February 25th, 2015
Recently there was an AP article that flew around the country that mentioned the massive numbers of derailments projected, but the study was not linked in any of the articles I’d found, and oh was I looking. Then I went searching around, made a few phone calls, and FINALLY, out of the blue, it appeared in my inbox today.
Who cares about some government study? Well, with info like this, I do, and so glad to get it. How’s this for starters:
February 24th, 2015
Tomorrow the House Jobs Growth and Energy Affordability Policy and Finance Committee will take up HF 341, see also SF 237, to provide an exemption from Certificate of Need for natural gas plants that sell power into the MISO market.
The Power Plant Siting Act, specifically Minn. Stat. 216E.04, Subd. 2(2) already gives natural gas plants a free ride by allowing “alternate review,” which is “review lite.” For example, the “Simon Says” 325 MW natural gas plant that had been planned for Waseca would have been built. The 700-800 MW Sunrise River Station by the Chisago sub would have been built. WHY? Should a community be subject to living with a HUGE natural gas plant without regulation? Nope, no way, no how. Plus who will pay for the transmission interconnection, and how will that be regulated, both “need” and routing… and then there’s eminent domain! What’s the impact on Minnesota utilities and their service territory?
The biggest problem? If it’s not regulated by the PUC, who handles it? Counties. What county has the expertise or resources to review and permit a power plant? Most likely it’s as in Freeborn County, where they cut and pasted the project APPLICATION and called it an EIS! Really! Or look at Chisago County and the Sunrise River natural gas plant. That’s not something that should be thrown at a local government.
Here are the Authors’ emails — contact them today:
Here are the Committee member emails — contact them today:firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
Please let them know how important it is that we continue to regulate natural gas plants. A power plants is large, expensive infrastructure with large, costly impacts, and should only be built when and where needed, after a full Certificate of Need and Siting review.
Here’s an example of how it went in Waseca when they tried to bootstrap a larger plant onto an already approve very small plant — short version? It didn’t go:
And in Chisago County where they tried to ram through a HUGE plant on the Sunrise River and pull out large amounts of water — short version? It didn’t go:
What about the Mesaba Project which has a site permit good until 2019, and which couldn’t demonstrate either “need” or that it would provide reasonably priced electricity — under this bill, a large natural gas plant could go up on that site without any further review! More info HERE on Mesaba Project!
That’s what communities think of having a natural gas plant using their water, making noise, being lit up 24/7, and all for the profit of some absentee corporate owner: Thanks, but NO THANKS!
Here’s the agenda for tomorrow:
Wednesday, February 25, 2015
12:45 PMRoom: 10 State Office BuildingChair: Rep. Pat GarofaloAgenda:Overview of natural gas issues in Minnesota.If you wish to testify on HF341, please contact Committee Legislative Assistant, Jonathan Fortner, at email@example.com.
Bills:HF341 – (Swedzinski): Requirement to obtain certificate of need prior to construction of a natural gas plant generating electricity that is exported from the state eliminated.
February 23rd, 2015
February 21st, 2015
New Jersey gets a bad rap, people here in the Midwest have no clue. People think of New Jersey, and they think of Newark (which has its good points, I really enjoyed officing there during the Susquehanna-Roseland hearing) which is a mess, vacant buildings all over the place, TALL vacant buildings…
And that’s where the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities is, rolling a cart full of boxes back and forth from the R.Treat (right) to the BPU (big black glass smudged building under “Aug 2012”) in the snow was a joy:
Anyway, there’s more to New Jersey than that. New Jersey where the Susquehanna-Roseland transmission line crossed is B-E-A-U-T-I-F-U-L. It’s a lot like northern Minnesota, granite and pine trees, stunning. Turns out my mother spent time there in the Army, and afterwards she worked at the Franklin Hospital, I think owned by the Franklin nickle mine.
Google Earth maps are now showing the summer’s construction of the Susquehanna-Roseland transmission project, and… OH… MY… DOG…
Here are photos from Stop the Lines in 2013 of new access roads through the Mahlon Dickerson Reservation, Lake Hopatcong, NJ to build this monstrosity:
And the view from Headley’s Overlook and Lake Hopatcong:
Here’s Lake Mohawk, another example of bizarre transmission routing:
And at the heart of Stop The Lines resistence:
How’s that for a depressing photo? That’s Highview in Newton, NJ, and that’s a 500 kV AC line, TRIPLE BUNDLED (it originally was QUAD bundled, but that was over-reach beyond belief, and hey dropped it), HUGE capacity line, HUGE. Oh, and that’s the same configuration as the GNTL line. AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGH! Look how close it is, and if ice coated lines and towers meet high wind, what happens if these crumple like others we’ve seen?
Check out these solar panels, house on Marksboro Road. The one just north has a roof full too, not just that garage!
Here’s a view of the Picatinny Arsenal, thanks to Stop the Lines, and the tower is 215′ tall, the transmission towers through here will be ~25 feet shorter than this:
And yes, this is the transmission line that goes over the Delaware Water Gap and the Appalachian Trail! Here’s on the eastern side, NJ side, of the Delaware Water Gap:
DOH! The Delaware Water Gap is one of the country’s few Wild and Scenic Rivers (like our own St. Croix River):
Just the place for transmission! Enough… transmission sucks.
One of the perks of the job and being in the neighborhood was that I got to hear Phil Woods at the Deer Head Inn, he lives right around the corner. That must have been 2009, maybe 2010. His relatives on the Charlie Parker side came in from the east, place was packed, and as Ed Berger would say, “way outside.”
February 21st, 2015
Thanks to Charlotte for finding this. My Google Alerts disappeared and now I’m the last to know!
For the Excelsior’s Mesaba Project, the carbon capture and storage was a farce, the project plan took it to the PLANT GATE, and a small percentage of it at that. A scam:
And McClatchyDC says the POTUS is taking a “step back” from coal gasification. ‘Bout time for this coal state Pres. to admit the obvious reality that this is NOT “the way forward for coal.”
How can they write a headline like that and not put the quotes around “clean coal.”