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Saturday, December 01, 2007

Wise County Power Plant - Wind Farm - Anti Coal Protest - Insanity

With all the talk about the evils of coal I found this article about a wind farm in West Virginia interesting.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — The Mount Storm wind farm has a new $185 million construction and operating loan.

European banking and insurance giant Fortis and Spanish banking group Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria said Friday they will be the lead lenders for a 15-year loan for the NedPower Mount Storm project.

NedPower will be jointly owned by Richmond, Va.-based Dominion Resources and Shell WindEnergy Inc.

The project’s first phase, 82 turbines capable of generating 164 megawatts of electricity, is scheduled to start commercial operations next January.

Dominion and Shell have said they plan 50 more turbines despite an ongoing legal challenge. In June, the state Supreme Court reinstated a lawsuit brought by homeowners living near the northeastern West Virginia project.(LINK)

Yes, Dominion Resources owns a wind farm. Here are some Google Earth pics of the project. The project looks intrusive to me. In fact, by the time the grading and drainage work is complete it looks like mountain top removal. We read that  homeowners nearby file lawsuits.

The article says that 82 turbines are needed to generate 164 megawatts. The new Wise County Power Plant will generate 585 megawatts. It would take close to 300 turbines to produce that power. That is a lot of turbines and land. The Mount Storm wind farm with its 82 turbines is over 14 miles long "14 miles of turbines, 82 turbines, two rows deep." If Wise county used the same design it would take over 5o miles of turbines. What a view.

After some thought, I have concluded that with the present technology - Wind Farms Blow. The answer for our power needs in Wise County is not blowin in the wind, but being mined daily by proud miners above and below ground. The opponents of the Wise County Plant need to face the reality of our energy needs and what source can immediately provide that for the next 100 years. The answer is coal.  Until the anti coal people can provide a solution to our energy needs, we all should be thankful we have coal. Instead of protesting coal, why not support cleaner coal technology and good mining practices until other energy sources, like wind farms, are refined. Coal is not a curse, but a blessing. We don't have to depend on foreign countries to provide it, making us energy independent and secure. Protesting our main power source when there is no other feasible alternative is insane.


Comments on "Wise County Power Plant - Wind Farm - Anti Coal Protest - Insanity"


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (9:18 AM) : 

Interesting tidbit — the plant won't provide power for Wise County. County residents don't use Dominion power. Their electricity comes from ODP, and in some areas, from AEP. The plant's power will be funneled up to customers in central or northern Virginia.

Not that there's anything wrong with that — it's just to be noted.


Anonymous Megawatt said ... (12:52 PM) : 

Anon...You wrong. The ODP and AEP will have the option to buy power from the new plant.


Anonymous BeltwayBruce said ... (9:39 AM) : 

A thought on resources:

What is the better solution for future power generation as our society grows and consumes power at an ever increasing rate? Shall we continue to plow through our earths finite natural resources or develop renewable energy? Are we only concerned with the next 100 years of power consumption or would we rather harness sources that will last until the end of time? Renewable energy is the best answer!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (2:16 PM) : 

I am very sad and dissapointed in what you have to say. First off, coal will NOT last 100 years. By the time this power plant is built and constructed, coal will have reached its peak. Yes, Dominion has taken steps to come out with "clean coal technology." But coal, even in its purest sense, can never be considered CLEAN energy. The ecological balance will still be disrupted. Pollution will still be a factor. And mountaintop removal will STILL be an issue. Listen to what geologists say when they bring forth the fact that there is less than 50 years of coal left. Don't believe everything you hear from Dominion. They have a powerful monopoly on the earth's resources. Any investment in renewable energy is not a wasted one. You say to wait around until renewable energy advocates develop better technology. That is the first mistake. There is no time or reason to wait around until somebody else develops the technology. The resources are there, but we have to let it be known and demand that we as customers want a shift from finite resources that only drain the earth and promise temporary solace to endless, renewable energy.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (5:55 PM) : 

Coal is a NATURAL resource that we have AT LEAST 250 years reserve. If you want to talk about getting somewhere....let's start with America becoming INDEPENDENT with our energy sources.


Blogger someone who cares said ... (1:20 PM) : 

ok i know you cant tax the sun or the wind but why not use more solar power. i mean really. these companies have the money to do so and to me it seems it cant be taxed and line some one pockets. but use solar power instead of coal. or solar power with the coal. its waste coal that is going to be used and an entire hollow will be used to store the waste and solar power would keep things more clean.... but hey what do i know i'm not rich.


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