In an opinion piece at the Cumberland (Maryland) Times-News titled, “It’s time to tackle climate change through wind energy,” wind representative Frank Maisano challenged a letter to the editor in which the writer asked specific questions about industrial wind.
Typical of one with no answers, Mr. Maisano reaches into the wind developer’s bag of propaganda tricks and yanks out Numbers 1, 2, 5, 7, 13, and 14 to suggest the submitter of specific “what if” questions has no credibility or, as my favorite local reporter (aka wind shill) likes to portray folks who question – “standing in the way of progress and the common good.”
So, is it remotely possible these wind folks will ever answer a serious question directly? This enjoyable clip might give a clue to their tactic:
Mr. Maisano didn’t clarify the letter he was addressing, but perhaps he meant this list from Jon Boone’s letter of April 21 titled “Some questions about wind power are well worth asking.”
• Why did the Dutch stop using windmills to grind grain and pump water to reclaim land from the sea — as soon as the steam engine was invented?
• Why are sailing vessels used almost entirely for recreation today, rather than for commercial purposes?
• Why aren’t gliders providing a substantial percentage of commercial air transport?
• What is the difference between energy and power? What would be the likely consequence if all our gas pumps were wind “powered?”
• What is the percentage of oil used for electricity, nationally and in the MidAtlantic region?
• Why must electricity supply be matched to demand at all times?
• What are the implications for wind technology given that any power generated is a function of the cube of the wind speed along a narrow range of wind velocities (a wind turbine doesn’t begin work until wind speeds hit 9-mph and maxes out when the wind speeds hit around 34-mph)? Explain how a fluctuating source of energy could, by itself, “power” any city.
• Why has steady, controllable, precision power been the basis of modern life?
• If constructed on a forested ridge, how many acres of woods must be cut to support a 100MW wind project, consisting of 40-2.5MW turbines, each 460-feet tall? Account for the requirement to accommodate the “free flow of the wind” for each turbine, staging areas for construction, access roads, substations, and transmission lines. Also account for the number of miles the wind project would extend downrange, assuming five turbines per mile. Finally, account for the amount of concrete necessary to provide a sturdy base for each turbine.
• Examine four wind projects in Pennsylvania and West Virginia, asking how many permanent jobs were produced, the amount of local taxes and revenues received, and what the promises of such were beforehand ?
These seem fairly reasonable, so I don’t know why Mr. Maisano has to answer with this nonsense: “We already know from our experience in other states in the Mid-Atlantic, just to the north, south and west of Garrett and Allegany counties: wind projects have successfully generated clean energy, jobs, tax revenue, economic opportunities and yes, tourism.”
Well, sir … we actually don’t “already know” all this, but perhaps you could share the specifics from which you drew your estimates. I’ll help you out with a couple of facts:
- Mountaineer Wind Energy in Thomas WV – rated capacity 66 MW, produced 18.6 MW average in 2009= 28.2%
- Mt. Storm in Grant County, WV – rated capacity 264 MW, produced 66.1 MW average in 2009 = 25.0%
Now I don’t know about you, but for all the land, air and tax subsidies these clunkers consume, I don’t consider this particularly successful.
Oh, and about the animal kills … think you can convince your buddies to open the gates to allow the bat/bird kill trackers back on sites? I’m sure you recall that, when too many were found, the research teams were tossed off the property. Mighty neighborly of you folks.
We’re waiting for your answers … and waiting … and waiting … and …
You Letter to the Editor is a page from the Big Wind Industry Public Relations Game Play Book.
You write, “Meanwhile, the state of Maryland falls further behind because of a small band of opponents attempt to stand in the way.”
On July 31, 2006, the Chesapeake Climate Action Network reported:
“The fact that we can’t get a wind farm going in Maryland is a sad state of affairs,” said Mike Tidwell, director of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network, which supports wind power because it doesn’t produce carbon dioxide or other gases that contributes to global warming.” “Part of the blame for the delays, Tidwell said, lies with a small group of anti-wind activists led by …”
The projects have not moved forward due to lack of investors or utility companies willing to sign contracts.
1. The public is increasing becoming concern what these projects are costing them, through loss tax revenues, extra consumer charges to purchase ‘free green energy’.
2. Investors are becoming increasing concerned what the potential cost could be to their investments.
As an example, US Wind Force Savage Mountain Project was approved in March 2003, but failed…
“- A Savage Mountain wind power project that never got off the ground will officially die on Saturday, when the facility’s construction deadline passes.”
Despite a two-year extension granted in 2007, construction work never began on the proposed US Wind Force facility. After three years of construction delays, Vice President David Friend said that ultimately, the company could not secure an adequate power purchase agreement in a timely fashion.
“At that time the market was at one place and today it’s at a different place,” Friend said. “In today’s market, that project just didn’t perform well enough to make it work.” http://www.windaction.org/news/26269
The public and investors recognize the risk and legal responsibilities.
• Why should an investor put financial resources into a wind project that offers inadequate pre-construction studies? Look what happened here
US Fish and Wildlife Services (FWS) recommends three years of pre-construction monitoring to determine spatial and temporal use of project area by migratory birds.
Since 2002, the FWS have notified Clipper, Synergic, and US Wind Force LLC that Federal listed species may occur within the proposed project areas. There is the potential for adverse effects to bats, eagles, and wetlands.
The Service continues to express concern on the potential risk that construction and operations of wild power facilities may pose to wildlife residing and migrating through Western Maryland, nearby West Virginia, including the cumulative impacts that could occur following operation of this project and additional projects on Eastern United States ridgelines.
Constellation indicates they will apply for an Incidental Take Permit. If so what is the big hurry to start construction?
Constellation says they want to be a good neighbor. I guess this is how Constellation defines a good neighbor.
“Robison and other nearby property owners also object to what they say was a complete lack of review of the project’s impact on environmentally sensitive areas.”
“MDE spokeswoman Dawn Stoltzfus said the contractor clearing the site for Constellation had failed to install a silt fence properly and that runoff controls were inadequate. She said officials are weighing whether to fine the company.
It not a small band of opponentsthat attempt to stand in the way.” People now recognize that Big Industry Wind really represents High costs with little social value.