BP's Tatics in Cape Vincent Ny

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Lewis County to lobby the state to fund two potential wind farm projects

Mr. Virkler said if the state approves a wind project in another area, the project may never be accomplished because of the opposition to wind farms.

LOWVILLE — Lewis County Economic Development Director Eric J. Virkler said the Roaring Brook Wind Farm and the Copenhagen Wind Farm likely will apply for part of the $160 million in funding through the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority to build and expand clean energy projects.Continue...

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and OwnEnergy, Inc. seek to improve bat protections at New York wind facility

As renewable energy continues to develop across the northeast, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) is working with industry to reduce the effects of utility-scale wind turbines on threatened and endangered species. Continue ~ USF&W

Membership in absentia: Community leaders deny being part of SASS advisory board

If the Thousand Islands Regional Assessment Project wants advice on how to proceed with seeking Scenic Areas of Statewide Significance designation, here it is: Don’t list people as active participants in the process to achieve your goal if they are not involved. Continue...

Monday, April 27, 2015

Wind turbines would affect property values

I have seen references to proposed wind turbines of 570 to 640 feet tall for Hudson Energy’s Galloo Island Wind Energy Generation project. A search of wind turbines does indeed reference newer model wind turbines of up to 640 feet in height.Continue...

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Organizations protest inclusion in ‘advisory board’ for scenic-designation project

Several organizations listed as members of an “advisory board” helping municipalities pursue a scenic-area designation from the state say they are not affiliated with the effort in any way. Continue...

Friday, April 24, 2015

A scenic area is home to an ugly fight

Update: 04/25/1015 ~ 5:43PM

Outside Looking In By Perry White

I have received a number of emails requesting that I write a column on the brouhaha surrounding the Thousand Islands regional application for designation as a Scenic Area of Statewide Significance — a process that has taken the fitting name SASS. It has a lot of people fired up, both those who see the designation as the best way to preserve the scenic wonderland that is the Thousand Islands, and those who view it as yet more meddling in local affairs by that old bogeyman, the State.

Note: This commentary by Perry White has been posted twice on the Watertown Daily Times website, each with different titles and comments. Title links to each below

A scenic area is home to an ugly fight

Both sides of the SASS debate have made errors

Ft. Drum buys land rights to prevent Industrial wind development

Under the auspices of The Army Compatible Use Buffer (ACUB) program, Ft. Drum has recently spent nearly $2 million to purchase the development rights for 2,000 acres of adjacent farmland.

The ACUB program is a tool to protect an installation’s accessibility, availability, and capability for training, testing, and operations.

According to an ACUB year end summary [1] a challenge for Ft. Drum is to prevent the encroachment threats from wind energy development that could negatively impact the surveillance radar and pose potential safety and operational hazards to rotary-wing and fixed-wing training and operations by decreasing the safety margin for low-level flight operations.

Additionally, a recent report by WRVO Public Media [2] states that several years ago a wind developer had shown interest in the land in question.  
This very same issue was broached recently at a SASS informational meeting in Cape Vincent. [3] Darrel Aubertine, the state comptroller's special assistant
expressed concern that SASS would be taking away land development rights without compensation.
Since SASS only comes into play with large scale industrial development like wind farms, I for one question his motivation.  

Was Aubertine asking if the Department Of State was going to compensate landowners for not hosting industrial wind turbines? As a past wind lessee of British Petroleum and Acciona, do you think he was including himself in the compensation request?



Thursday, April 23, 2015

Ontario Court of Appeal decides Ostrander wind farm project and sends dispute back to the ERT

April 21 2015

The Ontario Court of Appeal overturned the Divisional Court of Ontario’s February 2014 decision, which had reinstated a Renewable Energy Approval (REA) previously revoked by the Environmental Review Tribunal (ERT). The REA was for the construction and operation of a wind farm in Prince Edward County. The Ontario Court of Appeal held that the ERT’s decision – that “serious and irreversible harm” would befall the Blanding’s turtle as a result of the project – was reasonable, but that the ERT’s decision on the appropriate remedy to grant in the circumstances – revoking the REA – was unreasonable. On that basis, the Ontario Court of Appeal remitted the issue of remedy back to the ERT to decide. As a result, although the REA has now gone through three levels of judicial consideration – the ERT, the Divisional Court and the Ontario Court of Appeal, only to be sent back to the ERT to be dealt with again – the status of the REA issued by the Ministry of the Environment, who originally approved of the project, remains unresolved. Continue...

