June 20, 2012
Blogs, Maine

The Maine Center for Public Interest reporting on First Wind, Emera, etc.

Posted by Long Islander on June 19, 2012 at 2:00pm | Citizens' Task Force on Wind Power - Maine | www.windtaskforce.org

Now that First Wind and Emera have announced their joint venture to be both utility and generator (what many believed was against the law), we thought it might be helpful to summarize some of the writings on this from the non-partisan Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting.

Multi-million-dollar wind deal approved by state regulators
Senior Reporters
April 11, 2012

State regulators on Tuesday approved a multi-million-dollar deal that could fund construction of hundreds of wind turbines in Maine and the Northeast, despite a staff recommendation to reject the proposal. All three members of the Public Utilities Commission voted for a complex series of transactions among First Wind, Bangor Hydro and Maine Public Service andMORE

Meeting land-based wind goals not likely, say two state studies
Senior Reporters
March 29, 2012

Maine will not be able to accomplish the state-mandated goals of building 2000 megawatts of wind power on land by 2015. That’s one conclusion of two studies issued this week by the governor’s energy office and an independent group of researchers. The studies also urged reconsideration of the landmark 2008 law that allowed wind turbinesMORE

PUC releases confidential transcript in wind energy case
January 31, 2012

  A proposal for a joint venture that would undertake major construction of wind towers across the state and region has encountered more regulatory complications, a week after reports were published that state officials recommended the proposal be turned down.   The state’s Public Utilities Commission (PUC) was set to decide on Jan. 31 whetherMORE

PUC staff: no-go for energy firms’ wind deal
January 19, 2012

Last April, Maine’s largest wind energy developer, First Wind, trumpeted a multimillion-dollar deal that would pay for the company’s ambitious plans to erect more wind turbines throughout Maine and the Northeast. But in just the last week,  the Maine Public Utilities Commission (PUC) dealt a potentially fatal blow to the deal. Faced with what opponentsMORE


Earlier investigations:

PUC chairman took equity stake in wind company



First Wind SEC filing change questioned



Group asks AG to probe official of First Wind


Adams Investigation Finds No Conflict


Three Part Series: A CRITICAL LOOK AT MAINE’S WIND ACT (excerpts) From Part 1 – On Maine’s Wind Law

Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine if the law’s goals were met.” . – Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting, August 2010



From Part 2 – On Wind and Oil Yet using wind energy doesn’t lower dependence on imported foreign oil. That’s because the majority of imported oil in Maine is used for heating and transportation. And switching our dependence from foreign oil to Maine-produced electricity isn’t likely to happen very soon, says Bartlett. “Right now, people can’t switch to electric cars and heating – if they did, we’d be in trouble.” So was one of the fundamental premises of the task force false, or at least misleading?”


From Part 3 – On Wind-Required New Transmission Lines Finally, the building of enormous, high-voltage transmission lines that the regional electricity system operator says are required to move substantial amounts of wind power to markets south of Maine was never even discussed by the task force – an omission that Mills said will come to haunt the state.“If you try to put 2,500 or 3,000 megawatts in northern or eastern Maine – oh, my god, try to build the transmission!” said Mills. “It’s not just the towers, it’s the lines – that’s when I begin to think that the goal is a little farfetched.”


URL to article:  https://www.wind-watch.org/news/2012/06/20/the-maine-center-for-public-interest-reporting-on-first-wind-emera-etc/