First Wind, UPC, IVPC, chronological history reveals much about the handful of people who control the wind sector. My summary of its content is that wind energy is the perfect con man's game as demonstrated by the "Lord of the Wind" Vito Nicastri and Oreste Vigorito of IVPC. Wind fraud has evolved to the September 2010 largest seizure of Mafia assets in history, $1.9 billion, from 'Lord of the Wind' Vito Nicastri reported connected to Matteo Messina Denaro, Mafia "boss of bosses".
This compilation of evidence begs questions by prudent citizens, Town Planners, Governors, legislators as well as the President of the United States.
“What public and environmental benefits have been delivered by publicly subsidized UPC, First Wind and IVPC wind Limited Liability Corporations to date?”
“Should the U.S. and individual states provide “stimulus”, grant money and loans to the wind energy industry?”
This working document provides a window through which to explore the business ethics, social conscience, trials and tribulations of First Wind, UPC, Cape Wind, DeepWater Wind and IVPC wind shell companies. This activity is what your dollars currently support, or not.
THE BIRTH OF UPC, IVPC, FIRST WIND:
News from IVPC translated from Italian to English:
The Group is born in 1993 from un' idea of Oreste Vigorito that constitutes the I.V.P.C. S.r.l with to an industrial partner, American society UPC, with l' objective to operate in the field of the planning and realization of systems for the production and sale of energy from eolica source. In the 1995 Oreste Vigorito, also exiting from the social compages of the IVPC S.r.l., he remains some continuous General executive manager and to take care itself of the development and the management of the Aeolic Parks. From this moment the IVPC S.r.l is stopped to 50% from the industrial partner Japanese Eurus Energy (Former Tomen). Between 1995 and 1996, the UPC constitutes the first Societies of Service through which it begins to take care itself also of the development, management and maintenance of the Aeolic Parks. In 1996 to Montefalcone (Benevento) the first Aeolic park of I.V.P.C enters in exercise. S.r.l, that it is also the first one in Italia* with an installed ability begins them of 7.2 MW. Between years 1996 and 2000 they come constituted various societies of plan for the realization of new Aeolic Parks in Campania, Sardinia and Sicily. In these years the Group develops 241MW. In the 2005 Oreste Vigorito it acquires from the UPC or 50% of the IVPC S.r.l, thus coming to stop a participation directed in the society that stops the property of Aeolic parks in exercise, or the 100% of the Societies of Service. Always in 2005, the UPC sells the stopped others asset in Italy to the Irish group Trinergy, than in its turn, in 2007 it sells, them to the English group International Power. In the November of the 2008 l' lawyer Oreste Vigorito decides to in any case deliver to own dimissioni from the assignments covered in the societies of property International Power consolidating the relationship of technical management of their systems. * Until to that moment they had been istallati prototypes to fine only experiences them from Aeronautical Alenia S.P.A and the Group River Fire S.p.A.
“The driver behind IVPC is US wind developer UPC through its UPC International...”
Worcester Polytechnic Institute Summer 2005 News: (UPC First Wind President and CEO Paul Gaynor earned his B.S. at (WPI):
"As president and CEO of UPC Wind Management, located in Newton, Mass., Gaynor was tapped to bring the success of the parent company, UPC Group, to North America. In Europe and North Africa, UPC affiliates—including Italian Vento Power Corporation—have raised over $900 million in financing and installed some 900 utility-scale wind turbine generators (WTGs)"
Chutzpah and wile cut through red tape
Windpower Monthly Magazine, 01 December 1997, 12:00am
It took the drive of an American businessman and the wile of an Italian lawyer to get wind development moving in Italy, where a new company already has over 100 MW either in the ground or under construction. The fact that it is foreign technology making inroads on the Italian market is probably the reason why the country is so quiet about this development.
Brian Caffyn, Chairman
Mr. Caffyn has a strong personal interest in developing environmentally friendly renewable energy, which has resulted in a dedication to uncovering new technologies, business models and financing that rapidly expand the deployment of renewable energy. To that end, Mr. Caffyn is the Chairman of UPC Solar, Solar Integrated Technologies, Wind City Oil and Gas and was the founder and inaugural Chairman of UPC Wind (now firstwindSM). In addition, Mr. Caffyn is also Managing Partner of UPC Capital Partners and UPC Energy Partners. He spent the first part of his career in project financing for wind, cogeneration, hydro, solar, geothermal, waste-to-energy and biomass energy projects with GE Capital, Heller Financial, Inc., and several private companies. Mr. Caffyn personally oversaw the establishment and construction of the largest wind energy company in Italy — Italian Vento Power Corporation. Mr. Caffyn received a BA in Finance and Quantitative Methods from Babson College in 1981.
UPC’s earliest wind farm developments were built in 1995 in Italy. At the time UPC sold IVPC, its Italian wind business, in 2005, it had built approximately 650MW of capacity representing over 50% of the total installed Italian wind capacity. UPC developed, financed, constructed, owned and operated all aspects of this business, selling 50% of the equity of its first two project companies to Tomen and Edison Mission Energy respectively, and was instrumental in Vestas setting up a new turbine manufacturing facility in Taranto, Italy.
UPC entered the North American market in 2002 as UPC Wind which has now changed its name to First Wind. Since then the Company has built a backlog of approximately 3,600 MW of high return wind projects. In early 2006, UPC closed on a large equity financing with D.E. Shaw & Co and Madison Dearborn Partners and began aggressively building out its high-return backlog. Currently, the Company focus on developing wind farms in the northeastern and western regions of the U.S and in Hawaii, and are already producing 274 MW of energy through three operating wind farms.
UPC Renewables has established a global business network and currently has offices in seven countries, including the Netherlands, UK, Poland, USA, China, Hong Kong and the Philippines.
THIS SHAREHOLDER INTEREST PURCHASE AGREEMENT ("Agreement") dated 3 March 2000,
by and between:
MEC International B.V., a limited liability company organized under the laws of
The Netherlands ("MECI"); and
UPC INTERNATIONAL PARTNERSHIP CV II, a limited partnership established under the
laws of the Netherlands Antilles ("UPC").