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Vermont Takes Breather From Wind Power, Focuses on Solar Power

All of Vermont’s new electrical capacity last year came from solar, doubling the state’s total in that category, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association.

Wind projects take longer to develop than solar, and they can face stiff opposition from the public. Continue...

Monday, April 20, 2015

Ship Aground Under TI Bridge ~ Photos

  The St. Lawrence Seaway is closed to commercial traffic after a freighter ran aground under the Thousand Islands Bridge near Alexandria Bay early Monday morning.Continue

Photos taken from Peel Dock road Wellesley Island,NY

Saturday, April 18, 2015

A pair of American Bald Eagles nesting in NYC for the first time since 1800

The presence of fireflies and raptors are indications that a certain place is healthy as far as the environment is concern and it is indeed delightful to see a pair of American bald eagles nesting in one of the most sophisticated and highly-developed cities in the world, that is, New York. Continue...

Climate-change deniers are in retreat

There is no denying it: Climate-change deniers are in retreat.

What began as a subtle shift away from the claim that man-made global warming is not a threat to the planet has lately turned into a stampede. The latest attempt to deny denial comes from the conservative American Legislative Exchange Council, a powerful group that pushes for states to pass laws that are often drafted by industry. Continue...

Copenhagen Wind Farm update

COPENHAGEN — The town of Denmark is waiting on OwnEnergy, Inc. to complete the detailed engineering work for the Copenhagen Wind Farm Holdings LLC project.Continue reading via this link to the Watertown Daily Times

Friday, April 17, 2015

Amid a $611 million budget shortfall Oklahoma nixes turbine tax credit.

OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahoma's wind energy industry could no longer claim a five-year exemption from ad valorem taxes under legislation advanced by the Oklahoma House. Continue...

Luxury Cruise Ships To Make Stops In Clayton

Clayton is expecting hundreds of extra tourists this year, coming by way of cruise ships.

"We're really excited about it to bring more people into town and for the businesses to have more customers," said Tricia Bannister, Clayton Chamber of Commerce executive director. Continue reading ~ 7WNYTV

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

A Remembrance of Brooks Bragdon (1947-2015)

Brooks loved the Town of Cape Vincent its history and its people. 

October 23, 2012 was one of those nights and moments where Brooks Bragdon shined his brightest. It was the first public meeting after BP filed their Article 10 application for their Cape Vincent Wind Project. Many of you may recall that particular evening where elected and appointed officials from Cape Vincent and Lyme met with Richard Chandler, BP's new project director, to ask him questions about BP's project.

I was sitting next to Brooks that night. As we waited our turn to question Mr. Chandler we had a little banter about our questioning. I asked if he was prepared to do battle and if he was going take Chandler to the mat? He brushed off my question and said, "Clif, I want you to assure me that you won't lose your cool." "I want you to promise me you won't embarrass me, use profanity or otherwise make a fool of yourself." I laughed and told him not to worry.

I finished my little part of the questioning and Brooks began with his interrogation of Mr. Chandler: Do you know our town is primarily an aesthetic community? Are you familiar with our comprehensive plan? He continued to badger Mr. Chandler telling him how important our town’s plan and zoning law was to Cape Vincent. At the same time he was demanding that Chandler look him in the face and giving him a wake-up hello when Chandler seemed puzzled and dazed. He told Chandler he was prepared to work with him if he and BP were willing to accept and work within the bounds of our plans and law. If not he shouted, then we will have an adversarial relation.

My favorite line of Brook's questioning and my favorite line of the night was his complete and utter disregard to his entreaty to me to keep my cool, "Mr. Chandler I'm asking you, to cut the bullshit and tell us if you are going to work within our zoning law or not?"

