Industrial Wind and Solar is a death sentence to Vermont's landscape.


Editor’s note: This commentary is by Steve Thurston, of Ferrisburgh, who is a retired general contractor and home builder committed to energy efficiency and conservation as the critical path to reducing fossil fuel consumption. He was a founding member and co-chair of the Citizen’s Task Force on Wind Power in Maine. In 2011 he helped initiate a successful citizens petition to create a special section in Maine’s noise regulations to address wind turbine noise.

Due to federal and state subsidies for wind projects, which reimburse about two-thirds of the construction and operating costs of these projects, over 80 miles of New England’s mountain ridges have been clear cut and blasted for the two lane highways that must be built to the top of the mountain and along the ridgeline to transport the enormous components of wind turbines to their destinations. Upon completion these machines rise hundreds of feet above the treetops with blade tips that move through the air at Class 5 hurricane force speeds – creating instant death to any bird, bat, or raptor that strays into its path. The roar created by the blades ripping through the air travels down the mountain to homes in the valleys below and at night, when all is quiet, many people who are sensitive to the pulsating low frequencies emitted by these enormous machines experience chronic, debilitating sleep disturbance.

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Comment by Long Islander on October 8, 2015 at 8:24pm

A lot of folks are being bribed. That simple.

Look under the table.

Comment by Penny Gray on October 8, 2015 at 6:26pm

A friend of mine called me from a business road trip two years ago, he was somewhere in the mid-west and said, "If you could keep those wind factories out of Maine, you'd have the biggest marketing tool going for your tourism industry.  You should see what these wind projects have done to the plain states.  These turbines are everywhere."  Wind industry lobbyists gave a presentation to Maine's tourism board.  They actually showed photos of the midwest pincushioned with industrial sized turbines and said, "Maine could look like this, too!"  Why didn't the tourism board tar and feather this dude and run him out of town?  They were afraid their hotels and resorts would be swamped by rising ocean levels.  And I'm not kidding.

Comment by Eric A. Tuttle on October 8, 2015 at 1:12pm

Tourism, in the upper 3 New England states, if promoted properly with conservation (real conservation) would be a jobs creator at many levels, preserve nature and allow for enjoyment of those around the world. The monies would stay local vs traveling outward, to investors such as big oil, and the others that come here to destroy, for a promise of faith.

Occupation of lands, has been going on since Mankind began. Always trying to have a place of sustainable living. In today's world, some are content to live in concrete towers of confinement, imprisoned by choice, and seek to destroy the land of others that seek to live in freedom with what could be a sustained higher quality lifestyle provided by nature, with clean air, water and abilities to grow fresh food locally.

Covering new land with solar, robs from nature and our ability to forest, farm and other activities. Destruction of hilltops and Mountains with either wind or solar changes much of what nature is able to currently provide, be it at the top, along the way or when deposited on the land or into the ocean. A different chemical makeup will come as water washes over new rocks releasing different concentrations of elements due to changing distributions of snow, and gradual stream relocations down the hillsides.

Attending a UMO Campus Green Team of students meeting with a 350 sponsor, (who is encouraging divesting from Oil) I suggested we divest also from corporations that produce high energy consuming products, that drive in part, the perceived need of additional wind or solar power. Promote Reduction through Efficiency". They received the thought well.  

Comment by Kathy Sherman on October 7, 2015 at 11:02pm
Coincidentally I went to ISO-NE right away after reading great commentary and wind was doing the best that I have ever seen it at 495.7 MW, above trash and nearly as well as wood, but still only 4.1% of demand as people are turning out the lights for the night (10:45 PM). If you can't forecast it and can't store it for dispatch when needed, it will never be worth the cost of required transmission upgrades and new high voltage lines, let alone the loss of habitat and everything else.

What about the idea that Vermont utilities don't want it? They operate very differently in Vermont with regard to RPS and other things. Can Vermont projects sell their "environmental attributes" into the more lucrative southern New England state markets for RECs? I thought that it was decided that they couldn't.

A perspective on the ISO-NE market is that today's day ahead price was only slightly higher than the PTC (and the PTC is really worth more than the $23/MWh).


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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