Submitted by New Energy News Blog
Pennsylvania, homestate of The Deer Hunter, is most proud and protective of its wildlife-oriented recreation. It required a unique agreement of wind developer Everpower before it would allow their Highland Wind Project to go forward.
In a perfect example of how the wind energy industry is completely committed to bringing the nation clean New Energy on a massive scale in the right way, Everpower signed a voluntary agreement with the Pennsylvania Game Commission designed to avoid, minimize and, if necessary, mitigate adverse impacts on wildlife resources.
The wind developer was required to prove its project would not harm plant and animal species. Everpower was also required to search the Pennsylvania Natural Diversity Index and resolve all rare species impact issues. EverPower is a participant in Governor Rendell’s Pennsylvania Wind Farm and Wildlife Collaborative, organized to develop wind energy in an environmentally responsible manner. It fully accepted the agreements and fulfilled them wholeheartedly.
As is usually the case where there is a flurry of development (see WILL PENNSYLVANIA BUILD ITS SOLAR POWER PLANT?), PA has other policy that supports New Energy. Pennsylvania’s Alternative Energy Portfolio Standards Act requires the states’ utilities to obtain 18% of their power from New Energy sources by 2021. With this RES and other policy proposals now pending, Governor Ed Rendell hopes to generate 3,000 to 4,000 megawatts of wind capacity as well as create 13,000 new jobs, decrease dependence on foreign oil and save $1 billion a year in energy costs.
A pioneer of Old Energy and proud of its heritage, Pennsylvania is now looking ahead to the 21st century and pioneering New Energy, installed and maintained with the dual goals of maximum power generation and minimal environmental harm.
Wind Energy Creates Windfall For Pittsburgh; Pittsburgh Is Hot Spot For Alternative Energy Companies, Engineers Say
August 21, 2008 (WTAE-TV Pittsburgh)
PA Building New Energy Economy As DEP Secretary Helps Break Ground On Cambria County Wind Farm: Highland Wind Project to Generate Enough Power for 16,000 Homes
April 17, 2008 (Everpower)
Everpower is opening a Pittsburgh office and building the Highland Wind Project while Converteam continues its Pittsburgh-based energy conversion activities.
– Converteam has been aggressively expanding its Pittsburgh team of engineers over the last year, drawing on the supply leftover from Pittsburgh’s glory days as a steel, coal and oil center.
– The Highland Project is being built on a reclaimed strip mine. It is expected to begin producing power in either late 2008 or early 2009.
– The U.S. built more new wind capacity in 2007 than any other country in the world.
– Everpower has offices in New York and Portland, Ore.
– The Highland Project is in Adams Township, Cambria County, in southwest PA.
– Converteam Conversion Camp is based in France. It North America HQ is Pittsburgh.
– The Highland Wind Project will cost $140 million to reclaim the land and install 25 turbines. Its 1st phase will have a 62.5 megawatt capacity and its 2nd phase will have a 65 megawatt capacity.
– Converteam hired 100 engineers in the past 12 months. It currently employs 280.
– Gamesa, Iberdrola and Conergy are also developing plans in PA.
– PA has 293 megawatts of installed wind energy capacity. 298 megawatts more (including the Highland Project) will come online in 2008.
-Because most wind intallations are built in remote areas where winds are strong, the wind industry is expected to create $1.2 billion in new income for ranchers, farmers and rural landowners.
– Bob Misback, worker, Converteam Conversion Camp: “Wind energy is only about 1 percent of electricity supplied in the United States. The government wants to push that to 20 percent sometime in the future…Pittsburgh has a good population of very educated people, including engineers. We have a lot of universities here. The steel industry used to be a very technical business…”
– Jim Spencer, managing director, EverPower Renewables: “We are very excited to be investing in Adams Township and Pennsylvania through the Highland Wind Project…In addition to providing a clean, renewable energy source to the community, we anticipate that 450 to 550 jobs will directly and indirectly be created from the construction and operation of the wind project. The township, county, and area school districts also will receive revenue each year in tax payments from the wind project.”