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OCOTILLO RESIDENTS SAY WIND TURBINE NOISE CREATES “LIVING HELL”

 

“It's a horror beyond words; something you have to live to understand. Something must be done to stop the noise.” – Ocotillo resident Parke Ewing

November 14, 2014 (Ocotillo) – Residents in Ocotillo say that during windy conditions in early November, noise from wind turbines is making their lives unbearable.   

Jim Pelley captured the loud noise on videotape, juxtaposed with footage of Pattern Energy’s Glenn Hodges selling the project to supervisors in Imperial Valley by claiming that noise would not be an issue due to setbacks.  “The project was sold on the understanding to be five miles from the community of Ocotillo,” Pelley wrote on a Youtube post. “We have turbines as close as 1/2 mile, we are now forced to live with the horrible noise of 112 turbines when the wind blows.”

His neighbor, Parke Ewing, says his complaints to Imperial County and Bureau of Land Management officials, as well as Pattern Energy, have fallen on deaf ears, with no meaningful responses.

COMMENT PERIOD EXTENDED ON DRAFT DESERT RENEWABLE ENERGY CONSERVATION PLAN

 

November 14, 2014 (Sacramento)--In response to public requests, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), California Energy Commission (CEC) and California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) will extend the public comment period for the draft Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (DRECP) Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Impact Statement (EIR/EIS) for 45 days.  The comment period, originally scheduled to close on January 9, 2015, will be extended through February 23, 2015.

ASK THE EXPERTS: NOV. 15 AT WATER CONSERVATION GARDEN

East County News Service

Drought got you down? Need garden tips, conservation insights and ideas for drought-resistant plants to make your fall landscape more beautiful with less water?

Get help at Ask the Experts, an event set for Saturday, November 15 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Water Conservation Garden at Cuyamaca College in El Cajon. Presentations and exhibits include a home compost workshop, toss the turf class, life after lawns, horticultural displays, how to hire a landscape contractor and save money, ask the designers, personalized landscape design consultations, free garden tours, and shopping for water-saving plants.

READER’S EDITORIAL: TRAILBLAZING EFFORT NEEDED ON SAN DIEGO CLIMATE ACTION PLANS

 

 

 

Photo from San Diego's Changing Climate: A Regional Wake-Up Call

By Jeffrey Meyer, Poway, SanDiego350 volunteer

November 13, 2014 (San Diego)--With the recent release of a new United Nations report on the global impact of climate change, we are given still another chilling warning that we are facing catastrophe unless we accelerate efforts to confront this crisis. The release of this report comes on the heels of a court decision rejecting the San Diego County climate action plan and the ongoing development of this state-mandated plan by the City of San Diego.  It raises the stakes for everyone and compels us to reach higher and dig deeper for community solutions to this crisis. 

IVANPAH, WORLD'S BIGGEST SOLAR PLANT, WANTS TAXPAYERS TO PAY OFF ITS DEBTS

 

By Miriam Raftery

November 11, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) –Owners of Ivanpah, the world’s biggest concentrated solar energy facility, borrowed $1.6 billion from the federal government to build the project in the Mojave Desert. Now they are seeking a $539 million federal grant to pay off that debt.  In other words, they want taxpayers to pay off their loan that was also funded by U.S. taxpayers.

DEPT. OF INTERIOR OFFICIAL DATED ENERGY LOBBYIST, SOUGHT JOB WITH WIND INDUSTRY WHILE INVOLVED IN DECISIONS ON LOCAL ENERGY PROJECTS

 

By Miriam Raftery

November 12, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) – Viejas Chairman Anthony Pico met with Steve Black, a senior counselor to Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, on February 28, 2012 and sent Black a letter  on March 5, 2012 asking him to visit Ocotillo to address tribal concerns over desecration of cultural resources  from the proposed Ocotillo Wind Energy Facility (which was since approved and built). Donna Tisdale, then with Protect Our Communities, has documents showing Black was also involved with federal approval of the controversial Tule Wind project, fielding requests from Iberdrola Renewables to help gain approval of the project in East County despite concerns about eagles.

