CAN YOU IMAGINE ALLOWING THE US TO DEVELOP AN EXPORT MARKET FOR DRONES AND SPYING SO THAT AUTOCRATIC SOCIETIES AROUND THE WORLD COULD SUPPRESS THEIR CITIZENS INTO OBLIVION?
THAT'S A NEO-LIBERAL FOR YOU! 100% TOTALITARIAN AND ALL MARYLAND'S POLS ARE NEO-LIBERAL!
Regarding the political fight called Maryland's 'TILTING AT WINDMILLS:
The latest of political discourse is exactly the source for political satire seen on Saturday Night Live. It is absurd to the max and shows how our political system at both the Federal and State level is distorted beyond belief. Here are two neo-liberals both working for two sets of corporations neither of which has anything to do with public interest. Reforming Maryland contract bidding is a start. We will need Bernie Sanders hitting the Federal Military funding to end the mess Hoyer has built for his constituents.
CINDY WALSH FOR GOVERNOR OF MARYLAND WILL FIX BOTH!
The wind farm project should have been public. We need our utilities taken public as a way to protect the citizens of Maryland from the current abuses of a criminal Wall Street market. This wind farm project should never have been given to a Texas corporation because Texas is a Right to Work state that abuses its labor and all these out-of-state contractors bring their own employees or work Maryland labor as they would in Texas.
MARYLAND CONTRACTS NEED TO GO TO MARYLAND SMALL BUSINESS FIRST. Cost Benefit Analysis------from a public interest and not corporate profit.
Raise your hand if you like the idea of drone warfare that has the entire world angry at the US for razing villages and killing innocent civilians-----NO ONE. Raise your hand if you want this technology mainstreamed into our domestic economy so that hummingbird drones fly into your open windows to videotape your every move----NO ONE. Stealth technology means nations of the world will be coming to the US to do the same. WHAT GOES AROUND COMES AROUND. So, MR. STENY HOYER who voted to break Glass Steagall and NAFTA to create these global corporations and corporate rule now needs these technologies to protect US corporations overseas. I know, let's return to rebuilding our US domestic economy by downsizing US global corporations and basing our economy on small and regional businesses that will not spread tyranny around the world. We have dolphin radar for goodness sake developed by mother nature.
BUILDING TOTALITARIAN MILITARY AND POLICING IS NOT A GOOD ECONOMIC ENGINE FOR MARYLAND!
Steny Hoyer is a Third Way neo-liberal as is O'Malley so neither support environmental issues. Neo-liberals support corporate interests first and that means labor and justice, including environmental justice will always lose. So, these windfarms deals were never about the environment and always about pay-to-play money to Obama campaign donors....and soon O'Malley campaign donors. Maryland has the worst of environmental policies and never enforce laws that do get passed so we fully expect these wind farms to send money to the private corporation to build and then be useless to alternative energy resources. Making alternative energy PUBLIC UTILITIES would show commitment to green energy.
Let's look at the issue. A Texas-based developer gets this Maryland state job. Texas has the worst Right to Work laws and these deals always allow the contractors to bring their own employees so there goes the strong employment/work for Maryland small business for the most part. Oh, that's right, Maryland businesses will be subcontractors to subcontractors. Then, let's look at the business Steny Hoyer is protecting-----stealth radar for drones. Indeed, Maryland is ground zero for all of the spying and drone warfare that no one in the US wants. HELLO!!!!!!!
So, we are watching our neo-liberal politicians argue over whether a Texas corporation gets to profit from what should be a public project and whether it will bother an unwanted spying/surveillance drone warfare operation. The answer is NONE OF THE ABOVE.
Southern Maryland is being made ground zero for this NSA/international-law breaking drone warfare. This is the problem. I'm sure that Southern Maryland would appreciate the opportunity to have completely different economic drivers.
The solution seems to be as is true of all neo-liberal policy coming from Maryland Assembly and O'Malley------NONE OF THE ABOVE. Kill the military research making the US a rogue nation that breaks international law and kill the deal with Texas corporations that take our business and bring workers that are subjected to the worst of labor laws.
Hoyer, O'Malley administration spar over Eastern Shore wind project Impact on Southern Maryland naval air base debated
By Timothy B. Wheeler, The Baltimore Sun 8:35 p.m. EDT, April 1, 2014
In a duel of sorts between two of Maryland's top Democrats, U.S. Rep. Steny Hoyer went to Annapolis Tuesday to press for legislation opposed by Gov. Martin O'Malley that Southern Maryland officials insist is needed to protect their region's prized naval air base from an Eastern Shore wind energy project.
Hoyer, who represents Southern Maryland in Congress, said he was making his first appearance before a legislative committee since leaving the General Assembly for Washington in the 1970s. He said he did so because he fears giant wind turbines proposed in Somerset County could jeopardize the future of Naval Air Station Patuxent River, which supporters say is an economic engine not only for the region but for the entire state.
