As solar booms in Maine, unease grows about loss of forest

by Mehr Sher
11/21/22

Excerpts:

.......The stakes for the siting of solar farms are increasing given Maine’s statutory target of 80 percent clean energy by 2030 and a recent rapid increase in solar development often requiring the clearing of many acres......

Since 2018, available data show approved solar farms ranging from one to 926 acres, with the majority being within 20 to 45 acres. Of the permitted projects, 10 are described as being more than 100 acres.

But these figures are an undercount and based on incomplete data the BDN collected from the department, which did not include acreage information in its database for 51 out of 110 total sites approved between 2018 and 2022..................

It’s not yet known how many solar projects require cutting of trees, but it’s clear that many have. Based on the incomplete dataset, developers for 19 sites estimated they would need to clear a combined total of about 696 acres. 

That total does not include the number of acres being cleared by what will be Maine’s largest solar farm. Longroad Energy’s Three Corners Project, which is under construction in Benton, Clinton and Unity Township, estimates it will need to clear 690 acres of vegetation and trees for its solar panels. The entire site is 926 acres.............

https://www.bangordailynews.com/2022/11/21/mainefocus/maine-solar-b...

 

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Comment by Willem Post on November 23, 2022 at 8:57pm

Robert,

Those wind folks and accommodating bureaucrats don’t give a damn about wildlife and their habitats.

They are blindly “saving the world”, while collecting huge subsidies, cementing their bureaucrat careers, while impoverishing and screwing Ordinary Maine folks up and down and sideways.

Comment by Robert Powers on November 23, 2022 at 7:40pm

Tree clearing is also major on ALL wind projects.  Cutting trees increases the effects of the wind in the ridge lines....which also damages important wildlife habitat on the ridges...which is totally ignored by DEP and the IF&W.   Most of the ridges are mature hardwood forest types...also consider te access roads at lower elevations and there is maximum impact on a variety of forest types.

Comment by Dan McKay on November 21, 2022 at 5:07pm

Comment by Willem Post on November 21, 2022 at 4:30pm

Solar can never boom in Maine, because the turnkey capital costs to install them are too high and the annual capacity factor is too low

That leads to very high costs of production, which requires huge subsidies to have owners earn at least 10% on their investments 

 

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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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/

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