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Wind Power News: Oregon


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.

May 4, 2017 • Oregon, Press releasesPrint storyE-mail story

Research aims to protect eagles from wind turbines

The system will feature a tower-mounted, computer-connected camera able to determine if an approaching bird is an eagle and whether it’s flying toward the blades. If both those answers are yes, the computer triggers a ground-level deterrent: randomly moving, brightly colored facsimiles of people, designed to play into eagles’ apparent aversion to humans. “There’s no research available, but hopefully those will deter the eagles from coming closer to the turbines,” Albertani said. “We want the deterrent to be simple and affordable.” At the root of each turbine blade will be a vibration sensor able to detect the kind of thump produced by a bird hitting a blade. Whenever such a thump is detected, recorded video data from a blade-mounted micro-camera can be examined to tell if the impact was caused by an eagle or something else.

Complete story »

April 19, 2017 • OregonPrint storyE-mail story

Conservation groups cheer ruling against Steens Mtn. wind project

BEND, Ore. – Two conservation groups are cheering a federal court ruling that they say seals the fate of a proposed wind-energy project in a place deemed very special and protected: Steens Mountain in southeast Oregon. Here’s the full text of a news release issued Wednesday by the Bend-based Oregon Natural Desert Association and the Audubon Society of Portland: The long-running case over the impacts of proposed industrial-scale wind energy development on Steens Mountain in southeastern Oregon was put to . . .

Complete story »

April 19, 2017 • OregonPrint storyE-mail story

Federal court kills wind project near Steens Mountain

A federal court has killed a large wind energy project in southeast Oregon over concerns about a declining sage grouse population that needs the area to breed. The U.S. District Court in Portland vacated plans for the project Tuesday, bringing an end to lengthy litigation over the proposal by Columbia Energy Partners. The project proposal was for wind energy development on roughly 10,500 acres of private land in Harney County near Steens Mountain. The project called for 40 to 69 . . .

Complete story »

April 8, 2017 • California, Oregon, WashingtonPrint storyE-mail story

BPA stops wind power generation for the first time in four years

Northwest rivers are running high as all that winter snowpack melts into spring runoff. And that means the region is producing too much of a good thing: carbon-free, renewable energy in the form of both dam-generated hydropower along with electricity from spinning wind-farm turbines. That’s prompted the federal government to take an action it avoided during the last four years of drought conditions: shutting down wind power. That’s something the Bonneville Power Administration did each spring from 2010 to 2012, . . .

Complete story »

March 21, 2017 • OregonPrint storyE-mail story

Big wind development returning to Oregon with a mystery power buyer

Marking the return of big wind power development in Oregon, Avangrid Renewables plans to break ground in September on the first phase of a 404-megawatt project in Gilliam County. As with the company’s Gala Solar project in Crook County, power from the 202-megawatt Phase I of the Montague project will go to a non-utility mystery buyer. One megawatt can power between 250 and 400 homes. “We do have a signed PPA for Phase I, but they do not wish to . . .

Complete story »

January 26, 2017 • OregonPrint storyE-mail story

PGE draws fire from all sides in power plan comments

Portland General Electric’s plan to meet its future power needs came in for the expected pummeling from environmentalists and industrial users on Tuesday, and drew skepticism from Oregon Public Utility Commission staff. In the first round of comments on the integrated resource plan, PUC staff questioned the utility’s capacity needs, called its plan vague to the point of being “problematic,” and said its “portfolio construction and overall analysis seems to be weighted toward long-term assets.” That asset, in the view . . .

Complete story »

December 10, 2016 • OregonPrint storyE-mail story

Eastern Oregon wind project plans taller turbines

A planned wind project in Sherman County could have fewer but larger wind turbines and still produce the same expected 400 megawatts under proposed changes before a state siting agency. Golden Hills Wind Farm, a subsidiary of Oakland, California-based Orion Renewable Energy Group, had sought to build the Golden Hills Wind Project as a 400-MW facility with 267 turbines on private land in northern Sherman County between Wasco and Moro. Late last year, the firm asked the Oregon Energy Facility . . .

Complete story »

December 3, 2016 • OregonPrint storyE-mail story

Could this be Oregon’s next big wind farm?

A big wind farm proposed for Eastern Oregon now has the permit it needs to go forward from the state’s Energy Facility Siting Council. That doesn’t guarantee that the 399-megawatt Saddle Butte project, in both Morrow and Gilliam counties, will be built. Proposed projects, even permitted ones, regularly linger or even vanish, and a wind farm approaching Saddle Butte’s scale hasn’t been completed in Oregon in more than four years. But this is a project that does appear to have . . .

Complete story »

December 1, 2016 • OregonPrint storyE-mail story

Oregon greenlights 399-MW wind project by Caithness Energy

The US state of Oregon has authorised a subsidiary of Caithness Energy to build the up to 399-MW Saddle Butte wind farm, according to information on the website of the department of energy. In particular, the Energy Facility Siting Council (EFSC) has issued a final order for the site certificate at its meeting on November 3, 2016. The particular site certificate was executed on November 17. The certificate holder, Saddle Butte Wind LLC, now has to commence construction work by . . .

Complete story »

November 7, 2016 • OregonPrint storyE-mail story

Lawmakers hash out restructuring of troubled Energy Department

A legislative oversight committee charged with restructuring the scandalized Oregon Department of Energy met Friday to discuss possible recommendations to lawmakers and got bogged down almost immediately in a lengthy, partisan debate over the agency’s future mission. The Democratic co-chairs of the committee, Sen. Lee Beyer, D-Springfield, and Rep. Paul Holvey, D-Eugene, had floated a draft of recommended fixes for the agency this week. They said their findings – which included keeping the agency alive while getting rid of some of . . .

Complete story »

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