"I want wind energy in this state and in this country," Hoyer said. "But not at the expense of undermining the viability and effectiveness" of the St. Mary's County base, where a unique radar system is used to test the stealth capability of aircraft.
Hoyer and other Southern Maryland officials warned the Senate Finance Committee that the turbines could interfere with the radar and lead to the testing being transferred — along with the thousands of jobs associated with it — to an air base in California or elsewhere.
But the Texas-based developer of the $200 million Somerset wind project says it has reached an agreement in principle with the Navy to turn off the 25 turbines whenever radar tests are to be run. And some current and retired military officials have said that would work.
A state Senate committee is considering a bill passed by the House, which would for 15 months effectively block commercial wind development within 56 miles of the air base — a zone stretching across the Chesapeake Bay to encompass the proposed Great Bay wind project on the western edge of Somerset. The developer, Pioneer Green, has warned that the delay would kill the project.
Supporters of the bill contend that the wind project needs to be delayed pending completion of a $2 million study looking at ways to remedy a turbine's impact on the radar system.
O'Malley didn't appear in person to oppose the bill, but Abigail Hopper, his energy adviser and director of the Maryland Energy Administration, told lawmakers the governor considered the legislation both unnecessary and potentially harmful to the state's efforts to woo more renewable energy projects.
"The governor has no desire to harm Pax River," Hopper said, using the base's nickname, but argued it's not "an either-or-choice." She pointed out there are both federal and state laws guaranteeing that the Navy can impose conditions on or even block approval of any wind project it believes would impair or degrade operations of one of its facilities.
Moreover, she said, such a broad moratorium could make it harder for the state to achieve a goal set at O'Malley's urging of getting 20 percent of its power from renewable sources by 2022.
"You will create a reputation across the country that Maryland is not open for clean energy development," she said.
Adam Cohen, vice president and founder of Pioneer Green, said the company has already invested nearly $4 million in leasing land and planning for its 25 turbines. And he said the company has worked out a deal with Navy officials to turn off its turbines whenever the base needs to run radar tests, so there would be no interference.
That deal has not been signed by all the necessary officials, however. Hoyer said he had asked the Navy to hold off pending completion of the study.
The congressman suggested the wind project is being foisted on Pax River by an Obama administration committed to promoting renewable energy. He suggested turning off the turbines was no remedy because it might tip off the nation's adversaries when the Navy was conducting classified radar tests.
Moreover, Hoyer and other base supporters said unspecified "customers" of Patuxent River — military aircraft programs, foreign governments and private contractors conducting testing there — object to the agreement and could take their business elsewhere. Letting the wind project go forward now under that arrangement could weaken Maryland's ability to retain all the operations and jobs at Pax River the next time the Pentagon orders a realignment of bases nationwide, they warned.
Cohen countered that wind turbines generally operate only about 30 percent of the time anyway, so it would be hard to divine when testing was being done. And Pam Kasemeyer, the company's lobbyist, said Patuxent already signals publicly — by a balloon launch — when it is about to conduct radar tests.
The developer also pointed to a statement from a former director of the Pentagon agency that referees such disputes over energy projects near military bases, who called the concerns of Patuxent River supporters "misplaced." Turning off the turbines would remove any interference, said David Belote, a retired Air Force colonel. He also said there was little prospect of the Navy or its customers abandoning Patuxent River because the costs of moving the sophisticated radar system elsewhere would be "astronomical."
The Department of Defense has issued varying statements about the deal. When first asked about it last month by The Baltimore Sun, a Pentagon spokesman said Pioneer Green's agreement to turn off its turbines "will provide the periodic curtailment of operations required by the Navy."
More recently, a different spokesman, Navy Lt. Greg D. Raelson, said that the agreement "still requires revisions and has not been approved by the Navy." He declined to elaborate.
The only Navy representative to speak at the hearing told lawmakers that for security reasons he could not discuss what issues the base may still have with turning off the turbines.
Outside the hearing room, though, Gary Kessler, executive director of the Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division, said the Navy's primary concern with the agreement is not technical but legal. Officials want to ensure that it is legally enforceable. Unless some technical fix is found, he said, base officials do worry how they could manage if more such projects are proposed on the lower Shore.
The developer's lobbyist and O'Malley's energy adviser both suggested a compromise — impose the moratorium, but allow any project with a signed agreement with the Navy to proceed.
Some members of the Finance Committee, particularly those with military background or with a military base in their district, indicated they side with the Southern Marylanders. But Sen. Allan Kittleman, a Howard County Republican, said he was torn.
"We talk about having these renewable energy goals," he said. If much of the state is off-limits to protect Patuxent River, he said, "I'm at a loss how we're going to get to these goals. This is really tough."
As someone who supports public utilities I would support public alternative energy as would any democrat. Neo-liberals who are not democrats but corporate pols want all public sector operations privatized because then corporate profit soars. This is what O'Malley and Hoyer are fighting over. Not what is in the public interest, but which corporation has its profits threatened.
