By the numbers:
The Dem/Prog cabal puts the cost of day-care subsidies and universal-pre-school subsidies at $400 billion
Wharton estimates the cost at $700 BILLION over 10 years.
The Dem/Prog cabal wants to spend $200 BILLION to extend the existing child tax credit for one year, but at the ENHANCED $3,600-per-year level, and “make it fully refundable for its duration” (what the hell does that mean?).
Wharton estimates the cost at $1.8 TRILLION over 10 years.
The Dem/Prog cabal has been playing games by using different program durations, to make the total spending number appear much smaller than in reality, and thus more “digestible” for wavering Dem/Progs, who are looking for good CYA to get re-elected.
BTW, after MAGA Virginians vote, en masse, and have a Republican for Governor, on November 2, 2021, no amount of CYA will ever be enough to save the tail-ends of wavering Dem/Progs.
Between the lines:
Manchin said he will continue to negotiate over substantive concerns — from climate provisions to total costs.
"I'm open to supporting a final bill that helps move our country forward,” he said Monday. “But I'm equally open to voting against a bill that hurts our country."
The big picture
Manchin and Sinema (D-Ariz.) have been at the center of talks for passing the two massive bills, because they've challenged the Dem/Prog cabal over their cost and scope.
Senate and House progressives have targeted the two senators with slime-ball shenanigans; Sanders writing a scathing OP-ED in West Virginia newspapers, and Dem/Prog weirdo operatives entering a ladies room to harass Simena!!
The US House Caucus of Progressives, and Pelosi, threatened/blackmailed the US Senate, by saying they wouldn't vote to pass the infrastructure bill, until after the US Senate passes the SHAM bill.
The Dem/Prog cabal pressed Manchin over the weekend to publicly declare his support for the SHAM bill, hoping that would convince progressives to vote for the infrastructure bill.
That approach backfired. "Holding this (infrastructure) bill hostage is not going to work in getting my support," Manchin told reporters.
The senator said he was concerned he couldn't accurately determine the SCOPE AND COST of the SHAM bill, without the final legislative language, which is being withheld, as “part of the process”.
BTW, Sanders is likely wishing he had never written that OP-ED.
Manchin said, "As more of the real details of the basic framework for the SHAM bill are released, what I see are shell games — budget gimmicks, that make the real cost of the so-called $1.75 trillion bill estimated to be almost twice that amount ... if you extended it permanently,", i.e., extend all provisions for the full ten years.
BTW, Simena had similar concerns about how much each program would cost over 10 years.
She is carrying her own spreadsheets to keep track of the price tag.
DEEP-WATER FLOATING OFFSHORE WIND TURBINES IN MAINE
The Norwegians have about 60 years of experience building and servicing oil/gas rigs and laying undersea electric cables, gas lines and oil lines all over the world.
They have invested billions of dollars in specialized deep-water, Norwegian harbors and facilities for assembly of oil/gas rigs and invested in specialized sea-going heavy lifters, and specialized sea-going tugboats to tow the oil/gas rigs from Norwegian building sites to oil/gas production sites. The heavy lifters and other ships perform services all over the world.
Norway companies want to expand their business by building and servicing and providing spare parts for floating wind turbines for deep-water conditions all over the world
NOTE: Norwegians advocating expensive floating wind turbines that depend on the randomness of wind and produce high-cost, variable, intermittent electricity for other people, such as Jane and Joe Worker/Ratepayer, is highly hypocritical, because the Norwegians get 98% of their electricity from their own hydro plants, which produce low-cost, steady electricity (not variable, not intermittent). The Danes advocating wind turbines and boasting about their high percent of wind on their grid is similarly hypocritical, because the Danes have been increasingly using the storage reservoirs of Norway’s hydro plants for decades.
First Experimental Floating Wind Turbine in Norway
Equinor (formerly Statoil, a Norwegian government controlled company) launched the world's first operational deep-water, floating large-capacity wind turbine in 2009. The turbine trade name is “Hywind”.
The wind turbine consists of a 120 m (390 ft) tall tower, above the sea water level, and a 60 m (195 ft) submerged extension below the sea water level, with a heavy weight at the bottom to keep the wind turbine steady and upright, even with very high waves and strong wind conditions. The design was tested and perfected under storm and wind conditions simulated in a laboratory.
The 2.3 MW wind turbine is mounted on top of the tower. It was fully assembled in a deep-water harbor near Stavanger, Norway.
It was towed to a site 10 km (6.2 mi) offshore into the Amoy Fjord in 220 m (720 ft) deep water, near Stavanger, Norway, on 9 June 2009, for a two-year test run, which turned out to be successful.
