Submitted by Jeff Buster on Wed, 07/26/2006 - 13:45.

Nantucket Wind resistance



Martha Eakin and I met with Mr. Stuebi last Wednesday and discussed the wind turbine manufacturing and use "talking points" (attached below) which we had emailed to him.  
Although the talking points were specific about  the wind manufacturing ideas we felt would advance the Friday paycheck totals in NEO,  we never got a reciprocally clear sense of what the Cleveland Foundation is pursuing  Our conversation was one sided.
If North EAst Ohio is going to develop wind turbine manufacturing,  (and be clear that manufacturing is more important to NEO than placement of turbines on Lake Erie; Installing turbines on Lake Eire is certainly attractive to turbine producers like GE but will generate very few jobs for the region because NEO has neither the talent nor the marine construction equipment to place such turbines),  the region will be best served by an open dialogue about what is being planned by The Cleveland Foundation, by the City of Cleveland, and by other participants. The usual "work it out behind the scenes and then present it to the public as a fait a compli " development model could backfire as it did with Nantucket Sound.


We need to encourage Joe Roman of Greater Cleveland Partnership (and the other 5 or 6 “business development leaders” mentioned in the recent Plain Dealer article) to put  about 2/3rds of his exorbitant salary towards salaries for new leaders developing alternative energy manufacturing in NEO.

We need the Cleveland Foundation and other organizations and individuals to collaboratively and openly advance their alternative energy interests - not merely use the public as a public relations sounding board (as ODOT has done with the Interstate 90 bridge "design") to help craft the "news release" of plans developed behind closed doors.  Let's follow Ed Morrison's model of open source economic development which calls for dialogue, inclusion, and collaboration.


6/22/2006 and 7/15/2006


Mr. Tyrone White and Mr. Richard Stuebi

Cleveland Foundation




A few talking points for meeting Friday, June 30, 2006, 9:00a.m. or Wed morning, July 19, 2006.


There are many strong practical reasons (including but not limited to the REPP Report) for NEO to proactively position itself as a North American center for wind turbine manufacturing and use.  

Persuading politicians, the public, unions, schools, churches, commercial (Forest City, hotel and office, and factory building owners), communities, and residential property owners that NEO’s economic and environmental future can be secured by wind manufacturing/use will require a full court press.      


Jobs for younger workers –and all workers - are critical to reviving Cleveland and its environs.  We need to stop the outflow of young people from our area.   GCP has made a very short- sighted decision in supporting gambling – the financial interests of GCP constituents would in fact be much more richly advanced with implementation of wind manufacturing/use in the area.  Wind turbine manufacturing provides a viable alternative to the casino push. 


Promoting Cleveland as the headquarters for wind components in NA requires  money to support a public education and lobbying effort, and instigation, inspiration and coordination between manufacturers. 


NEO does not presently have the technical expertise to design and build its own complete turbine,  (We could license from an existing turbine developer.)  but there are immediate practical goals which include the production of sub-components for turbines.  Here are some immediately implementable objectives:


1.         A cooperative lean manufacturing venture between Mittal, Lincoln Electric[1], American Tank, Timken, CSX and NS, and Port Authority, and others,  to produce specific steel plate   for rolling into conical tower sections.  A robot welding line[2] to produce quality submerged arc welds of the rolled section into 70’ lengths with machined (Timken) flanges, and made-to-purpose crane and transportation facilities to ship sections throughout NA and worldwide.  Objective would be to produce and ship at least one 300’ tower per day.   Competition – South Korea – look at joint venture with present SK manufacturer to get going ASAP.   Fund through Port Authority bonding.  See Manitowoc plant which just came on line here ------



2.         Fund a study to determine methods and means for constructing and installing marine foundation/anchorage systems for wind turbines throughout the Great Lakes.    Establish the necessary marine facilities in Cleveland, Lorain, Ashtabula to be THE Great Lakes wind turbine installer and servicer when turbines are installed. 


3.         Produce LIDAR wind anemometers under license from . http://www.risoe.dk/


4.         Produce turbine blade cleaning equipment and train service personnel for work around NA.


5.         Install modern mega watt turbines in industrial areas of Cleveland to feed power to the CCP grid and credit power to Cleveland School District.   Will provide cache, esprit and economic benefit for school system and grid strengthening distributed generation to CPP.  Meanwhile schools in suburbs will be educating in dirty fossil- fueled classrooms.  This could start a trend like Hull, Massachusetts  http://www.hullwind.org/


6.      Support GCRTA in producing an RFP to investigate feasibility of siting turbines along RTA right-of-way.  Described here- http://realneo.us/blog/jeff-buster/ride-the-wind


7.         Celebrate Charles Brush’s invention of the first wind driven electrical dynamo at his home on Carnegie in the late 1800’s by creation of a wind power museum – a  la Ford’s Greenfield Village near Detroit – near downtown Cleveland.   Collect obsolete machines from around the world for re-erection at museum site.   Such a museum would be the only one in NA (only two small ones in Europe) and would bring 100’s of thousands of visitors annually to stay in those hotel rooms.   Establish a “smart power works” green energy college campus at this site.  Call it the World Wind Center.


