Wind energy update in New York and offshore

Cattaraugus County examines alternative energy tax issue

Per the Buffalo News (9/12)

Cattaraugus County legislators agreed Wednesday to go ahead with a Sept. 23 public hearing, but some said they’re still confused by a proposed local law governing local taxing authority for alternative energy systems.

Town of Italy (Yates County) reviews wind zoning

Per the Daily Messenger and (9/14):

…The board is considering two amendments. If approved, the town would change the comprehensive plan and current zoning restrictions to allow for industrial wind turbines. Wind development has been on the table in Italy for seven years – since affiliates of Ecogen first expressed interest and began buying and leasing land for potential development.

Early on, the board opposed wind development and placed a moratorium on future projects. Ecogen sued, but the town won. However, the court advised the town to adopt an official stance on wind development, said MacKenzie. That led to a strong anti-turbine opinion in the town’s comprehensive plan. But Ecogen sued again, said MacKenzie.

Watertown Daily Times (9/14) editorial: New York State needs to provide wind project oversight

…There should be uniform standards for siting and development of wind turbines. People making decisions that will impact communities for many years should be above any allegations of conflicting interests.

The state needs to assume a greater oversight role in the many aspects of wind power development. This must be done soon, as wind projects are being implemented and pondered throughout upstate. The state should take some leadership here.

2007 Academic Study: Overwhelming support for Lewis County wind development

File this with the oldies but goodies. From an October 2007 study by the Center for Community Studies at Jefferson Community College:

  • Over 72% of those surveyed “agreed” or “strongly agreed” that “The development of the Maple Ridge Wind Farm has had a positive effect on Lewis County.” The largest group in disagreement, in the aggregate more than 27%, were those aged 18-29.
  • Over 76% of those surveyed “strongly” or “somewhat” support the expansion of windfarms in Lewis County, with support very similar across gender and age groups.

The study was released in March 2008.

Delaware’s offshore project

New York Times magazine (9/14) article on the Bluewater Wind project off the coast of Rehoboth beach in Delaware.

“The moment I read that paper,” the wind entrepreneur Peter Mandelstam recalled, “I knew in my gut where my next wind project would be.”…