The following information on First Wind executives’ connections to ENRON became password protected by the Maine Government after it appeared exactly on 2009 Aug 18 09:47 AM, under an article by Nilanjan Das on August 11, 2009. This information was cut and pasted exactly as appeared as still available by this link: http://seekingalpha.com/article/155452-just-how-important-is-ge-capital
Paul J. Gaynor Executive Summary Career Highlights Education Paul J. Gaynor is responsible for the strategic direction and day-to-day .... After beginning his energy career with GE Capital, he joined Enron in London ...
maine.gov/doc/lurc/rev... - Similar
UPC First Wind President
Section 4 Technical Capacity
Michael Alvarez is responsible for First Wind operations and asset ... After beginning his energy career with GE Capital, he joined Enron in London in
UPC First Wind
“After beginning his energy career with GE Capital, he joined Enron in London in a project development and gas trading capacity. His role at Enron included trading natural gas forward contracts and negotiating structured power deals.”
New York Times
Offshore Harvest of Wind Is Proposed for Cape Cod
By KAREN LEE ZINER
Published: April 16, 2002
“Cape Wind Associates, a joint venture between Energy Management Inc. and Wind Management Inc. (a subsidiary of UPC, a European-based wind-energy company) of Boston”
"Brian and Timothy Caffyn to form Wind Management, Ltd. Brian Caffyn is a wind developer with considerable experience building medium-sized land-based wind farms in Italy. He was well aware of the potential wind development off the coast of Cape Cod. He expanded Braginton-Smith’s original plan and proposed to develop 2,400 megawatts of wind-generated electricity along Nantucket Sound.By the end of the year Wind Management had merged with EMI to form Cape Wind Associates."
IVPC 2000: certificated success
01 February 2004
"The 176 MW IVPC2000 wind project is a market test case for Italy's new green certificates regime. The Eu170 million club deal backing the development signed 12 December 2003 with six banks taking a piece as mandated lead arrangers: Royal Bank of Scotland with Eu35 million; BNL, Dexia Crediop, MCC and San Paolo IMI at Eu30 million each; and Banca Verde with Eu15 million.
The project funds development of five wind farm sites. The sponsor, Italian Vento Power Corporation, is already well known in the market for a number of wind deals closed under the old CIP6 regime: the 163 MW IVPC1 in 1998 in the Campania and Puglia regions, jointly developed with Tomen of Japan, and the 283 MW IVPC4 in 2000, in the Campania, Puglia, Basilicate and Sardinia regions, jointly developed with Edison Mission Energy..."
Boston Business Journal
April 14, 2005
"As James Gordon creeps closer to fulfilling his vision of a windmill power farm off Cape Cod, his erstwhile partner, Brian Caffyn, still faces headwinds in his efforts to plant turbines on Hardscrabble Mountain in Vermont and other peaks and plains across the country.
Caffyn, a Babson College graduate, is unaccustomed to wind projects getting mired in the doldrums.He founded UPC Group in Europe several years ago, and in 2000 a subsidiary completed what then was one of the world's largest wind plants, a 170 megawatt plant near Naples, Italy, that cost $260 million.It then put together a $325 million syndicate for more windmills in Italy."
2005 Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) News Summer 2005 (UPC First Wind President and CEO Paul Gaynor earned his B.S. at (WPI)
"...As president and CEO of UPC Wind Management, located in Newton, Mass., Gaynor was tapped to bring the success of the parent company, UPC Group, to North America. In Europe and North Africa, UPC affiliates—including Italian Vento Power Corporation—have raised over $900 million in financing and installed some 900 utility-scale wind turbine generators (WTGs), with a total capacity of more than 635 megawatts. UPC subsidiary companies, positioned across the United States and in Toronto, are currently pursing some 2,000 megawatts in projects from Maine to Maui..."
Prefiled Direct Testimony February 21, 2006
"UPC Group is a group of related companies that have developed large scale wind farms in Europe. To date, UPC Group has developed, financed, constructed, owned and operated over 635 MW of large-scale wind turbine generators in southern Italy and the islands of Sicily and Sardinia through a company called Italian Vento Power Company (“IVPC”) (www.ivpc.com). Certain principals of the UPC Group recently sold their ownership interests in holding companies that own the IVPC companies. In conjunction with this sale, a new European subsidiary of UPC Group has been established and is pursuing several hundred megawatts of wind energy projects in Europe and North Africa, including additional projects in Italy".
"The IVPC subsidiaries of the UPC Group achieved an exceptional operating record, with its wind turbines available 98.5% of the time on a fleet-wide basis. An extensive operations and maintenance organization was established for the Italian projects, consisting of over 120 personnel dedicated exclusively to the day-to-day management, operation and maintenance of the IVPC projects."
UPC Wind Partners, LLC (“UPC Wind”) announced today that a member of the D. E. Shaw group and an affiliate of Madison Dearborn Partners have each made a significant investment in the Newton, Massachusetts-based wind energy company.
Thursday May 4, 2006
BOSTON, May 4, 2006 – (BUSINESSWIRE)—UPC Wind Partners, LLC (“UPC Wind”) announced today that a member of the D. E. Shaw group and an affiliate of Madison Dearborn Partners have each made a significant investment in the Newton, Massachusetts-based wind energy company. UPC Wind’s original investors have retained a substantial stake in the company, and the management team at UPC Wind will remain unchanged.
April 25, 2007, A complaint against "UPC Wind Management LLC: "an American subsidiary of UPC Group", formerly known as Wind Management LLC, founded by Brian Caffyn for U.S. developments.", is filed with the U.S. Department Of Justice. The complaint filed under the Sherman Antitrust Act by 94 concerned citizens alleged a cartel was engaged in Market Allocation, Price Fixing, Big Rigging in Wind Farm Developments in New York and Vermont, as well as other states across the nation.
April, 2008. A citizens’ group had asked the attorney general to investigate Adams, the former Public Utilities Commission Chairman, after the Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting reported that he had been granted 1.2 million units of equity in wind power company First Wind while he was still on the state’s payroll
Adams left the commission in May 2008 to work as senior vice president for First Wind and said the stock options — which First Wind called “equity units” in filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission — “had no value at all,” and thus should not trigger state conflict of interest or improper gift laws. Later, Adams and company officials said that despite statements First Wind had made in federal filings, the company had made a mistake and had granted the units only after Adams had left the PUC in mid-May,
Boston, MA—May 1, 2008—UPC Wind, an independent North American wind power company, today announced that it is changing its name to First Wind.