WE WANT MARYLAND UTILITIES PUBLIC AND REGULATED SO RATES STAY LOW, PUBLIC EMPLOYEES ARE WELL-PAID AND HAVE A CAREER, AND PUBLIC MONEY IS SPENT ON PUBLIC ASSETS.
I had a 'green' energy employee come to my door this week trying to get me to switch from BGE to this 'green' corporation that wants these BGE green surcharges tied to alternative energy in Maryland. COMMERCE ENERGY selling itself as a 'green energy' corporation wanting to receive the green energy surcharge on my BGE bill. This is all connected to wind farms. So, with a simple click of the computer Commerce Energy was going to get the green energy surcharge attached to the BGE bill. Commerce Energy now has 'local' businesses all over the country.
NOTICE THIS CORPORATION WAS CREATED IN 2008 JUST TO RECEIVE YOUR GREEN ENERGY SURCHARGE.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Commerce Energy Group, Inc., based in Costa Mesa, California, USA, was the parent company of a wholly owned independent electricity and natural gas marketing company, Commerce Energy Inc.. The company was purchased by Universal Energy Group on December 11, 2008.
On July 31, 2008, Commerce had 155,000 customers. Revenue for the fiscal year 2008, ending July 31, 2008, was $460 million. The company had 200 employees on July 31, 2008.
Meanwhile, Maryland has doubled-down on making Maryland citizens pay Wall Street speculators for profits and completely deregulated its energy sector to maximize those profits. None of this has anything to do with the democratic party. It is neo-liberal.
States still having their public utilities are having to fight for them as these national energy corporations buy politicians right and left.
CINDY WALSH FOR GOVERNOR OF MARYLAND WILL FIGHT FOR PUBLIC UTILITIES AND REGULATION.
Energy in New Hampshire
A blog about New Hampshire energy matters
by Mike Mooiman, an engineer and business program professor at Franklin Pierce University.
Wednesday, September 25, 2013
What’s It All About, Alfie?* - A Primer on Public Utilities
I have followed with great interest the various reports, meetings and debates regarding the restructuring of the electricity market in New Hampshire and the impact it has had on the State's largest electrical utility, Public Services of New Hampshire (PSNH). In the past, we allowed public utilities, like PSNH, to have unopposed access to supply services to consumers in designated areas. For much of the last century this monopolistic model worked as it permitted the build-out of the infrastructure, such as roads, power lines, railways, airports, communications networks, etc., that we now have across the country and that are so important to our economic success.
However, times have changed, economic thought has evolved, and there has been deregulation of many of these utilities. We now require that utilities give up their monopolistic hold on their markets and that they compete with other suppliers for customers. For example, consider what has happened with telephone service and the airlines and more recently with electricity supply in some states. This has had profound implications for the utilities, their investors and for us as consumers. In my next series of posts, I plan to take a look at utilities in general, at what has been happening to electrical utilities during this wave of deregulation and at the issue of stranded costs.
I think it is important to understand what a public utility is and what its obligations are because, in the electricity deregulation debate here in NH, I am sometimes astonished at the vitriolic comments aimed at public utilities such as PSNH and the condemnation of their actions. Now I am no advocate for the public utility industry, but it is essential that we discuss these matters on the basis of facts and data rather than on emotion and gut feel. It is my sense that the debate surrounding public utilities and deregulation could benefit from a reiteration of some key facts about utilities. I appreciate that many of the readers of this blog are probably familiar with these matters, but for new students in the energy world, a primer on utilities is, I think, useful material to cover.
So let's turn our attention to improving our understanding of a utility. A useful definition of a utility is provided by Rick Geddes, Professor of Economics at Cornell University. He states that "Utilities typically create a good or service at one location, and then distribute it over a 'network' where it is delivered to numerous customers for end use."
The delivery of electricity, natural gas and land-line telephone service are obvious examples. The supply of these services are delivered by organizations that need to run their infrastructure, such as power lines or supply piping, through a community to get to their customers. Sewer service is another example of a utility. In this case, the service is removing water-borne waste from our homes through a network of piping to be treated at another location. Other utilities we tend to forget about are the transportation networks provided by trucking, rail and air travel.
The key to a utility is the distribution network that has to run between and through communities. As a result, the utilities need the ability to utilize parts of the public space of a community to put equipment in place to establish the network. These service networks can only be established and made to function if the community allows the utility access and rights-of-way to put up support structures to carry wires or to dig up roads and sidewalks to lay piping. However, establishing these networks is a very disruptive and expensive endeavor, so this led to the concept of a natural monopoly: we agree to provide the utility with the sole right to supply the service in a specified area - a franchise as it were - on condition that it is done cost effectively, safely and that the service is reliable.
By allowing the monopoly, we in the community benefit from having the service network built and operated and the utility benefits from an assured revenue and profit stream as they have no competition in the provision of the service. We as a community also gain by virtue of only having one company digging up our roads or stringing power lines, i.e, we avoid congestion of power lines, utility poles, and pipelines in our public spaces. In permitting monopolistic access to our community in exchange for cost-effective, safe and reliable service, we, in essence, establish a financial and regulatory agreement or compact with the service provider.
