New York state wind power updates

From wind news and web sources:

New York State Gov. Paterson announced the passage of a three-way bill negotiated with the Legislature to improve net metering, which encourages the development of renewable energy systems. Net metering allows electricity customers with qualified renewable energy systems to sell excess electricity back to their local utility.

Per the Governor:

This legislation is the product of a “Net Metering Summit” that was convened by Governor Paterson last fall to facilitate an agreement between renewable energy installers and the State’s major utilities. The bill eliminates the peak load limitation on the size of non-residential solar and wind systems that are eligible to participate in the net metering program. Non-residential solar and wind systems will now be allowed up to 25 kilowatts with the interconnection charges capped at $350 and $750 for solar and wind, respectively. For systems above 25 kilowatts, up to the overall cap of 2,000 kilowatts, the customer would be responsible for the actual interconnection charges. (Office of the Governor, 2/23) (Link to NYS Assembly)

DOE releases updated New York Wind Map and Resource Potential.

Per Wind Powering America:

The Department of Energy’s Wind Program and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) (in collaboration with Albany-based AWS Truewind) published a new wind resource map for the state of New York. The new wind resource map shows the predicted mean annual wind speeds at 80-m height. Presented at a spatial resolution of 2.5 km (interpolated to a finer scale for display). Areas with annual average wind speeds around 6.5 m/s and greater at 80-m height are generally considered to have suitable wind resource for wind development.

Additionally, a national dataset was produced of estimated gross capacity factor (not adjusted for losses) at a spatial resolution of 200 m and heights of 80 m and 100 m. Using AWS Truewind’s gross capacity factor data, NREL estimated the windy land area and wind energy potential in various capacity factor ranges for each state. The table (Excel 75 KW) lists the estimates of windy land area with a gross capacity of 30% and greater at 80-m height and the wind energy potential from development of the “available” windy land area after exclusions.  (Wind  Powering America, 2/19)

Jefferson County legislature reportedly opposes NYPA Lake Ontario wind proposal. (News 10 Now, 2/17)

Summary of Sullivan County Community College $2M legal dispute with wind developer. (Times Herald Record online, 2/20)

Summary of Citizen Power Alliance 2/16/2010 (anti-large scale) wind conference (CPA, 2/16)

ABA Journal’s “The War of Winds” regarding on-land wind siting challenges. Includes considerable information about industrial wind projects in New York State. Disclosure: This Wind Power Law blogger was an interviewee. (American Bar Association Journal, February 2010)

New York wind siting updates

Town of Hammond (St. Lawrence County) passes new wind ordinance. Watertown Daily Times, 10/28

The City of Oswego (Oswego County) in discussions with Optiwind to provide municipal wind power. Palladium Times, 10/28.

Wind project siting controversy infused into state legislative race in Jefferson County. Valley Times, 10/29.

NYS DEC issues Galloo Island environmental scoping document

Galloo Island wind environmental scoping document available

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYS DEC) final environmental scoping document for this wind farm project in the Town of Hounsfield (Jefferson County), filed under the State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA), is available online.

Upstate NY Power Corp intends to place up to 84 wind turbines on Galloo Island in Lake Ontario with nameplate generation capacity up to 269 megawatts. The scoping document comprises 40-pages of detailed requirements but indicates that an underground transmission line necessary to be constructed for the project is not subject to SEQRA review. The transmission line will receive Article VII review from the New York Public Service Commission (PSC). The NYS DEC asserted itself lead agency for environmental review of the wind project over the objection of the Town of Hounsfield Planning Board.

Watertown Daily Times (9/30) article on the NYS DEC document here.

Where is Galloo Island you ask? Right here.

New York wind developments

Lyme (Jefferson County) wracked by wind issues

Per the Watertown Daily Times (9/11), the Lyme town council decided to appeal the recent decision by a state trial court to invalidate a strict wind ordinance. (Gosier et al. v. Town Board of Lyme). The Town is also set to discuss a renewed moratorium on wind project development on September 30. Additional report from WWNY-TV here. BP Alternative Energy is developing a wind project in the area.

Schuyler (Herkimer County) considers wind ordinance

The Herkimer Evening Telegram (9/9) reports that

The Schuyler Town Board is conducting a public hearing to receive comment on the proposed Wind Energies Facilities Ordinance on Wednesday, at 6:30 p.m., at the Schuyler Town Office, Route 5, Utica. The proposed Local Law addresses the jurisdiction of both residential and commercial wind energy facilities for the town of Schuyler, according to a newsletter distributed to residents.

