Jan 30, 2011

When it comes to offshore windpower, the Shadow knows....

The ocean windpower extraction industry is now nervous about how more serious than earlier believed is the problem of "wind shadow" when positioning the mega windcomplexes envisioned off the Atlantic coast far enough apart to not reduce the wind too much between them.  The data from the Norwegian and other european ocean windmill operations is in and it is not pretty.

Read the January 10, 2011 letter from Blue Water Wind to federal wind agency BOEMRE: "...mitigation of potential shadowing effects on the Mid‐Atlantic Wind Park off Delaware must be considered"..."In this case, NRG Bluewater’s analysis indicates that turbines in the northern reaches of the Maryland RFI area will shadow some of the southernmost turbines of the proposed Mid‐Atlantic Wind Park." 

QUESTION: If impact of shadowing is enough to affect the performance of ocean windmills miles away, what affect must  wind energy extraction be having on the energetics of the oceanic ecosystem in the air and water currents flowing though these windparks? The significance of this on coastal currents is only beginning to be understood . Could Penobscot Bay lose its lobsters?  Could the Chesapeake lose its blue crabs? 

The Shadow knows....or those who plan to make those shadows.

Theoretically, yes, if larvae-bearing surface currents are slightly diverted from their landward wind drift by the giant wind armadas proposed to be stationed off the atlantic coast, from Maine to North Carolina, they could very well end of missing their home bays.

Jan 9, 2011

Last month's offshore Maine Wind Conference - links to all speakers' written remarks

Courtesy of the Island Institute, here are pdf files of  speakers’ presentations at the December 14, 2010 offshore windpower conference in Belfast, Maine, Link to Panel 3 audio included.

Panel I – Ocean Energy Goals in Maine

Panel II – Understanding the “Critical Factors”
Panel III - Lessons Learned From Siting Renewable Energy Projects AUDIO of panel

Jan 5, 2011

Maine legislation calls for cutting aerial pesticide notification zone by 90%.

LD 16. An Act To Revise Notification Requirements for Pesticides Applications Using Aircraft or Air-carrier Equipment. Sponsor: Representative Jeffrey Timberlake of Turner, Maine. (9 cosponsors)
This bill changes the notification criteria regarding the application of pesticides by aircraft or air-carrier equipment to a person on a notification registry from 1,320 feet to 100 feet. It also changes the distance requiring notification when pesticides are sprayed into the crowns of fruit trees or Christmas trees using air-carrier equipment from 500 feet to 50 feet.

SPONSOR: Representative Jeffrey Timberlake of Turner.
COSPONSORS:  Representative BLACK of Wilton; Representative CRAFTS of Lisbon, Representative DAVIS of Sangerville, , Representative DUNPHY of Embden, Representative LIBBY of Waterboro, Representative LONG of Sherman, Senator MASON of Androscoggin, Representative VALENTINO of Saco, Representative WOOD of Sabattus
Be it enacted by the People of the State of Maine as follows:
Sec. 1. 22 MRSA §1471-Z, sub-§3,  as enacted by PL 2009, c. 584, §2, is amended to read:
3. Criteria requiring notification.  A land manager is required to notify a person whose property is on the registry if:
A. Pesticides are being applied using aircraft and the registered property lies within 1,320 100 feet of the intended spray area;
B. Pesticides are being applied using air-carrier equipment and the registered property lies within 1,320 100 feet of the intended spray area; or
C. Notwithstanding paragraph B, pesticides are being applied using air-carrier equipment into the crowns of fruit trees or Christmas trees and the registered property lies within 500 50 feet of the intended spray area. This paragraph is repealed January 1, 2012.