Title: FIRST WIND NAMES KURT ADAMS TO SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, TRANSMISSION DEVELOPMENT
Industry sector: Wind
Announcement Type: New Personnel
May 1, 2008
Former Maine Public Utilities Commission Chairman to lead First Wind’s transmission development strategy
Boston, MA—May 1, 2008—First Wind, an independent North American wind power company, today announced that Kurt Adams will assume the position of Senior Vice President, Transmission Development. Adams will primarily be responsible for the oversight and implementation of transmission planning for all of First Wind’s operating and development projects.
“We are very excited to welcome Kurt to our team, and we know that his immense experience will help advance the transmission efforts for our projects across North America,” said Paul Gaynor, President and CEO of First Wind, formerly UPC Wind. “Through his most recent work as Chairman of the Maine Public Utilities Commission, Kurt has a great working knowledge of the issues facing the wind industry. Kurt is now part of our senior management team; we look forward to his leadership in implementing creative transmission solutions across our operating and development portfolio.”
May 2, 2008 ... Kurt Adams resigns to work for a national wind development company. ... for transmission development at First Wind, formerly UPC Wind. ...
tchgetting2zero.blogspot.com/2008/05/maine-puc-c... - 75k - Similar pages
On May 2, 2008, the Company contributed approximately $3.4 million of cash and property in exchange for a 30% investment in Deepwater Wind, LLC (Deepwater), an off-shore wind energy company. The Company has significant influence but not control over Deepwater, therefore the Company accounts for this investment using the equity method of accounting. A member of First Wind has a majority investment in Deepwater. The Company committed to provide contributions of $120.0 million to Deepwater; however, the Company has the right to opt out of making such contributions, which could result in the dilution of the Company's interest in Deepwater. As of December 31, 2009, the Company's interest had been diluted to approximately 17%.
July 15, 2008, First Wind served with a civil subpoena by the New York State Attorney General seeking documents to substantiate First Wind’s alleged improper benefits to public officials. First Wind is under criminal investigation by NYS Attorney General Andrew Cuomo for allegations of improper dealings with public officials and anti-competitive practices. http://www.oag.state.ny.us/press/2008/july/july15a_08.html
July 15, 2008
The Press Republican
"We've had a number of complaints from counties all over the state, from Franklin all the way over to Erie," said John Milgrim, spokesman for Attorney General Andrew Cuomo.”
“Franklin County District Attorney Derek Champagne was among "DAs from eight counties, public officials and citizens" who bombarded Albany with complaints about Noble and Massachusetts-based First Wind, formerly known as UPC Wind, he said"
Friday, September 26, 2008
First Wind spinoff to build RI offshore wind project
By Mass High Tech Staff
The office of Rhode Island Governor Donald Carcieri announced today it has chosen Deepwater Wind to lead the development and construction of the state’s $1 billion offshore wind energy project. Deepwater Wind is an offshore wind development company formed by Newton-based First Wind Holdings Inc. and other investors.
UPC Management, LLC
UPC Management, LLC is the administrative and management arm of the
UPC Energy Group, one of the most successful privately owned renewable
energy organizations in the world. UPC Energy Group focuses on renewable
energy related investments and development projects both domestically within
the United States as well as around the globe. http://upcmanagement.com/
Executive Managing Director, Zeehan Zinc Limited
Total Annual Compensation
This person is connected to 6 board members in 2 different organizations across 2 different industries.
As of Fiscal Year 2008
Brian Eugene Caffyn has been an Executive Managing Director of Zeehan Zinc Limited since June 26, 2007. Mr. Caffyn has over 20 years of experience in project financing for wind, co-generation, hydro, solar, geo-thermal, waste-to-energy, and biomass energy projects, initially with G.E. Capital, Heller Financial and UPC. He founded first wind energy company in 1996, Mr. Caffyn has successfully completed some of the largest wind energy projects ever financed while overseeing ... the development and operation of over 750 MW of operating wind energy projects. He is founder of Wind City Inc. He Founded and serves as Chairman of UPC Wind Partners, L.L.C. Mr. Caffyn has been Chairman and Director of Solar Integrated Technologies since December 2006. He served as Non Executive Director of Zeehan Zinc Limited and also previously served as its Director from June 26, 2007 to November 2007. Mr. Caffyn serves as a Director or Partner in the following companies or partnerships includes 02 St. Antoine, L.P., 191202309 Alberta 20 Ulc., 9162-0716 Quebec, Inc., 9162-0690 Quebec, Inc., Asia Wind Management, LLC, BEC Arizona Properties, LLC, BEC Montana Properties LLC, BEC Montana Properties 2, LLC, Canandaigua Wind Partners, LLC, Empire Energy Corporation, Empire Holdings, B.V., Equinox Capital Holdings, Inc., Europe Wind, B.V., Europe Wind II, B.V., Europe Wind III, B.V., Europe Wind IV, B.V., Europe Wind V, B.V., Europe Wind VI, B.V., Europe Wind VII, B.V., Europe Wind VIII, B.V., Europe Wind IX, B.V., Europe Wind X, B.V. and Europe Wind Management, LLC. Mr. Caffyn serves as Director or Partner of Evergreen Wind Power, LLC, Evergreen Wind Power II, LLC, Evergreen Wind Power III, LLC, Evergreen Wind Power IV, LLC, Evergreen Wind Power V, LLC, HC 750 Place D'Armes, Inc., HC-750 Place D'Armes, L.L.P., HC St. Jovite I, Inc., HC St. Jovite II, Inc., Kaheawa Wind Power, LLC, Kaheawa Wind Power II, LLC, Maine Wind Partners, LLC, Maine Wind Partners II, LLC, Millford Wind Corridor, LLC, New York Wind Partners, LLC, Place D'Armes Land Partners, Inc., Place D'Armes Land Parnters II, Inc., SI Holdings, B.V., Solar Integrated Technologies