First Commercial Floating Wind Turbine Plant in Scotland
Hywind Scotland project is the world's first commercial wind turbine plant using floating wind turbines.
It is located 29 km (EIGHTEEN MILES) off Peterhead, Scotland to minimize visual impacts from shore.
It has five Hywind floating turbines with a total capacity of 30 MW.
It is operated by Hywind (Scotland) Limited, a joint venture of Equinor, Norway (75%) and Masdar, Kuwait (25%).
In 2015, Equinor received permission to install 5 Hywind turbines in Scotland.
Manufacturing started in 2016 in Spain (wind turbine, rotor), Norway (tower, underwater base, assembly), and Scotland (various parts)
The turnkey capital cost was $263 million for five 6 MW turbines, or $8,767/kW.
They were designed to float on the surface, with about 180 m (600 ft) above the sea water level and 80 m (265 ft) submerged below the seawater level.
Total steel weight is about 2300 metric ton, total ballasted weight is about 20,000 metric ton.
Heavy weights in the bottom of the submerged parts serve to keep them steady and upright.
The turbines were assembled at Stord in Norway in the summer of 2017, using the specialized Saipem 7000 floating crane, and then towed to the north of Scotland by sea-going tugboats.
Make sure to see the videos showing the crane assembling the entire wind turbine.
Nothing like that exists in Maine, or in the rest of New England.
That means offshore wind turbine assembly and servicing would largely be performed by foreign companies, which already have built the infrastructures and other facilities during the past 25 years.
The huge, sea-going, specialized, crane (14,000-metric ton lifting capacity) is required for partial assembly on land and final assembly in an area close to shore with a very deep harbor, before towing, fully assembled, to the site.
The finished turbines were towed to Peterhead, Scotland.
Three cup anchors hold each turbine in place.
About 2400 meter of chain is required, weighing 400 metric ton, for each turbine.
The Hywind Scotland project was commissioned in October 2017.
Hywind Wind Turbines for Demonstration Purposes in Maine
Hannah Pingree and other Maine's wind bureaucrats in state government are engaging in mindless prattle, eager to do the bidding of various multi-millionaires and foreign companies that may be providing some wining/dining boondoggle trips to “view the Hywind turbines” in Norway and Scotland.
The turnkey cost of those two Hywind turbines would be about $10,000 per kW, versus NE ridgeline wind at $2,000/kW, and regular offshore, south of Martha’s Vineyard, at $4,000/kW.
That would be at about $120 million for a two 6 MW Hywind wind turbines, plus whatever facilities would need to be built in Maine to support the project.
The turnkey capital cost of the wind turbine plant in Maine would be much higher, because Maine does not have the experience of the Norwegians and the specialized equipment and specialized ships, and other facilities. It would be very costly to build those facilities and ships in Maine, or elsewhere.
600-ft Tall Hywind Turbines Highly Visible From Mohegan Island, Plus Infrasound
The 600-ft tall Hywind wind turbines would be highly visible from Mohegan Island, if they were located TWO MILES east of the island.
At that distance, the problem would not be just cyclical, audible noises keeping people awake, but also low frequency infrasound, which can travel many miles, and passes through walls of houses, and can be felt but not heard, and has been shown to have adverse health impacts on people and animals.
The FAA-required aviation beacons would be clearly visible during nighttime. BTW, they would need to be located about 15 - 20 miles away from Mohegan Island to be unobtrusive to the Islanders.
Here is a research report of daytime and nighttime visibility of wind turbines that are about 3 to 4 MW and about 500 ft tall. See URL with photos.
“Study objectives included identifying the maximum distances the facilities could be seen in both daytime and nighttime views and assessing the effect of distance on visual contrasts associated with the facilities. Results showed that small to moderately sized facilities were visible to the unaided eye at distances greater than 42 km [26 miles (mi)], with turbine blade movement visible up to 39 km (24 mi). At night, aerial hazard navigation lighting was visible at distances greater than 39 km (24 mi). The observed wind facilities were judged to be a major focus of visual attention at distances up to 16 km (10 mi), were noticeable to casual observers at distances of almost 29 km (18 mi), and were visible with extended or concentrated viewing at distances beyond 40 km (25 mi).”
One has to feel sorry for all the residents of Mohegan Island, but the bureaucrats in Augusta, Maine, do not care about that, because there are not enough votes to stop them. Those bureaucrats are hell-bent to use federal and state grants, subsidies, taxpayer and ratepayer money of already-struggling Joe and Jane Worker to save the world, and to enrich a host of multi-millionaires seeking tax shelters. See Appendix.
Who are these Aqua Ventus multi-millionaire owners pushing for this expensive project?
