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Copenhagen Wind Farm development progressing  

The state Article 10 permitting process, which now allows the state Public Service Commission to make decisions about where wind and other power projects are sited, was enacted in 2011. However, it didn’t take effect until after the Copenhagen Wind Farm was proposed, leaving review of this project in the town’s hands.

Credit:  By Steve Virkler, Johnson Newspapers | Journal & Republican | June 29, 2017 | www.journalandrepublican.com ~~

COPENHAGEN – Developers of the Copenhagen Wind Farm are planning a pre-construction open house this week, with access road construction expected to kick off later this summer.

“We’re just about at the finish line of development,” said project manager James Damon from EDF Renewables, in San Diego. “We plan to start construction in five or six weeks.”

An open house will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, June 29, in the Copenhagen Central School gymnasium, giving residents the opportunity to talk with project officials about scheduling and impacts during the next couple years of construction work.

EDF, with local partner Jerry B. Wichelns, is planning a wind farm featuring 40-turbines – of two megawatts each – in the town of Denmark and an overhead power line running through the towns of Champion and Rutland.

While developers had initially hoped to start work on the project last fall and be up and running by later this year, National Grid officials last fall notified them the earliest interconnection to the power grid would be in mid-2018.

EDF now has a signed interconnection agreement with the utility company, so plans are to construct access roads through November then commence with pouring of foundations and turbine installation from May to September 2018, Mr. Damon said. “It will be a very busy summer,” he said.

Wind farm construction will be handled by Renewable Energy Systems Americas, Mr. Damon said.

The Denmark town Planning Board in September signed off on the six-year-old project, with some conditions, after a lengthy review process, and Mr. Damon said the board gave its final approval in May after officials from EDF and the construction company came up with a final tower layout.

The state Article 10 permitting process, which now allows the state Public Service Commission to make decisions about where wind and other power projects are sited, was enacted in 2011. However, it didn’t take effect until after the Copenhagen Wind Farm was proposed, leaving review of this project in the town’s hands.

Mr. Damon said he didn’t have a lot of information on proposed state legislation that, if enacted, would prohibit wind farm development near air bases and military installations. However, he said, Copenhagen Wind Farm already has secured its needed permits, including those from the Federal Aviation Administration, so he was hopeful there wouldn’t be any issues with the project.

Under a proposed 20-year payment-in-lieu-of-taxes agreement to be administered by the Lewis County Industrial Development Agency, Copenhagen Wind Farm would pay $8,400 per megawatt – or $672,000 – in the first year following completion, then add 2.5 percent each year. That’s more than $19 million over the 20-year period.

Most of the turbines would be in the Copenhagen Central School District, and that revenue would be split as follows: 38.07 percent to the school district, 31.07 percent to the town of Denmark and 30.85 percent to Lewis County. For the roughly five towers in the Lowville Academy and Central School District, the split would be 35.07 percent to the school district, 32.58 percent to the town and 32.35 percent to the county.

For the transmission line, the wind company would additionally pay Jefferson County and its two towns based on full taxation on an assessed value of 70 percent of line construction costs, while the Copenhagen school district would waive transmission payments for the first 15 years.

[rest of article available at source]

Source:  By Steve Virkler, Johnson Newspapers | Journal & Republican | June 29, 2017 | www.journalandrepublican.com

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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