Norwich Technologies, on behalf of Stamford Main Renewables, has notified the preparation of a petition to the Vermont Public Utility Commission (PUC) for a certificate of public good (CPG) to install and operate one 2.2-megawatt (MW) wind turbine on private land in Stamford, Vermont to be filed at the end of August 2023.
The electricity generated by the wind turbine will supply power to Vermont’s electric utilities through the Vermont Standard Offer Program. It is currently estimated that that project will produce over 6,000,000 kWh of renewable energy annually to Vermont’s electric grid contributing to Vermont’s clean energy requirements. That is equivalent to the annual electric needs of approximately 800 average Vermont households
Stamford Main Renewables is member-managed by Norwich Technologies, Inc., a leader across Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine in integrating and deploying renewable energy to reduce the carbon footprint of local municipalities, businesses, and individuals. The Norwich Technologies team brings together extensive experience deploying and operating wind energy technologies. Local Vermont consultants working on the Project include Krebs & Lansing Consulting Engineers, Arrowwood Environmental, and Stantec.
Project Location and Description
The wind turbine will be accessed by utilizing an existing drive off Main Road in Stamford. A Green Mountain Power (GMP) electric line extension will run along the access drive. The wind turbine location is at approximately 2,250 feet elevation. A previously disturbed location along the access road will be used for temporary construction staging and a crane pad will be constructed at the turbine location to facilitate installation of the wind turbine. Approximately 20± acres of the 250± acre parcels will be used for the project.
The Wind Turbine
The wind turbine will be a neutral off-white color which softens its appearance on the horizon. The tower will be enclosed to provide protection from the elements for electrical and communication cables, operational computer equipment, and safe access for service personnel. Per Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations, the wind turbine will have an FAA-regulated light on top of the nacelle.
The main components of the wind turbine include a three-bladed rotor assembly, a nacelle, and the supporting tower. The rotor assembly – the three blades attached to the hub – is mounted to the nacelle, which sits atop the tower. The wind turbine will be up to 499 feet tall when the tip of a blade is in its highest position. The nacelle houses the generator and mechanical equipment and functions to “yaw” or face the rotor assembly into the wind. The wind’s kinetic energy turns the rotor assembly which turns the generator to create electricity.
Electric Collection System and Interconnection
The Project will meet all applicable electric safety codes and will be operated in accordance with an interconnection agreement with GMP. The Project will connect to GMP’s electric distribution system via a new three-phase overhead line extension from Main Road. A 2,500 kVA pad-mounted transformer with secondary containment will be located adjacent to the wind turbine. The Project will pay for all electric system upgrades that are its responsibility under GMP’s tariff and PUC rules to interconnect to the local utility electric distribution system safely and reliably.
Equipment and construction materials other than the wind turbine components will be transported to the site by standard delivery trucks and require no special permits. Wherever possible, the Project will use local materials for installation. The wind turbine blades, hub, nacelle, and tower sections will require special handling and transport vehicles from the manufacturing facilities to the Project site. Oversize/overweight load permits will be obtained to transport components over Vermont’s roads. Specific transportation plans will be coordinated with town, county, and state transportation officials.
Natural Resources and the Environment
An environmental resource assessment will be included with the petition to the PUC. A preliminary assessment identified wetlands at locations along the Project’s access. In consultation with the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources, protection measures will be developed to ensure the Project creates no undue adverse impact.
Wind turbines are visible in the landscape within ten miles of the Stamford Main Renewables wind turbine. Due to the rolling mountain topography predominant in the area, views of the Stamford Main Renewables wind turbine will be limited and intermittent. Other wind turbines —Deerfield Wind (15 turbines), Searsburg Wind (11 turbines), and Hoosac Wind (19 turbines)— are seen intermittently as one travels the local roads. An assessment of the Project’s potential aesthetic impact will be included with the petition. The assessment will follow the parameters established by the PUC for energy generation projects using the “Quechee Analysis.”
The Stamford Main Renewables wind turbine will contribute significant financial benefits to the Town of Stamford and the State of Vermont through annual property tax payments and generation payments to the statewide Education Fund. The Project will create jobs, particularly during construction, support local contractors where possible, and will contribute to Vermont’s greenhouse gas reduction goals.
Comments on Project Plans and Participation in Project Review
The Project schedule contemplates receipt of all necessary permits and approvals in time for the Project to break ground in late 2024 and complete commissioning in 2025. We welcome and appreciate public input on this single wind turbine Project
To learn more about participating in the PUC’s review of the Project, please refer to the PUC’s website . Specific information about the Section 248 process can also be found on the Commission’s website. The case number is 23-2313-AN. Click the following link to view the 45-Day Notice with the Vermont PUC Case.
Of course, we also welcome your questions about the process and the Project and encourage you to contact us at Stamfordwind@norwichsolar.com or 802-281-3213 for additional information.
Learn more about Wind Energy at Energy.gov
Additional Information and Documents
Effects of Wind Energy Facilities on Surrounding Property Values in the United States: Property Value Study
- Capacity (vs electricity): The maximum amount of power an electric generator can produce, typically provided in Megawatts.
- Electric Collection Line: The electrical line that will connect the wind turbine electric generation to the utility’s electric distribution system.
- Electric Generator: The component of the wind turbine that converts the energy extracted from the turning rotor blades into electricity.
- Hub: The center component of the wind turbine rotor where each of the three blades is mounted.
- Kilowatt hour (kWh): a measure of electrical energy equivalent to a power consumption of 1,000 watts for 1 hour.
- Megawatt (MW): a unit of electrical power equal to one million watts; a measure of the output of a power station. One Megawatt of power can light ten thousand 100W lightbulbs.
- Nacelle: The component of the wind turbine that sits atop the tower, houses most of the mechanical parts, and functions to yaw or face the wind turbine rotor assembly into the wind.
- Nameplate capacity: Also known as rated capacity. The number registered with authorities for classifying the maximum possible power output of the generator, as rated by the manufacturer. This does not necessarily reflectthe amount of power that will be generated.
- Quechee Analysis: a two-part test utilized by the Public Utility Commission in assessing whether a proposedelectric generation project will have an undue adverse effect on aesthetics under 30
- V.S.A. § 248(b)(5). The analysis involves a series of questions designed to identify whether a given project will have an “adverse” impact on the aesthetics and scenic and natural beauty of an area, and if so, whether that adverse impact can be considered “undue.”
- Rotor assembly: The part of the turbine that rotates. The rotor of the Project wind turbine consists of three blades and a hub.
- Safety equipment (protection equipment, switchgear and/or electrical disconnect): Electrical switches, fuses and devices that enable an electric generator(s) to be disconnected from the electric grid thereby protecting itand the grid from equipment malfunction.
- Tower: The component of the wind turbine that supports the nacelle and rotor assembly.
- Viewshed: the surrounding land area from which a structure or object is visible.
- Wind Turbine: A generator and supporting components that converts the kinetic energy of the wind to electricenergy. The main components of the Project wind turbine are the three blades, hub, generator, nacelle, and tower.
- Yaw: To turn by angular motion around a vertical axis. The nacelle will “yaw” to face the rotor assembly into the wind.