CLAYTON – Though the developer of the Horse Creek Wind Farm project ceased planning efforts more than two years ago, it remains interested in possibly reviving its proposal.
“We still have meteorological towers and land leases there, so we remain interested in that community,” Paul N. Copleman, spokesman for Iberdrola Renewables, said Tuesday in an email. “New York has a proven track record of successfully integrating new renewable energy sources, so we are generally optimistic.”
Mr. Copleman could not provide further details about when the Spanish wind energy giant could revive its 48-turbine, 96-megawatt wind farm proposal. The project has not had active status since April 2014, when it was removed by the developer from the New York Independent System Operator’s interconnection queue, which lists wind projects actively being planned across the state. The company said at the time that it hadn’t entirely given up hope on the project, even through no active plans had been made since late 2012.
Clayton Town Supervisor Justin A. Taylor said Wednesday that he was “surprised” to learn about Iberdrola’s confirmation of its ongoing interest in the project “because we haven’t heard anything since 2012.” He said he’d be even more surprised if the wind developer decided to earnestly revive plans for the project.
The developer previously said “the project was not economically viable based on low energy prices and the lack of renewable energy tax credits, and I’m not aware that’s changed,” Mr. Taylor said, adding that the Town Council had a “neutral position” on the project.
The wind project stalled after Iberdrola notified the state Public Service Commission in December 2012 of its intent to seek a state Article X siting review. That review process was never started because the developer remained skittish about its plan. In the fall of 2013, the developer had cited poor economic conditions and regulatory uncertainty as reasons for not taking action. It said it likely would have to secure a federal wind production tax credit to make the project feasible.
The DEC’s list of active projects, last updated in March, still includes the Horse Creek project because Iberdrola hasn’t removed the proposed project from its website. The description of the project on the Spanish wind developer’s website, available at http://wdt.me/oHTtMN, continues to describe the project as active.
DEC Region 6 spokesman Stephen W. Litwhiler said Wednesday the project will soon be removed from the agency’s list, however, because “it has been stale for a long time.”
“Even if they’re stale, there is still merit to keeping them up there for a while because people still want to learn about the project,” Mr. Litwhiler said. “But because this project has been stale for a long time, it’s going to be off the website soon.”
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