This is worth a watch…

Senate video of hearing

I’ve been receiving a lot of emails about the upcoming hearings, now this has happened and emails are coming in about it.

She has a good handle on it, the job, the role, and she’s been on energy issues f-o-r-e-v-e-r.  I’ve just put it on, and she is sounding nervous, with reason, given the tone of some of what I’ve been hearing.

Now she’s got a story about Koppendrayer and Pugh, where LeRoy told Tom that this was not the legislature and he didn’t have to vote with the chair, Tom proceeded, and LeRoy then said,  “You don’t HAVE to vote AGAINST the Chair EVERY TIME!”

Right now, she’s addressing questions from Sen. John Howe, from here in Red Wing, but he’s asking about things that are before the Commission right now, which she cannot address, it’s like asking a judge in confirmation hearing about issues before the court, she can’t go there… and from the sound of it, she’s not real familiar with the Goodhue Wind case, where the statute does allow County regulation.

Explaining differences… “You can’t just shoot off your mouth like I could as a Senator.”

Sen. Howe is now addressing “personal bias” and I wonder if he knows about her role in limiting nuclear generation and nuclear waste in Minnesota?!?!  And balanced with that is her role in putting nuclear waste “in Goodhue County.”

And now a question about repealing the coal moratorium.  HELLO, where do these folks think that there’s a need for a coal plant?  She’s talking about generation and transmission planning, decreased demand (too weak on that, she should have the specifics).   They’re wanting answers to questions like “What would be the circumstances for the public interest to add a new coal plant?”  Unreal… no understanding that there’s no need.   Sen. Metzen is saying “we used to think we were 5,800-6,000MW short and now, I don’t think the need is there.”  Well DUH.  I’ve been providing info to the Senate and House Energy Committees for so long about need and lack thereof, how is it that so many haven’t gotten it through their heads that there is NO NEED!

Sen. Scott Dibble is now referrring to a facility proposed, can’t tell if it’s Big Stone or Mesaba, probably Mesaba, “a facility that there were questions about.”

Sen. Doug Magnus: “What are your thoughts on transmission… how are we going to move this energy around where we need it?”  There’s a number of transmission cases coming up before us… PUC has decided the first of the CapX lines, that line is intended to help support renewables.  Related to that… one thing that’s been interesting, because there’s been transmission gaps, and logjams in recent years, more of the wind projects have been located closer in to the metro area… as we site more of those transmission lines… that will help bring wind farm siting more back to the high speed wind areas that are more rural… not quite as much contention.   I did carry bill in 2005 to allow CapX utilities to get cost recovery to build out transmission…

(gotta get back to work!)

MISO queue for Illinois

March 28th, 2010


Here is information about what generation projects are in line waiting for interconnection, and keep in mind that this is the MISO queue, and part of Illinois, and a big part of the load, is in PJM.

Here’s where you get the queue, and download to Excel and it’s sortable by state, by fuel
CLICK HERE FOR MISO QUEUE LINK — it’s updated regularly

Here are a couple of spreadsheets, the MISO queue downloaded in Excel as of March 25, 2010:

MISO Queue – ENTIRE – as of 3/25/10

Illinois Queue – as of 3/25/10

Just for yucks, look at the Illinois Queue – as of 3-25
Sheet 1 is everything listed for Illinois (they list by state, column H)
Sheet 2 is for generation interconnection of projects where fuel is identified as “wind”


The links in columns S, T & U are the transmission studies showing what can be connected, what the system can bear, and what improvements would need to be made.  Check them out for some fun reading.

Now, all of you thinking about transmission, and the moronic ox of “transmission for wind,” think about this please — why would anyone near Illinois, and why would anyone way out east, want to pay for wind generation from the Dakotas via transmission?  Buying the power generated in the Dakotas means that you’d have to pay for:

  • Cost of Energy
  • Capital cost of transmission
  • Cost of transmission service
  • Cost of line losses (energy lost in transit due to resistance — greater loss over greater distance)
  • Cost of reactive power (transmission over long distances sucks reactive power out of the system and requires input for system stability)

As Minnesota Public Service Commissioner David Boyd noted when testifying before the Legislative Energy Commission last year (jointly with MOES and MISO!!!), he was talking about transmission, and he is Chair of Upper Midwest Transmission Development Initiative, a conflict if there ever were one.  Anyway, he said, and it was in writing on the slide:

We need a business plan.

That’s encouraging, because he apparently realizes that the above equation does not make any business sense.

That is the most important part of this issue — and the pell-mell hell-bent push for transmission.  WHY?

Why would anyone in Illinois want to pay when it’s right there in Illinois, and the offshore wind hasn’t even begun?  NREL has targeted Illinois as a wind production state, and… well.. DUH, what’s Chicago’s nickname after all???

Why would anyone out east want to pay for transmission of wind, on land a 41% capacity factor at best, to have it shipped 2,000 miles and pay BILLIONS to build that transmission, pay cost of transmission service, and pay cost of line losses, and cost of reactive power?