By Brian SwartzCounty Wide Free Press COLUMBIA — Pending final approval by regulatory agencies, construction should start in 2018 on a 90-megawatt wind-powerproject in western Washington County. The project, which will generate enough electricity to power 27,000 homes, represents a $106 million investment in the region. Being developed by Charlottesville, Virginia-based Apex Clean Energy, the project known as Downeast Wind would involve erecting 30 wind towers and connecting their turbines to the Emera Maine substation on the Station Road in Columbia. Each turbine could produce three megawatts of electricity. Based on several factors (including favorable wind studies and proximity to existing electrical transmission lines), the wind turbines will be located on higher land north of Route 1 and east of Route 193. “It’s a premier site,” said Paul Williamson, development manager for Apex Clean Energy. The terrain, which he described as a “higher plain geographically,” catches the onshore coastal winds. Agriculture, in the form of blueberry barrens, dominates the existing use of the land, and “there are transmission lines that already run through the area,” he said. And a ready market exists for wind-generated electricity. “New England right now is one of the most competitive renewable energy markets” in the United States, Williamson noted. Continue reading
CRESTON, Neb. — The midday sun pushed temperatures past the 70-degree mark late last week while the fifth and sixth generations of the Brockhaus family gathered the last 20 acres of the fall harvest near here. Brothers Terry and Steve Brockhaus, along with Steve’s sons Jeff and Jon, typically reap corn from these fields, but as a slight westerly breeze picked up, Steve Brockhaus looked southward over the last remaining rows of the 2016 corn crop to the purveyors of their newest cash crop: four 1.7-megawatt General Electric wind turbines. “I’m surprised on days like today when it seems like there’s hardly any wind on the ground and they’re still turning,” Steve Brockhaus said. Read more here.
Investing in wind energy makes so much sense in so many ways. Wind and the related necessary transmission will reduce electric energy costs in Maine and New England. Read more here.
Check out the great benefits of wind power for community schools in the Huffington Post... We all want our children to have the brightest futures possible, and wind power helps check a lot of the boxes we envision when we think of the opportunities we’d like them to have: well-payng jobs, clean air and healthy communities. But there’s another way wind is ensuring success for the next generation — it’s strengthening schools across the country. It’s not easy to run a school district in the rural parts of America. Small populations and low tax bases mean resources can be scarce. Our children’s education is one place we never want to skimp, so that presents a challenge. During the recession years, these pressures were only intensified. Read more here.
Downeast Wind (DOW) participated in the Harrington Oktoberfest this past Saturday. An annual event, it’s on the first Saturday of October, and is geared to kids. Annually, the Harrington Rec Committee takes over the local park and provides a day of entertainment for only a small donation. There was a train ride, three bounce houses, laser tag and free food provided by a local restaurant, Scovil’s Millside Dining. Local folks feasted on grilled chicken, pulled pork sandwiches, hot dogs and hamburgers with salads and drinks. The Boy Scouts were there to raise awareness and funds by selling popcorn. Many of the local businesses supported this celebration with donations and participation in the parade that kicked off the day's events. Continue reading
In Maine, growing wild blueberries isn’t just a business, it’s a proud tradition and it’s a way of life. This July I attended the Wild Blueberry Summer Field Day hosted by the University of Maine’s Cooperative Extension in Jonesboro. Downeast Wind was thrilled to join as a sponsor, and I was truly impressed by the Blueberry Hill Farm operation. Continue reading
Back in June, Cat Mosley and I visited Cherryfield, Maine for the annual Cherryfield Days festival. It was a perfect day in Washington County, as we celebrated the town’s 200th year anniversary. Saturday’s parade was an incredible showcase of regional and town pride. From CH Matthews to Route 1, Main Street was lined with spectators of all ages. The crowds cheered on the procession to the music of the Cherryfield Band. There was a wide range of floats, vehicles and marchers, from the VFW veterans and U.S. Coast Guard Cruiser, to dancing blueberries and a wagon of organic farmers. With an ATV, a redemption center pulled a creative pyramid of soda cans and Allen’s bottles. In the middle of it all, Cat drove the Apex pickup truck, while I tossed Downeast Wind candy to the crowds. Continue reading