How much would be the subsidies?
What would be the energy cost/kWh?
How long would the project last before it would have to be repaired?
How would it be repaired?
Would any special ships, facilities be required?
Does Maine have the required, at least 100-meter, deep-water port?
Is anyone looking at the entire picture on an A to Z basis, or are Maine bureaucrats just dreaming/prattling about castles in Spain?
Does anyone think the Norwegians would not want to make money to maintain/service and provide spare parts for their Hywind wind turbines?
Extremely Adverse Impact on CMP Electric Rates
LePage’s energy director, Steven McGrath, has focused exclusively on the cost of electricity from the demonstration project.
The rate is at least FOUR TIMES above wholesale market value, reflecting the custom design and experimental nature of the platforms.
It would start at 23 cents per kilowatt-hour in the first year, escalating at 2.5% per year to 35 cents after 20 years.
The PUC estimates it would add up to $208 million over the term, or about $10.5 million a year from Central Maine Power ratepayers. Maine Aqua Ventus had calculated the extra cost would add 73 cents a month to the average household electric bill, in the first year of operation, more thereafter.
That is a total rip-off, because Massachusetts pays only an average of 8 - 9 c/kWh over the life of the project.
Main bureaucrats need to learn from Governor Baker.
NOTE: The above prices should be compared with NE wholesale prices, which have been about 5 c/kWh since 2008, courtesy of abundant, domestic, low-cost, low-CO2 electricity from gas at about 5 c/kWh, and low-cost, near CO2-free electricity from nuclear at about 4.5 - 5.0 c/kWh.
This project is insanity on STEROIDS.
One has to feel sorry for the already-struggling Joe and Jane Workers in Maine who will ultimately pay for all this.
My Solar Recycling bill was one of the ones Stephen mentioned. It was based on Washington state's legislation.
But there is a dirty little secret about DEP we should know. Solar "Recycling" to DEP is not true recycling. They do not strive for full recovery. For example, they are happy to simply bury asbestos wrapped in plastic, rather than implement a simple but complete recovery of raw materials.
We need a more effective DEP and BEP. They are behind our very weak environmental stewardship.
Brad Blake ... I stand corrected. I noted that in my comment below.
Ms. Sosman - CMP and Janet Mills’ brother(s) had nothing to do with Friends of Maine's Mountains. Moreover, it wasn't phony; it was for ten years a legitimate registered Maine 501c3 not for profit. It was the only statewide organization other than this Citizens blog that led the fight against industrial wind. FMM de-incorporated last year. It was formed by three altruistic gentlemen: Rand Stowell, George Appell and Dain Trafton. They incorporated shortly after the Wind Act, as they saw a threat to the mountains. Against long odds they fought the 2700 MW statutory goal, and at the time they de-incorporated, there were less than 1000 MW. FMM intervened in numerous cases. It fought and helped local groups (including yours in Frankfort) fight wind projects. It was a legal intervener against the NECEC, and after weighing the impacts vs. benefits, AND after raking CMP and Hydro Quebec over the coals, and then successfully getting major concessions from CMP and HQ, FMM signed off on the stipulation. I was president of FMM after Mr. Stowell's untimely death, and we kept up the fight. But it was mostly "mission accomplished" with so few new wind projects being proposed. Say what you want about the NECEC, but please do not falsely disparage the relentless work of FMM.
Peter Mills does in fact sit on the board of a non-profit -- Western Mountains and Rivers Corporation -- that has ties to both CMP and the transmission line project. CMP provided $250,000 to WM&R for start-up and other proceeding costs. $250,000 for start up, formed in 2017, before Millz was elected gov, with addl $50,000/year for five years. Sorry Monique, for stating wrong organization. Qwenks attacking my comment using "covid boosters" demonstrates the level of stupidity and obfuscation underlying the whole cmp corridor debacle. ArtB, an old story. And, I live in Frankfort and am proud we beat back wind turbines.
Too many Covid-19 Boosters for Nancy methinks.
Nancy Sosman, I am not sure where you got your info about FMM , but I do know that I was the engine who created FMM. I spoke twice in November 2009 to inform Rand Stowell from Weld about the impending nightmare wind power was about to unleash on Maine's mountains after the despicable Expedited Wind Law Baldacci ramrodded through the legislature in April 2008. A meeting was organized at the home of George Appell. Present were George Appell, Dan Trafton ,Rand Stowell Steve Thurston and myself. The organization Friends of Maine's Mountains was formed that same night with the purpose of paying for legal costs of opposing of wind projects. Steve Thurston and I became board members. At the second organizational meeting Chris O'Neil was hired as a lobbyist.
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