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The Citizen Power Alliance is a coalition of independent groups organized to promote sound energy and environmental policy. CPA holds public officials and regulators accountable, while seeking the protection of the public interest.

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2/22/2010
Citizen Power Alliance 2/16/10 Wind Conference Summary
The 2/16/10 Citizen Power Alliance (CPA) Wind Conference at Bristol Harbor on Canandaigua Lake drew close to 200 elected officials, state representatives, news media and CPA members from across NYS to discuss the industrial wind issue.

The meeting was specifically designed to elicit greater awareness and involvement by NYS elected representatives and news media regarding the realities of industrial wind in New York State. CPA's panel of presenters for the meeting included NYS Town Supervisors & Board members, business owners, and an environmental attorney who have all had years of experience and great frustration in dealing with the industrial wind issue in their respective communities.

Congressman Eric Massa was originally scheduled to address the meetings' attendees, but was unable to attend due to Congressman John Murtha's funeral. Congressman Massa's representative, David Marion, read Massa's letter to President Obama (See: Massa Letter Link). Massa's letter calls on President Obama to address the questionable use of $115 Million dollars of stimulus money paid out to First Wind for projects already built, which fail to create any jobs, and is, for the most part, going overseas -- contrary to what the Stimulus money was intended to do.

The meeting included presentations and discussions on many of the aspects of this complex energy issue, including:

1.) exposing the myths Big Wind LLC's use to sell their product (i.e. - will reduce foreign oil dependence);
2.) education as to the economic, scientific, and environmental realities of industrial wind (i.e. - Wind is neither reliable, nor dispatchable, and therefore, provides virtually NO Capacity Value, and has not been shown to reduce CO2 emissions worldwide);
3.) explain common corruption and conflict scenarios that are occurring across NYS;
4.) to set forth goals and recommendations for elected representatives to strive for in order to protect the health, safety, well-being, and property values of ALL of their constituents, while also protecting the priceless legacy of NYS's irreplaceable natural landscapes for future generations.

CPA's cited goals for the meeting were:

1.) Amendments to SEQRA that require lead agencies to use independent third party firms - not those brought in by the wind industry, which is currently what is happening.

2.) Statewide noise and setback standards for industrial wind turbines that will fully protect the health, safety, quality of life, and property values of neighboring residents.

3.) Accurate coverage by news media (which has been sadly lacking to date), who have taken the time to educate themselves on the issue instead of simply repeating false claims made by wind industry salesmen, which is what typically happens (i.e. - 'homes served' claims).

4.) An audit of NYSERDA regarding: a.) the hiring of wind industry lobbyists to develop the industrial wind Production Tax Credit (PTC) and other Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS) regulations, and b.) the payment of over $200 Million from the Systems Benefit Charge (SBC) account to industrial wind companies - monies that were intended by the legislature to be used to improve the energy efficiency of state operations.

5.) A comprehensive investigation by the Attorney General's Office into the predatory and illegal tactics used by Big Wind LLCs across NYS, including: market allocation, price fixing, larceny, extortion, conspiracy, filing false instruments, mail fraud, etc.

6.) Audits of IDAs for ongoing refusal to acquire and maintain data on actual job creation and other economic benefits for projects that have PILOT or other tax abatements.

7.) An investigation into the 2009 decision by the DOE to pay out hundreds of millions of dollars in stimulus money to existing wind projects - monies that have not, and will not create a single new job.

8.) Support from our state representatives for the Protection of Home Rule.

Citizens from communities across NYS who comprise CPA are simply asking for responsibility and accountability from our elected officials and state agency representatives in their positions of public service. Likewise, since honest information is the key to our freedom, CPA seeks adequate, educated coverage of this extremely divisive, complex issue from the news media.

In the views of CPA members, these actions are not at all too much to ask for if we truly value our democracy, and wish to prevent ratepayers, taxpayers, and our environment from being exploited by financially-motivated mega-corporations/LLC's.

Mary Kay Barton
CPA Media Editor & Environmental Activist for Sound Scientific Solutions
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