Inc., Top Skin S.r.l., Turtle Dove International, Inc., UPC Asia Wind Partners, LLC, UPC Capital Partners (Holding) Cooperative, U.A., UPC Construction Management, LLC, UPC Europe Wind Partners, LLC, UPC Hawaii Wind Construction, LLC, UPC Hawaii Wind O&M, LLC, UPC Helas Wind, EPE, UPC Maine Wind Construction, LLC, UPC Maine Wind O&M, LLC, UPC Management, LLC, UPC Mars Hill Wind Partners, LLC, UPC New York Wind, LLC, UPC O&M Management, LLC, UPC Oregon Wind, LLC, UPC Polish Wind Partners Spoika, Z.o.o., UPC Renewables Partners (Holding) Cooperative, U.A., UPC Solar, LLC, UPC Solar Management, LLC and UPC Solar Montebello/Orange, LLC. Mr. Caffyn serves as Director or Partner of UPC Tunisia Wind Partners, LLC, UPC Utah Wind, LLC, UPC Vermont Wind, LLC, UPC Wind Gestione, S.r.l., UPC Wind Partners, LLC, UPC Wind Partners II, LLC, UPC Wind Prospects, LLC, UPC Wind Uno, S.r.l., UPC XET CA Management, LLC, WCI Technology Ventures Management, LLC, Wind City, Inc., Wind City Oil & Gas, LLC, Wind City Oil & Gas Management, LLC, Wind City Penna Oil & Gas, LLC, Wind City Tennessee Oil & Gas Management, LLC, Wind Farm Prattsburgh, LLC, Wind Mill Oil & Gas, LLC, Wind Mill Equipment Holdings, LLC, XET Management, LLC, XS Holdings, B.V. and Zeta Petroleum, Inc. Mr. Caffyn served as Director or Partner of BEC Texas Properties LLC, Dakota Wind Power I, LLC, Dakota Wind Power II, LLC, E.F.A. Ltd., EnerCiel B.V., EnerCiel Tunisie, SARL, International Energie, Inc., Italian Vento Power Corporation (IVPC), Srl, IVPC 4, Srl. (Italian Vento Power Corporation), IVPC 6, Srl, IVPC 2000, Srl., IVPC Energy B.V., IVPC Energy 3 B.V., IVPC Energy 4 B.V., IVPC Energy 5, B.V., IVPC Energy 6, B.V., IVPC Energy 7, B.V., IVPC Gestione, Srl, IVPC Management, Srl, IVPC Management 2, Srl and IVPC Marche, Srl. Mr. Caffyn served as Director or Partner of IVPC Marche 2, Srl., IVPC Puglia, Srl, IVPC Service, Srl, IVPC Service 2, Srl, IVPC Service 3, Srl, IVPC Service 4, Srl, IVPC Service 5, Srl, IVPC Service 6, Srl, IVPC Sicilia, Srl., IVPC Sicilia 2, Srl., IVPC Sicilia 3, Srl., IVPC Sicilia 4, Srl., IVPC Sicilia 5, Srl., IVPC Sicilia 6, Srl., IVPC Umbria, Srl., IVPC Wind, Srl, UPC International Partnership CV, UPC International Partnership CV II, XET Holding Co., LLC, Xslent Energy Technologies, LLC and Xslent Technologies, LLC. Mr. Caffyn received a B.A. in Finance and Quantitative Methods from Babson College in 1981.
As mandated by the Global Warming Solutions Act; the Climate Protection and Green Economic Advisory Committee assists Mass. Secretary of Environment and Energy Ian Bowles by their identification of "lowest-cost", "most job-creating", green measures.
March 2009 Mass Energy and Environmental Affairs press release provides Secretary Ian Bowle's description of First Wind Paul Gaynor's role as appointed climate protector:
“Global climate change is the environmental challenge of our time, but it’s also an opportunity for Massachusetts to capitalize on the transition to a clean energy economy for jobs and economic growth,” said Secretary Bowles. “The Climate Protection and Green Economic Advisory Committee has an important role to play, helping my office identify the lowest-cost, most job-creating measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and I can think of no one better to lead this committee than Susan Avery and Martin Madaus.”
According to investigative journalist Ira Stoll, this last round of $117 of stimulus grant to Massachusetts Green Job Czar translates to $11.7 million and $19.5 million for each of 6 to 10 green job created in Hawaii at his company.
Maine, this 27th day of March, 2009.PETER S. KELLEY, ESQ.ATTORNEY FOR PLAINTIFFS Filed suit: "Mars Hill residents' suit against First Wind et al."
The Union Leader
April 6, 2009
"According to a March 26, 2008 report by the Daily News in Bangor, Maine, UPC
Wind president and CEO Paul Gaynor said the company would do a better job in the
future about letting local residents know what to expect from wind farms."
"I know there was an expectation (in Mars Hill) about what these were going to
sound like," Gaynor told the Daily News. "These are big structures and they do
Shortly after Gaynor spoke to the Maine newspaper, the firm changed its name to
First Wind. It was formerly known as Global Winds Harvest/UPC."
July 14, 2009
Utilities First Wind Energy LLC SnapshotPeople Company Overview First Wind Energy, LLC produces wind power in North America. It develops, owns, operates, and finances wind farms. First Wind Energy, LLC was formerly known as UPC Wind Management, LLC. The company is based in Newton, Massachusetts. As of July 14, 2009, First Wind Energy LLC operates as a subsidiary of Caliber Energy Inc.
http://investing.businessweek.com/research/stocks/private/snapshot.asp?privcapId'059779Fox News Report:
Mafia Invests in Sicilian Wind Farms
Tuesday, May 05, 2009 The Mafia may be going green.
Sicilian prosecutors are cracking down on Cosa Nostra involvement in the numerous small firms that build wind farms on the Mediterranean island, the Financial Times reports. What's the attraction for organized crime? The best of intentions, of course. The European Union and the Italian government heavily subsidize the construction of alternative-energy facilities, and the operators are guaranteed high rates to maximize their profits. A few wind farms that broke down because of lousy construction still received subsidies, prosecutor Roberto Scarpinato told the Financial Times.
"This is the amazing thing -- that developers got public money to build wind farms that did not produce electricity," he said.
Furthermore, locally-built wind farms are often bought up by multinational energy firms from other parts of Europe, none of which know the true identities of the original owners. "A handful of people control the wind sector," said Scarpinato. "Many companies exist, but it is the same people behind them." Eight arrests have already been made."
Clean Tech July 21, 2009
Banks bail out First Wind’s debt with $191M
"Newton, Mass.-based First Wind is in a crunch for cash and it’s forcing the company to get creative since it’s indefinitely delayed plans to raise it on the public markets.
