June 17th, 2013
Evidence is mounting that the Goodhue Wind Project, n/k/a New Era Wind Project, f/k/a AWA Goodhue, the little project that could, but assuredly is NOT, the project that has gone from something pretty much “shovel ready” and approved by the Public Utilities Commission to a project with nothing more than a P.O. Box:
… the evidence is indeed mounting that this wind project is going down, down down…
Join us at the Public Utilities Commission, Thursday June 20, 2013 “not to be decided before 10:30 a.m.” but be there early, 9:30 or so, just in case.
First, the Staff Briefing Papers:
And just to make sure we understand, because “New Era” keeps stalling saying they’re trying to get something together for a Power Purchase Agreement, that there is NOTHING WHATSOEVER happening with the PPAs, Xcel Energy filed an action to terminate the PPAs because nothing is happening, Xcel has had enough, DONE:
What a hoot! Read it and chortle! You tell ‘em, Xcel! errrr… NSP!
June 16th, 2013
FERC, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, is at it again. Join in on the free webcast, also no need to register, and it’s really stimulating stuff! “Reliability of the Bulk-Power System” Doesn’t get much better than that!
This webcast could be useful, because we all know that Reliability and the Bulk-Power System are one of those conflated things, because the “Bulk-Power System” is about marketing and shipping everywhere and anywhere, and “Reliability” is more the inverse of these bul-power transfers, which can trigger instability by promoting such a high-capacity grid that the magnitude of the transfers, the long distance, and need for reactive power puts the system at risk.
June 12th, 2013
How to work up excitement about the Certificate of Need rulemaking??? On its own, it’s dry, detailed, wonkish stuff, thrilling only to those of us who live and breathe need decisions and utility infrastructure siting and routing… but may there’s some pizazz in the machinations surrounding input, like lack of public representation on the Advisory Committee such that even my tremendous bulk doesn’t even it out. Does Xcel deserve THREE representatives? ITC two? “Participating Utilities” two, “Wind Coalition” one and none for Goodhue Wind Truth? Here’s the list:
Plus they’re not posting the drafts on the rulemaking site, so the public has no idea what’s being proposed:
And minutes from the first meeting:
To get to the docket, go to www.puc.state.mn.us and then “search eDockets” and search for 12-1246.
We’ll be talking about the Certificate of Need criteria next, and here’s what’s proposed:
7849.0120 CRITERIA CERTIFICATE OF NEED REQUIREMENTS.
A certificate of need must be granted to the applicant on determining that:
Subpart 1. Need Demonstration. An applicant for a certificate of need must demonstrate that the demand for electricity cannot be met more cost effectively through energy conservation and load-management measures.
Subpart 2. Renewable Resource Preferred. An applicant proposing an LEGF that uses a nonrenewable energy source must demonstrate that it has considered the use of renewable energy sources, as required under Minnesota Statutes section 216B.243, subd. 3a.
Subpart 3. Assessment of Need Criteria. In evaluating a certificate of need application, the
commission shall consider the criteria contained in Minnesota Statutes, section 216B.243, subd. 3, as well as the following:
A. whether the probable result of denial would be an adverse effect upon the future adequacy, reliability, or efficiency of energy supply to the applicant, to the applicant’s customers, or to the people of Minnesota and neighboring states, considering: the region;
(1) the accuracy of the applicant’s forecast of demand for the type of energy that would be supplied by the proposed facility;
(2) the effects of the applicant’s existing or expected conservation programs and state and federal conservation programs;
(3) the effects of promotional practices of the applicant that may have given rise to the
increase in the energy demand, particularly promotional practices which have occurred since 1974;
(4) B. the ability of current facilities and planned facilities not requiring certificates of need to meet the future demand; and
(5) the effect of the proposed facility, or a suitable modification thereof, in making efficient use of resources;
B C. whether a more reasonable and prudent alternative to the proposed facility has not been demonstrated by a preponderance of the evidence on the record, considering:;
(1) D. the appropriateness of the size, the type, and the timing of the proposed facility compared to those of reasonable alternatives;
(2) E. the cost of the proposed facility and the cost of energy to be supplied by the proposed facility compared to the costs of reasonable alternatives and the cost of energy that would be supplied by reasonable alternatives;
(3) F. the effects of the proposed facility upon the natural and socioeconomic environments compared to the effects of reasonable alternatives; and
(4) G. the expected reliability of the proposed facility compared to the expected reliability of reasonable alternatives;
C. by a preponderance of the evidence on the record, the proposed facility, or a suitable modification of the facility, will provide benefits to society in a manner compatible with protecting the natural and socioeconomic environments, including human health, considering:
(1) the relationship of the proposed facility, or a suitable modification thereof, to overall state energy needs;
(2) H. the effects of the proposed facility, or a suitable modification thereof, upon the natural and socioeconomic environments compared to the effects of not building the facility;
(3) I. the effects of the proposed facility, or a suitable modification thereof, in inducing future development; and
(4) J. the socially beneficial uses of the output of the proposed facility, or a suitable modification thereof, including its uses to protect or enhance environmental quality; and.
D. the record does not demonstrate that the design, construction, or operation of the proposed facility, or a suitable modification of the facility, will fail to comply with relevant policies, rules, and regulations of other state and federal agencies and local governments.
June 12th, 2013
Photo: A January RW Beagle photo of Dan Bender being recognized as he left the City Council after not running last November.
Dan Bender is now Mayor. I don’t know much about him and so don’t have a clue how he’ll do as Mayor. We shall see how it goes. A couple of the candidates in this 6 candidate race were not credible or substantive. He seemed a solid option, with experience in city government, and noticeably lacking in the slick oily veneer of his predecessor — that difference shows in the photo!
We shall see…
June 4th, 2013
So it turns out the Public Utilities Commission has had a rulemaking going on Minn. Rules Chapter 7829, which is the PUC’s “Utility Proceeding, Practice, and Procedure” and runs alongside the Office of Administrative Hearings rules in 1400 and 1405. I discovered this by accident when looking for the PUC’s Web Archive.
The 7829 Rules are something that I’ve been fuming about, that and the 1400 and 1405, for YEARS, like 17 years or so, and they start up a rulemaking docket and don’t give me notice? Feels real personal, particularly after all the trouble I had with the Post Office and my P.O. Box, trying to change the address, and making sure the PUC had the right address on things, getting phone calls from the keeper of the list that mail was being returned. But here they use an old address?
Plus the Comment period ended in April. I am NOT happy…
Here are the rules:
Here’s the notice and proposed changes:
… and check the service list — proof they had the wrong address for me and yes, I didn’t get notice. And I”m not on any of the other lists.
HELLO! EARTH TO MARS!
Where did they get this service list? They had a list called the PPSA list, that I was on, but wrong address, and several Telecom list and an “SPL_SL_ETCList-DOC-PUC” list and rulemaking lists, and somehow I’m not on any of them? How can that be? Shouldn’t they at least have noticed this when mail was returned?
And look at the notice, the email for comments is “firstname.lastname@example.org,” but that bounces, his email is “email@example.com” — shouldn’t that be corrected?
So, for any of you who did not get notice on this, it’s time to file some comments, file on eDockets, file 13-24. It’s important, because the only ones filing are a couple of state agencies and utility toadies.
And as Suzanne noted, use their proposed procedure to assure they are not excluded as “late” — can’t have that now, can we: