Thursday, December 30, 2010

Who Can You Trust?????????

Many of you know of the AES Somerset coal fired electric power plant in the northeast corner of Niagara county right on Lake Ontario as seen in the above photo. This is a large operation, 675 Mw, 1800 acre site, serving 650K homes, state of the art pollution equipped (their words) and they employ about 120+ people, many union. Somerset began operating in 1984 and in 1999 AES purchased six power plants in New York (including the Somerset station) from NGE Generation, Inc. for $953 million. A 15.9-mile long railroad line was built for delivery of coal to the plant and there’s a single smoke stack nearly 300 feet tall there. There is a PILOT (payment in lieu of taxes) agreement between the power plant and the Barker school system, the town of Somerset and county of Niagara so you know that this operation is presently getting a very huge break on taxes since being built. A couple of years ago the plant proposed building a pier 3200’ into the lake for 750’ long freighters to deliver coal and limestone to the plant. This was a $25M plan, called LUP (lake unloading project) that never was built. The plant is now considering selling off 178 acres of land to Verizon for a multi-billion dollar data center.

About Nov 5, 2010 something strange happened. AES Corp. temporarily stopped producing electricity at its coal-fired Somerset plant on Lake Road. Meanwhile, the company also withdrew its request for an increased tax break from the Niagara County Industrial Development Agency, although that may only be temporary. The plant was temporarily taken off-line for economic reasons, AES plant manager Peter Bajc said in an e-mail to The Buffalo News. According to the letter AES sent the IDA with its application for a revised tax deal, the AES company had placed two other coal-burning power plants in New York in "protective lay-up" in September because they were losing money. Not only that – the AES Dresden, NY coal fired plant electric plant near Seneca Lake is also scheduled to be mothballed in 2011.

According to the Lockport newspaper - AES Somerset went back on line about Dec 1 after the coal-burning power plant on Lake Road was down 24 days. This article stated in part:

“The plant is in start-up today,” Plant General Manager Peter Bajc said. “During the time we were down, the Somerset people remained on the job.”

AES is asking the Niagara County Industrial Development Agency to amend the payment-in-lieu-of-taxes agreement it has with the Town of Somerset, Barker School District and Niagara County. According to Bajc, AES Somerset needs its annual PILOT payment reduced to $9.8 million from $15.8 million in order to stay competitive – a whopping 48% decrease!

But wait a minute – maybe what was decided less than a year should be reviewed.

In January 11, 2010 article the Tonawanda News reported in part –


AES Eastern Energy has agreed to pay $15.8 million in taxes (PILOT) annually for five years, and there will be no further litigation between AES and the municipalities.

(Barker) School Superintendent Roger Klatt noted that the PILOT provides revenue certainty through 2016 at a time when state aid to education is unclear.

AES has no incentive to get out of it early, according to (Somerset town supervisor) Meyers. The PILOT can be adjusted in five years and because of the uncertainty in the coal industry, the PILOT can be negotiated again.

The newspaper article also reported that AES is the “county’s largest taxpayer”.

One wonders what school Superintendent Klatt would say today about the PILOT revenue certainty or what Somerset Supervisor Meyers would say about AES now attempting (renege?) to get out of their agreement of less that a year ago?

Now all this is interesting to the wind turbine foes as why would anyone possibly consider spending $1.5B in a 166 turbine, 500 Mw offshore wind facility (now proposed by the New York Power Authority known as the GLOW project – Great Lakes Offshore Wind) that would risk selling electricity for several times per kilowatt hour MORE than that produced by an upstate lake shore coal plant – if the coal fired AES plant can’t produce power for a profit in today’s market place? Or would AES’ recent temporary plant closure simply be an intimidating action by AES to get their PILOT agreements reduced? Could the Niagara Co. IDA be foolish enough to fall for this ruse? If there’s not enough demand for a coal fired electricity plant - then why build a $1.5B offshore wind powered electric plant? The truth is there is no need for an offshore wind powered plant. There is no need for additional expensive electricity generated by wind. NYPA’s spokesperson Sharon Laudisi appeared before the Niagara Co. legislature in Sept. 2010 hinting that electric power produced by a GLOW project could sell for an outrageous $.40/kilowatt hour! Who needs this?