8.         Provide an “incubator” with development funds for prototype production and testing of new “small wind” turbine designs at the museum location in conjunction with NASA Glenn, Case, CSU, CCC, Kent, Oberlin, Lorain CC, etc.


9.         Fund a speakers program to bring wind experts from around the world to address frequent wind symposia.


10.    Fund a dynamic MTV style ½ hour long movie for persuading the general public of the challenges, excitement and benefits of wind turbine manufacturing and use – visit operating turbines, gear production facilities, welding works,  and demonstrate the amazing technology which allows cell phone SCADA control of individual components in distant wind farms. Get this production on TV.

Martha Eakin 
     Jeff Buster        


[1] Eakin and Buster convened a presentation at Case’s Regional Economic Initiatives forum at the Peter Lewis building and invited speakers from Lincoln Electric and American Tank . One objective was to determine why the steel turbine towers installed in Bowling Green, Ohio were manufactured in South Korea.  We also spoke with the Vestas procurement engineer who attempted to source towers in Ohio. 

[2] RAMTEC, with experienced leadership from Cleveland Public Schools and from local automated machining fields, has a inspired concept for educating the NEO workforce in robotic and lights-out manufacturing.


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Jeff, simply put, what is their intent and purpose?

You ask the right question, which we need to start applying to all these foundation and non-profit objectives... how does what is being done fit with collaboration=dialog+inclusion+knowing+intention+purpose

You raise reason to question the intent and purpose of Stuebi, and his knowledge, and his dialog and inclusion - I would suggest there is no collaboration here. That is how things have operated with this sector in NEO as long as I've paid any attention. Fill in this equation and where you cannot get satisfaction force others to recognize there is no collaboation - if people want collaboration, they must force completion of the equation. Very simple but serious process. Otherwise, there's no collaboration here, so develop other approaches.

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Stuebi's talk at SURES lunch

Martha and I visited Case in a veritable downpour Thursday July 27 to hear Stuebi give his first educational talk about the energy crisis. He was convincing in the area of climate change -- sort of like Al Gore on steroids. Where he differed from the consummate politician (I'm not speaking specifically of Gore, but of politicians in general) is that he offered little that those listening to him could do to address the doom and gloom fate that awaits. Politicians at least know that if they are going to do some grand save-the-day project behind closed doors, they need to distract the public by asking them to do this or that to lend a hand. Voices and Choices may be a great distraction for the public as the 83 foundations actually meet in another room to discus what they will launch once the campaign distraction has run its course.

    Stuebi was offered the efforts and great suggestions of some of Cleveland's most forward thinking environmentalists at that luncheon. Phil Lane, biodiesel entrepreneur and energy know it all (I am not throwing shade, I truly am snowed by what I hear Phil say in these meetings -- he seems to have the facts from a global perspective on energy) offered up his part of the solution. This guy has his sleeves rolled up and is at it everyday! Phil and Sarah Taylor (they have solar panels on their modest Cleveland Heights home) offered ideas about wind manufacturing and retrofitting for our own regional power and taxing gasoline and returning that tax to a fund to develop renewables. We were seated with Case students who had successful projects for heat capture and conservation in the aluminum casting process. But every offer of assistance (and we all know and he stated that there is not one silver bullet to address global warming or the energy crisis) was pooh-poohed. Then he said he didn't know what would be done, that he does not have a strategy or plan yet, but that what individuals and small entrepreneurs could do was simply and I quote, "rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic". I was infuriated. Time and again we are told by people in power that we plebeians (we tax burdened serfs) can't help. We are forced to sit back and wait for those with position to ride in on the big white horses and "fix it" for us. We are not invited to the table in this mock feudal system. In this situation, it seemed as ridiculous as throwing a scrap to the master chefs of the future who had gathered (albeit not in their “whites”). As chefs of the future, we will all need to act. Gore distributed, with his film, a list of things we individuals could do. Stuebi simply painted the dangerous picture and knee capped his audience. I think that this is particularly discouraging when talking to a group of students. He might have asked them (and us), “What research projects, ideas, behavior have you that might assist?” That might have encouraged and empowered the student who has created a system for energy conservation in the aluminum casting process. He might have said, "We need all your best thinking here, and I welcome you to add your lone potato to the stone soup which will feed us all."

He said that government policies must be changed to force manufacturing to meet more reasonable environmental standards, but then followed by saying that no legislator would introduce such plans because they would end up in the trunk of a car. At least we understand that he shares our cynicism. But what solution can he offer?

I left wondering -- if as he said, the Cleveland Foundation is committed to solving this problem, what behavior are they modeling internally? What does their portfolio look like? Are they investing in green companies here in the region and globally or is their money in oil and coal? We don’t need a home run here, but we will have to get the runners on base and bring them home to win the game. This game will be played by our grandchildren and our great grandchildren (hopefully). Let’s get on first base in Northeast Ohio. Don’t stand there and say, we will only ever strike out because this game is already lost.


