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Wind Fact

One Megawatt of Wind Energy = 2,600 Fewer Tons of Carbon Dioxide per year.

Project Overview

The Antrim Wind Project is currently proposed to be a 28.8 MW, 9 Turbine, wind facility located just south of Route 9 in the northwestern portion of Antrim, NH.  The project will span from Tuttle Hill in the north to the north flank of Willard Mountain in the South.  Antrim Wind is being developed completely on private property void of any conservation restrictions and with 100% private capital.  The Antrim Project is widely supported in the Town of Antrim among its residents and elected officials and is consistent with and advances a number of important local and regional public policy goals.  It will produce enough clean renewable electricity to supply more than 12,000 average New Hampshire homes.  In addition to providing significant clean energy and fuel diversity benefits to the state, which can stabilize volatile energy costs resulting from over-dependence on fossil fuels, the Antrim Project features a unique and extensive conservative benefit package that will permanently conserve over 900 acres of valuable forestland and wildlife habitat resulting in a perpetual benefit consistent with the generation of clean wind energy.

Background

The Antrim Wind project has been under development since 2009. In January 2012 Antrim Wind Energy LLC (“AWE”) filed an application with the New Hampshire Site Evaluation Committee (“SEC”) for a 30 MW wind farm consisting of ten 3 MW turbines. In a decision in February 2013, the SEC did not approve the project due to concerns about aesthetic impacts.  The SEC did however, issue numerous beneficial findings including that the project would not have an unreasonable adverse effect on the natural environment, the orderly development of the region, public health and safety, or air and water quality.  Further, the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services recommended the approval of all of the environmental permits required for the project.

Since the 2013 decision, AWE has focused on addressing concerns identified in prior docket while maintaining an economically competitive project that achieves the highest standards for appropriate siting, safety and reliability.

Current Status

In November 2014, AWE filed a petition for jurisdiction with the Committee to avoid any confusion as to whether or not the SEC retains jurisdiction over a project rated at less than 30 MW.  The Town of Antrim and over 100 registered voters in Antrim also filed similar petitions with the SEC.  As soon as the jurisdictional matter is resolved, AWE plans to file a new complete application with the Committee.  AWE plans to achieve commercial operations in 2017.

If you have any questions about this project, please contact the Project Manager, John Soininen by calling (603) 570-4842 or email John at jsoininen@eolian-energy.com

 

Technical Information

The Antrim Wind site is a favorable one for wind energy development for many reasons.  This area has a very good wind resource, to the north of the project area lies State Route 9 providing excellent transportation access and within the project area Public Service of New Hampshire (PSNH) has an existing electrical transmission corridor that contains 34.5kV and 115kV transmission lines. The Project proposes to interconnect the generated electrical power to the PSNH 115 kV line.  The on site electrical system will include collector lines that are below ground along the extent of the ridge and pole-mounted along the access road down to the point of interconnection. Collectively, the turbine foundations, construction pads, access roads, and electrical upgrades are anticipated to directly impact less than 60 of the more than 1,800 privately owned acres that have been leased by AWE. Final reconfiguration of the AWE project that incorporates changes to address concerns regarding aesthetics and other technical matters will be completed shortly. Once a revised project plan is finalized it will be made available here.

Environmental

Over the past several years AWE has conducted a comprehensive natural resource analysis and a review of potential impacts on rare and endangered species, avian and bat populations, sensitive habitats, wetlands, watersheds, and wildlife. These studies demonstrate that the project will not have an undue adverse impact on wildlife or ecosystems in the area.  The New Hampshire Natural Heritage Bureau (“NHB”) issued a letter in August 2012 (link to letter) stating that “NHB has determined that it is unlikely that the proposed wind facility will impact rare plants species or exemplary natural communities.” This position was supported by the New Hampshire Site Evaluation Committee in their 2013 decision when they found that the project would not have an unreasonable adverse effect on the natural environment or air and water quality.  Further, the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services recommended the approval of all of the environmental permits required for the project. Finally, AWE’s avian and bat protection plan (“ABPP”) has received the support of the US Fish and Wildlife Service for minimizing and mitigating impacts to birds and bats. In preparation for the submission of AWE’s new application, our scientists have again surveyed the project site and consulted with state and federal agencies to ensure our plans are fully up to date.

Among all of the competing sources of energy in New Hampshire, wind is certainly among the least impactful when it comes to the environment and AWE is committed to minimizing the impacts and maximizing the benefits of renewable energy development. The Antrim Wind Energy Project will permanently conserve over 900 acres of forestland in Antrim, including 100% of the ridgeline, which is more than 15 times the direct impacts of the development.  This conservation effort has been undertaken by AWE voluntarily as a community and regional benefit in addition to the clean energy benefits that the wind project itself will bring.