Brooks was best known for his keen mind, quick wit and eloquence that showed bright most nights as he represented the people of Cape Vincent. But, I also loved the other side of his personality that few had the privilege of seeing - the tenacious brawler who played lineman for Williams College football. That tenacity was properly disguised most of the time, but it was very much a part of what made him special, why he was so effective as a town official and why I liked him as a friend.

Clif Schneider

April 15, 2015

Video of Brooks Bragdon confronting 
BP Project Developer Richard Chandler

Monday, April 13, 2015

TILT has benefited our river communities

I would like to take the opportunity to relate some personal experience with the Thousand Islands Land Trust.

A few years ago, many of our friends and neighbors learned that we had massive infestations of pale swallow-wort on our properties. This is an extremely invasive, non-native plant species that spreads rapidly and chokes out the native plants and grasses. It can quickly devastate farmlands, woods and meadows and create havoc with the 1000 Islands ecosystem. Continue reading via this link to the Watertown Daily Times

Subsidy-itis: Developers shouldn’t receive both state and local tax breaks

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced a $160 million sweepstakes last week to encourage large wind- and solar-power generation projects across the state. The program’s launch comes shortly after a 32-turbine wind project is being proposed by William M. Moore on Galloo Island in the town of Hounsfield.

Continue reading via this link to the Watertown Daily Times

Sunday, April 12, 2015

SASS is a way to protect the future

As the SASS {Scenic Area of Statewide Significance} project is drawing to a close it has become apparent a few individuals are adamantly opposed to this project with the common theme of State government regulation and oversight.

I wish to reflect back on the reasons that I brought this project to our area. Over the past 25 or so years that I have been aware of what has been happening to our area it has become painfully evident that the area as a whole has seen a steady backwards decline in life as we have known.
  Continue reading via this link to the Watertown Daily Times

What’s the True Cost of Wind Power?

Over the past 35 years, wind energy—which supplies just 2 percent of U.S. electricity—has received $30 billion in federal subsidies and grants.

As consumers, we pay for electricity twice: once through our monthly electricity bill and a second time through taxes that finance massive subsidies for inefficient wind and other energy producers. Continue reading via this link to Newsweek

TILT helps us appreciate nature and river

When I was young, there was much more undeveloped, unbuilt waterfront in Clayton, and we had nearly unlimited access to the river; you could swim off every dock. And we used to hike and explore all around the river and French Creek.
It’s a different world today, and most of these areas are now private, with no access allowed. Continue reading via this link to the Watertown Daily Times

Saturday, April 11, 2015

 Wind investment falls 30% in Q1

WORLDWIDE: Investment in clean energy has fallen to its lowest level in two years, according to figures by Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF). Continue...

Cruise ship MS Saint Laurent to dock in Clayton, not Ogdensburg

OGDENSBURG — The MS Saint Laurent, a 210-pass­enger cruise ship that had been expected to dock in Ogdensburg 10 times from May through October, will now bypass the city and instead make scheduled port calls in the Thousand Islands community of Clayton.

Continue reading via this link to the Watertown Daily Times

Friday, April 10, 2015



August 2013, The Maine Department of Environmental Protection denied a 16 turbine wind project. Their findings indicated that the project would have a widespread negative scenic effect on 14 nearby lakes, eight of which are designated as scenic resources of state or national significance.

Spaniard Iberdrola 
Biggest Piggy at the Trough

A newly released 5 year study on government grants, tax credits, loans, guarantees, and bailout assistance is reporting that Iberdrola the Spanish electric utility, who is primarily invested in wind power technologies all across the U.S., is the biggest pig at the government welfare trough, collecting $2.2 Billion. Most of these funds may have been paid by direct cash payments rather than tax credits, since the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act allows actual fund transfers in lieu of tax credits. 
Link here to read more.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

NYSERDA to lead New York’s $160 million program to subsidize wind, solar projects

Large-scale wind and solar projects being planned across the state will have a chance to get a financial boost from a $160 million program announced this week by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo.
Continue reading via this link to the Watertown Daily Times