New York towns wrestle with wind energy regulation

Cape Vincent wind committee works on ordinance

The Watertown Daily Times (9/5) reports on progress of the Cape Vincent (Jefferson County) wind zoning committee:

There will be no wind turbines in the riverfront and lakefront districts. Town Supervisor Thomas K. Rienbeck began the wind law committee’s meeting on Thursday afternoon by clearing up some mistakes and misconceptions about the draft amendment to the zoning law.

Suburban DeWitt considers wind regulation

Syracuse.com reports (9/4) on efforts by the Town of DeWitt (in Onondaga County, near Syracuse) to regulate wind energy conversion systems:

Suburban DeWitt is the latest town to grapple with how to handle wind turbines. The planning board is proposing an ordinance that would ban from residential properties the tall, bladed turbines most typically in use, chair Michael Lazar said. But the ordinance would allow another, less common type of wind conversion generator – a vertical axis wind turbine, he said.

New York wind energy developments

East Bloomfield (Ontario County) adopts wind ordinance

The Daily Messenger (8/28) reports that

Tipping its hat to the town Planning Board members and critics who have jousted with them during the drafting of a windmill law, the Town Board on Monday unanimously passed a revised version on its second attempt.

Henderson (Jefferson County) wind project under consideration

From the Watertown Daily Times (9/2)

A fledgling investment group is eyeing the town as a location for a wind power project.

Ronald J. Scrudato has talked to town Supervisor Clyde E. Moore and one landowner. He represents an investment firm so young, it’s name isn’t set yet. But so far, it’s called Delfea and it is based in New Jersey.

Herkimer County conflict allegations

From the Utica Observer-Dispatch (8/30)

At least one Stark Town Board member and three town Zoning Board of Appeals members have signed leases with the developer behind the Jordanville Wind Project, according to Herkimer County property records. Stark town officials said they have been paying close attention to these potential conflicts of interest and have followed legal advice to make sure they haven’t done anything wrong.

Jefferson County wind project tax breaks discussed, criticized

From the Watertown Daily Times (8/31)

Money doesn’t grow on trees, but it may grow on windmills. The developers of the four proposed wind farms in Jefferson County could capitalize on tax breaks and incentives at the federal, state and local levels through their projects. Opponents say the subsidies take taxpayer money and give it to those who already are rich.

New York wind energy developments 8/29

Clayton (Jefferson County) sound report creating controversy

Per the Watertown Daily Times (8/25)

[Clayton] Town officials have refused to let residents see a report evaluating the noise study done for Horse Creek Wind Farm. The officials claim the report, by Cavanaugh Tocci Associates, an acoustic engineering firm in Sudbury, Mass., is too complicated and preliminary to be released.

Empire State Wind interested in Alfred in Allegany County

The Evening Tribune (8/23) reports that:

At least one wind developer is eyeing Alfred for a potential building site. Keith Pitman, president and chief executive officer of Empire State Wind Energy from Oneida, said his company is interested in developing a wind project in Alfred.

Frankfort Village (Herkimer County) looking into wind development

Per the Evening Telegram (8/22)

The Frankfort Village Board is preparing to move forward with negotiations to enter into an agreement with Empire State Wind Energy (ESWE) to conduct feasibility studies on potential wind turbine sites.

Jamestown (Chautauqua County) Board of Education gives Chautauqua County Industrial Development Agency authority to negotiate PILOTs

From the Post-Journal (8/27)

The Chautauqua County Industrial Development Agency will be in charge of negotiating PILOT agreements with wind farm developers in the Jamestown Public Schools District.

At Tuesday’s Board of Education meeting at Jefferson Middle School, school officials decided to opt out of Section 487 of the Real Property Tax Law after hearing from Bill Daly and Rich Dixon of the Chautauqua County Industrial Development Agency. The law makes the installation of energy improvement systems – solar power, windmills – exempt from taxes.

Volney (Oswego County) adopts wind regulations

From the Valley News (8/23)

The Town of Volney has followed suit with other central New York municipalities in establishing regulations for residential wind energy systems. The town board adopted a local law regulating private windmills during its meeting last week.