Wind power in Maine
There are several wind power projects in the state of Maine, with a total of 521 MW in capacity. The largest single wind farm is Kibby Mountain with an installed capacity of 132 MW. Former Governor John Baldacci set a goal for the state of 2,000 megawatts of wind power installed by 2015 and 3,000 MW by 2020.
In 2011 wind power facilities in Maine generated 713 million kilowatt hours of electrical energy out of 15,778 million kilowatt hours total generated in the state, or 4.5% of the total. As of the end of 2011, 397 megawatts of wind generation capacity had been installed in Maine.
 Operating wind farms
 Mars Hill
Mars Hill ( ), in the town of Mars Hill, Maine, underwent an $85 million wind turbine project in the fall of 2006, installing more than 28 GE 1.5 MW Wind Turbines along the top and northern section of the mountain, which overlooks Canada. The windmills are assembled in four parts. The towers, made of three support sections stacked on top of one another, and each weighing 20,000 pounds, are 262 ft (80 m) tall. The blades attached to the hub of the turbine are about 115 ft (35 m) long – giving a rotor span exceeding the wingspan of a Boeing 747 jet-liner. This is small, though, compared to the wind turbines available in 2013.
 Kibby Mountain
The Kibby Mountain wind farm project—at a capacity of 132 MW, prospectively New England's largest—comprises forty-four 3 MW wind turbines strung along the ridges of Kibby Mtn. ( ) and nearby Kibby Range ( ). is expected to generate about 357 million kilowatt-hours (41 MW·yr) of electricity annually. Half the turbines were put online in October 2009, and TransCanada completed the project in 2010. The capital cost of the project is approximately US $320 million. Work on clearing the site began by September 2008.
 Record Hill
Record Hill Wind is a 55.6 MW wind project in Roxbury, consisting of 22 turbines arrayed along a four mile long north-south ridgeline connecting Record Hill, Flathead Mountain ( ), and Partridge Peak. The electrical output of the project is estimated to be approximately 160 million kW·h (18 MW·yr) per year.
Stetson Wind Farm began commercial operations in January 2009. The 57 megawatt wind farm consists of 38 GE 1.5 MW Wind Turbines strung along the north-south ridge of Stetson Mountain ( ), and will generate approximately 167 million kilowatt-hours (kW·h) of electricity per year. Stetson Wind Farm surpassed the Mars Hill Wind Farm as the largest wind energy project in operation in New England. In March 2009, the LURC approved First Wind's $60 million 25.5 MW Stetson II expansion. Seventeen turbines will be installed on nearby Jimmy ( ) and Owl ( ) mountains. In September 2009, First Wind received $40.44 million from the federal government for the Stetson I project; it was one of twelve grants made to wind projects under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act stimulus program.
In addition to the Stetson and Mars Hill projects, First Wind completed a 60 MW wind farm, with forty 1.5-MW turbines, on Rollins Mountain ( ) and other hills in the Penobscot County towns of Lincoln, Burlington, Lee, and Winn. The estimated cost is US$ 130 million.
 Fox Islands
The Fox Islands Wind Power Project (North Haven and Vinalhaven Island. The $14.5 million project is expected to produce 11,600 megawatt-hours of electricity per year. Approved by a vote of 383–5 on July 29, 2008 by members of the Fox Islands Electric Cooperative, construction began on June 29, 2009, and the wind farm went online on November 17. The project has significantly reduced rates on the island residents, who previously imported all their power from the mainland via a submarine power cable. However, the noise generated by the turbines has caused considerable controversy on the island.) is a 4.5 MW wind project consisting of three GE 1.5 MW wind turbines, providing power for
 Beaver Ridge
The 3 turbine Beaver Ridge Wind Project is located in Freedom. It is owned and operated by Patriot Renewables and was commissioned on November 1, 2008.
 Bull Hill
A 34.2 MW wind project on Bull Hill (Township 16, MD, was built by First Wind and put online October 31, 2012. The $78.5 million project consists of 19 Vestas V100-1.8MW wind turbines.      ) and adjoining hills in Maine
 Proposed wind projects
The Longfellow project would have 16 turbines that could produce 40 MW of electricity, enough to power about 17,000 homes in the Northeast. The power would be sold to the New England power grid. If the plan goes ahead, the wind turbines would be built on the west side of the mountain, away from the Black Mountain ski area.
 Deepwater Offshore wind
The DeepCwind Consortium's  mission is to establish the State of Maine as a national leader in deepwater offshore wind technology through a research initiative funded by the U.S. Department of Energy, the National Science Foundation, and others. The University of Maine-led consortium includes universities, nonprofits, and utilities; a wide range of industry leaders in offshore design, offshore construction, and marine structures manufacturing; firms with expertise in wind project siting, environmental analysis, environmental law, composites materials to assist in corrosion-resistant material design and selection, and energy investment; and industry organizations to assist with education and tech transfer activities.
