Time Sensitive: Dept of Energy Seeking Public Comment on Maine Offshore Wind

Meeting dates and written comment deadline are highlighted below. Perhaps the new DOE will take public input seriously.

EA-2049: UNIVERSITY OF MAINE’S NEW ENGLAND AQUA VENTUS I, AN OFFSHORE WIND ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY DEMONSTRATION PROJECT, OFFSHORE MONHEGAN ISLAND IN THE GULF OF MAINE

SUMMARY

DOE is proposing to provide funding to the University of Maine to support the development of an offshore wind advanced technology demonstration project (i.e. New England Aqua Ventus I) consisting of two turbines on floating foundations in the Gulf of Maine, approximately 2.5 miles south of Monhegan Island, Lincoln County, Maine and 12 miles off the mainland.  This proposed project is also known as the Maine Aqua Ventus I project.  Development actions include design, construction, and commissioning of the proposed project; environmental monitoring; and five years of post-construction structural and performance monitoring data collection by the University of Maine.  Additional project activities and/or potential impacts from the project would occur in or near Hampden, Searsport, Port Clyde, Monhegan Island and Pemaquid, Maine.  The operation, maintenance and eventual decommissioning of the proposed project are considered connected actions under the Council on Environmental Quality's Regulations for Implementing the Procedural Provisions of the National Environmental Policy Act (40 CFR 1508.25) and will be analyzed in the Environmental Assessment (EA) as part of the Proposed Action.

DOE intends to prepare an EA to evaluate the potential direct, indirect and cumulative impacts of the New England Aqua Ventus I project.

WHAT’S NEW

February 2017 – DOE is requesting public input on defining the scope of environmental impacts and issues to be addressed in the DOE Environmental Assessment (EA) for the New England Aqua Ventus I project.

Public scoping is a key component of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process and is used to provide an opportunity for the public to help define the scope of environmental impacts and issues to be addressed in depth in the EA.  All public comment opportunities and meetings are posted below.

PUBLIC SCOPING MEETINGS

DOE will conduct the following public scoping informational meetings:

February 28, 2017 from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm and 7:00 pm to 9:00 pmLocation: Fire Department Meeting Room at the Town of St. George Office, 3 School Street, Tenants Harbor, Maine 04860.  Meeting format: open house.

March 1, 2017 from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm. Location: Monhegan Island School, 1 Monhegan Avenue, Maine 04852. Meeting format: short presentation with an open house to follow.  For instructions on remote participation for this meeting, click here.

Please check this webpage prior to the scheduled meetings for additional meeting information including any delays or postponements due to inclement weather.

For a summary of the Key Steps in the DOE NEPA Process for the New England Aqua Ventus I project, click here.

OVERVIEW

For more information on the U.S. Department of Energy’s Offshore Wind Advanced Technology Demonstration Projects, click here.

PUBLIC COMMENT OPPORTUNITIES

DOE welcomes your input on DOE’s Proposed Action, alternatives, and environmental issues to be reviewed in the EA.  To ensure DOE receives your written comments in time for consideration in preparation of the draft EA, please provide them on or before March 22, 2017.  Written comments can be submitted via email at AquaVentus1EA@ee.doe.gov or via mail to:

Ms. Diana Heyder, NEPA Division
U.S. Department of Energy
Golden Field Office
15013 Denver West Parkway
Golden, CO 80401

The complete public scoping notice and project description are available for your use below.

DOCUMENTS AVAILABLE FOR DOWNLOAD 

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Comment by Jim Lutz on February 28, 2017 at 6:53pm

I wrote this using some of the data and writings from our Website to submit to the DOE.  Please comment and let me know if I should make changes or additions.

Thanks, Jim

Comments on Vinal Haven Wind Installation

In 2008, Governor John Baldacci and his subordinates in Maine put forth a bill called “The Expedited Wind Energy Act” and passed it through the Maine Legislature with absolutely no debate and no objections.  Their reasoning had many errors and outright lies in the proposal and got broad support based on those statements.  In the time since, most of those have been proven to be false and yet they continue to try and put through more and more industrial wind projects in the State of Maine and offshore. 

The bill constituted one of the most significant changes in the state’s land use laws in a generation:

• It weakened longstanding rules that would have required wind turbines “to fit harmoniously into the landscape.” LURC director Catherine Carroll said, “That’s a huge change.”

• The bill cut off a layer of appeal for those protesting state permits for wind power.

• It set ambitious goals for the development of wind power that could result in 1,000 to 2,000 turbines being constructed along hundreds of miles of Maine’s landscape, including the highly prized mountaintops where wind blows hard and consistently.

 It opened every acre of the state’s 400 municipalities to fast-track wind development.

Baldacci said all this could be done without hurting Maine’s landscape or the tourism industry.  The law is still largely in effect today.

According to Chris O’Neil, a former state legislator who now works as a public affairs consultant to groups opposing wind power development in Maine’s mountains, said that the governor’s vision was fundamentally flawed. “To fulfill the charge of making Maine a leader in wind power development and to simultaneously protect Maine’s quality of place is impossible,” O’Neil said.

Vinal Haven is one of those idyllic places, a place that has been treasured by visitors and artists, residents who ply the waters as have their ancestors for generations and putting wind turbine towers in their waters, towers that are taller than any building currently in the State of Maine would be just another blight on our environment. 

Power from our wind turbines does not support the people of Maine and would not exist except for the vast subsidies and tax incentives given to the developers of these projects. In fact, the politicians who put these projects through have become some of the wealthiest people in Maine as they left their political positions and morphed into management with the developers. It is a financial and political boondoggle that has managed to raise the rates and taxes of common people and businesses here in Maine. It has not provided one electron of power to Mainers, and has only hurt our health and property values as well as our viewsheds. The companies involved have changed hands so often it is going to be hard to track down who will be responsible for decommissioning them when the time comes. First Wind was the original owner who sold out to SunEdison, now bankrupt, who passed them on to TerraForm, where John Baldacci is Executive VP, but itself is in trouble. Our energy provider is Emera who is owned by a Portuguese company, Energias de Portugal, who has just sold part of their interest to China Three Gorges because of debt problems. Wind and solar have not made a cent in profits except for the subsidies and tax benefits they get. When the subsidies have been suspended, there has been no development.

Our National Energy policy is in a terrible turmoil, and most of it is because of ill advised “renewable energy” standards imposed on us by politicians, not scientists. We need to reanalyze our future and the costs that have been involved in creating this nightmare. We have spent more than $2 trillion dollars nationwide chasing a belief that something other than energy we already know is viable for our future. The costs of bringing offshore wind power to the grid are going to be high and it is not reliable. Wind commonly only produces 25% of its rated output, though offshore might push 40%. The DOE would be better off investigating a way to get more gas to Maine so one or two new gas generating power plants could be hooked up to the existing grid at a much reduced price. It really comes down to reliability and economics.

  

 

 

  

 

 

Comment by Jim Wiegand on February 25, 2017 at 12:59pm

Keep in mind that these comments are posturing or fraud because the Department of Energy is corrupt. Wind energy outputs reported by them are embellished and their website info about wind energy looks like it was taken directly from wind energy propaganda. 

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/

 

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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