Neither Pico nor Tisdale had any idea that Black was dating an energy company lobbyist at the time – or that he sought to gain a job as chief executive officer of the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), the wind industry's trade group, while still employed at the Department of the Interior.   But an investigation by the Department of Interior's Inspector General has raised these concerns and more.

GOLDEN EAGLES SPOTTED IN JACUMBA NEAR PROPOSED ENERGY SITES

 

By Miriam Raftery

November 11, 2014 (Jacumba) – Consultants hired by renewable energy companies in recent years have consistently claimed that there are no golden eagles in the Jacumba-Boulevard Planning areas, where several major energy projects are proposed or planned. 

But two separate residents of Jacumba now report seeing a pair of golden eagles in the past 10 days—including on documented with a photograph.  The first sighting was over the town itself and the second was directly across from the Jacumba Solar project and a proposed power line tie-in to the ECO substation.

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED TO REPLANT ALPINE CREEK WITH NATIVE PLANTS NOV. 15 AND 22

 

November 10, 2014 (Alpine) – The Back Country Land Trust (BCLT) and the Endangered Habitats Conservancy are looking for volunteers to help restore the watershed along Alpine Creek and Alpine Boulevard.  On Saturday, November 15th and 22nd, volunteers will help plant native trees, shrubs, and ground-cover species to enhance native habitat along this important wildlife corridor through Alpine.  Here are details provided by the BCLT:

ETHANOL "FLEX-FUEL" COMING TO LA MESA

 

By Miriam Raftery

November 8, 2014 (La Mesa) – Starting Monday, November 10, Center City Shell at 3810 Massachusetts Avenue will be offering up an ethanol fuel blend made from corn by Pearson Fuel.  The E85 Flex Fuel will be sold for a special rate of just 85 cents a gallon on opening day, when Miss California will be on hand for a ribbon cutting.

CLEVELAND NATIONAL FOREST FOUNDATION OBJECTS TO SDG&E POWER LINE PLANS

Photo: High-voltage Sunrise Powerlink tower by Lake Jennings

November 7, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) – San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) has applied for a master permit to construct power line replacement projects in Cleveland National Forest. Now the Cleveland National Forest Foundation  has submitted formal comments objecting to the plan.

According to the Foundation, SDG&E’s project fails to assure that the state’s renewable energy mandate of 33% renewable by 2020 will be met; the project aims to increase energy project four-fold without proposing any reductions in dirty energy sources.

COURT RULES COUNTY’S CLIMATE CHANGE PLAN IS NOT ADEQUATE

 

By Miriam Raftery

November 7, 2014 (San Diego)—The County’s climate action plan lacks teeth to assure that greenhouse gas emission goals will be met,  California’s 4th District Court of Appeal has ruled. The Appellate Court upheld a San Diego County judge’s ruling in a lawsuit filed by the Sierra Club.

The Sierra Club argued that the county’s reliance on voluntary measures and lack of clear deadlines were not enough to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by the targeted amounts by 2020. The Court also noted that the County rejected mitigation proposed by the Sierra Club without  valid reasons.

GREEN HOMES TOUR NOV. 9 INCLUDES INNOVATIVE EAST COUNTY RESIDENCES

Photo: This house rocks! Boulder in center of Jamul home absorbs heat by day and gives off warmth by night.

 

East County News Service

November 6, 2014 (San Diego’s East County)—The San Diego Green Building Council will hold its Green Homes Tour this Sunday, November 9th from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The tour features innovative, sustainably designed homes throughout San Diego County.  There is a $5 fee for non-members. Several East County homes are on the tour.

WILDERNESS PROTECTION GRANTED TO 43,000 ACRES IN CLEVELAND NATIONAL FOREST

 

November 4, 2014 (Cleveland National Forest)—U.S. Forest Service officials have signed a Record of Decision for the Cleveland National Forest Land Management Plan Amendment  that gives wilderness protection to an additional 43,000 acres in the forest, at least temporarily.

MEXICAN WIND TURBINES MAR VIEWS ALONG BORDER

 

October 28, 2014 (Ocotillo) – Residents in the southern portion of San Diego and Imperial Counties have voiced surprise at seeing massive wind turbines sprouting up just south of the border.  The La Rumerosa wind facility in Mexico is visible across our region – causing consternation in some quarters.