In the figure below I have attempted to capture the main aspects of the financial and regulatory compact. The fundamental nature of the agreement is that we get affordable, safe and reliable service and the utility gets an assured rate of return for an extended period of time. At the same time, we do not permit these utilities unchecked access to our communities. We insist on the regulation of these utilities; we want them to be transparent about their financial performance so that they make reasonable, but not excessive, returns on their investments; we want to be involved in establishing rates for service; we want them to make long-term investments in infrastructure; and not discriminate against customers. The utilities, on the other hand, without challenges from competitors, are assured of a large customer base, a profitable business, steady returns to investors and, as a result, they have the ability to borrow money at low rates to fund the infrastructure projects. They are also given the power of eminent domain to obtain the land to install their networks.
Administration of this regulatory compact, with all its different configurations and nuances, is largely done by the various state-based Public Utilities Commissions (PUCs) which sit between the communities and the utilities. There is some federal based regulation of utilities. Specifically, it is the task of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to regulate the interstate transmission of electricity, oil and gas as well as the operation and location of hydropower projects. The NRC, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, is in charge of nuclear power plants.
As noted, most of the regulation of utilities is done on a state by state basis. Here in NH, we have the New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission which is run by three appointed Commissioners. They have the challenging and interesting task of regulating a range of utilities to ensure folks in New Hampshire get reliable, safe and reasonably priced services. In New Hampshire the law is quite clear on what a public utility is. Specifically RSA 362:2 states that:
"The term "public utility" shall include every corporation, company, association, joint stock association, partnership and person, their lessees, trustees or receivers appointed by any court, except municipal corporations and county corporations operating within their corporate limits, owning, operating or managing any plant or equipment or any part of the same for the conveyance of telephone or telegraph messages or for the manufacture or furnishing of light, heat, sewage disposal, power or water for the public, or in the generation, transmission or sale of electricity ultimately sold to the public, or owning or operating any pipeline, including pumping stations, storage depots and other facilities, for the transportation, distribution or sale of gas, crude petroleum, refined petroleum products, or combinations of petroleum products, rural electric cooperatives organized pursuant to RSA 301 or RSA 301-A and any other business, except as hereinafter exempted, over which on September 1, 1951, the public utilities commission exercised jurisdiction."
So in New Hampshire, public utilities are electricity and natural gas suppliers, landline telephone companies, as well as drinking water supply and sewage treatment enterprises. They do not include your cable company or your cell phone service supplier.
There are different ownership structures for public utilities. There are utilities that are owned by the community - municipal drinking water supply and sewage services are typical examples and there are even a few communities in NH that have municipal electricity companies – there are cooperatives that are owned by their members, and then there are large investor-owned utilities, such as natural gas, electricity providers and landline telephone services that we all know (and like to complain about).
In supplying a service to a community, a public utility has to take into account three key aspects of the utility business. The first is the generation of service that it is supplying. This is usually some central location like a power plant for an electrical utility or the treatment works for the handling and discharge of domestic sewage. Secondly, these services often need to be supplied over long distances, so there is the transmission part of a utility. For example, consider the railway lines between cities or those large power lines that run across the state delivering electricity to towns. Finally, there is the distribution network where the service is dispersed throughout the community to reach individual residences and businesses. Examples of distribution networks include the telephone lines that run down our roads or the electrical wires and transformers that are spread throughout our communities.
The basic structure of the utility industry - the generation, transmission and distribution aspects - is shown in the figure below. Some utilities are focused on just one or two aspects of this network, e.g., I live in a community with a municipal electrical company and their focus is just on the distribution network, whereas some utilities deal with all three. PSNH is a public utility that deals with all three aspects of the utility business which is the cause for some of the challenges they currently face.
With this basic knowledge of a public utility and the regulatory compact involved, I will, in my next post, take a closer look at electrical utilities and the some aspects of deregulation of electricity supply in New Hampshire.
Until next time, remember to turn off the lights when you leave the room but, before you do, take a moment to think about the network that was involved in getting electricity to that light bulb.
Meanwhile this is what O'Malley and Hoyer are working towards. Skyrocketing private wind energy global corporations. The Texas corporation? It is a venture capitalist----One51 is a global corporation that intends to take over control of these facilities for the long-term.
So, in Somerset County, Maryland this opertation is given a name of Great Bay------the development firm is Pioneer Green Energy and the investment corporation set to take control is One51, a global energy corporation. What part of this sounds good for Maryland citizens?
Do you think Eastern Shore residents know that a global corporation controls what is being marketed as a 'local' business is taking hold? Do Maryland citizens know yet another global corporation controls the economy in Maryland? A utility at that!
Renewable Energy: Pioneer Green Energy
In 2010, One51 invested in Pioneer Green Energy LLC, a next generation wind developer focused on developing assets in a number of US states. One51 has board representation and an option to take a controlling interest in the business.
