Visit to Maple Ridge wind farm

Here are some pretty unsophisticated home movie clips (totalling one minute) of a July 2008 visit to the Maple Ridge windfarm. Yes, the blogger dragged the blogger’s family. If you’ve been to a windfarm you’ll doubtfully have interest in the video.

The first segment is pretty close to a turbine. Commentary by Ethan. For the record, the turbine is bigger (well, taller) than our house.

The second segment briefly shows the scale of a single turbine. Notice the people walking up the access road toward the camera. (If memory serves, these are 1.65MW Vestas, almost 400 feet at full vertical rotor blade extension, but you’ll want to check that.)

The third segment offers a pretty quick, roughly 360-degree panorama. At 0:56 you get a decent view of a spare blade centered in the picture, with the O&M building immediately behind and to the right.

The extraneous sound heard is more the wind itself than the turbines, and demonstrates primarily the inability of the microphone on my camera to filter it out. It’s windy in Lowville!

I’m grateful to Bill Burke, who on short notice gratiously showed us (and some impromptu visitors from the Cape Vincent area) a video of and described the project before he had to run off to volunteer at the county fair. (If you’re looking for a terrific county fair, by all means head up to Lewis County in the summer time.)

NY PSC approves Marble River wind farm

As reported previously, the NY Public Service Commission (PSC) granted a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity (CPCN) to Marble River, LLC, a joint project of Horizon Wind and AES-Acciona Energy, to create a 109-turbine wind park. The 229 MW facility will sell electricity to the wholesale market.

Salient points include:

  • The Towns of Clinton and Ellenburg were co-lead agencies for a comprehensive environmental (SEQR) review.
  • The NY State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO), found an adverse impact on historic resources (and overlap with the nearby Noble Environmental Power project) and continues to review the project and mitigation proposals.
  • The PSC will require Marble River to address the need for additional post-construction study, monitoring and analysis of impacts, and the development and implementation of a long-range strategy for adapting facility operations to address conservation of natural resources, such as birds and bats.
  • Marble River agreed to a setback of 1.5 times total turbine height (407 feet at maximum blade verticality) to nearest transmission facility component.
  • The PSC considers the benefits associated with the Company’s proposed project to be greater than the adverse impacts, even though it believes some displacement of other renewable energy to be likely under certain conditions. The PSC indicated that in the future, it will “appropriately ramp-up” the analyses it expects to see in CPCN petitions.
  • Among other blade safety requirements, the Company shall maintain a log of the history of each wind turbine blade including date of manufacture, details of installation, inspections, lightning strikes, damage, maintenance and repairs. Each wind turbine blade shall be uniquely and serially numbered so that it can be monitored throughout its service life.

The PSC’s Marble River order granting the CPCN may be found here.

Assorted NY wind projects underway or proposed (as reported recently in local press)

As reported recently:

Gallatin wind project

Article describing zoning, community challenges faced by a farmer attempting to erect a 135-foot 20kW turbine in Gallatin (Columbia County).

Arkwright wind

Horizon Wind Energy installing more meteorological towers in Arkwright (Chautauqua County) and dealing with escrow issue.

Westfield wind

Babcock and Brown submits Special Use Permit application in the Town of Westfield (also Chautauqua County) for up to 83 different turbine sites. More information here.

Richmondville wind

Reunion Power before the ZBA in Richmondville (Schoharie County)

Frankfort small wind

Small Empire Wind project proposal in the village of Frankfort (Herkimer County)

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