The company, an independent developer and operator of wind power in the United States, has put at least two projects on hold for 2009 and struggled to access financing. But today things turned around with the company closing two financing transactions totaling $191 million. Proceeds from the transactions are expected to be used to further First Wind’s development activity, to fund debt and for general corporate purposes, First Wind’s Director of Communications John Lamontagne told the Cleantech Group.
The company had revenue of $12 million and a net loss of $73 million for past 12 months ending March 31, 2008. Lamontagne couldn’t provide more current figures.
The first financing is an 8.5-year $115 million term loan facility from Edmonton, Alberta-based Alberta Investment Management. The second is a $76 million 1-year loan with HSH Nordbank for First Wind’s Stetson project, which started operating in January 2009.
“These are highly capital intensive projects, and we have to borrow significant sums to get these projects built,” Lamontagne said.
He added that today’s financing would be used to fund debt incurred in having the facility built, although he didn’t know how much debt had been acquired."
In 2008, First Wind filed an IPO to raise up to $450 million on the Nasdaq. First Wind said at the time that it planned to use proceeds from the IPO to repay debt and to fund a portion of its capital expenditures in 2008 and 2009 (see First Wind plans share sale as WNDY). Lamontagne confirmed those plans are still on file with the SEC.
July 25, 2009 My letter regarding The Wind Turbine Siting Reform Act asks the Patrick Administration to beware of wind developers, UPC, First Wind, Cape Wind, Italian Vento Power Corporation IVPC and Oreste Vigorito. Posted online by Mass Government: http://www.mass.gov/Eoeea/docs/doer/renewables/wind/Public%20Comments_Listening%20Session%202_Barbara%20Durkin.pdf
Financial Times Guy Dinsmore November 12, 2009:
"Police said yesterday they had sent requests for documentation to five foreign companies – two in the Netherlands and three in Spain – that were linked to IVPC. Other companies in Ireland and the UK, said to be Italian affiliates of IVPC, have been asked by Italian authorities to provide information."
President of Italian Wind Energy Association arrested for fraud
By Red Nek Engineer
By Guy Dinmore in Financial Times, November 12, 2009
Italian finance police, mounting an operation code named “Gone with the wind”, yesterday said they had arrested two of the country’s most prominent businessmen in the wind energy sector. Police said the charges related to fraud involved in obtaining public subsidies to construct wind farms. They are also investigating the sale of wind farms to foreign companies.
Italian finance police, mounting an operation code named “Gone with the wind”, yesterday said they had arrested two of the country’s most prominent businessmen in the wind energy sector.
Police said the charges related to fraud involved in obtaining public subsidies to construct wind farms. They are also investigating the sale of wind farms to foreign companies.
Oreste Vigorito, head of the IVPC energy company and president of Italy’s National Association of Wind Energy, was arrested on Tuesday in Naples. Vito Nicastri, a Sicilian business associate, was arrested in Alcamo, Sicily.
Two other men were arrested in Sicily and the Naples area, while 11 others were charged but not arrested.
IVPC, a leading constructor and operator of wind farms in Italy, did not return calls asking for comment. Mr Vigorito is also well known as president of the Benevento football club.
“Gone with the wind”, mounted by the finance ministry’s anti-fraud police, started in 2007 and began by blocking public subsidies worth €9.4m ($14m, £8.4m) granted by the ministry for economic development. Last year police confiscated seven wind farms with 185 turbines in Sicily linked to IVPC.
Anti-Mafia prosecutors in Sicily have launched a parallel investigation. The Financial Times was told in April that a large number of wind farms had been built with public subsidies but had never functioned.
Police said yesterday they had sent requests for documentation to five foreign companies – two in the Netherlands and three in Spain – that were linked to IVPC. Other companies in Ireland and the UK, said to be Italian affiliates of IVPC, have been asked by Italian authorities to provide information.
Police also said they were carrying out checks on 12 companies in Italy, including nine with company names that are variations of IP Maestrale and which share the same street name and number as IVPC in Avellino, near Naples.
International Power of the UK, the largest operator of wind farms in Italy last year with a market share of about 15 per cent, said it owned the IP Maestrale companies.
International Power acquired its Maestrale portfolio of wind farms in 2007 for €1.8bn from Trinergy, an Irish company that had bought them from IVPC two years earlier. Some of the projects had been developed by Mr Nicastri, although IP told the FT in April it had no direct relationship with him.
International Power, which has not been charged with any wrongdoing, said in London yesterday: “We are aware of the arrests made in Italy yesterday. Criminal proceedings in Italy are conducted on a confidential basis and we will not make any comment on either the arrests or the individuals involved at this time.”
Mr Nicastri told the FT in April he had developed the “majority” of Sicily’s wind farms. He had then sold some of the projects to IVPC for further sale to foreign companies.
All were functioning, he said at the time. His office declined to comment yesterday.
November 15, 2009:
'Italians nab soccer club president in energy fraud''
"...Italian finance police have arrested two prominent businessmen — including one with ties to a former investor in the Cape Wind project in Nantucket — in the wind energy sector on charges of fraud, reports the Financial Times . Arrested were Oreste Vigorito, head of the IVPC energy company and president of Italy's National Association of Wind Energy, and Vito Nicastri, a Sicilian business associate,..."
November 16, 2009 Dakota Voice
‘Trouble in Green Wind Paradise: Wind Farm Scams “Gone with the wind”, mounted by the finance ministry’s anti-fraud police, started in 2007 and began by blocking public subsidies worth €9.4m ($14m, £8.4m) granted by the ministry for economic development. Last year police confiscated seven wind farms with 185 turbines in Sicily linked to IVPC."
First Wind calls it quits in Prattsburgh
By Mary Perham
Corning Leader/Bath Courier
Sun Jan 24, 2010
Prattsburgh, N.Y. -
One of two potential wind farm developers in the town of Prattsburgh announced Friday it is abandoning plans to put up nearly 50 turbines in the town.
First Wind spokesman John Lamontagne said lease holders for potential turbine sites have been notified of the firm’s decision, made at the end of December.
Lamontagne said First Wind’s decision to pull out was made after a careful, internal review of pending, “viable” projects.
“We appreciate the support – and there was a lot of support – from the people in Prattsburgh,” Lamontagne said.