Pioneer Green aims to assemble a large pipeline of competitive build-ready wind and solar projects targeted to the mid-term market in the United States. The company sees its niche in the innovative approach it takes solving transmission and other special issues blocking otherwise good renewable energy projects.
Headed by Andrew Bowman, Pioneer Green boasts an experienced founding team who, in their respective careers to date, have helped develop almost 3 GW of operational projects across America. These projects are now owned by some of the largest renewable energy companies in the industry.
Pioneer Green has a broad geographic reach, however the team remain extremely discerning when considering potential projects. Once a development is selected, Pioneer Green’s hands-on detail orientated approach to project management fosters a collaborative relationship with property owners and other stakeholders, enabling previous obstacles to be surmounted to mutual benefit.
Wind Energy Companies
A Snapshot of the Global Wind Industry
By Nick Hodge August 26, 2008
Editor's Note: The article below provides an excellent snapshot of the global wind industry from a bird's-eye view. For a more detailed and updated look at the sector, check out Jeff Siegel's piece on top wind energy companies.
I've discussed wind energy in these pages many times before, but the conversation seems to have always turned to a discussion of wind turbine stocks.
Today, I want to take a step back, look at the industry as a whole, and focus more broadly on wind energy companies.
The Wind Energy Industry
First, let's get a quick rundown of the growth of the domestic and international wind markets out of the way.
Here's the chart for wind power capacity growth by year:
wind power capacity growth by country
As you can see, global installed capacity for wind energy has grown 482% over the last seven years, from 14,604 MW in 2000 to 84,934 MW in 2007.
Broken down further, the international wind industry has a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR or year-over-year) of 28.6%, which is impressive, to say the least.
But the past performance of the wind energy stocks is going to do little to help the future performance of your portfolio, apart from establishing an historic trend and highlighting what you've been missing.
So here's the global wind energy installed capacity forecast, going out to 2012:
wind energy installed capacity forecast
This data reveals that the industry will grow 215% between 2007 and 2012, from 84,934 MW to 267,837 MW. That's a CAGR of 25.8%
Now this is information that can give your portfolio a boost. In an industry that's doubling in size every four years or less, there are surely more than a few companies worthy of investment operating within it.
The only thing left to do is to actively seek out the best ones.
To start the search, it's probably worth taking a look at the countries currently boasting the highest year-over-year growth in the wind industry. So here they are, along with their respective annual growth rates, as provided by GlobalData:
Of course, those are the fastest growing markets. According to GlobalData, the largest markets by megawatt capacity are:
China, 51,200 MW
U.S, 45,454 MW
Spain, 36,715 MW
Germany, 35,829 MW
India, 25,935 MW
The only thing left to do is single out the largest operators in those areas, invest, and reap the profits.
Wind Energy Companies
Let's begin with China since that's the only country to appear in both the largest market and fastest grower categories. Per GlobalData, here are the largest wind companies operating in China that each installed more than 100 MW in 2007:
Goldwind Science and Technology (SZ: 002202)
Sinovel Windtec Co.
Gamesa Corporacion Tecnologica (MCE: GAM)
Vestas Wind Systems (CPH: VWS)
Dongfang Electric Corporation (HKSE: 1072)
GE Energy (NYSE: GE)
Suzlon Energy Limited (NSE: SUZLON)
Most of those companies trade on foreign exchanges. If you dabble in those markets, my money is on Vestas and Gamesa, with Suzlon in third. But the companies that trade in China could see significant growth as the industry continues to mature.
Vestas, for example, is getting $1,628 per kW for their turbines. The average price is $1,008 per kW.
In the U.S., which is the market most of you are probably interested in, the dynamic shifts dramatically.
Here are the largest companies operating in our domestic wind market:
GE Energy (NYSE: GE)
Vestas Wind Systems (CPH: VWS)
Siemens AG (NYSE: SI)
Gamesa Corporacion Tecnologica (MCE: GAM)
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (TYO: 7011)
Suzlon Energy Limited (NSE: SUZLON)
Clipper Windpower (LSE: CWP)
Nordex (FRANKFURT: NDX1)
Of course, my first two picks of Vestas and Gamesa still stand, and now you can see it's because of their intense presence across multiple markets. My sleeper pick here is Nordex.
The other side of the coin is to look at the largest wind farms being erected to identify the companies involved. Here are the companies that come up when discussing the largest planned wind farms in the U.S., and around the world:
Clipper Windpower (LSE: CWP)
British Petroleum (NYSE: BP)
Naikun Wind (TSX.V: NKW)
SUEZ (PARIS: SZE)
RWE Group (XETRA: RWE)
Naikun probably offers the lowest share price in relation to potential for that group.
A Windy Future
So that's a snapshot of the global wind industry. I think some clear winners are definitely emerging.
But there is much more to come. And some tiny companies will certainly make their mark before all is said and done.
This is because the big boys alone can't satiate the surging demand for wind energy and related products and services.
