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Iberdrola Town Meeting Notes

Iberdrola Town Meeting Notes

Dec 3, 2012

Iberdrola town meeting notes are from concerned citizens who have been present, alert and taking notes and pictures concerning the Wild Meadows Wind Project and its wind effects on the communities involved.  There are surely discrepancies from what interviews and newspaper articles report.  Decide for yourselves.

Recap of Iberdrola Wild Meadows Wind Project Open House in Grafton (11/13), Alexandria (11/14), Danbury (11/15):

Open House, which ran from 6:00-8:30pm, consisted of a series of stations that folks could visit. Each station contained information about the proposed project, including the impacted areas, visibility map, sound level determination, etc. There were no handouts available but a few pictures of their representations (see attachments) were taken.

At 6:30pm, Ed Cherian, Iberdrola Project Manager, turned down the lights and gave a brief presentation on the project, very similar to the presentation delivered to the Board of Selectman. There were no handouts but most of the information was captured and is available online by googling “Wild Meadows Wind Project, Alexandria, NH” or www.alexandrianh.com/page46.php.

Specific to Grafton: Following the presentation, a local resident insisted on a Q&A session. Iberdrola resisted this request but upon further urging, gave in to 15 minutes of Q &A. There were a variety of questions asked which provided the following information:

  • Iberdrola has no agreements in place yet to sell the electricity.
  • The energy from the wind turbines is not stored
  • Board of Selectmen will need local support for this to go forward.
  • The land is being leased for 30-40 years
  • Decommissioning is based on town agreement with Iberdrola or their LLC. It was stated that Groton has $600,000 budget for decommissioning of 24 turbines although local resident pointed that actual decommissioning cost is closer to $160,000 per turbine.
  • There will need to be a 75 foot wide road to get the equipment in although this will be reduced for longer-term access. There was some discrepancy on road sizes as 38 feet and 22 feet were also discussed.
  • Iberdrola is not a utility company so they will not provide the transmission line although they said they have secured the land for the transmission to the grid.
  • It was stated that these turbines would be enough to power 60,000 homes while a local resident pointed out that there’s not more than 5,000 homes in the impacted area.
  • The production tax credit, due to expire 12/31/2012, will not be provided until the site is operational.
  • A local Grafton resident spoke to the impact on taxes and pointed out that Lempster’s taxes have increased significantly since the project was installed. She had been in touch with the Lempster tax collector to gather the tax details from 2008 through 2012. In short, Lempster’s taxes have gone from $17.69/$1,000 in 2008 (pre-wind project) to $19.85/$1,000 in 2012 (post wind project).
  • The project requires 1 year to complete construction of the turbines.
  • When asked how this is likely to impact property values, Ed Cherian responded, it won’t have any impact as the turbines are ‘a matter of taste’ and some people like to see them.

Specific to Alexandria: Following the presentation, folks urged the Q&A session, and were provided with 10 minutes for ask questions.

Q:     Who pays for dirt access roads?
A:     Iberdola

Q:     How long is/are leases?
A:     Land access, 40 years. Turbines, 20, with expectations of upgrades or replacememt.

Q:     Confidentiality clause(s) in lease docs?
A:     No

Q:     Who owns Turbines?
A:     Iberdola

Q:     Road widths?
A:     22, 33 ft. (Comment:  Don’t know what happened to 75 ft I heard somewhere before.)

Q:     Are sites forested?
A:     No, most have been logged.

Q:     What about Forbes Mt?
A:     That hasn’t been logged,

Q/Comment from a participant: This is all subsidized by borrowing and US Tax $$, but we in NH don’t need or get the electricity generated.
A:     The power generated goes into the NE grid.

Q:     How many houses on Washburn Rd will be affected by ‘flicker’?
A:     Hasn’t been studied yet.

Q:     How much invested so far?
A:     ~$1.5 million

Q:     How much is subsidy from Fed governmentt?
A:     2 cents / KW-Hr

Q:     Is Iberdola the only local wind project at this stage?
A: 
There are several. A Portugese company is proposing another located in Alexandria and Hebron.

Specific to Danbury:   Following the presentation, folks urged the Q&A session and were denied.   Jeanie Forrester attended this session.

 

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