Notice of Public Hearing
View Case Record, CN-17-184
View Case Record, TL-17-185
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Docket Numbers 17-184 and 17-185
I do not believe the NEED requirement for this project has been met.
I was at the February 27th meeting (evening) and none of the “experts” from ITC Midwest LLC nor Xcel Energy were able to articulate a true need for the project nor were they able to explain or cite from previous projects, any savings to the consumer that might result from this line. It was admitted that the congestion on the line is not constant. There are no identifiable tangible benefits for local consumers but there are uncalculatable costs to families potentially affected. ITC Midwest LLC and Xcel Energy should be required to reveal estimates of financial impacts of their proposed line. This proposed project effectively drains low cost energy from Southern Minnesota and Northern Iowa to subsidize the wealthier Twin Cities areas located in the MISO footprint. This transmission line will not benefit anyone in its path. It is solely proposed to benefit the owners of the wind farms who have a product they need to move. While there may be a need in places for more energy, it does not make sense to move it so far. If the power is generated in Iowa, why not use it in Iowa? If the Twin Cities needs power, find a way to generate more that is closer to the need.
Energy costs could easily increase if wind turbines become more expensive to operate or repair plus the source of this power is variable and unreliable. There are times when solar and wind power produce ZERO energy!
A recent article published on the website of the Center for the American Experiment, EIA Expects Wind Installations To Plummet After Federal Subsidies Expire by Isaac Orr (www.americanexperiment.org - 3/11/19) states that most of the electricity generating capacity additions installed in the US through 2050 will be natural gas combined-cycle and solar. Onshore wind looks to be competitive in only a few regions.
Another article, also published on the website of the Center for the American Experiment, American Experiment Releases Groundbreaking New Study on the High Cost of Renewable Energy Mandates in Minnesota, by Isaac Orr (www.americanexperiment.org -3/12/19), delves into Governor Walz’s version of the Green New Deal, mandating that Minnesota must get 100 percent of its electricity from “carbon free” resources by 2050. This will be a disaster for the average Minnesota family, costing on average an additional $1200.00 per year. By maintaining and upgrading Minnesota’s existing coal fired power plants would reduce electricity costs and save the average household an average $112.00 per year. Minnesota ratepayers have financed billions of dollars in existing coal and natural gas infrastructure and deserve to reap the benefits of their investment. While it may sound great to strive for 100 percent renewable energy, it just is neither feasible nor cost effective. If any of the valid points in this article are considered, there is no way that the Huntley to Wilmarth transmission line will ever save consumers any money.
I believe that Xcel Energy and ITC Midwest, LLC are minimizing the impact of their proposed project. I don’t believe the NEED for this project is real nor has it been successfully demonstrated to the citizens in Southern Minnesota. We should commit to technology and energy saving strategies that meet electricity needs without damaging natural and scenic assets nor the properties of citizens and businesses.
40816 Judson Bottom Road
North Mankato, MN 56003
RE: Docket 17-184 – Huntley-Wilmarth transmission line project
I am stating my current opposition to the need for the proposed Huntly-Wilmarth transmission line project.
My wife and I own and live on property that would be withing several hundred feet of two of the proposed routes.
There has been much discussion about routes for new transmission lines, but I have seen very little about the cost and technical feasibility of updating existing routes to add capacity. I personally would rather see energy costs remain flat, or even slight increase, if it meant we could re-use existing routes and lessen the environmental and land owner impact.
The need for this project has been stated as “to reduce congestion”. This means little to the average citizen affected by these proposed routes, and strikes me personally as a public relations buzzword.
There has been talk about the need to move power generated by wind farms. While wind power is interesting, its not yet universally accepted as a viable long term solution for energy production.
I believe an infrastructure project such as this, that will affect residents along its path so heavily and is so many ways (aesthetics, safety, noise, reduced property values) should only be moved forward on as a last resort. I don’t feel that enough has been done, or at least presented to the public, to show that this is the case with this project.
I urge the Public Utilities Commission to deny this project.
53804 Rockford Road
North Mankato, MN 56003