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Quoddy Tides
Eastport, Maine
March 27, 2009     Quoddy Tides
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March 27, 2009

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27 March, 2009 THE QUODDY TIDES Page 11 Hearing set on community energy bill by kora Whelan board or association. The Maine legislature's Utilities and An additional bill related to local en- Energy Committee will hold a public hear- ergy generation, An Act to Facilitate the ing at the Cross Office Building in Au- Marketing of Power Produced by Small gusta on Tuesday, March 31, at 1 p.m. on Generators (LD 1114), has also been in- An Act to Promote Community-Based En- traduced. The bill would allow utilities ergy (LD 1075). The bill seeks to create that transmit and distribute power, such as more favorable conditions for communi- Bangor Hydro, to aggregate electric power ties to benefit economically by renewable from a number of small generators and energy projects sited in their locale, then, on those generators' behalf, admin- Among a number of goals, the bill would ister the purchase and sale of electricity to create incentives for alternative energy de- a competitive electricity provider. A hear- velopers to include local residents in own- ing has not yet been seheudled on LD ership structures. "Qualifying owners" are 1114. described as any of a number of distinct - To learn more, the two bills can be entities such as a nonprofit, rural electrifi- accessed through the Maine state govern- cation cooperative, a municipality, school merit website at . WINDMILL BLADE SHIPMENT (from page 1) if no new income is generated, Gardner pires at the end of this year. If FMT pulls noted at the March 16 meeting of the port out and another terminal operator comes authority board of directors. With budget in after the contract has expired, long- adjustments, the shortfall has been re- shoremen fear that the new operator might duced to just under $200,000. Those ad- try to break the union and not use NELA. justments include a $100,000 savings this "We'd like a statement from the port au- year through a change in the terms of a thority that the North East loan from The First for warehouses, so Longshoremen's Association is the one that only the interest will be paid. Other they use for a labor force." savings include a drop in expenses from Gardner said that the port authority handling fewer ships and the elimination could stipulate that the terminal operator of maintenance reserve funds, would have to negotiate with the associa- Board member George "Bud" Finch tion but couldn't force the operator to use suggested the board hold a workshop to the association, as the union would then discuss the port's options if the Domtar be choosing the operator for the port. Fie shutdown is prolonged, but Gardner re- added, "The port has opportunities in front quested that the discussion wait for an- of it, and this port is going to do fine." other three months. Working on the railroad Washington St. property "We firmly believe that bulk is the fu- Finch presented a list of options for the ture for the port," Gardner said, noting use of the port authority's Washington St. that there is an opportunity for the ship- property, ranging from the port authority merit of wood chips, with wood pellets, maintaining the building and property and fertilizer and salt also being looked at. developing a visitors center, apartments The port authority is working with the or a parking area to transferring the build- congressional delegation and the ing and property to the city. governor's office on funding; for a con- The Washington St. property issue has veyor system to handle bulk shipments, been considered for some time, and the Gardner believe, s there is a good chance board finally voted to negotiate with the that the port could be shipping wood chips city on swapping the Washington St. prop- for Europe this year. erty for the city-owned land on which the The port authority is also looking at port authority office building and Coast getting a rail line closer to the port to Guard station sit. The port authority is handle bulk cargo shipments by using the currently paying property taxes on the Calais to Ayers Junction branch and add- Washington St. property, and Gardner said ing a spur to Perry or possibly Eastport. the port authority would be willing to add that assessment to its payment in lieu of Gardner will be checking to see if any federal economic stimulus funding for taxes, so there would be no loss of tax transportation projects can be acquired to revenue to the city. help get the rail line closer to the port. He In other business, Gardner reported that says it will be important to have an the UniversityofMaine'scompositespro- intermodal facility for transferring from gram and the govemor's office are inter, rail to trucks as close as possible to the ested in having a pilot project to repair the port terminal for bulk cargo shipments, in breakwater, using composite sheet piles. order to reduce costs. The board decided not to act on the con- struction of a maintenance barge at this Longshoremen's concerns time. Doug DeWitt, president of the North The port authority's insurance company East Longshoremen's Association will be reviewing the sinking of the Bur- (NELA), noted