We wonder if anyone’s even thought about what may happen if the NYPA GLOW project gets located offshore from Niagara County and all wind generated expensive power will be bought via NYPA’s power purchase agreement hence more expensive, low quality, intermittent electric may be unloaded on NYPA ratepayers against their will. The forcing of offshore wind generated electric may trump lesser expensive coal fired electricity and plants like Somerset would be forever less in demand and hence shuttered permanently like others even though it’s a relatively new plant. And the worst news – Niagara county, the town of Somerset and Barker school district – whose budgets are heavily depending upon the AES PILOT agreement that could soon be reduced may be faced with yet another demand from AES to lower the agreement terms again (lower than $9.8M) after a wind farm is located offshore from Niagara County! In the meantime this desirable 1800-acre AES lakeshore site could have been used to develop a great housing project of beautiful deluxe homes that would have produced enormous amounts of 100% value tax revenue forever for the county, school district and town without the ugliness, pollution and downside of what’s there now. What’s the likelihood that the Somerset plant would ever be razed for a super-housing complex in our lifetime? And if a NYPA supported GLOW project is ever developed in Lake Ontario, a spoiler, you can bet there won’t be any PILOT agreement for the town, school district or county. And the way things are now going – don’t be surprised to see both projects haunting Niagara County in the future. A wind farm could permanently close AES and what might that do to the PILOT agreement? Would a wind farm in Niagara County bring in the amount of taxes that the AES PILOT now produces? Of course not. Would a wind farm cause further havoc with AES (and Niagara Co. IDA) and result in an even smaller AES PILOT in the near future? You bet it would. There will be no PILOT agreement with any offshore wind farm development.

Rochester Area, Beach Ave. & Wind




In April 2010 we passed out flyers to lakeside Beach Ave. residents warning them that the New York Power Authority (NYPA) was promoting an offshore wind farm in either Lake Ontario or Lake Erie (or both) called GLOW – Great Lakes Offshore Wind. Our April handout warned of major consequences for lakeshore property owner’s should this project take place such as: lower property values, loss of darkness over the lake replaced by flashing bright strobe lights and fog horns on wind turbine towers 450’ high, forever loss of view shed, avian slaughter, boating/fishing restrictions, noise of turbine rotor rotation, lake bed sediment displacement pollution onto your shores and much, much more. This impending debacle can very easily take place in the lake near your Beach Ave. homes and drastically affect your property FOREVER. Greece, Irondequoit and Webster have already passed resolutions opposing the GLOW project. Jefferson, Oswego, Wayne and Chautauqua counties have also passed resolutions against the GLOW project in both Lake Erie and Ontario. NYPA has already designated on its maps – a potential offshore wind farm that is located directly north of Rochester’s Beach Ave. homes. Look on the NYPA website and you will see their maps showing this potential location. Included is Irondequoit, Webster and Greece but they have acted.


We contacted Mayor Duffy’s office via email in late November 2009 asking the mayor to contact us to discuss GLOW and while we received an automatic email reply that someone from the mayor’s office would contact us – we are still waiting! We passed out flyers in April 2010 to Beach Ave. lakeside property owners and nothing happened. We contacted, via email on July 28, 2010, Rochester city council member for the Northwest District (includes Beach Ave.) Carla Palumbo and never received the courtesy of a reply from her – should people like her be in elected office? We are proud to inform you that your Monroe Co. Legislator Rick Antelli has done much to oppose the GLOW project and we highly commend him.

Five wind developers have submitted proposals for the GLOW project but NYPA won’t release any details on their locations – keeping this in total secrecy until its too late to change. Several people and organizations have submitted Freedom of Information (FOI) law requests to NYPA to find out where the GLOW projects might be located and ALL requests have been rejected. Not only that – NYPA has ignored the FOI laws on answering appeals as well. NYPA has nothing but contempt for the NYS FOI laws. NYPA is a dysfunctional organization headed by downstaters seeking to trash our Great Lakes for their benefit. The NYPA supported Long Island wind project touts how their offshore turbines will be well out of sight of the landowners – how nice for them and not upstaters. Google NYPA CEO Richard Kessel and read what comes up – would you trust this man?

Here’s what Mayor Duffy had to say about the GLOW catastrophie in a Aug 20, 2010 Democrat & Chronicle article:

Rochester Mayor Robert Duffy said he believes passing resolutions of opposition is short-sighted. “We need to look at this for the long term and explore this,” he said. Duffy, who is running for lieutenant governor, said offshore wind farms were desirable as a source of renewable energy and, potentially, a source of jobs and economic growth for the Rochester region.

