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Wind Power News: Vermont


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.

June 13, 2018 • VermontPrint storyE-mail story

Andover board OKs energy section for Town Plan

Under Vermont State law (30 V.S.A. § 248), the state Public Utility Commission has absolute control over the construction of energy infrastructure, including large-scale renewable power generators such as solar farms and wind turbines. However, when a town has adopted an energy plan, the commission is required to “give substantial deference” to that plan. The Andover plan specifically encourages the construction of ground-mounted solar panels and limited use of residential-scale wind turbines, while prohibiting utility- and commercial-scale wind turbines. Complete story »

June 9, 2018 • VermontPrint storyE-mail story

Act 250 revision meetings scheduled

The state government is gathering opinions on how Vermont’s environment should be protected in the coming half-century. With the 50th anniversary of Act 250 approaching, the Legislature has created a commission to look at how the law should be tweaked for the next 50 years. That commission announced this week the dates for a series of forums around the state to gather public input on potential changes to Vermont’s landmark environmental law, which was adopted in 1970. The commission doesn’t . . . Complete story »

May 29, 2018 • VermontPrint storyE-mail story

Electric rates going up again, and grid constraints and green energy are culprits

Washington Electric Co-op has announced that electric rates will rise this year at 3.72 percent if the Public Utility Commission approves its request. Like other Vermont utility rate hikes in recent years, the main culprits include grid upgrades, curtailment of large energy projects and the spread of net metering projects. The prior rate increase for Washington Electric was requested a year and a half ago. General Manager Patty Richards told True North that they take the increases very seriously and . . . Complete story »

May 21, 2018 • VermontPrint storyE-mail story

Hearing delay for proposed Dairy Air Wind project

HOLLAND – The Vermont Public Utilities Commission (PUC) has issued an order granting the Vermont Electric Cooperative, Inc.’s motion to continue hearings due to new information received in a different case regarding ISO-NE and the grid constraints in northern Vermont. The Vermont Electric Cooperative recently held a second hearing on its 20-year transmission plan, which includes some discussion about the northern Vermont grid constraints, said Annette Smith, executive director of Vermonters for a Clean Environment. VEC filed a motion before the . . . Complete story »

Cold snap tested reliability of region’s power grid and arguments against fossil fuels

As Maine and New England shivered through last winter’s historic cold spell, the region’s electric system faced an unprecedented prospect: rolling blackouts. Several troubling circumstances were converging. Natural gas was scarce and pricey. A power line failure sidelined one of New England’s largest power plants. Solar panels were covered with snow and wind turbines were buffeted by storms. The combination forced grid operators to ramp up 1960s-era technology to keep the lights on. For the first time, they strategically juggled . . . Complete story »

May 12, 2018 • VermontPrint storyE-mail story

Vt. Supreme Court punts renewable energy dispute to Legislature

The Vermont Supreme Court has dismissed a case seeking to overturn set-aside price protections not favorable to industrial wind and other large renewable projects. Renewable Energy Vermont, A lobbying group representing large wind and other renewable developers, sought to get rid of a 2017 change in the state’s Standard Offer program that eliminated price protection set-asides for large capacity wind, landfill gas, biomass, and hydroelectric projects. The group argued that getting rid of the capacity set-asides violated the Public Utility . . . Complete story »

May 8, 2018 • VermontPrint storyE-mail story

PUC could decide fate of Dairy Air Wind over grid constraints

HOLLAND – The Vermont Public Utilities Commission has narrowed its initial review of the Dairy Air Wind Project to determine first whether the single large wind turbine should be built given the grid constraints in northern Vermont. All other issues are on hold until the commission, which regulates energy generation projects in Vermont, resolves the questions relating to the grid that could determine the fate of this wind project, according to an order issued by the commission last week. The technical . . . Complete story »

May 1, 2018 • VermontPrint storyE-mail story

Dozens brave cold for 2nd Dairy Air Wind site visit

HOLLAND – About three dozen people braved a cold north wind and rain Monday morning to again check out the proposed site for the Dairy Air Wind Project. Those gathered on School Road walked the planned access road to the site of the base for a 499-foot-tall wind turbine intended for Dairy Air Farm. Walking the muddy cornfield were state officials, Holland selectmen, representatives of the developer and area residents, some of whom are active participants in the regulatory review of . . . Complete story »

April 27, 2018 • Quebec, VermontPrint storyE-mail story

International Water Company criticized over Dairy Air Wind

HOLLAND – The hearing officer in the Dairy Air Wind Project petition scolded the International Water Company serving Derby Line and the town of Stanstead, Quebec, for not following protocols and ordered officials to cooperate. The water company is led by Stanstead town officials and governed by an international board of directors with representatives from both border communities. The water company questioned whether the installation of a proposed 499-foot-tall wind turbine on Dairy Air Farm would affect its nearby water line . . . Complete story »

April 15, 2018 • VermontPrint storyE-mail story

Case closed on Kidder Hill windmill complaint

IRASBURG – A violation investigation into the siting of two small windmills on Kidder Hill is officially closed, with property owner David Blittersdorf agreeing to pay $10,000 to the state without admitting any violation. Blittersdorf has already taken down the two wind mills. The neighbor who brought the complaint, Robert Garthwaite, and other parties agreed with the payment and conclusion of the case. Garthwaite complained in 2016 that Blittersdorf did not erect his two windmills in the locations described in his . . . Complete story »

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