that the union's contract ton G, since it was moored at the break- with Federal Marine Terminals (FMT) ex- water. Rt. I 90, Eastport 853-2736 We are now doing basic maintenance on motorcycles and coming soon - INSPECTIONS FOR CARS AND MOTORCYCLES AND COMPUTERIZED DIAGNOSTICS. Dennis, Free tire rotation for life of tires if purchased through us. Thank you for your business and patience during our transition. Billy, Ben, Brian, Matt, Tommy, Walt and Colleen WORKING ON THE DESIGN and layout phase of the Wind Blade Challenge are Shead students (left to righO Cameron Morrison, Dr. Reeser Manley, Garret Sullivan, Henry Schuth, Damian Turner and Ethan Stevens, Absent is Cecil Cates. (Lora Whelan photo) Shead competes in wind blade challenge by Lora Whelan composite technologies." Two Washington County schools are The Shead students working on the participating in a statewide competition to project are interested in engineering and create a wind-turbine blade as a means of plan to attend higher education. One self- exploring alternative energy industries and described "math junkie," Damian Turner, the emerging applications of composite has been instrumental in the design phase. materials in those industries. Shead High He holds up the computer-generated tem- School of Eastport and Machias Memo- plate that they are using to shape the blade. rial High School have committed to creat- "I found the design on the NACA [Na- ing teams, tional Advisory Committee for Aeronau- Shead has a crew of 10 students work- tics] website, used an equation to calculate ing after school on different aspects of the size of blade and then plotted it on a project. "We're in the design phase right graph," he says. now," says science teacher Dr. Reeser All the students agree that the wind Manley, who explains that the students blade project helps their chances for get- will be using a "styrofoam-like" material ring into college and shared some words called polyisocyanurate foam as their of wisdom with students in the elementary blade form. The material can be carved school. "Don't mess around in your eighth and sanded into shape. He notes that stu- grade year," says Garret Sullivan. "Don't dents have contributed mathematics and be scared, have a good work ethic and be computer skills as important elements to good to people," says Cameron Morrison. the design process. "Don't be stressed; enjoy the ride," ad- "This is a self-directed group of stu- vises Ethan Stevens. Their advice seems dents," Manley says. "I gave them the ball, to apply to their own class etiquette as and they ran with it. They're working to- they banter with each other and work on gether and enjoying themselves." He does the blade prototype. have one suggestion for organizers of The blade the students are working on events such as the wind blade challenge, can be no longer than 18 inches long, with "Extra-curricular events like this, there's a total turbine diameter no greater than 42 nothing to be lost and everything to be inches. They will take their finished blades gained," but, he says, schedule them for to the Advanced Engineered Wood and when there are windows of time that oe- Composite Center at the University of cur between other extra-curricular activi- Maine. On May 15 blades from all over ties. This particular window of the state will be mounted on a specially opportunity, he notes, fit perfectly, designed universal testing hub. The blade Dave Olson, Machias high school sci- testing competition will officially begin, ence department teacher, notes that he has and each blade design will be measured two students signed on, but "every student for power output at a set wind speed. Of is so darned busy, it's hard to find even a the competition, Garret Sullivan says, "I time when we have a free period during want to see a spiral blade." He hopes an- and after school" to work on the project, other team is making one. The Shead stu- He explains that many of the juniors and dents plan on attending the power output seniors participate in the early college pro- testing in Orono. gram, which takes up even more of their "The Wind Blade Challenge is the first available time. While he still plans on par- time students from across Maine can le- ficipating, he says that if the students are verage their skills in math and science, as not able to commit then he would have to well as their growing knowledge of alter- withdraw from the challenge, native energy, into a real world project," Washington County teams will design says Paul Williamson, program director of and build their own prototype and work the challenge project. Each team receives with The Boat School in Eastport during a kit of composite materials from Harbor the closed vacuum resin infusion process. Technologies LLC and OCV Technical Bret Blanchard, lead instructor at The Fabrics. A total of 18 schools and v0ca- Boat School, says, "It' s a good connection tional centers are participating. The event between the high schools, Boat School and is being sponsored by the Maine North composites. It's recognizing the need in Star Alliance Initiative and the Maine Maine for jobs and steering kids towards Composites Alliance. House Checking ~ Property Management Vacation Rentals ~ Year-Round Rentals C0bsc00k Property Management Pat Scott ~ 207-853-6179 - Our business is your peace of mind.