Comments about ‘Utah wind farm inching toward completion’

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Published: Monday, May 25 2009 12:00 a.m. MDT

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Revitalize Rural Communities

This project is bringing millions of dollars to Milford, Utah, in the form of land lease payments and tax revenues over the next 20 years. It will be interesting to see how the community changes with that influx of revenues! Much of the property taxes will go to the local school system, benefiting the local children.

The one downside of this project is that all its output is going to California so that California can meet its imposed goal of 20 percent renewables by 2017. California is trying to shield its rate payers from carbon taxes or increased costs from cap and trade. Sadly, Utah is about 90 percent coal-fired, and we'll be hit hard by the coming emission restrictions. Utah will be producing wind, but our rate payers won't benefit from the cost stability of wind power.

Here in Utah, our legislature and utilities don't believe in global warming, but the carbon restrictions are coming regardless of what decision makers believe. Bottom line is that the utilities will just pass those costs onto us -- and we have no one looking out for our interests! We get the pollution of coal AND its higher costs!

lost in DC

the great ommission from this story is how the cost of the power produced compares to that produced by clean coal plants or, heaven forbid, nuclear plants (without the billions of added costs from government policy blocking the production of nuclear power, and I'm NOT talking about reasonable regulation).

I don't know for sure, but I think once you factor in those costs, you will see that the wind farm has a negative net affect to the overall economy. The bright spot here is that southern california will be paying the extra costs, and the good citizens of Milford and Beaver will reap the benefits.

I feel bad, though, that Utahans are benefitting at the expense of dupes. The real danger is, with incomplete stories such as this that don't measure the total cost, more expensive power generation will be forced on all of us.

Just Wait

Perhaps when the high utility bills come due folks will stop building starter castles for single family dwellings, maybe the old reliable clothes lines will reappear for drying laundry, and finally conservation of electricity can be practiced on a wide scale.

I'm waiting for the policiticans to finally get a glimmer that Utah is not autonomous from the rest of the world. Utahns pocketbooks will feel the crunch until we get in the solar, wind, geothermal mode for clean renewable power generation.

Make Sure

The last person to leave California turns out the lights!

Reality

Of course, it is unsaid that when the wind is not blowing, the Intermountain Power Plant will pour on the coal in its Lynndyl units to replace that not produced by the wind units. All the added emissions will be in Utah and will quietly drift east into Nephi, Lehi, Manti, etc.

Irish Ute

Way to give Pres. Obama the credit for encouraging green energy solutions like this project, even though it was started well before he was even a hopeful Presidential contender. When will the media stop making it sound like everything good that is happening in this world is because of B. Obama?

Anonymous

There are no clean coal plants, they may be free of mercury, but they continue to be the leading cause of global warming. the emissions are pure CO2 and soot.

Curt

Make Sure@ 7:29- You just might have made a prophetic quote

Howard

If nuclear power is so bad, why are we helping the UAE construct a nuclear power plant? If solar is the answer shouldn't we be encouraging them to construct solar farms? After all they have plenty of sunshine. If we are really serious about global warming (which were not) we would build nuclear plants. Instead of wind farms which are incredibly inefficient for the amount of space they take up and the visual pollution.

Also if nuclear is so bad, why are almost all of the capital ships in our navy powered by small nuclear reactor?

Let's get over our fear of nuclear power and use it like the enlightened French do.

c almond

Re: lost in DC
Why do you feel the costs will be higher? You site no numbers or examples at all. It seems very unlikely to me the cost would be higher.

utahenergyideas

We need clean energy, clean air, clean water, clean land and energy independence. We also need to encourage energy efficiency and technologies such as ground source heat pumps.

We may not agree with each other re: CO2 cap/trade, taxes, or our effects on climate.

We do need more renewable energy. Coal is reportedly being removed fast enough in Utah that it could last only 15 to 45 years for use in Utah at current rates.

We will need more electricity to offset a reduction in the use of foreign oil, and we can't afford to just rely on coal.

Do we have existing dams that we could add hydro power to, without putting more land underwater, hurting our rivers and/or wildlife?

It has been pointed out that renewable energy will help the state's economy in places that coal, or gas won't. Renewable energy being added to the mix will increase the life of the Utah coal economy.

Having goals to rely on renewable energy and energy savings to make up the increased demand on power is good. It is helpful when both sides of a debate can concentrate on items they agree.

Anonymous

Yes, we need to go nuc power. Wind mills will never, NEVER, produce the power we need.

falcon's beak

The wind farm will cost according to the article $1, 300,000 per megawatt. A new nuclear plant in Finland will cost 3.4 billion Euros for 1,400 MW. That is about $5 million a MW. The Euro stands at the moment as .7 per dollar or 1.4 dollars per Euro. So it would seem this wind farm is very competitive. First Solar recently announced they had cracked to $1 per watt level. That's $1 million per MW even better. What did you say about using coal? We may not have a large supply in Utah, but as a boy in Chicago we were taught in grade school that 80% of the state was coal. So there is oodles of coal it is just that why use coal when you can use solar and wind? And to top it off it appears Ceramatec and other companies will have storage units for release of electricity when no wind or sun. I'd like to go that route.

Clean Coal Too!

I'm an advocate of using renewables like wind, and solar in combination with clean coal technology and natural gas. US has oodles of coal and abundant supplies of natural gas. Wind and solar can complement the two providing clean affordable energy that will enable the US to become energy independent and conservation minded.

utahenergyideas

We can add enough wind, geothermal, solar, hydro and recycled methane, along with energy savings for buildings to handle the increases needed in the near future.

I am not opposed to Nuclear, but we need to make sure we can do something with the waste.

Physicists at The University of Texas at Austin have designed a new system that, when fully developed, would use fusion to eliminate most of the transuranic waste produced by nuclear power plants.

I would like to see if that is really going to work, and then I don't have a problem with a few nuclear plants in Utah - if we can solve the waste issue and if Energy Solutions processes waste from Utah and the US. Until we have a plant that can convert the waste, I don't want to be the world's dumping ground.

I would like to keep the same amount of coal plants being used, and all new power being something else.

tntmonster

The project was built in a bird migration path. Clear Lake bird refuge is just north of the site. Hope Snow Geese can dodge the blades.

JPC53

To tntmonster. The birds are a lot smarter than us humans.

Sarcasm

tntmonster,

You're absolutely right. Birds are used to wide open areas with no obstructions. The number of bird deaths from running into tall obstructions such as trees and mountains is bad enough, when you factor in razor sharp blades spinning at 10,000 rpm they won't stand a chance! Once the field begins to fill with dismembered birds and the blood begins to pool around the bases then the powers that be will see the err of their ways and remove the evil money trees.

myhouse

first, you should take a walk thru a wind farm when these units are running. they dont have razor sharp blades and they dont spin at 10,000 RPM... more like 6-8 RMP at higher wind times. get a grip!

justin

Most wind farms have achieved grid parity a long with most solar plants. The wind farms don't consume water using nuclear uses a lot of water. The proposed nuclear plant would nearly double our water consumption as a state. Utah residents use more water per person then any other state yet we are the second driest. We can not afford a nuclear power plant because of that reason.
I hate how we have to take care of California. They mismanaged their state let them deal with it. Give us the cheap, clean energy that can be produced through proper methods and let them take care of them selves.

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