Wind Power News: Vermont
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.
BENNINGTON – Bennington County Regional Commission representatives have approved a comprehensive energy plan for the county’s 13 towns and 3 villages in the region. James Sullivan, the BCRC executive director, said 16 of the commission reps had voted as of Thursday to adopt the 161-page plan, enough to pass the official approval threshold. All of those who cast votes were in favor, he said. A draft of the plan was released in November, and two hearings – one in Manchester in December . . .
A wind power-related lawsuit against the town of Newark continues in Caledonia Civil Court next month. Hawk Rock Holdings, LLC, filed its first lawsuit against the town five years ago, not long after Newark citizens overwhelmingly adopted a new town plan in the midst of a controversial bid by an out-of-state developer which had proposed a wind project to span from Newark to Brighton to Ferdinand. The new town plan restricted the height of structures permitted on ridgelines. In 2015, . . .
HOLLAND – State officials and local residents should see just how tall a 500-foot wind turbine will look like sitting on a farm field in rural Vermont. That’s the decision by the hearing officer with the Vermont Public Service Board. Thomas Knauer has ordered the developer of the Dairy Air Wind Project to put up a large red helium balloon in time for Thursday’s site visit or explain why it can’t be done. The site visit is 3 p.m. at Dairy . . .
SWANTON – A Swanton sugaring business is suing Swanton Wind, alleging trespassing and illegal road construction as well as a host of complaints related to the project itself, despite the fact the project is still undergoing a Public Service Board review. Mark and Marianne Dubie own M&M VT Maple, LLC, the company suing Swanton Wind, LLC and its manager, Travis Belisle. The Dubies’ attorney, Hans Huessy, filed the lawsuit with the Franklin County Superior Court, Civil Division, on March 3. M&M . . .
Groups opposed to renewable energy development, for example, often call for a review under Act 250’s rules instead of Section 248, a separate set of statutes for energy projects. John Brabant, the director of regulatory affairs for Vermonters for a Clean Environment, which opposes large-scale wind, said his organization supports the study commission as long as it includes representatives from at least two municipalities.
HOLLAND – A Quebec town has joined the opposition to the proposed Dairy Air Wind turbine. Coaticook, north of Norton and Holland, is in the viewshed of the planned 500-foot-tall turbine on a Dairy Air Farm field and wants to send representatives to be heard at hearings on the project before the Vermont Public Service Board. Coaticook has filed a request for intervention based on what the town says would be the impact on the area’s economy. “This project might affect . . .
HOLLAND – The Vermont Public Service Board has scheduled a site visit and public hearing next week about the proposed Dairy Air Wind Project. The site visit is 3 p.m. Thursday March 30 at Dairy Air Farm on School Road. That will be followed by a presentation from the wind developer’s team at 6 p.m. in the Holland Elementary School gym about the single 2.2 megawatt turbine. And then the board’s hearing officer will take public comment about the project, beginning . . .
The Vermont Department of Public Service, acting in its consumer watchdog role, wants wind developer David Blittersdorf to explain why his two small wind turbines on Kidder Hill aren’t where he said they would be. And the department wants to know why Blittersdorf didn’t notify state utility regulators about the difference in location and the proximity to nearby residents. The questions being posed during an investigation into whether Blittersdorf violated his 2011 certificate of public good for the two small . . .
As chair of the Select Board of the Town of Windham, I was recently vilified in a letter sent to various Vermont news outlets. Besides the peculiar accusation that I am “classless,” the letter criticizes a challenge at this year’s Town Meeting to another sitting Select Board member, who was up for re-election. Although the letter suggests that such a challenge was unprecedented, it wasn’t: two years ago as an incumbent, I was challenged unsuccessfully and nobody thought much of . . .
Ban Big Wind: It’s a slogan many Vermonters would gladly get behind, giving the folks at Vermont Public Interest Research Group more heartburn than they are currently experiencing, pursuant to the recent rule on wind turbine noise proposed by the Vermont Public Service Board. VPIRG imagines that the proposed sound rule would “effectively ban any further wind energy development in the state.” Only an “effective” ban, you see, rather than the very real ban craved by Vermont’s growing anti-industrial wind . . .