For example, through 2020 in Europe, wind is expected to account for 34% of new generating capacity. It'll account for 46% from 2020-2030.
And the goal of attaining 12-14% of Europe's power from wind by 2020 is well within reach.
Here in the U.S., an Energy Department study found that wind energy could generate 20% of U.S. electricity by 2030, as compared to today's one percent.
So there's still a lot of work and investment to come.
The companies discussed so far will certainly play a vital role in wind's growth. But a handful of companies are providing specialty parts and service that are also crucial to the industry, like transmission cables, installation services, gearboxes, and, increasingly, turbines.
As I said, this is snapshot of the industry—a very dynamic industry that's constantly changing.
While it's possible to base investment decisions on stationary data like this, it's probably wise to have constant updates and recommendations to really stay on top of things, especially since they change everyday.
With that in mind, the Alternative Energy Speculator has designed a way for you to cash in on the booming wind energy market.
I've compiled a full report that analyzes the wind industry, telling you exactly how much it's going to grow, and releasing the names of three companies you must own if you want to reap lucrative wind profits.
You can't afford to miss this opportunity or the chance to get in today on the wind energy giants of tomorrow.
Read the report today!
Call it like you see it,
Below you see how this was sold in Maryland and it is always the minority contractors and labor unions who are told they will benefit. A Texas corporation awarded the development contract forces local contractors to bid so low for awards that they almost always earn no profit and rarely use union labor.
Imagine a Texas development corporation bringing its labor to Maryland and then a global corporation One51 bringing its staff from all over the world.
Who gets hired?
Friday, March 30, 2012
Maryland’s offshore wind farm could blow contracts ashore
Businesses prepare for work on proposed turbine project
Lindsey Robbins, Staff Writer
An offshore wind farm will mean opportunities for a range of small and minority-owned businesses in Maryland, executives learned Wednesday.
“There are many different industries involved in this project, industries that are already here in Maryland,” Ross Tyler, director of the Business Coalition for Maryland Offshore Wind told businesspeople attending a forum in Annapolis.
Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) is calling for a 310-megawatt installation off the coast of Ocean City, at a cost of almost $1 billion. State estimates predict the project’s economic impact during the next five years could reach $2 billion, with $8.7 million in additional state tax revenues. O’Malley has introduced legislation that would add fees to electric users’ bills to help attract developers to build the wind farm.
The House Economic Matters Committee approved the bill Monday, after reducing the average residential ratepayers’ additional monthly fee to $1.50 from $2 and exempting from the surcharge the first 750 million kilowatt hours of annual electricity use by an industrial concern.
Other amendments under discussion include creating a $10 million Offshore Wind Business Development Fund to support a local supply chain for small and minority-owned businesses and a potential wind business incubator.
Prince George’s County Del. Michael L. Vaughn (D-Dist. 24) of Bowie said the fund is an important piece of the legislation to ensure small and minority-owned businesses receive equal opportunity to benefit from this project.
“I appreciated being able to give this my yes vote,” he said.
Ross illustrated the opportunities for businesses along every step of the wind farm’s life cycle, including its development, preparation of the turbine, preparation of the balance of the plant, installation, commissioning and operation.
He pointed out that local companies already are engaging in services and technologies that could bank off this project. AC Wind, a Salisbury manufacturer of wind energy composites, is prepared to make turbine blades, some of which can extend 300 feet in length. Areva of France, whose North American headquarters is in Bethesda, has the resources to make the wind tower’s nacelle, which is the size of a small house and stores all the electrical systems. Eaton, which makes electronic converters for offshore turbines and has an aerospace facility in Beltsville, also could work on the project.
At least 30 businesses support Ross’ coalition, ranging from those with ready skills to those trying to figure out where they could fit in, he said.
“There are thousands of components that go into this. It has an enormous tertiary supply chain,” Ross said. “This could operate for at least 25 years.”
“These projects are going to create boots-on-the-ground jobs,” said R. Daniel Wallace, director of renewable energy systems for BithEnergy in Baltimore.
He cautioned that businesses prepare early and begin collaborating so they do not lose to outside competition, especially from the foreign market.
“When these jobs come to Maryland, you need to be able to identify where you can play,” he said.
Joe Gaskins, executive director of the nonprofit Economic Development & Training Institute incubator in Suitland, emphasized the need for proper training for businesses to get involved.
“You have to understand things like how wind works on water,” he said.
Gaskins said he hopes to be part of the proposed wind industry incubator, which would support up to 100 small and minority-owned businesses starting in 2013.
He said 200 small and minority-owned businesses already have the potential to compete for these contracts.
Richard Cerkovnik of Anne Arundel Community College discussed the community college resources, especially those in the science, technology, engineering and math fields, available for businesses to build capacity before these contracts go to bid.
Cerkovik’s college received a $19.7 million grant from the federal government last fall to lead the National STEM Consortium, which develops portable, certificate-level programs in these fields to meet occupational demands.
“If an industry needs something in terms of training, we can quickly ramp up our programs to meet it,” Cerkovnik said.