First Wind also drew a fair share of critics, particularly after it launched eminent domain procedures via a divided town board. Plagued by the economic downturn during the summer and fall of 2008, the developer announced a yearlong hiatus in 2009, in order to reassess its projects.
First Wind intends to pursue projects this year in Maine, Vermont, Utah and Hawaii, but remains committed to its projects in the town of Cohocton and Lackawanna, Lamontagne said.
He did not rule out the possibility of future development in Prattsburgh, “but we’d be back starting at ground zero, so it would be pretty difficult.”
Lamontagne said the decision to leave was not influenced by the disputes that erupted last year between second developer Ecogen, town residents, and some town board members.
The disputes -- which were driven in part over concerns about excessive noise at First Wind’s operating wind farm in Cohocton -- led to angry charges from both sides, unseated two pro-wind board members in November and resulted in a flurry of lawsuits.
The new town board is now considering a six-month moratorium in order to review its comprehensive plan and possibly set up a zoning board.
Town Councilman Steve Kula wondered if the move would benefit the Ecogen project.
“Does this open up more land, to identify possibly new sites for Ecogen?” he asked.
Kula has advocated for greater setbacks than those currently in place to ensure residents’ health and safety.
“Before, you had two projects squeezed into one small town. First Wind had 50 (turbines),” Kula said. “Now you’ll have one project and more land. I don’t know. But maybe.”
Supervisor Al Wordingham said a First Wind representative left a message, but so far he has not spoken with the developer’s agent.
“All I can say is, after the experience they had in Cohocton, which is less densely populated than Prattsburgh, maybe they just decided this is not a suitable place for any wind farm,” Wordingham said.
OffshoreWindResources: 1/25/10 Expert Says Rhode Island Power Purchase Agreement Too Expensive
January 25, 2010
A power pricing expert testified last week that a proposed offshore wind power purchase agreement between Deepwater Wind and National Grid is too expensive and should not be approved.
Deepwater Wind is planning an eight-turbine project in Rhode Island state waters, near Block Island. The company reached a power purchase agreement last month with National Grid — the utility agreed to pay 24.4 cents per kilowatt hour for electricity from the wind farm. That agreement must be approved by the Rhode Island Public Utilities Commission.
Feds Plan Offshore Wind Consortium With 11 Atlantic States
The University of Maine DeepCwind Deepwater Offshore Wind Consortium has been awarded $25 million of federal support, including federal Recovery Act funds, to expand efforts to develop offshore wind capacity.
Wind power worries small Oregon town
March 6, 2010
By Richard Cockle The (Portland) Oregonian
"...Still, organized resistance has been emerging. After Massachusetts-based First Wind sought state permission in 2007 for a 40-turbine project between The Dalles and Mosier, residents protested that the 260-foot turbines would mar Columbia River Gorge views and endanger migrating birds. First Wind withdrew the plan in January 2009..."
Mixed views on Block Island over proposed wind farm
01:00 AM EST on Sunday, March 7, 2010
By Alex Kuffner
Journal Staff Writer
But opponents aren’t convinced that the state Coastal Resources Management Council can develop an objective plan when Deepwater is paying $3.2 million to help fund the studies being conducted as part of the project.
They also question whether the company has undue influence over Block Island’s town government, which is paying an energy consultant and a lawyer with money from Deepwater. The developer has so far reimbursed the town about $20,000 for the lawyer and consultant, according to Rich.
“There are no strings attached,” he says.
Ex-PUC head enriched by utility company
By Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting
April 21, 2010
Bangor Daily News | BDN
CAPTION Left to right: Public Utilities Commissioners Vendean Vafiades, Kurt Adams and Sharon Reishus listen to opponents and supporters of the Verizon-Fairpoint telecommunications merger during the PUC's public hearing on the matter at Bangor High School Thursday evening. BANGOR DAILY NEWS PHOTO BY JOHN CLARKE RUSS (WEB EDITION PHOTO)
AUGUSTA, Maine — While he was Maine’s chief utilities regulator, Kurt Adams accepted an ownership interest in a leading wind energy company.
'Global warming: The Oxburgh Inquiry was an offer he couldn't refuse'
April 25, 2010
"...And at Falck's windfarm at Buddusò - Alà dei Sardi: "Four people arrested, seven wind farms and 12 companies under sequestration, and 'that's the outcome of the operation' Gone With the Wind 'for which the magistrate court of Avellino has issued arrest warrants for Oreste Vigorito, 62 years Naples lawyer, administrator and president of IVPC Benevento Calcio; Vito Nicastro, 52 years of Alcamo, Ferdinand Renzulli, 42 years of Avellino, and Vincent Dongarra, 46 years of Enna. Another 11 people were investigated in various capacities for accountability in organized fraud for receiving government grants for the construction of wind farms. Nine of the seized companies are based in Avellino, the other 3 in Sicily."
Group asks AG to probe official of First Wind
By Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting
May 06, 2010
AUGUSTA, Maine — A citizens’ group has asked Maine’s Attorney General to investigate former Public Utilities Commission Chairman Kurt Adams after revelations that he accepted a grant of “equity units” in a wind power company while still on the state’s payroll.Adams left the commission in May 2008 to go to work as senior vice president for First Wind and said the equity units “had no value at all” and thus should not trigger state conflict of interest or improper gift laws. http://new.bangordailynews.com/2010/05/06/politics/group-asks-ag-to-probe-official-of-first-wind/
May 12, 2010 Pat Wood, III has joined First Wind’s Board of Directors
Boston, Massachusetts, United States May 12, 2010
Past Chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and Public Utility Commission of Texas to help guide growth of Boston-based wind energy company
First Wind, an independent U.S.-based wind energy company, announced on May 11 the addition of Pat Wood, III to the company’s Board of Directors. Mr. Wood brings with him an impressive record as Chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) from 2001 to 2005 and the Public Utility Commission of Texas from 1995 to 2001, and is actively involved with a number of private companies and projects to increase clean power generation, independent power transmission and natural gas facilities.
First Wind SEC filing change questioned
5/18/10 11:24 pm Updated: 5/19/10 12:12 am
By Naomi Schalit Senior Reporter
©Maine Center For Public Interest Reporting
Business experts say that energy company First Wind was within its rights to amend an SEC filing last week to declare that it did not, as the company had previously stated in an earlier filing, award Public Utilities Commission Chairman Kurt Adams an ownership interest while he was on the state payroll, a possible violation of state law.
