Sand – UNEP’s report

May 7th, 2019

Here in Red Wing, and throughout southeast Minnesota, and along the other side of the river in Wisconsin, sand has been a major issue. Many communities were dragged into this issue when an epidemic of silica sand mines, processing, and transloading facilities sprang up to support fracking for oil. Sand interests got Red Wing’s Mayor ejected when he was both Mayor and Executive Director of sand mining industry’s Minnesota Industrial Sand Council:

Mayor Egan Resigns

Sand was also an issue as Minnesota attempt at, though I’d say avoided, developing sand mining rules:

Someone explain rulemaking to the MPCA

As to sand as a resource, that’s not really been a part of the discussion in these parts. And on that note, the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) has released a report:

And in the STrib: UN environment agency warns of effects of rising sand use

Check it out!

Prairie Island Nuclear Plant & Prairie Island Indian Community

Here it is, I believe this is it, the “dream” bill that’s really a nightmare, Xcel Energy’s wish list, increasing “clean” energy generation, but what is regarded as clean, that’s the primary issue for me.  For you?  Check it out:

HF1956-0

OK, now, let’s read it and figure out what they’re up to!

And GO HERE to keep track of bill’s status.

House Energy Committee Hearings

Here are the House Energy Committee members – contact all of them with your concerns!

There’s no Senate companion bill yet, and it’s getting late.

And yet another year where Xcel, errrrrr, NSP, had a lackluster peak demand.  That’s a good thing, verification that we can get along with a lot less coal and nuclear.  And it’s also good as proof that of those Certificates of Need, based on their bogus “modeling” predicting 2.49% annual increase, we could jettison how many of those projects?  How much infrastructure was built that clearly wasn’t needed, at least by their justifications? Billions, right?  How much will ratepayers be refunded given all these unnecessary projects based on bogus projections?

Here are the details:

And looking at it another way:

Here’s the primary doc — Xcel’s 2018 10-K, just search for “peak demand” and there it is:

Xcel 2018_10-K

So now can we get all that unneeded transmission yanked up and hauled to the salvage yard?

Does this solar make my house look fat?!?! Soon… coming to a new white roof on West! It looks reasonable that we can cover our annual useage, average is 465 kWhr/mo., and if we can keep Alan’s air conditioner out of the window, and figure out a heater for the mudroom during polar vortices (?)(got a panel heater, should work), it’s even lower, so NO PROBLEM! Won’t be able to get out of the $8/mo to Xcel for the privilege of getting a low bill from them, drat!

We’ve got the new roof on, so we’re ready to rock! Just have to nail down the details!

THIS is how solar should be, on every rooftop. It’s SO easy, it’s at load, DOH!  Just do it!

And then there’s this: Build a Simple Solar Air Heater.

I want one on the south side of every building in Red Wing. How hard would that be?

GOOD!  Another incremental win for Association of Freeborn County Landowners.  That’s an interesting development!

County board opts not to vote on wind farm, will have further talks in March

After last Friday’s PUC meeting where Freeborn Wind’s siting permit was put on hold as they consider amendments:

Yesterday at PUC – Freeborn Wind TABLED!

… and today, at Freeborn County, when Motion was made to vote on the Freeborn Wind Development Agreement, and others, there was no 2nd!  Silence!!

Here’s the latest drafts of the agreements that I’ve been able to scrounge up:

Freeborn Development Agreement final January 2019

Freeborn Road Use Agreement final January 2019

Freeborn Public Drainage System Agreement final January 2019

How bad is this agreement?  Check this, on p. 8:

6.1. Amendments to Development Agreement. This Development Agreement may be amended by mutual agreement of the Parties only if the amendment is in writing and signed by an authorized representative of each Party. County authorized representative will be County Board Chair or County Administrator. Developer authorized representatives will be as designated by Article 9.4 of Development Agreement.

Ummmmm, no. Guess again…  Amendments must go to entire County Board. And there are additional changes you’ll need to make, Freeborn Wind!

Stay tuned.  Next meeting is mid-March.