As William Burroughs and countless others would prove, life is hard. Hardly anyone survives it. However, while we are still here, what is it we can do to keep others from knocking holes in the bottom of the boat?


Concern about Stuebi's intentions and purpose

Based on the experience you and Jeff report from interacting with Stuebi, and his actual profile and business interests, it is very reasonable to find concern in his new role in our community, and that he will have a harmful and/or chilling impact on environmentalism here, as does all greenwashing (and I contend most environmentalism and "sustainability" in NEO is entirely greenwashing). Bottom line, Stuebi has lived and made his fortune working for the electric and fuel industries...

In brief, consider Stuebi's CV below and his philosophy and other thoughts from the website of his personal energy enterprise, NextWave Energy, and ask yourself if any of this is of interest to you or the community in which you want to live and raise your children... if not, he is not a solution for you, nor are the efforts of the Cleveland Foundation, which clearly understood Stuebi's philosophy when they hired him as their BP Fellow:

OUR Philosophy

We will primarily work with private sector firms, focusing on how they can profitably grow in the energy industry.

We will specialize in assisting the emergence and growth of new business opportunities that promise meaningful improvement in the economic and environmental efficiency of the energy sector.

We will be cautiously skeptical toward regulatory-driven commercial activities that may be subject to significant downturn with sudden elimination of government support.

We will drive towards financially motivated conclusions and recommendations that maximize the likelihood of commercial success.

We will evaluate situations according to fact-based technical and economic analysis.

We will be candid in expressing our views, believing that candor minimizes miscommunication, and explicitness begets clearer decisions and more forceful action.

We will not engage in public advocacy, so as to preserve our reputation of objectivity and professionalism.

We will manage our firm so that we can always nimbly respond to market needs and to ensure high quality services at competitive terms.

We will leverage the experience and talents of trusted professional colleagues in offering our services.

We will assess our ultimate success by the success of the companies we work with, not by the size of our staff.

Consistent with aligning our incentives with those of the companies we serve, we will consider compensation for our services in equity in lieu of cash.

We will decline engagements in which we assess that we are not competent or are otherwise unable to be of effective assistance.

Richard T. Stuebi
President, NextWave Energy, Inc.

Renewable energy consulting

With our services, NextWave Energy measures its success by our ability to increase the profitability and value of the companies we support. We have helped many companies of different types in achieving that aim:

Energy companies developing strategies and evaluating new business opportunities - or taking actions to capture those opportunities.
Entrepreneurs building successful new energy ventures.
Private equity interests making wise decisions with respect to potential investments in the energy sector - or helping their investments perform better


Richard T. Stuebi
rts [at] nextwave-energy [dot] com

Richard Stuebi has nearly 20 years of experience as an executive, entrepreneur and consultant in the energy industry, with most of the past decade focused on advanced energy technologies and business opportunities.

Since founding NextWave Energy in 1999, Mr. Stuebi has assisted several clients with new energy businesses or technologies in various aspects of business development, including strategy and capital formation.  Reflecting NextWave Energy's entrepreneurial interests, Mr. Stuebi has also participated directly in the founding and management of certain energy-related ventures.

Mr. Stuebi is currently the BP Fellow for Energy and Environmental Advancement at The Cleveland Foundation, where he works with various public and private sector stakeholders to promote commercial activity in advanced energy in the Cleveland area.

Previously, for over 6 years at McKinsey & Co., Mr. Stuebi was a management consultant exclusively serving clients worldwide on energy-related topics. During his tenure at McKinsey, Mr. Stuebi primarily assisted clients on developing strategies and enhancing organizational capabilities to help them prepare for the onset of deregulation and restructuring in the electricity sector. He worked for extended periods with two of the five largest U.S. electric utilities, helping them position for success in the increasingly competitive industry. He also aided several other electric utilities, large energy consumers, fuel suppliers, and independent power producers to anticipate and capitalize on the major changes occurring in the energy sector.

Before founding NextWave Energy, Mr. Stuebi was a Senior Vice President at Louis Dreyfus, the global commodity trading firm. At Louis Dreyfus, he was responsible for North American electric and gas business development activities.

In the late 1980's, Mr. Stuebi spent nearly 4 years as an analyst of the North American electricity and coal industries at ICF Resources, a leading economic and environmental consulting firm based in the Washington DC area. Mr. Stuebi's work in analyzing the economic impacts of alternative acid rain legislation approaches was instrumental in the creation of sulfur dioxide emission allowances as part of the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990.

From this long history of focused experience in the energy industry, Mr. Stuebi has wide knowledge of energy sector participants, activities, economics and regulations, and has formed strong business perspectives on the energy sector's likely evolution and business strategies to capture emerging opportunities in the evolving marketplace.

Mr. Stuebi has authored several articles that have appeared in such leading industry periodicals as TheElectricityJournal and PublicUtilitiesFortnightly, and has presented at numerous major energy conferences. He is also a weekly contributor to www.cleantechblog.com.

Before embarking upon his professional career, Mr. Stuebi earned degrees in Economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1984) and Stanford University (1986).

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