Wind Power News: Oregon
These news and opinion items are gathered by National Wind Watch to help keep readers informed about developments related to industrial wind energy. They are the products of the organizations or individuals noted and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of National Wind Watch.
A Canadian company says it’s ready to pursue a big wind power plant in Umatilla County, not far from where the nation’s largest generator of renewable energy wants to build its own major wind farm. Capital Power Corporation this month filed a notice of intent with the state’s Energy Facility Siting Council to seek a site certificate for the Nolin Hills Wind Power Project, capable of producing up to 350 megawatts of power. It would be located about 10 miles . . .
How do you increase opportunities for public participation in a process without adding significant time and complexity? That is the issue Oregon’s Energy Facility Siting Council has been grappling with over the past few years as it looks to update its administrative rules for making amendments to the site certificates issued for large-scale energy facilities. Site certificates are the state approval necessary to construct and operate energy facilities. After the owners of such a facility get a site certificate from . . .
Portland General Electric officials entered a meeting in Salem this week intent on persuading state regulators that it makes economic and environmental sense to move quickly on a massive new wind farm to meet the state’s expanded green energy mandates. The utility was already playing defense. Facing intense blowback from environmental advocates, ratepayer groups and regulatory staff, it had abandoned the centerpiece of the resource plan it had submitted to the Public Utility Commission in November. That would potentially have . . .
Regulators have cleared Apple’s Oregon wind power project to use the biggest turbines ever deployed in the Pacific Northwest. Project developer Avangrid Renewables said it hasn’t made a final decision on the machines it will use at the Montague Wind Power Facility, but regulators last week granted a site-certificate amendment that allows for turbines with rotor diameters of 136 meters and generating capacities of 3.6 megawatts. The biggest turbines in the region now top out around 100 to 110 meters . . .
PacifiCorp and Portland General Electric pitched new resource plans to regulators last week that include major investments in renewable energy. PacifiCorp’s $3.5 billion proposal entails building 1,100 megawatts of new wind farms in Wyoming, upgrading another 1,000 megawatts of existing windmills there to provide more power, and building a new transmission line to ease bottlenecks on the grid and bring all that green energy to market. PGE touted a smaller but ambitious expansion that would have it build or buy . . .
On the brink of construction, a 292-turbine wind farm slated for Umatilla and Morrow counties is changing hands. NextEra Energy, based in Juno Beach, Florida, has purchased the development rights for the Wheatridge Wind Energy Facility and is now working to transfer the project’s site certificate through the Oregon Department of Energy. Wheatridge was pioneered by Ione farmer Jerry Rietmann before the facility sold to NextEra in April, according to documents. One month later, the Energy Facility Siting Council issued . . .
Fewer but bigger turbines – the most powerful ever deployed in the Northwest – could reduce the footprint and improve the economics of an Oregon wind farm that Apple is counting on for vast amounts of clean energy. Project developer Avangrid Renewables is seeking a permit amendment for the Montague Wind Power Facility that would allow it to use a turbine model with a rotor diameter of 136 meters and generating capacity of 3.6 megawatts. That’s a big step up from the . . .
This old man is going on 80, and ever since I rolled into Oregon in ’51 on my beautiful 1947 Harley—and in later years literally soared over the sprawling sagebrush and rim rocks, sharing airspace with eagles—I’ve discovered more and more animals, plants and places and people to keep me busy helping to save. I’ve had the honor and delight to spend hours, days and years sharing the high desert with my family and so many friends in the Fort . . .
The system will feature a tower-mounted, computer-connected camera able to determine if an approaching bird is an eagle and whether it’s flying toward the blades. If both those answers are yes, the computer triggers a ground-level deterrent: randomly moving, brightly colored facsimiles of people, designed to play into eagles’ apparent aversion to humans. “There’s no research available, but hopefully those will deter the eagles from coming closer to the turbines,” Albertani said. “We want the deterrent to be simple and affordable.” At the root of each turbine blade will be a vibration sensor able to detect the kind of thump produced by a bird hitting a blade. Whenever such a thump is detected, recorded video data from a blade-mounted micro-camera can be examined to tell if the impact was caused by an eagle or something else.
BEND, Ore. – Two conservation groups are cheering a federal court ruling that they say seals the fate of a proposed wind-energy project in a place deemed very special and protected: Steens Mountain in southeast Oregon. Here’s the full text of a news release issued Wednesday by the Bend-based Oregon Natural Desert Association and the Audubon Society of Portland: The long-running case over the impacts of proposed industrial-scale wind energy development on Steens Mountain in southeastern Oregon was put to . . .