The Ocean Energy Institute, founded by Matthew Simmons, is advocating developing wind power in the Gulf of Maine. Simmons and his partner, physicist George Hart, propose an enormous, 5-gigawatt wind farm, with five 64 nmi² (220 km²) sections, each containing 200 5-MW turbines. That would generate sufficient power in winter to replace the state's consumption of home heating oil. According to Simmons, a proponent of peak oil, "If we don't do this, we're going to have to evacuate most of Maine."
As proposed, the turbines would be built on floating platforms, anchored in waters 100–200 meters (330–660 ft) deep — something that has never been done in the United States. It will take several years to test the feasibility of such buoyed turbines. (The Hywind wind turbine became the world's first operating large-capacity (2.3 MW) floating wind turbine in the summer of 2009, operating in the North Sea off Norway.) Hart said, "three qualities — survivability, reliability, and performance — are what investment bankers need to see before they're going to put up the large amount of capital needed".
Angus King, a former governor of Maine, is supportive of the idea."I see this as a huge economic development opportunity for Maine,... This thing could create 20,000 to 30,000 jobs." However, others have challenged the project's projected cost, which could reach $25 billion.
 Table of wind projects
|Number of Turbines||Location
|Mars Hill||42||28||Aroostook||Operating||First Wind||2006|
|Spruce Mountain||20||10||Oxford||Operating||Patriot Renewables||2011|
|Stetson I||57||38||Washington||Operating||First Wind||2009|
|Stetson II||25.5||17||Washington||Operating||First Wind|
|Fox Islands||4.5||3||Knox||Operating||Fox Islands Electric Cooperative||2009|
|Record Hill||50.6||22||Oxford||Operating||Independence Wind||2012|
|Beaver Ridge||4.5||3||Waldo||Operating||Patriot Renewables||2008|
|Bull Hill||34.2||19||Hancock County||Operating||First Wind||2012|
 Canceled proposals
 Redington and Black Nubble
In 2005, Maine Mountain Power (MMP) filed an application with the Maine Land Use Regulation Committee (LURC) for a permit to develop a 30-turbine wind farm on Mount Redington ( ) and neighboring Black Nubble ( ). After years of contentious debate, the proposal was voted down by the LURC in 2007. The summit of Redington was seen as too ecologically sensitive — a sub-alpine fir habitat providing a home for two rare species, the bog lemming and Bicknell's thrush. Also, the development would have been visible for miles along the Appalachian Trail (AT). A revised proposal, for 18 turbines only on Black Nubble, was put forward by MMP, supported by many environmental groups, but still opposed by Maine Audubon. The project was rejected by the LURC in 2008.
 Community debate
A statewide poll in Spring 2007 by the Pan Atlantic SMS Group showed that 85% of Maine people supported wind power development.
A 2009 poll conducted by Portland-based Critical Insights shows that 90% of Maine people support the development of wind power as a source of electricity. Nearly nine in ten Mainers agree that "wind power can improve energy security and reduce Maine’s dependence on fossil fuels, and eight in ten agree that wind power will produce jobs and other forms of economic benefits".
In a 2010 statewide telephone poll of 500 registered voters, 88 percent supported wind power in Maine. Calls to residents in seven rural "rim" counties, from Aroostook to Oxford, where most wind power projects are built or planned, showed 83 percent support. Survey results show that Maine residents "strongly support wind power development, chiefly because it cuts dependence on fossil fuels and creates jobs". The survey was done by Portland-based Pan Atlantic SMS Group for the Maine Renewable Energy Association.
However, some community opposition has arisen, expressed as litigation against mountain wind farms and an ocean wind turbine proposal, as civic activism, and as development of municipal ordinances.
 Wind generation
|Maine Wind Generation (GWh, Million kWh)|
Maine used 11,411 GWh in 2011.
 See also
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- EIA Electric Power Monthly, February 2012 p.16
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- "State approves Kibby wind farm project". Bangor Daily News. 2008-07-10. Retrieved 2008-08-21.
- "Kibby Wind Power". TransCanada Corporation. 2009-10-09. Retrieved 2009-10-21.
- "Kibby Mountain Wind Farm Begins Operations". WCSH. 2009-10-17. Retrieved 2009-10-21.
- "Kibby Wind Power Project Receives LURC Approval". TransCanada Corp. 2008-07-09. Retrieved 2008-08-21.
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- "Project Overview". Record Hill Wind. Retrieved 2009-05-09.
- "57-MW Stetson Wind Farm Starts Commercial Operations in Maine". RenewableEnergyWorld.com. January 23, 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-21.
- Sambides, Nick Jr. (March 4, 2009). "Commission OKs Stetson II wind farm". Bangor Daily News. Retrieved 2009-03-21.