But, he said he knows people have legitimate concerns about the turbines, especially their esthetic impact. “If they buy a home on Beach Avenue or anywhere along the lake, they want to look out their windows every morning and see the water. I respect that,” Duffy said. “I don’t think we in any way can make a rash decision. If we put our minds together, I bet we could come up with some alternatives and compromises that could produce that first wind farm.”

Very clearly – based on his brief comments - Duffy favors the GLOW project in Lake Ontario and suggests there’s a possible compromise. Our new Governor Andrew Cuomo also favors offshore turbines in the Great Lakes too! Do you think they care about the value of your home or quality of life? There is no compromise for (166) 450’ turbines 2.3 miles offshore from Beach Ave. in the lake. Look for better representatives to run for office next time that will look out for your neighborhood - probably Republicans.

Lastly - NO Monroe County Democrat signed Legislator Rick Antelli’s recent resolution against GLOW when this opportunity was presented in summer 2010. Four Republicans refused to sign too.

Rochester homeowner's you need to take action right now before it’s too late. You MUST get the city of Rochester to pass a resolution against GLOW just as the many other Great Lakes municipalities have already done. You must appear before city council and demand that they say NO to GLOW.

This could be the view from Beach Ave. homes into Lake Ontario in 2015 after the GLOW project has been installed. Will you like seeing the flashing red strobe lights all night long or hearing helicopter maintenance crews and heard the turbine blade whooshing noise these eyesores will generate? This may be avoided if action is taken now - not after it’s too late. Rochester and Monroe County must say NO to this project right now. Share this info with your neighbors and anyone else who values the lake shore! Get to you elected representatives and demand action.

Lovely Warren, another city Democrat, is President of the Rochester City Council and has a welcome message on the web site for city council but we question the true sincerity of the message. Here’s Ms Warren’s text on the City of Rochester web site which says the city council attempts to: “to preserve, protect and improve the quality of life for city residents through the legislation we review and approve”. A local wind opposition group offered her and the City Council, the opportunity to view a wind presentation given to the full city council on why the NYPA GLOW project will harm the city of Rochester and especially the fine homes along Rochester's Beach Ave. in Charlotte. The presentation would last one hour and give a history of how the GLOW project came about, who is involved, it's timeline, what’s already gone wrong, the many negatives involved for the city of Rochester and Lake Ontario, and suggestions for a course of action. There was no charge for the presentation but that didn't matter to city council. It is critically important city council learn about this project immediately since NYPA planning is now taking place that could dramatically affect the Charlotte offshore area and the Genesee River in the city. This project is contrary to Ms. Warren's goals mentioned about quality of life issues for city residents. The towns of Webster, Irondequoit and Greece have already passed resolutions against GLOW (many others have too) as have four NYS Great Lakes counties.

We asked that Ms. Warren contact us by phone or email to discuss setting up a date and time for a presentation or to discuss the matter further. We also asked her to drop us a return email that she received this email offering the program. Ms Warren avoided any personal contact by phone and had city council Chief of Staff, Andrea Guzzetta, contact us by email who said: Thank you for taking the time to contact City Council President Lovely Warren. In your email you requested to make a presentation. Could you please let me know exactly how much time you are looking for and if you need anything for the presentation (smart board, computer, etc). As of now group meetings for the Council are booked through the new year. I do however feel that this is not something at this point that needs to be before the entire Council, instead I think it would be best for you to present to the Jobs, Parks and Public Works Committee.

Please send me the information requested and I will also reach out to Dana Miller, Chair of the Jobs, Parks and Public Works Committee to discuss when a good time would be for the presentation. Thank you and thank you for reaching out to City Council.

So much for the effort to educate Rochester city council! THEY ARE USELESS.

The GLOW project would have no interest to the Public Works committee and Warren knows this. Once again – property owner’s along Beach Ave. do not know that the mayor blew us off, that city council rep. Palumbo ignored us and that city council president Warren sloughed us off too. None of them would take the time to learn about the many negatives the city of Rochester would suffer from the NYPA GLOW project. Maybe they know too much already and can’t waste time listening to the Great Lakes Concerned Citizens.

NYPA knows they would have no trouble with Rochester and that the city would likely sacrifice the beautiful Beach Ave. lake shore neighborhood for the GLOW project and Kessel may have already promised money to the city. Good thing Greece has already said NO as the former RG & E Russell Station link to the grid is critical for the GLOW project. (the Russell Station is now closed and was a coal fired electrical plant, still exists in the town of Greece)

The reader should know that Democrats, federal, state and local, are responsible for efforts to place offshore turbines in the Great Lakes. Andrew Cuomo is among them and so is Robert Duffy. These people would be pleased to industrialize the Great Lakes and destroy the natural beauty and resource for a few dozen mediocre jobs.