Monday, April 6, 2015

Update ~ Iberdrola CEO Targets North America For Growth

In a recent interview with Tom Buerkle International editor for Institutional Investor, Iberdrola CEO  Ignacio Gal├ín stated that Iberdrola expects to grow the US as a share of their global footprint, and to continue investing in wind farms. Continue reading via this link to Institutional Investor

Iberdrola’s Horse Creek Wind Farm is still in play. Recent exam of public property records in the Jefferson County Clerk’s Office showed leaseholders in Clayton renewed contracts with Iberdrola in 2013. Assume others in Orleans, Brownville and Lyme renewed as well for another 5-year term.


Iberdrola has recently shown an interest in the efforts to kill (SASS). As explained in an earlier post:
“Why is Iberdrola interested in the effort to kill SASS?
Industrial wind developers were forced to the renewable energy backburner with intermittent support of the Production Tax Credit (PTC). Nevertheless, renewal efforts for the Galloo project and the smoldering ashes of Horse Creek suggest Big Wind is still sniffing around in the wings and they cannot be too pleased with SASS’s
anti-industrial wind stance. No surprise if Big Wind wants SASS dead and gone - Lookout Cape and Clayton?

Thousand Island Regional Assessment Project Information Meeting April 13, 2015

The final grant information session will be held on April 13, 2015 6:00-8:00 pm at the Cape Vincent Recreation Center. The final draft report has been posted to the website www.scenic1000islands.com. Presentations will be conducted and questions will be taken concerning the 1) TIRAP report, 2) the consistency review process and 3) the SASS application process.

Note: This is NOT the final public hearing.

Solar power helps environment, economy

With the start of the new season, sunny skies are ahead of us. Spring is all about renewal and regrowth.
We should start spring by renewing our commitment to solar energy and growing the industry here in New York. Our solar industry employed 7,284 New Yorkers in 2014, according to the Solar Foundation’s new solar jobs census.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Saturday, April 4, 2015


Sometime between March 16,2015 and today the NYS DEC has wiped their website clean of all traces of Upstate Energy's GALLOO Island Wind Farm documents.

Why have they removed these important documents?

Who authorized their removal?

Link below to read the GALLOO ISLAND WIND FEIS

Galloo Island - Article 10 - Visual Impacts

If visual impacts are an issue for the DEC in their Open Space Plan, how can the siting board, which includes DEC Commissioner Joe Martens, possibly approve an Article 10 proposal to erect 30, 600+ ft high industrial wind turbines on Galloo Island?
Excerpts from NY 2014 Draft Open Space Plan:

 Galloo Island wind as proposed 2009
The geographic area of Region 6 has a long history of providing for the generation and transmission of energy for all New Yorkers. Water power and hydroelectric generation shaped most of the region’s economy and communities. The region is home to many hydro generation facilities, including the state’s second largest hydroelectric generation facility at the Robert Moses St. Lawrence power project, the largest wind farm east of the Mississippi River and more than 20 additional proposed wind facilities, has one of the State’s three biomass-fired electrical generation facilities, as well as several large transmission corridors of international, statewide and regional significance. Clearly, the region is a major source of carbon free and alternative electrical generation capacity. This energy production and distribution capacity and the potential for future projects are important to New York State and the Northeast as a whole, and the future planning for and siting of electrical generation and transmission facilities has the potential to dramatically effect open space within the region.

In light of the current and future importance and impact to the region of energy generating

facilities, the Region 6 Open Space Committee strongly supports consideration of Open Space Conservation in the siting of these facilities including a review of the visual aspects and impacts on Open Space resources under the provisions of Article 10.

Link here to Citizens Task Force On Windpower Maine ~ to view more Galloo photos like the one above

Link here to read the NYS DEC 2014 Draft Open Space Plan

Thursday, April 2, 2015

SASS designation would benefit the region

The Scenic Area of Statewide Significance designation is part of the New York State Coastal Management Program. There are only two such designated areas in the state, and the Thousand Islands with all its scenic beauty is certainly worthy of a SASS designation.