After the forum, Terry Goolsby of Sowinergy and Clozynergy in Upper Marlboro, said the nation needs better public policy in renewables if it hopes to keep up with other regions, such as Europe.
“This is a piecemeal reaction to a stimulus, rather than a holistic approach,” she said, referring to how the Ocean City farm is intended to connect to the Atlantic Wind Connection, which will help add 7,000 megawatts of offshore wind turbine capacity to the regional grid.
She said she supports the legislation because it gives Maryland businesses a chance at the opportunities, which otherwise would go to others.
The House committee’s approval is a good sign, Goolsby said.
“This is a proven industry and proven technology in other parts of the world, especially Europe. There’s absolutely no reason the U.S. can’t be participating and embracing this industry,” Ross said.
You don't hear Steny Hoyer and O'Malley shouting about the fact that there has been no public comment or input as to concerns. Maryland State Police now use drone radar that is part of tracking license plates and vehicular movement of all Maryland citizens. What's to worry? Well, totalitarianism doesn't end well for American citizens.
People are not afraid of technology development, they demand to be the ones making these decisions. When the Maryland Assembly and governor/mayor tell us over and over public business is classified simply because of outsourcing to private business---
WE HAVE ELIMINATED WE THE PEOPLE FROM ALL PUBLIC POLICY!
As Mary Pat Clarke shouted to me in Baltimore City Hall----SHE'LL WRITE ABOUT IT! That's all we are to expect as peasants.
Drones Flying Under the Radar
Thursday, 05 April 2012 09:33 By Tom Barry, Truthout | News Analysis
An undated handout photo of a U.S. Air Force MQ-9 Reaper, a drone aircraft aimed with laser-guided munitions and Hellfire missiles.An undated handout photo of a US Air Force MQ-9 Reaper, a drone aircraft aimed with laser-guided munitions and Hellfire missiles. (Photo: Lt. Col. Leslie Pratt / US Air Force via The New York Times)
Drones are the future, especially in foreign wars, surveillance and law enforcement.
In all sizes, armed and unarmed, drones are proliferating at home and abroad. Some are loaded with missiles, others simply with Tasers, but all carry surveillance payloads.
These "eyes in the skies," also known as Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) or Remotely Piloted Vehicles (RPA), may soon be inescapable. For the most part, however, drones fly outside the radar of public scrutiny, Congressional oversight or international control.
In the seven years that the CIA and US military have deployed killer drones, the US Congress has never once debated the new commitment to drone operations. Although the CIA and the US military now routinely direct intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) operations that enter foreign airspace, these interventions haven't been subject to serious Congressional review.
Drone operations often proceed without any authorization or knowledge of the intervened nations.
On the domestic front, local police and Homeland Security agents are also enthusiastically deploying drones for law enforcement and border security missions. At all levels, government in the United States is sidelining mounting civil rights, privacy and air safety concerns. The US Congress functions more as a booster for the drone industry than as a regulator.
In the United States, the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) and the ACLU have brought a legal challenge to the "targeted killings" carried out by the CIA and the military's Joint Special Operations Command. "The executive branch is claiming the authority to target and kill any individual anywhere in the world - including American citizens - without any judicial process or oversight and without any transparency or accountability," Leili Kashani, CCR's advocacy program manager, told Truthout. "It is subverting the Constitution and international law in assuming the role of judge, jury and executioner."
Lately, other civil liberties groups, local and national, are also raising concerns about the lack of transparency, accountability and oversight over domestic drone deployment. Such groups include the Center for Technology and Democracy, the Electronic Policy Information Center and the Electronic Frontier Foundation.
Drone proliferation has sparked the creation of new organizations, such as the International Center for Robotic Arms Controls, which are demanding global governance over international drone missions.
A stream of recent media reports about drone proliferation at home has sparked rising public interest and concern in the United States. The lack of attention by Congress to the drone-related privacy issues has precipitated a surge of citizen activism and nongovernmental organization advocacy - accompanied by a wave of alarmed blog postings and commentary.
The rising concerns in America about the implications of drone deployment parallels a more advanced public debate in Great Britain about the onset of the "surveillance society" and about the legal and human consequences of drone interventions in foreign nations.
One example of this new attention in the United States is the upcoming Drone Summit, which will bring a variety of civil libertarians, human rights activists, robotics technology experts and peace activists to Washington, DC, on April 28-29. The Drone Summit is jointly sponsored by the peace group CodePink and the legal advocacy organizations Reprieve (UK) and Center for Constitutional Rights. Described as the "first international drone summit," the event will feature military experts and first-hand testimonies by victims of drone strikes in Pakistan.
Medea Benjamin, author of the forthcoming book "Drone Warfare: Killing by Remote Control," says that "our nation is leading the way toward a new form of warfare where pilots sitting on the ground thousands of miles away command drone strikes, where targets are- in military jargon- 'neutralized,' and where unintended victims are dismissed as 'collateral damage.'"