But one expert says that the amendment, which came after the Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting published details of the grant to Adams, could itself raise questions with SEC regulators.
“The SEC is fairly liberal in permitting parties to amend their disclosure document,” said securities law expert Manning G. Warren III of the Louis S. Brandeis School of Law at the University of Louisville. But the amended filing, said Warren, “suggests that the company is acknowledging a rather significant error in terms of granting him those restricted stocks while he was a public servant.”
First Wind is in the process of filing disclosure documents — called an “S1” — with the SEC before a public offering of stock to raise money for the company.
County tax official not responsible for First Wind's failure to pay a $1.5 million tax bill:
Delinquent $1.5 million tax bill lost in paper trail
County’s strained treasury to get boost from Kaheawa
July 23, 2010 - By HARRY EAGAR, Staff Writer
Press Release: First Wind Opens Office in Washington D.C.
Boston, MA – September 16, 2010 – First Wind, an independent U.S.-based wind energy company, today announced the opening of an office in Washington, D.C. to support the company’s government relations efforts. The office is located at 601 Pennsylvania Avenue NW.
“First Wind is pleased to open an office in Washington, D.C., which reflects our commitment to communicating with elected officials and key stakeholders about the benefits of wind power and renewable energy, and providing information about the projects we have in operation and in development throughout the country,” said Paul Gaynor, CEO of First Wind. “We commend the Administration and Congress for their leadership, which has been critical as we work toward the development of clean, renewable energy projects that bring new jobs and other economic benefits to our host communities.”
Julia Bovey, the former Director of External Affairs at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, will head up the First Wind office in Washington, D.C. Bovey is a veteran of the clean energy movement in Washington, and also previously served as the national media director at the Natural Resources Defense Council.
Anti-mafia police make largest asset seizure
By Guy Dinmore in Rome
Published: September 14 2010 19:31 | Last updated: September 14 2010 19:31
Italian anti-mafia police have made their largest seizure of assets as part of an investigation into windfarm contracts in Sicily. Officers confiscated property and accounts valued at €1.5bn belonging to a businessman suspected of having links with the mafia.
Roberto Maroni, interior minister, on Tuesday accused the businessman – identified by police as Vito Nicastri and known as the island’s “lord of the winds” – of being close to a fugitive mafia boss, Matteo Messina Denaro.
General Antonio Mirone, of the anti-mafia police, said the seized assets included 43 companies – some with foreign participation and mostly in the solar and windpower sector – as well as about 100 plots of land, villas and warehouses, luxury cars and a catamaran. More than 60 bank accounts were frozen.
Until his arrest last November, Mr Nicastri, based in the inland hill town of Alcamo, was Sicily’s largest developer of windfarms, arranging purchases of land, financing and official permits. Some projects were sold through intermediaries to foreign renewable energy companies attracted to Italy by generous subsidy schemes.
In an interview with the Financial Times at his head office in Alcamo last year, Mr Nicastri denied any wrongdoing and welcomed police probes. “It is like going to the hospital and having check-ups and you come out without doubts about your health,” he said.
Police confirmed that Mr Nicastri, 54, had been released after his arrest on suspicion of fraud last year and had not been re-arrested. Italy’s tough anti-mafia laws give authorities powers unparalleled in Europe to seize assets as a precautionary measure.
The police statement said Mr Nicastri was suspected of being close to mafia gangsters, and that investigations had revealed that Sicily’s Cosa Nostra and Calabria’s ‘Ndrangheta had infiltrated Sicily’s renewable energy sector.
Mr Nicastri was not immediately available for comment but a colleague in his Alcamo office called the seizures an “injustice”.
The renewable energy sector is under scrutiny across much of southern Italy. Some windfarms, built with official subsidies, have never functioned.
A separate probe in Sardinia has involved political allies of Silvio Berlusconi, prime minister. They have denied bribing officials to win tenders.
Mr Berlusconi’s government is proud of its record of cracking down on the mafia, seizing more than €10bn in assets and arresting more than 5,800 suspects since taking office in May 2008.
While commending Mr Maroni’s tenure, critics, including prominent anti-mafia magistrates, have attacked legislation seen to favour the mafia, such as last year’s tax amnesty and proposed restrictions on police use of wiretapping.
Mr Nicastri sold most of his windfarm projects to IVPC, a company near Naples run by Oreste Vigorito, also president of Italy’s windpower association. Mr Vigorito was also arrested last November on suspicion of fraud and later released. He denied wrongdoing.
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Italy Seizes Mafia-Linked Assets Worth $1.9 Billion
September 14, 2010, 6:02 AM EDT
By Lorenzo Totaro
(Updates with details on seized assets in third paragraph.)
Sept. 14 (Bloomberg) -- Italian police today seized 1.5 billion euros ($1.9 billion) in assets belonging to a Sicilian businessman linked to the Mafia in the country’s biggest haul against organized crime, Interior Minister Roberto Maroni said.
“It was the biggest seizure of assets” in Italian history, Maroni said in a television interview on “Mattino Cinque” on Mediaset SpA’s Canale 5. The businessman, based in the Sicilian city of Trapani, is “close to the Mafia boss Matteo Messina Denaro, currently at large,” Maroni said.
A statement by anti-Mafia investigators in Rome identified the businessman as Vito Nicastri, who works in alternative- energy production. He has not been arrested. His seized assets include more than 100 properties, 43 companies operating mainly in the wind-power industry, luxury cars, a 46-foot catamaran, bank accounts and securities, according to the statement.
Italian police seized 15 billion euros in assets from organized crime groups in the 14 months through August, Maroni said on Aug. 15. Among the seizures was Rome’s Café de Paris, famous for appearing in Federico Fellini’s 1960 film “La Dolce Vita.” Investigators said the café was owned by the Calabrian ‘Ndrangheta mafia.
--Editors: Jeffrey Donovan, Andrew Atkinson
To contact the reporter on this story: Lorenzo Totaro in Rome at firstname.lastname@example.org
To contact the editor responsible for this story: John Fraher at email@example.com
Mafia's dirty money linked to clean energy
By Michael Day in Milan
Thursday, 16 September 2010
Italian police say Matteo Messina Denaro, the Mafia's 'boss of bosses' is linked to the seized assets
After decades of drug-running, extortion and prostitution, the Mafia appears to have found a rather more ecological way of laundering their money: green power.