- Sambides, Nick Jr. (September 2, 2009). "Maine wind farm gets stimulus funds". Bangor Daily News. Retrieved 2009-09-04.
- Sambides, Nick Jr. (2008-08-15). "Lincoln Announces Wind Farm Hearing". Bangor Daily News. Retrieved 2008-09-04.
- Pater, Joe. "Rollins Wind - The Lincoln Maine Wind Project". Retrieved 2008-09-04.
- Sambides, Nick Jr. (2010-10-17). "40-turbine wind project under way". Bangor Daily News. Retrieved 2010-10-20.
- Tyler, David A. (July 2009). "Community celebrates Fox Islands wind power groundbreaking". The Working Waterfront. Retrieved 2009-07-03.
- Curtis, Abigail (June 30, 2009). "Vinalhaven turbines to provide enough electricity for 1,500". Bangor Daily News. Retrieved 2009-07-03.[dead link]
- "Maine Islands Get Power From Wind". Associated Press (AP). November 17 2009. Retrieved 2009-11-18.
- "Fox Islands Electric Wind Power Project". Fox Islands Electric. Retrieved 2009-06-05.
- Conkling, Micah (June 2009). "Construction to start on Fox Islands wind project". The Working Waterfront. Retrieved 2009-06-05.
- Zeller, Tom Jr. (October 5, 2010). "For Those Near, the Miserable Hum of Clean Energy". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-10-14.
- Miller, Kevin (5 October 2011). "LURC approves 19-turbine wind farm in Hancock County". Bangor Daily News. Retrieved 13 October 2011.
- "First Wind - Blue Sky East LLC/Bull Hill Development Permit for Wind Energy". Maine Land Use Regulation Commission (LURC). 3 October 2011. Retrieved 13 October 2011.
- "EastbrookWind.Org". 2009-04-09. Retrieved 13 October 2011.
- "WABI-TV: Bull Hill Wind Farm Project Completed". 14 November 2012. Retrieved 31 December 2012.
- "First Wind's Bull Hill Wind page". 14 November 2012. Retrieved 31 December 2012.
- "First Wind press release on Bull Hill". 14 November 2012. Retrieved 31 December 2012.
- Sambides, Nick Jr. (2009-04-09). "Wind power developer seeks to build in Oakfield". Bangor Daily News. Retrieved 2009-05-09.
- "Ocean Energy Institute". 2008. Retrieved 2008-12-15.
- Gies, Erica (November 26, 2008). "Plans for the world's biggest wind farm". International Herald Tribune. Retrieved 2008-12-15.
- J Dwight (December 14, 2008). "The biggest con job in the history of man". Sun Journal. Retrieved 2008-12-15.[dead link]
- Fehrenbacher, Katie (December 1, 2008). "Gulf of Maine Wind Proposal Could Cost $25B". earth2tech.com. Retrieved 2008-12-15.
- EIA Electric Power Monthly, Oct 2011 p.13
- "Get The Facts". Maine Mountain Power. 2006. Retrieved 2008-08-28.
- Crowell, Alan (2007-07-11). "Black Nubble wind project supporters line up". Kennebec Journal. Retrieved 2008-08-28.
- "Maine Mountain Power Redington Wind Farm Application for Development". Maine LURC. Retrieved 2008-08-28.
- "Redington wind farm a step toward Maine's energy future". Portland Press Herald. 2006-07-29. Retrieved 2008-08-28.
- "Support Builds for Black Nubble Wind Farm". Natural Resources Council of Maine. 2007-07-10. Retrieved 2008-08-28.
- "Will you help Maine Audubon fight an uphill battle for wildlife-friendly wind power in Maine?". Maine Audubon. Retrieved 2008-08-28.
- "Wind project rulings issued: Panel OKs Kibby, rejects Black Nubble". Morning Sentinel. 2008-01-15. Retrieved 2008-08-28.
- "Poll Shows Overwhelming Support for Wind Power". NRCM. November 13, 2009.
- Tux Turkel (June 29, 2010). "Mainers full of gusto for wind power, survey finds". Portland Press Herald.
- Bangor News: Group renews legal challenge to Rollins Mountain Wind
- Petition against offshore wind test areas
- Friends of Ragged Mountain
- Dixmont Wind Ordinance
- EIA (July 27, 2012). "Electric Power Monthly Table 1.17.A.". United States Department of Energy. Retrieved 2012-08-15.
- EIA (July 27, 2012). "Electric Power Monthly Table 1.17.B.". United States Department of Energy. Retrieved 2012-08-15.
- EIA (February 2012). "Electric Power Monthly Table 5.4.B.". United States Department of Energy. p. 118. Retrieved 2012-11-23.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Wind power in Maine|
- "Projects". First Wind. Retrieved 2008-09-04.