Great Lakes Concerned Citizens

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Andrew Cuomo's New NY Agenda

Our new Governor Andrew Cuomo needs to enroll in John Droz course on Wind Energy 101 and learn what really happens scientifically within the wind industry because apparently Cuomo hasn’t learned from his years experience as NYS AG what the wind industry is really all about. Cuomo has apparently authored three agendas in 2010 on his thoughts about improving NYS after he takes charge as governor. The agendas are entitled: The New NY Agenda Power NY; The New NY Agenda: A Plan for Action; The New NY Agenda - A Cleaner, Greener NY. – all are available to view on the internet. Should anyone have doubts that Cuomo highly supports wind energy in NYS, both terrestrial and offshore – then read through his three recent New NY Agendas and come to a conclusion. Cuomo’s thoughts are sometimes repeated somewhat in all 3 “agendas”. These are a blend of overstatements; understatements, dreaming, moonstruck and just plain errors. But the reader should be convinced that Cuomo is definitely looking out for his downstate friends and their best interests. If you believe what Cuomo has written in these “agendas” – you must believe in the tooth fairy. Regarding wind – we have major reason to worry with Cuomo in command! To save you time - please continuing reading and we’ll share with you some of Cuomo’s thoughts as mentioned (culled) in these three “Agendas”. Their page numbers are on the left and the text in blue is what Cuomo’s agenda thoughts are about.

Beginning with:

The New NY Agenda Power NY.

p. iv - Make New York the Nation’s Leader in Wind Power

p. iv - Promote On-Shore Wind Projects and Facilitate Siting

p. iv - Enter Into Power Purchase Agreement for Off-Shore Wind When Economically Feasible

p. 1-2 Environmental Quality: Environmental quality and sustainability must be a prime consideration in New York’s energy policy. This means transitioning to cleaner fuels with less carbon emissions and renewable fuel sources like wind and solar power and other alternative technologies.

p. 8-9 we should add new transmission capacity where necessary to meet our energy goals. An example of the type of transmission project that could meet our criteria is one that would build a transmission line that enables New York to purchase low-cost and renewable hydropower from Canada in the hot summer months (our peak usage time) while selling our excess energy—including unused wind power—in Canada’s cold winter months. One of our priorities of our transmission policies should be to expand the market for wind power and other energy sources from Central and Western New York, thereby advancing both our renewable energy goals and economic development in that part of the State.

p. 11 With strong leadership and enlightened policies, New York can be a leader in this transition to a more efficient and greener energy economy. New York hosts major “cleantech” businesses such as General Electric and Corning that are leaders in sectors such as wind power, high tech glass insulation that improves energy efficiency, and the burgeoning field of battery technologies that can support electric and hybrid cars.

p. 12 Expanding the State’s use of renewable fuels such as wind and solar power, as well as repowering power plants so that they operate more efficiently and produce fewer harmful emissions, reflect our commitment to environmental quality.

p. 23 The State must ensure that its generation sources include both sufficient baseload supply as well as other sources that, although may be less consistent in producing electricity, supplement the baseload supply, such as wind turbines that produce greater amounts of electricity at night and under windier conditions.

p. 71 Expand Wind and Solar Power and Repower Old Plants to make them Cleaner and More Efficient

p. 71 On-shore wind power is generally cost competitive, but its greatest output often comes when demand is low.

p. 72-73 However, even as the State increases its use of renewable energy, it must ensure that it has a sufficient supply of electrical power that can be dispatched when needed at any time—a quality that wind and solar power do not yet have because they generate electricity only when those resources are available.

p. 73 Wind is the most promising renewable resource for large-scale energy generation in New York. While up-front costs remain significant, recent developments in wind power generation technology—including increases in the size of available turbines—have substantially lowered such costs.

p. 73-74 Now, with the support of the federal production tax credit for wind power generation, state-of-the-art wind power plants can generate electricity for less than 5 cents/kWh, a price that is competitive with new gas-fired power plants.