Yet, drones aren't only about war fighting and extrajudicial killings overseas. Drones are also being deployed domestically by border security and law enforcement agencies. Predator drones deployed by Customs and Border Protection search for immigrants and drugs on the northern and southern borders, while metropolitan police and county sheriffs are acquiring smaller drones to assist their SWAT operations.
Under industry pressure, the Federal Aviation Administration was mandated by new Congressional legislation to adopt procedures to open US domestic airspace to private and governmental drones by 2015 and to allow police to start flying lightweight, line-of-sight drones by this summer. The new law was a major success for the new House Unmanned System Caucus and for the Association of Unmanned Vehicles Systems International, a drone industry group that works closely with the House drone caucus.
The drone freedom law also served as a wake-up call for a US public, which has been largely oblivious to advance of drones as a surveillance and law-enforcement instrument. Benjamin, who founded CodePink, warns, "As drones become an increasingly preferred form of warfare and as their presence expands at home, it is time to educate ourselves, the US public and our policymakers about drone proliferation." For Benjamin, activism needs to complement education if drone proliferation is to be subjected to the necessary accountability, transparency and oversight. "As remotely controlled warfare and spying race forward," she says, "it is also time to organize to end current abuses and to prevent the potentially widespread misuse both overseas and here at home."
Internationally, the simultaneously contentious and mutually self-serving relationship between the United States and Pakistan has lately been stuck at an impasse over routine US drone surveillance over that nation and killer drone strikes in Pakistani tribal areas. The Pakistani Parliament and public protests say the drone interventions must stop, while the Obama administration says that the UAV deployments must and will continue.
It wasn't until January of this year that the president even acknowledged the secret targeted killing missions of drones by the CIA when he insisted in the midst of rising concern of noncombatant (collateral damage) deaths that the overseas killer drones were on a "very tight leash."
"Under the Obama administration, drone strikes have escalated and expanded in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia," said Kashani. "In Pakistan alone, the Obama administration has launched six times as many drone strikes as the Bush administration, in fewer years in office, killing hundreds of innocent people and devastating families."
"Ultimately, efforts to end the expansion of US drone strikes and covert wars are not only a legal matter," Kashani said, "but a political and ethical one on which the viability of a livable future and meaningful democracy is based."
Although information is restricted and controlled, it does appear that noncombatant deaths by killer drone strikes are declining - although continuing. But security questions remain about the level of threats represented by combatants who are being targeted and constitutional questions persist about the legality of these extrajudicial killings.
The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan may be winding down after nearly a decade. But the US military and the Obama administration are committed to the increased use of UAVs in intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance and war fighting.
In January, President Obama announced a shift in US military strategy, including the shedding of "outdated Cold War systems" in favor of the high-tech instruments and conflicts of the future - including the aptly denominated "shadow wars." This evolution in military strategy, including the increased reliance on drones and special operations (and presumably a continuing pattern of extrajudicial killings by drone strikes around the globe) may, as its supporters contend, be exactly the course the US military needs to ensure national and global security.
Whether strategically right or not, this is a shift that clearly calls out for the processes of moral, ethical and legal scrutiny at all levels of government - local, national and international.
The crash of the CIA's highly sophisticated - and extremely expensive (even its price tag is secret) - US stealth Sentinel drone in Iran last December proved another wake-up call about the risks of drone interventions. The US military, intelligence agencies and counterterrorist units may be the top dogs in the drone world now - but things change, blowback happens and drones have no national loyalty. Many close observers of drone proliferation point to near complete lack of governance structures, international conventions and adequate export controls to regulate drones.
Meanwhile, Iran is busy incorporating US drone technology into its own now-extensive drone program, and China has surged into the international drone market.
Understandably, this competition concerns the US drone industry - led by the major US military contractors, including Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, General Atomics, among others.
Currently the industry - with support of the Congressional caucus - is pressuring the administration to continue relaxing the export controls on US-made drone technology to ensure that the industry keeps its market share of the fastest growing military and aviation sector. As speakers at the annual Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International conference in February reminded industry representatives and the attending Congressional representatives, drone competition is sparking new markets for drone detection technology, defenses against enemy drones and electronic warfare instruments designed to break drone communications with their remote piloting.
"It is vital that the debate on drones is brought to American public since US drone policy is becoming vital part of US foreign policy in conflict zones," says Shahzad Akbar, attorney with Reprieve in London and with the Pakistani Foundation for Fundamental Fights. Akbar, who is listed as a summit speaker, says that a debate about drones needs to include all stakeholders, including the US public and that's a central objective of the planned drone summit in Washington, DC.
"Central to the debate are questions about the rights of individuals, whether as objects of surveillance or targets of killing machines," says Akbar. Essentially, we are asking to what degree "we [are] ready to allow government to "usurp the rights of individuals and under exactly what circumstances?" With respect to the objectives of the drone Summit, Akbar said that the summit's organizers are working to ensure that in the United States and in other drone-deploying countries they will subject their use to the "due-process rule of law" and to "proper judicial and democratic oversight."