Wind Power News: North Dakota
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.
As an “edge of the seat” observer to the continuing narrative unfolding about the painting of the water tower in the province formerly known as Oakport, is it too late to ask “Why, pray tell, would anyone include the wind turbine silhouette from the ‘Inherit the Wind’ program … a program that has done little else than lose money for the city … on the water tower logo?” Moorhead Public Service has never released a balance sheet or the operating . . .
HETTINGER – A western North Dakota farm where artifacts dating up to 7,500 years old were found won’t get wind turbines in a new project slated for next year. Tetra Tech, a firm hired by Allete Clean Energy, conducted a cultural resources survey on Celestine (Sally) Slater’s farm in 2013 in Adams County near Hettinger while considering the location for a Thunder Spirit Wind Energy Center wind turbine. Adam Holven, a senior archaeologist and project manager for Tetra Tech, wrote . . .
North Dakota policymakers aren't convinced. They liken the wind power boom in their state to the government-mandated surge of renewable energy in Germany since 2010, a transformation that triggered an oversupply of electricity, grid reliability problems and other disruptions to the country's power system. "We've all seen that story, and we don't want to retell it in North Dakota," said state Sen. Rich Wardner (R), the president of the state Senate. He co-signed a letter sent to Sen. John Hoeven (R-N.D.) last March excoriating the federal PTC for wind power as a program that is "subsidizing out-of-state companies to use North Dakota as a staging area to mine federal taxpayer funds."
BISMARCK—A North Dakota regulator expects a decision on the final state permit for a wind farm northeast of Valley City to come by the end of the summer. The Public Service Commission already issued a siting permit to Glacier Ridge Wind Farm, LLC for the first phase of the Barnes County project last year. The commission is now notifying the public on the opportunity to seek a hearing on the second phase, which would include 35 planned wind turbines. In . . .
JAMESTOWN, N.D.—The North Dakota Legislature has adjourned and with it, so has hope for public study on wind energy. Wind developers continue sweeping into North Dakota, trying to breeze their way through the permitting process in order to take advantage of government giveaways – not only federal tax credits (which are scheduled to be phased out unless Congress renews them yet again), but also tax breaks, loan guarantees and other economic assistance available under more than 80 different programs across nine . . .
A wind farm project that has been on the shelf for several years may soon be built. The Merricourt Wind Power Project was to be built near Ashley, in McIntosh County. The Public Service Commission had given the project siting approval in 2008. However, it was never built. But now, the developer has filed a new siting application – and the PSC has scheduled a hearing on it. Commissioners said some of the proposed wind power projects couldn’t find anyone . . .
News broke recently that Otter Tail Power Company had resurrected a 130,000-acre wind farm originally proposed six years ago near Merricourt, N.D. and brought it back before the North Dakota Public Service Commission. One might assume the project will get a quick green light since the PSC has vetted it before, but I hope it doesn’t. I have no dog in this fight. My interest is solely from the perspective of a taxpayer and consumer who, after careful research, finds . . .
The North Dakota Public Service Commission (PSC) has approved two sets of rule changes that strengthen requirements for future wind projects and ensure they are properly decommissioned at the end of their use. The rule changes focus on two different areas related to wind projects: decommissioning requirements for when a wind farm is retired, and lighting systems. “A half century ago our ancestors made a commitment to ensure that our coal mines would be reclaimed when the prairie became quiet . . .
A wind farm project in southern North Dakota that was first heard by the Public Service Commission nearly six years ago may be headed back to the PSC. Otter Tail Power Co. filed an application in April for an advance determination of prudence and a certificate of convenience and necessity for the Merricourt Wind Project with the PSC. The application included a $175,000 filing fee. The Merricourt Wind Project is a 150-megawatt wind farm near Merricourt in western Dickey County. . . .
Over the next few years, North Dakotans will have their nighttime view improved with a reduction in the frequency of seeing blinking red lights atop wind turbines. House Bill 1378 passed the North Dakota Senate by a 45-1 vote on April 20 with no debate. It now heads to the governor’s desk for his signature [NWW note: signed April 24]. HB1378 requires that all wind turbines install aircraft detection lighting systems. All wind energy projects approved after June 5, 2016, . . .