p. 74 Unfortunately, in recent years some unscrupulous developers of wind power engaged in unethical and illegal behavior. That’s why, as Attorney General, Andrew Cuomo established a Wind Industry Ethics Code (“Code”). The Attorney General’s Code prohibits conflicts of interest between municipal officials and wind energy companies and establishes public disclosure requirements on wind companies. This code is the result of investigations of the relationship between wind energy companies and local government officials who control local zoning and land use decisions. The Code is monitored by a Wind Energy Task force made up of representatives of local government, good government advocates and the wind industry.

p. 74-75 The robust development of wind power generation in New York requires that we overcome some significant barriers. We must work hard to address the lack of adequate transmission capacity for renewable energy from upstate areas to the high demand downstate region, while remaining sensitive to the guiding principle of equity among regions of the State. In addition, we must reform the State’s regulation of both siting and financing of such projects to ensure that unnecessary delays and uncertainty do not prevent power producers and utilities from investing in upgrades to the transmission infrastructure. The Power NY Agenda will achieve these goals through the measures outlined below.

p. 75-76 Promote On-Shore Wind Projects and Facilitate Siting There are various wind generation projects that have been proposed in New York State and are currently awaiting development with the assistance of strong leadership in Albany. With existing subsidies from the Renewable Portfolio Standard (“RPS”) that is included in ratepayers’ bills and federal tax incentives, on-shore wind power is now cost-competitive with other forms of generation and thus has the potential to increase dramatically if the State takes the proper steps. As described in other sections, the State should promote smart transmission investments that expand the market for wind power. Next, as described in sections below, the State needs a new energy siting law that will create an accelerated siting process—allowing for necessary community input and protecting critical community interests—that ensures that sound projects are approved and permitted expeditiously. A new siting law should include an expedited review and approval for renewable energy.

p. 76 Enter Into Power Purchase Agreement for Off-Shore Wind When Economically Feasible

In 2009, NYPA issued a request for proposals for developers to build the nation’s first freshwater wind farm in the Great Lakes—a utility-scale project that would produce as much as 500 MW of new electric power to be purchased by NYPA. NYPA has also set up a “Great Lakes Offshore Wind Business Registry” to involve local companies in the project and create a list of companies to draw upon in the construction and development of the project.

p. 77 In addition, several responses were received to the Request for Information issued by the LIPA, NYPA, and Con Edison (the “Collaborative”) for a new off-shore wind facility off of the Rockaway Peninsula (the “Long Island-New York City Offshore Wind Project”) in the Atlantic Ocean. Because of its location, the Long Island-New York City Offshore Wind Project would help address the difficult transmission problems associated with bringing sufficient power to customers downstate.

p. 77 Because off-shore wind projects produce energy at a higher cost than the current market price, we must be mindful of the impact on the affordability

of energy. We cannot have renewable energy irrespective of cost. But if these projects can be delivered at a cost that has only a minimal impact on total energy costs, building these projects will serve to hedge against unforeseen future increases in fossil fuel prices, create significant economic development opportunities and serve as a strong endorsement of New York’s commitment to environmental quality and the new energy economy.

p. 78 One of the distinct advantages of solar energy is that, unlike wind turbines and other sources of renewable energy, solar energy can be implemented in New York City and other downstate regions such as Long Island where the demand for energy is greatest. Solar power can provide these downstate areas with new sources of power without requiring new hard-to-site power plants or transmission lines.

p. 100 A number of transmission projects have been proposed that should be carefully evaluated to determine if they meet the criteria adding new transmission capacity in New York. One such project contemplates building a transmission line that would enable New York to purchase low-cost and renewable hydropower in the hot summer months (our peak usage time) while selling our excess energy including unused wind power to Canada during the cold winter months (their peak usage period).

p. 101 To determine where and what types of new transmission infrastructure should be built, the State should build on the ongoing work of the State Transmission Assessment and Reliability Study (“STARS”) task force, a multi-stage analysis of the State’s transmission needs and plans for addressing those needs. The STARS process is currently addressing the enhanced transmission that will be needed to bring future wind power into the bulk transmission system.

p. 101-102 New York State has not built a major new above-ground transmission line in more than 20 years, leading not only to increased congestion and aging infrastructure but also a lack of capacity to bring new wind power downstate.