And if the assets of the Italian police's latest target are any indication, the Mafia is embracing the renewable energy business with an enthusiasm that would make Al Gore look like a dilettante. The surprising revelation of organised crime's new green streak came as Italian police said yesterday they had made the largest recorded seizure of mob assets – worth €1.5bn (£1.25bn) – from the Mafia-linked Sicilian businessman Vito Nicastri, who had vast holdings in alternative energy concerns, including wind farms.
Organised crime in Italy has previously been notorious for trading in environmental destruction – principally earning billions of euros by illegally dumping toxic waste. But most of the newly seized assets are in the form of land, property and bank accounts in Sicily, the home of Cosa Nostra, and in the neighbouring region of Calabria, the base of the rival 'Ndrangheta crime syndicate.
Police said the operation was based on a 2,400-page investigative report and followed 54-year-old Mr Nicastri's arrest last year. He has since been released without charge, and has denied wrongdoing. But General Antonio Girone, the head of the national anti-Mafia agency DIA, said that Mr Nicastri, known as "lord of the winds", was linked to Matteo Messina Denaro, the fugitive believed to be the Sicilian Mafia's "boss of bosses".
Senator Costantino Garraffa, of the parliamentary anti-Mafia committee, said the Mafia was trying to break into the "new economy" of alternative energy as it sought to launder money earned from crime. The seizure of Mr Nicastri's assets "confirms the interest that organised crime has in renewable energy, which several annual reports on environmental issues have already stressed," added Beppe Ruggiero, an official with the anti-Mafia association Libera.
Generous subsidies have led to rapid growth in wind power in Italy in recent years. Mr Ruggiero said: "It is very important for this sector to stay far from Mafia activities." However, he stressed the need for renewable energy to develop in Italy's poorer South. "Investment in renewable energy should not be discouraged," he said, adding that the nuclear alternative would be "a losing choice".
Recent estimates suggest the total annual turnover of Italy's main organised crime groups is around €100bn (£83bn), or 7 per cent of GDP. Officials, including the Bank of Italy governor, Mario Draghi, have argued that organised crime has perpetuated poverty in the south of the country.
9/30/10 Wind proposal gets blowback Board votes not to accept money
By Kim Ring TELEGRAM & GAZETTE STAFF BRIMFIELD — After hearing three hours of mostly opposing comments from residents, selectmen last night voted unanimously not to accept $30,000 from First Wind, the company hoping to build several turbines in town.
The funds would have been used to study the financial impact of a wind energy facility on West Mountain, near Steerage Rock.
About 160 people attended the public hearing at Brimfield Elementary School, most speaking in opposition to the project that would site eight to 10, 400-foot wind turbines on the ridge just north of Route 20, and expressing concern that taking the money would allow First Wind to move closer to its goal.
Board members said if they had decided to accept the money, the town would not have been bound to any future agreements, nor would it have been forced to allow the turbines to be constructed; rather, the money would have helped fund research about the project.
Health Board Chairman Richard Costa and other local officials visited a facility at Mars Hill, Maine, and said he now believes the project would be wrong for Brimfield.
He said residents in Maine told him stories of health issues, decreased property values, and turbine noise difficult to tolerate.
“I don’t really think that this project would be a good fit,” he said, to rousing applause. http://www.telegram.com/article/20100930/NEWS/9300825/-1/NEWS04
American University School of Investigative Reporting
October 10, 2010
"...In western New York, for example, in the hills near the economically hard-hit cities of Syracuse, Rochester and Buffalo, the Canandaigua Wind Farm could have created the sort of green-collar jobs that the Obama administration promised would be generated by the stimulus package. The feathery blades of the farm’s 88 gigantic turbines reach more than 400 feet in the air. Each turbine contains 8,000 components and is almost as sophisticated as a jet engine. Hundreds of construction workers were needed to haul and erect the steel towers, each weighing hundreds of tons.
The wind farm was built in two phases. The developer, First Wind, received a total of $61.8 million in stimulus grants on Sept. 1, 2009, when the administration began rolling out money for the program. But FAA records indicate both were completed at least 15 months earlier -- by May 20, 2008..."
"...First Wind, received a total of $61.8 million in stimulus grants on Sept. 1, 2009, when the administration began rolling out money for the program. But FAA records indicate both were completed at least 15 months earlier -- by May 20, 2008..."
Matteo Messina Denaro Forbe's “The World's Ten Most Wanted Fugitives”.
“The Italian mafia remains the most famous organized criminal group, and Matteo Messina Denaro has taken control of it. Denaro, nicknamed "Diabolic," was only emerging as a leader of the Italian mafia following the capture of Bernardo Provenzano when Denaro appeared on the first Forbes Most Wanted list two years ago. Since then arrests of other top mafia men leave no doubt that he is the new boss. The Italian mafia's playboy, Denaro is known for living a fast lifestyle, driving Porches and fancying Rolex watches. Mafia Inc. is believed to have done very well amid Italy's economic downturn and has been described as Italy's biggest corporation. On the flip side, Italian authorities have recently been making some high-profile arrests, including that of Denaro's brother.”
Video News Coverage regarding the largest seizure of assets in the history of the Mafia: :
November 2010 Boston Business Journal and Maine Portland Herald cover protests against First Wind
Massachusetts/Maine/’First Wind: Boston Business Journal reports ‘A small town sums up the challenges to siting wind turbines’ about Brimfield, MA, where "200 unhappy residents" voiced concerns to Selectmen is a reoccurring theme. Portland Press Herald November 8, 2010, Lincoln, ME, police arrested 5 of the approximate crowd of three dozen who locked arms to block traffic to First Wind’s Rollins Mountain wind project.
BOSTON, Nov 24, 2010 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- First Wind Holdings Inc. today announced that pursuant to Rule 12d2-2(c) under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 5840(j) of The Nasdaq Stock Market LLC ("Nasdaq"), it intends to withdraw its Class A common stock, par value $0.001 per share, from registration under section 12(b) of the Exchange Act, and in connection therewith intends to file an application on Form 25 with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
This will continue as a working document.