DESERT CONSERVATION PLAN MAKES ITS DEBUT

 

By Nadin Abbott

October 25, 2014 (San Diego) Representatives of state and federal agencies held a public meeting in San Diego at the Hilton in Mission Valley to present the Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (DRECP) to citizens.

The plan, which covers 22 million acres of deserts in California, has the following stated goals according to the program:

HEALTH DEPT. AND COURTS BACK NEIGHBORS IN COMPLAINTS AGAINST TWO WIND FARMS

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Wind turbines dwarf homes and barns in rural Illinois

October 17, 2014 (San Diego’s East County)--Neighbors battling wind energy projects locally just got some new ammunition in two separate cases. 

In Wisconsin, the Brown County Board of Health this week voted to declare Duke Energy’s Shirley Wind energy project a human health hazard to residents, visitors, workers and other people  up to six miles away from the wind turbines. Here in San Diego’s East County and neighboring Imperial County, wind turbines have been built within a half mile of homes and new setbacks proposed remain much less than six miles, raising questions over potential dangers to residents if those projects are built.  

In Vermont, a federal district court has found that plaintiffs provided ample evidence to allow a private nuisance claim over the Sheffield Wind Project to proceed in court for creating unreasonable noise.

NEW 500 kV POWER LINES PROPOSED ACROSS EAST COUNTY : MEETINGS OCT. 20-21

 

 

East County News Service

October 17, 2014 (San Diego’s East County)—The most controversial project in memory in East County was the construction of the 500kV Sunrise Powerlink, which was built despite objections of a coalition representing 79,000 people--though the route was changed amid public outcry. 

Now, a new set of 500 kV power lines are proposed through San Diego’s East County and Imperial County as part of the draft Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (DRECP) which is currently available for public review and comment at www.drecp.org. The plan aims to open 22 million acres up for energy development including vast swaths in our region.

AMID STORM OF CONTROVERSY, PEEVEY TO RESIGN AS CPUC CHAIR

 

By Miriam Raftery

October 10, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) – With consumer activists clamoring for his impeachment, California Public Utilities Chairman Michael Peevey has announced he will not seek reappointment when his term ends at year’s end.   His replacement will be appointed by Governor Jerry Brown.

WESTERN YELLOW-BILLED CUCKOO RECEIVES FEDERAL PROTECTION UNDER ENDANGERED SPECIES ACT

 

East County News Service

Photo credit: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

October 6, 2014 (Sacramento)--The western population of the yellow-billed cuckoo will be protected as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has announced. The Service determined that listing a distinct population segment  of the bird in portions of 12 western states, Canada and Mexico is warranted. In the U.S., the listing will cover parts of Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Utah, Wyoming, Montana, Oregon and Washington.

Since 1980, nine sightings of the yellow-billed cuckoo have been made in San Diego County, though no nests have been found since the 1930s, according to the San Diego Bird Atlas Project at San Diego State University.  Locally the birds have been spotted from May to August, most commonly in stands of riparian willows and cottonwoods.

KELLY FULLER, PROTECT OUR COMMUNITIES, SPEAKS OUT ON LAWSUIT TO PROTECT EAGLES IN EAST COUNTY

 

 

 

 

Listen online now to hear the interview:  http://k007.kiwi6.com/hotlink/8l8mqgxkpz/KelllyFuller-GreenSceneInterview.mp3

October 9, 2014 (San Diego's East County) -- On our "Green Scene" report aired originally on our East County Magazine Show on KNSJ 89.1 FM radio, we interviewed Kelly Fuller with Protect Our Communities about the local nonprofit's lawsuit filed against federal agencies over the Tule Wind project planned in McCain Valley. The suit alleges that the U.S. Department of the Interior and the Bureau of Indian Affairs ignored advice from wildlife officials at state and federal wildlife agencies, who warned that the wind turbines pose threats to eagles.

For details, click "read more" and scroll down.