Now: The New NY Agenda: A Plan for Action

p. 122 New York State already has ambitious goals to improve energy efficiency and increase the use of renewable fuels, but not nearly enough is being done to meet those goals. To make more rapid progress, the New York State Power Authority and the Long Island Power Authority must be made full partners in advancing energy related projects that will create jobs and grow the economy. Their efforts should include both major wind-power projects and making possible smaller “distributed generation” renewable energy projects by allowing net metering.

p. 124 New York’s farmers must be able to share in the benefits of emerging technologies. Alternative energy sources—ranging from wind to biomass—can create new economic opportunities for farmers.

p. 167 Accelerate efforts to achieve energy efficiency and expanded sources of renewable energy. To make more rapid progress towards these goals, the New York State Power Authority and the Long Island Power Authority must be made full partners in advancing energy related projects that will create jobs and grow the economy. Their efforts should include both major wind-power projects and making possible smaller “distributed generation” renewable energy projects by allowing net metering.

p. 168 encouraging the use of emerging technologies such as alternative energy sources—ranging from wind to biomass; and increasing affordable access to broadband which will help connect farmers and other rural residents to the world economy.

Finally: The New NY Agenda - A Cleaner, Greener NY

p. 48 Moreover, we should build the smart grid to empower citizens to reduce their energy costs and increase efficiency, support and foster the growth of clean tech businesses, promote onshore and offshore wind projects, create a new “NY-Sun” renewable energy tax credit to stimulate investment in solar energy, jumpstart the use of solar thermal technology for water heating and enact a new fuel neutral power plant generation siting law that provides fast-track review and approval for efficient power plants that provide the most power and are located on existing plant facilities and for renewable energy projects. (Fast tracking new power plants is exactly what Cuomo wants in order to prevent or discourage legal action against power plants. What Cuomo wants to do is remove or bypass Municipal Home Rule that would prevent downstaters like Cuomo from forcing unwanted power plants upon upstaters. This would include any type of power plant be it coal, nuclear, wind, etc. This is against the NYS Constitution and would no doubt be opposed by any upstate municipality.)

p. 95-96 Close Indian Point. Andrew Cuomo has long been a supporter of closing the Indian Point nuclear power plant in Westchester and has argued that the federal government should not renew the plant’s operating license when it expires in 2013. We must find and implement alternative sources of energy generation and improve transmission to replace the electricity now supplied by the Indian Point facility. It is reported that the Indian Point nuclear facility supplies 30% of New York City’s electricity. How could Cuomo possibly suggest the closure of this plant in a few years without a plan for its replacement? What new power plant could possibly supply NYC with 30% of its electricity?

As NYS Attorney General, Cuomo developed the Wind Industry Ethics Code. This came about as a result of shoddy and illegal wind practices by First Wind and also Nobel as they operated in NYS. Here is the gist of Cuomo’s code:

The Attorney General’s Wind Industry Ethics Code prohibits conflicts of interest between municipal officials and wind companies and establishes public disclosure requirements. The Code:

  • Bans wind companies from hiring municipal employees or their relatives, giving gifts of more than $10 during a one-year period, or providing any other form of compensation that is contingent on any action before a municipal agency
  • Prevents wind companies from soliciting, using, or knowingly receiving confidential information acquired by a municipal officer in the course of his or her official duties
  • Requires wind companies to establish and maintain a public Web site to disclose the names of all municipal officers or their relatives who have a financial stake in wind farm development
  • Requires wind companies to submit in writing to the municipal clerk for public inspection, and to publish in the local newspaper, the nature and scope of the municipal officer’s financial interest
  • Mandates that all wind easements and leases be in writing and filed with the County Clerk
  • Dictates that within sixty days of signing the Wind Industry Ethics Code, companies must conduct a seminar for employees about identifying and preventing conflicts of interest when working with municipal employees

Now if the wind industry were so clean, honorable, transparent and trusting – why would there be a need for such an ethics code? Have you ever heard of an attorney general in any state developing such a code to be signed any industry or business? Does this speak well of the wind industry? Absolutely not!

Andrew Cuomo:

“We need to do a better job of transmission. We need to get the power from upstate New York, from Western New York, low-cost power from Canada down to the metropolitan area of New York City. That’s basically a challenge of transmission lines.” – Andrew Cuomo, Hofstra/Newsday Gubernatorial Debate, October 18, 2010.

This quote from Cuomo, apparently telling the truth, made during his campaign for governor surely reveals mountains of intent. Cuomo, a typical downstate Democrat, wishes to achieve a goal of delivering huge amounts of needed electrical power to metropolitan downstate areas and Long Island. But he is respecting downstate’s wish not to pollute viewsheds with hundreds of ugly 450’ tall industrial giants that intermittently produce electricity 30% of the time so the answer is to transmit the power, to downstate, from far outside the metropolitan area and well away from pricey Long Island neighborhoods. His answer is to locate the ugly power plants upstate and build better transmission lines to downstate. One of the novel new suggestions is to buy inexpensive hydro power from Hydro-Quebec and run a transmission line laid under Lake Champlain and then over to the Hudson River and along the river bottom to the metro area – and this may not be a bad idea!

