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PSC staff: time to throw out Galloo Island wind project  

Credit:  www.wwnytv.com 18 July 2012 ~~

In a strongly worded statement, the staff of the state Public Service Commission says it’s time to end the Galloo Island wind farm.

The staff is asking that Galloo Island’s case before the Public Service Commission be dismissed.

Technically, the staff refers to the power line that would connect Galloo Island to the state’s power grid.

But the statement plainly takes aim at the larger issue – that the wind farm has not gotten off the drawing board.

The staff’s statement is a reaction to a request from the developer of the project, Upstate NY Power Corp., for another six to nine months in which to get the project going.

“…the Applicant (Upstate NY Power) has engaged in a series of delay tactics delibeately intended to keep the application on hold while the Applicant seeks a market for its product,” the statement notes.

A call from 7 News to Upstate NY Power was not returned Wednesday.

Earlier this month, the company told the Watertown Times the project was on hold, because of the all-time low price of electriciity.

“The entire U.S. wind energy industry is waiting see when this turns around,” Thomas L. Hagner, president of Upstate NY Power, told the newspaper.

(Read the entire story here.)

As originally envisoned in 2009, the electricity from Galloo Island would be sold to the state Power Authority, which abandoned the idea in late 2011.

Since then, Upstate has talked about selling electricity to Fort Drum, but that idea appears to have been pre-empted by a plant on post that will burn wood waste to generate power.

“While the Applicant continues to raise new possible routes and opportunities for a power opurchase agreement, it has failed to complete any alternative route analyses or provide any new substantive information…” the staff notes.

That’s holding up people who want to do things with their land, but might be affected by a power line from Galloo, the staff writes.

“Those landowners raised issues of fairness stating that while the proceeding is on-going they would not develop their properties, including expansion of farming operations, without having some certainty about the project’s impact on their properties.”

“It is an undue burden on landowners to ask them to wait indefinitely for the Applicant to determine what is in its best financial interest and at the same time ask them to put their interests on hold.”

A Public Service Commission official said there is no set time for an administrative judge to rule on the matter.

Source:  www.wwnytv.com 18 July 2012

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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