WHY SAN DIEGO'S EAST COUNTY IS A GLOBAL WARMING "HOTSPOT"

 

 

By Roger Coppock



October 7, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) Everybody has heard of global warming. There is at least one article in the news every day. Scientists who study and write about global warming have reasons to say our Earth's near surface is on average warming.  All their instruments are in agreement. During most of the last couple of hundred years things have gotten hotter.

SOLAR AND WIND ENERGY ARE NOT NECESSARILY GOOD

 

A Review of the video Good News, from Climate Reality

Originally Published in the ECOreport

View video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UTH3otcW_hs[/embedyt

By Roy L Hales

October 9, 2014 (San Diego's East County) - "Good News," from Climate Reality, is good propaganda. The message is clear and, to a large extent, true - only it also perpetuates a myth. Solar and wind energy are not necessarily good, it depends how they are used.

SIERRA DE JUAREZ WIND PROJECT UNDERWAY SOUTH OF THE BORDER

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo by Wayne Brammer: project viewed from the In-Ko-Pah/Jacumba area in East County

October 4, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) – Wind turbines are rising just south of the border as construction commences on the Sierra de Juarez wind energy facility in Baja California.  The 47 turbines in this phase of the Innova Energy project are projected to generate 157 megawatts of power that will be sold to San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) to meet our region’s energy needs.

WIND TURBINES DAMAGE EAR, SCIENTISTS FIND; LONG-TERM EXPOSURE MAY CAUSE DEAFNESS

 

By Miriam Raftery

October 4, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) The inner ears of people were “drastically” altered after exposure to low frequency noise. Living close to wind turbines may lead to severe hearing damage or even deafness. Those are the findings of scientists from the University of Munich, Germany, according to a study published in the Royal Society’s Open Science Journal on October 1st.

MAYOR FAULCONER RELEASES COMPREHENSIVE CLIMATE CHANGE PLAN

 

October 1, 2014 (San Diego) – San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer has responded to calls from the City Council and more than a thousand climate march activists locally by releasing a comprehensive Climate Action Plan. The plan calls for cutting the city’s carbon emissions 15% by 2020 and nearly in half --49%-- by 2035. The city also aspires to produce 100% of its power from renewable resources by 2035.

GOVERNOR SIGNS PLASTIC BAG BAN

 

By Miriam Raftery

September 30, 2014 (Sacramento)--California has become the first state in the nation to ban disposable plastic bags in major retail outlets, though 125 local jurisdictions in the state have already adopted similar ordinances.

SPRING VALLEY CLEAN-UP AND TIRE RECYCLING DAY OCT. 11

 

September 30, 2014 (Spring Valley)—Spring Valley residents can recycle your auto tires, tree trimmings, hot water heaters, electronic wastes, documents for shredding , trash and more  at the Spring Valley Clean-up Day on Saturday, October 11 from 7 a.m. until noon (or when dumpsters are full).   The event will be held at Monte Vista High School, 3230 Sweetwater Springs Boulevard in Spring Valley.

WORLDWIDE, WILDLIFE SUFFERS 52% POPULATION DECLINE

 

By Miriam Raftery

September 30, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) - Over the last 40 years, total wildlife populations on earth have fallen by 52%. That’s the grim finding of the London Zoological Society’s Living Planet Index, the BBC reports.

MASTER GARDENER REPLACES LAWN WITH WILDLIFE-FRIENDLY PLANTS

 

 

 

September 28, 2014 (San Diego) -- With San Diego knee-deep in a drought, it might be a good idea to ditch that thirsty turf grass in favor of a vibrant, easy-care garden that's also a haven for butterflies and other native species. San Diego County News Service met up with a San Diego Master Gardener who did just that.  Click the video to check out her beautiful yard.

DRAFT DESERT RENEWABLE ENERGY CONSERVATION PLAN RELEASED BY BLM AND U.S. FISH & WILDLIFE

 

Plan would open up 22 million acres of California to large-scale renewable energy development

By Miriam Raftery

September 26, 2014 (San Diego’s East County)--The Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service this week published in the Federal Register a Notice of Availability of the draft Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (DRECP) Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Impact Statement (EIR/EIS).  A formal comment period is now open through January 9, 2015.

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