On a final note – Rochester, NY Mayor Robert Duffy is now Cuomo’s Lt. Governor.

Here’s what Robert Duffy had to say about the GLOW catastrophe in a Aug 20, 2010 Rochester Democrat & Chronicle newspaper article:

Rochester Mayor Robert Duffy said last week he believes passing resolutions of opposition is short-sighted. “We need to look at this for the long term and explore this,” he said. Duffy, who is running for lieutenant governor, said offshore wind farms were desirable as a source of renewable energy and, potentially, a source of jobs and economic growth for the Rochester region.

But, he said he knows people have legitimate concerns about the turbines, especially their esthetic impact. “If they buy a home on Beach Avenue or anywhere along the lake, they want to look out their windows every morning and see the water. I respect that,” Duffy said. “I don’t think we in any way can make a rash decision. If we put our minds together, I bet we could come up with some alternatives and compromises that could produce that first wind farm.”

In other words Duffy is willing to sell out to NYPA’s foreign developers and sacrifice Rochester’s lake shore beauty! Now that he and Cuomo are in bed together we’ll bet they attempt to find a way to force this on an unsuspecting public.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

NYSERDA = Part of the Problem

NYSERDA seeks to 'transform our economic system'

As the G20 summit meeting scheduled in Cancun approaches, the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) co-chair, Dr. Edenhoffer of Germany, candidly admitted, "... One must say clearly that we redistribute the world's wealth by climate policy." This has been clearly exemplified here in the United States by the fact that of the $2.2 Billion dollars of the stimulus money that was allotted for "renewables" (and supposed "green" job creation) -- over 80% of that money went overseas (See: ). Industrial wind is a major component of the IPCC's "climate policy" redistribution of wealth scheme, and NYS - with plenty of Big Wind lobbyists and political cronies in high places, is a major player in this redistribution of wealth and, as Al Gore & George Soros refer to it - "global governance" scheme.

The push for the redistribution of our wealth through politicalization of our energy policies was made clear once again at the annual
NYS Energy Research & Development Authority (NYSERDA) "Partnership for Environmental Improvement" meeting held on 11/18/10 in Albany, when NYSERDA executive, Janet Joseph stated, "...We are looking at transforming our economic system."

The objective of the meeting was supposed to be for NYSERDA to give Environmental Groups from across NYS an opportunity to bring their concerns to NYSERDA's attention, so that NYSERDA could properly address these concerns. The absolute frustration we have faced at getting them to address any of our concerns over the past several years now, was made even worse at this year's meeting. Dr. Thorndike, the Cornell professor on NYSERDA's board who chairs these meetings, elected to skip over the folks from across NYS she knew were there about wind, while letting all the other attendees speak - despite the fact that we had all been invited by NYSERDA to this meeting, and driven hundreds of miles to get there. When it got to be 3:00 - past the time the agenda said would be allotted for our comments - and the meeting was only scheduled to go until 4:00, I decided to speak out - much to their chagrin, I'm sure.

I pointed out to them that the entire focus in each of their varied presentations that day had been about improving "energy efficiency & reliablity" -- of which industrial wind is neither.

I asked, "You admitted that we don't have the money, the equipment, or the transmission lines in your presentation on Offshore Wind, - so why are we wasting the time and resources soliciting these projects? I can testify that my hometown would be much better off if we spent the money insulating, and installing energy efficient windows in every home. And I dare say, we'd probably save millions in dollars, and emissions in the process, while creating thousands of jobs!" (Why create jobs for local contractors when it's all about servicing Big Corporate, though?!?)

I went on and said, "Two things are missing when it comes to industrial wind -- the science and the money!"
NYSERDA has yet to provide the independent, transparent, empirical proof that wind energy can live up to any of the wind industry's claims.

I asked how they could compare industrial wind - something that has virtually a zero capacity value (can be relied on to be there when called upon), to our reliable, dispatchable, baseload energy sources (i.e. - hydro, nuclear, gas, & coal), which "is like comparing a soap box derby car to a Boeing 747." (See: )

I referenced the Colorado/Texas Bentek studies, which looked at actual wind performance data in Texas and Colorado, and concluded that wind caused coal plants to operate more inefficiently, "often resulting in great SO2, NOx, and CO2 emissions than would have occurred if less wind energy were generated and coal generation was not cycled."

