Ocotillo Wind Energy Facility

ASTHMA "DEADLY" FROM "DARK" AIR IN IMPERIAL COUNTY, REPORT FINDS

 

Did researchers miss a key cause: scraping desert soils for renewable energy projects?

By Miriam Raftery

Photo by Jim Pelley: Dust from construction at Ocotillo Wind Energy Facility

April 25, 2015 (Imperial Valley) – Just over the San Diego County line in Imperial County, the Center for Investigative Reporting found the air is “dark and asthma is deadly along the Mexico border.”

BRIBERY SCANDAL ENSNARES CARLYLE GROUP & RIVERSTONE HOLDINGS: PARENT COMPANIES BEHIND OCOTILLO WIND AND QUAIL BRUSH PROJECTS

 

By Miriam Raftery

December 9, 2014 (San Diego’s East County)--Corporations behind the Ocotillo Wind Energy Facility  and the failed Quail Brush gas-fired power plant in San Diego are being sued in federal court amid revelations of bribery allegations and a Securities and Exchange Commission investigation under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

BLADE FLICKER POSES DRIVER DISTRACTION ON I-8

 

By Miriam Raftery

June 26, 2014 (Ocotillo) – Moving shadows of massive blades the length of football fields flickering across I-8 near the Ocotillo Wind Energy Facility  has been the subject of many complaints we’ve received from readers, residents and motorists since Pattern Energy built the project on Federal Bureau of Land Management property.

LAWYERS OFFER ADVICE TO WORKERS AND FAMILIES TO PREVENT SPREAD OF VALLEY FEVER

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Dust at job site during construction of Ocotillo Wind Energy Facility

June 26, 2014 (San Diego’s East County) – With Valley Fever at epidemic proportions across the Southwest, the Monterey Herald has published tips from two attorneys on precautions employers should take at job sites to lessen the risk of contracting Valley Fever, particularly in desert areas. Suppressing dust is a key element –and one that some major project developers in our region have ignored.  (See photo of dust at Ocotillo wind construction site, where the developer was cited for violations of dust suppression requirements.)

LACKLUSTER POWER PRODUCTION CONTINUES AT OCOTILLO WIND

 

May 31, 2014 (Ocotillo) – Last month, our article, “Was it fraud?”  raised serious questions over whether Pattern Energy exaggerated wind capacity factor claims to pocket federal subsidies for its Ocotillo Wind Energy Facility.  That story revealed that in calendar year 2013, the facility produced less than half  of the 34% capacity factor promised by the developer.

HUESO ASKS FAA TO GRANT RELIEF TO OCOTILLO RESIDENTS FROM WIND TURBINE LIGHTS, APPROVE RADAR-ACTIVATED LIGHTING

 

 

 

 

FAA may approve radar lighting systems, but won’t require Pattern to install

By Miriam Raftery

March 30, 2014 (Ocotillo) – State Senator Ben Hueso has taken heed of his constituents’ complaints about flashing red lights on wind turbines shining into people’s homes at night.  In a February 10, 2014 letter to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Hueso wrote that flashing red lights on over 100 turbines, each taller than a 40 story building, are harmful to the health of Ocotillo residents.

“As most of them live within two miles of these turbines, the steady light transmitted from these structures is causing them to suffer from migraines, vertigo and loss of sleep,”  Hueso wrote. He added that his staff has looked into the issue and found studies indicated that “residents living in such c lose proximity to turbines often suffer from illnesses including chronic sleep deprivation, hypertension and heart attack. Ocotillo is made up largely of senior citizens, a group which has been found to be exceptionally sensitive to the effects of the turbines.”

VIDEO: THE OCOTILLO SUITE

February 28, 2014 (Ocotillo) -- An Ocotillo resident has prepared a poignant video dramatically illustrating the scope of destruction done by Pattern Energy to build its Ocotillo Wind Energy Facility.  The video details the beauty of the desert with closeup images of birds and other wildlife amid the ocotillo forest mowed down on 12,500 acres of public lands, then shows the construction and finished results.

FEDERAL JUDGE HEARS QUECHAN TRIBE’S CASE ON OCOTILLO WIND PROJECT HARM TO SACRED SITES

 

By Miriam Raftery

January 21, 2013 (San Diego) – On Friday, January 18, U.S. District Court Judge Gonzalo Curiel heard arguments in a lawsuit filed by the Quechan tribe of the Fort Yuma Indian Reservation against the U.S. Department of the Interior and Bureau of Land Management, as well as Pattern Energy and other defendants.

The suit contends that the federal government failed to protect Native American cultural resources, including sacred sites, when it allowed the Ocotillo Wind Energy Facility to be built. Moreover, Quechan contends that the federal government's reclassification of protected lands to accommodate the wind project was arbitrary--and that a similar decision to industrialize almost any public lands regardless of damage to resources could be done if the government's action is allowed to stand.