News Roundup: Honda wind, a plus on property values, and EIA's outlook

10 January 2014 by Peebles Squire Peebles Squire

The weekend is nearly upon us, but before it begins, here are a few great stories about wind power. Honda is harnessing the wind at its plant in Logan County, Ohio, a Massachusetts agency finds turbines don’t negatively affect property values, and an Energy Information Administration report shows good news ahead for American wind power.

The Columbus Dispatch’s Dan Gearino highlights Honda’s plan to provide 10 percent of its electricity at its Russells Point transmission plant using clean, renewable wind power:

  • “The company just finished installation of two wind turbines that will provide for an estimated 10 percent of the plant's electricity needs.”
  • “‘We appreciate the support we have received from the township and our neighbors throughout all phases of the project that will help Honda work toward our goal of reducing CO2 emissions,’ said Gary Hand, vice president of Honda Transmission, in a statement. ‘This is just one of many ways that Honda is seeking to reduce our environmental footprint.’"
  • “Last year, the company was one of the major employers that successfully urged Ohio lawmakers not to weaken standards for renewable energy and energy efficiency.”

The Massachusetts Clean Energy Center found that the presence of wind turbines does not have a notable effect on property values. The Cape Cod Times’ Patrick Cassidy:

  • “The $70,000 study analyzed 122,000 home sales between 1998 and 2012 that were within 5 miles of 41 wind turbines in Massachusetts. It focused on four development periods, from before a project is announced through post construction.”
  • “For projects within a half mile of an operating turbine, the effect on home prices was about a half percent in the positive direction, according to the report.”
  • “‘What we wanted to do was to help provide independent research to communities that are either dealing with questions about existing projects in their communities or communities that might be dealing with new projects,’ said Alicia Barton, CEO of the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, which sponsored the study.”

Finally, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) projects U.S. renewables to continue to grow in 2014, with an even stronger performance in 2015. With this growth will come new initiatives in energy efficiency and reduced overall household consumption. Steve Bennish of the Dayton Daily News:

  • “The U.S. Energy Information Administration offered its energy outlook for 2014, saying residential energy use should decline overall while industrial use grows. Beyond that, fossil fuel production will grow and more renewable energy will come on line.”
  • “U.S. wind power generation capacity is forecast to increase 8.8 percent this year and grow another 15 percent in 2015. Utility-scale solar power generation capacity is expected to rise 40 percent between the end of 2013 and the end of 2015.”
  • “Improvements in appliance and lighting energy efficiency have helped slow the growth in residential electricity use in recent years. Average household consumption is expected to decline 1.1 percent this year and another 0.4 percent in 2015.”

For more news on how wind power helped grid operators survive the cold snap and more, check out this week’s news roundups:

Also, be sure to check out David Ward’s Top 10 AWEA Blogs from 2013!

Sources:

Dan Gearino, “Wind power comes to Honda plant.” The Columbus Dispatch. 9 January 2014.

Patrick Cassidy, “Study: Wind turbines don’t hurt home values.” Cape Cod Times. 10 January 2014.

Steve Bennish, “Energy use projections for 2014 show increase in renewable power, industrial electricity demand.” Dayton Daily News. 9 January 2014.