No one debated any of the facts I presented.

I looked to the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative presenter who had proclaimed that "We must raise the cost of carbon!", and told him that in spite of their demonizing of coal, there is the inconvenient fact that with over 100,000 IWT's that have been installed worldwide to date, NOT one coal plant has been closed down anywhere in the world thanks to industrial wind. I elaborated that it was cheaper, affordable energy that had made our country what it is today, and our poorest poor in this country are far better off than the poor in any other country in the world because we have had affordable power. Their plans to "transform our economic system" will hurt the lowest income folks the most. (See: "Resisting the Green Dragon" at the )

His response was, "We answered all your questions at the meeting a year ago."

I said, "No you didn't! Dr. Jan Storm, the NYS Dept of Health rep who spoke at the June, 2009 meeting acknowledged the existence of health problems around the world due to citing these things too close to peoples' homes -- but that NYS had not yet undertaken any studies. Here it is
a year and a half later, and NYS still has done NO health studies. Yet, you continue to push these projects through! Furthermore, former PSC Sound Engineer, Dan Driscoll, told us all at the June, 2009 meeting that setbacks of approximately 3500' would probably alleviate most problems, yet you still have made NO recommendations to communities across NYS dealing with industrial wind developers. As a matter of fact, you have done NOTHING to help protect NYS residents!"

Of course, the typical reply came back, "It's a local matter."

I challenged them, and said, "As NYS's Energy Research & Development 'authority', you have a responsibility to make recommendations to the state on behalf of the people you work for in regard to these projects!"

A fellow advocate from the Tug Hill area jumped in - citing the fact that she had brought in FERC numbers showing the ridiculous output levels of 12% & 16% from the Maple Ridge project at the last meeting, and then handed all of them copies of the latest peer-reviewed study on the negative health effects of living too close to industrial wind installations. Advocates there for the first time from the Great Lakes group, then voiced their utter dismay with the way we had all been treated and ignored, and got up and left.

And how were our questions and concerns answered? With lame excuses and condescending lectures.

Why doesn't our government listen, you ask? One can only surmise that our government and its agencies (i.e. - NYSERDA) are in bed with the developers. NYSERDA is bent on raising your electric rates in order
to benefit multi-national developers, and in turn - themselves.

NYSERDA told us straight out at last year's meeting, "Industrial wind is not up for debate as it is a political agenda that has been handed down from Washington & Albany." Really???

The hypocrisy of the NYS Energy Research & Development bureaucracy's Mission Statement of providing "independent, objective, scientific proof," versus pursuing "political agendas," is clear, and it is we - the NYS taxpayers & ratepayers, who will pay the price, while OUR tax & ratepayer dollars continue to be exported overseas in this "climate policy" fraud.

I'm afraid that I could not agree more with the statement Environmentalist, Jon Boone, made three years ago at a presentation in Chautauqua County:

"The politicalization of electricity production, which is what is happening here, corrupts any reasonable sense of enlightened public policy, driven as it is by propagandized sloganeering and a press that much of the time couldn’t hit water with an accurate story about wind if it fell out of a boat. New York State’s Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), the politically correct renewable energy oversight group within the state’s PSC, has become one of those grotesque bureaucracies that exist to justify its existence, generating gratuitous inaccuracies about the potential for wind energy in much the same way Cinderella’s step sisters connived to make that damned slipper fit their outsized feet. NYSERDA’s levy of a renewable energy surcharge is nothing more than a legalized bunko scheme for defrauding consumers."

Folks, accountability is a biblical principle. Not only is it time that we held our politicians and government bureaucracies accountable -- we all have a duty to speak out! Silence is agreement. Ignoring what is going on is akin to denial of an addiction -- It won't get better until we acknowledge the problem, and ask God for His help to deal with it. We have a responsibility to educate ourselves, speak out, and demand accountability from our elected officials. As Edmund Burke said, "All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing."

The next "political" development in NYS will likely be "Article X", which is being promoted by Governor-elect Cuomo. This will effectively take away NYS citizen's Home Rule rights to determine whether or not they want wind projects in their community, and if so, under what conditions. Are you willing to sit back and accept this removal of our constitutional rights, or will you stand up and speak out?

Mary Kay Barton
Silver Lake, NY