Falmouth, Massachusetts Moving Old Turbines Ignores Gearbox Failures

Falmouth Massachusetts USA -- 11/11/19

Wind I & Wind II Turbine Relocation Omits Maintenance Costs 
 
Office of Town Manager Letter September 13, 2019, Omits Gear Box & Blade Inspection For Article 14 Falmouth Town Meeting  11/11/19
See link bottom of page:
 
The replacement of transmissions or what are called gearboxes and blades in these older turbines has become a cottage industry.
 
The blade inspection and gearbox inspection happens once the turbines are taken down by a specialized heavy-duty crane.
 
Falmouth officials, as well as the news media, continue to omit any bad news about wind turbine maintenance or the lifespan of the parts.
 
Falmouth has three V-82 types of 1.65-megawatt wind turbines all made by the same manufacturer. One private two are town-owned.
 
The manufacturer of the Falmouth wind turbines operates a business that states: "as your service partner, you get access to a one-stop-shop for spare parts and repair solutions." So why is the town omitting future repair costs?
 
The Falmouth Select Board continues to ignore what happened Saturday, February 24, 2018, to the privately-owned wind turbine in Falmouth and many others including the 1.5-megawatt wind turbine at Otis Air Base and hundreds around New England that suffer gear failures. 
 
The wind industry no longer produces the 1990s gearbox technology and has switched to direct drive like the automatic transmission in your automobile.
 
Saturday, February 24, 2018 neighbors of the privately-owned wind turbine noticed a massive crane taking the blades off the wind turbine to replace gears in the gearbox. The turbine is the same type and date wind turbine as those owned by the Town of Falmouth wind turbines that have been shut down by the Massachusetts Superior Court.
 
The cost of the crane for a minimum of three days $150,000.00 and $50,000.00 each additional day.
 
The cost of a new gearbox $650,000.00 half price for a rebuilt gearbox with a limited warranty.
 
Blades wear like ice skates reducing power production of the turbine up to 2 percent per year.
 
Older blades are made of resin and fiberglass susceptible to cracking can be repaired on-site.  
 
Replacement of blades has to done in sets of three as they are balanced costs around $3,000.000.00 for a set of three. 3 million for a set of 3
The Town Meeting is Tuesday, November 12, 2019 -- Article 14 

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

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(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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