Articles filed under Zoning/Planning from USA
The Reno County Commission agreed in a surprise move Tuesday to issue a moratorium on the development of commercial wind farms in Reno County through the end of the year and look at banning them in the zoned areas of the county.
Stark County Commissioners voted unanimously to approve a moratorium halting energy development in the county for 9 months, taking effect Monday.
A proposal under review by the City Council and the Planning Board seeks to amend zoning to allow for wind turbines along the old Interstate 95 access road, but many residents have come out strongly against the idea. The ordinance, sponsored by Councilor at-Large Barry Connell, was introduced to the council on June 28 and referred to the Committee on Planning & Development for further discussion. “I think that we have a responsibility to look for ways to reduce the carbon footprint of the city of Newburyport to the extent that is possible,” Connell said in a phone interview Thursday.
It started as a request for a county-wide wind turbine zoning ordinance to battle a proposed DTE wind farm in the four northwest townships.
Cherokee County Commission members on Monday unanimously adopted a resolution that establishes a one-year moratorium on wind energy development inside of county limits, saying they want additional information on such operations. “I believe we, as a commission, deserve the time and the right to fact-find,” said Commissioner Lorie Johnson, of District 2. The resolution establishes a moratorium and suspends certain types of improvements regarding wind energy on any land within the limits of Cherokee County for one year, officials said.
A special meeting was held Thursday morning between commissioners, residents and representatives from the company — RWE in America. They were also joined by Labette and Neosho county commissioners, who voiced their concerns after having experienced similar turbine projects in their communities. “There were concerns of property values decreasing, the damage to infrastructure, roadways, the unsightly of these wind turbines within the county,” said Cory Moates, Cherokee County Commissioner.
The Adams Township Board voted unanimously to impose a six-month moratorium on approving applications for commercial wind and solar projects Wednesday. Supervisor Gerald Heikkinen said the board would take the time to find more information about renewable power. “I know everybody in this room is probably against it, but there are still people that are for it, so we have to take the middle of the road,” he said. ”
The Westerlo Town Board has unanimously approved a 90-day extension to the town’s solar and wind energy moratorium, which was first instituted in 2019 to allow the town to develop a new comprehensive plan. The extension is necessary to allow the town additional time to continue reviewing the comprehensive plan draft and three laws relating to renewable energy that are consistent findings of that draft, Deputy Supervisor Matt Kryzak said at the town board’s special meeting and public hearing on Aug. 11.
Rejected by the Shasta County Planning Commission after a public hearing in June, the controversial Fountain Wind project planned for the Intermountain area is now getting a second look by the company that wants to build it. But the founder of a citizen's group that opposes the wind farm said there is no scenario that would get members to change their mind.
The Stanton Township Board imposed a nine-month moratorium on construction for a proposed wind turbine project at its meeting Wednesday. Stanton Township Supervisor Marty Rajala said the moratorium would buy time until the township could complete a resident survey gauging their opinion of the Scotia Wind project, which would include 12 575-foot turbines in Adams and Stanton townships near Whealkate Bluff. The board approved sending the survey to every registered voter in the township.
Since announcing plans for the wind farm in 2015, Apex Clean Energy has seen a number of setbacks. The most recent came last month, when county zoning administrator Drew Pearson determined that Apex had missed a May 26 deadline for county approval of a site plan. The Charlottesville company did not qualify for an exemption passed by the General Assembly for some projects that were delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic, Pearson ruled.
Permits for the proposed wind turbine project in Adams and Stanton townships have been denied by the state over concerns of harm to wildlife, including bat and eagle populations, and wetlands. The Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy (EGLE) Water Resources Division (WRD) determined the Scotia Wind project did not benefit the public enough to outweigh potential impact to wildlife and wetlands at the site.
Concerned Enel has not shown they can meet the standards of the special use permit, Myers offered a resolution to stop any further issuances of building permits until the company provides more proof of curtailment of the wind turbines during severe weather events.
Dan and Nancy Welke live in Merrill, Lafayette Township, where they say they have one turbine less than 1,600 feet from their home and another one about 2,600 feet away. They say they have been “battling” with DTE Energy and Gratiot County officials for the last year and a half regarding the negative effects of the turbines. Nancy called the ongoing experience “a living hell.”
Labette County commissioners on Monday heard another request for a moratorium on wind farm development to allow further study. Commissioners will take up the request next week but two commissioners didn’t appear to support it. So far, several requests for a moratorium on wind development have failed. Commissioners Brian Kinzie and Cole Proehl both have voted no while Commissioner Lonie Addis voted yes on the requests.
As RWE Renewables considers harvesting wind in Labette County, residents who would live in the proposed wind farm footprint are concerned how wind turbines will impact their health and livestock, among other issues.
The battle for wind turbines continues in Madison County. The Arbor Hill project would allow 52 new turbines to be put up, but the Madison County Board of Supervisors added a new ordinance that has delayed the project.
In giving their approval, commissioners Sue Ibarra and Pete Gosar added several stipulations. ...Their requests included a one-mile turbine setback from non-participating residences, and a turbine setback from public roads of 1.5 times the turbine height plus the blade diameter. ...Gosar requested that aircraft detection lighting systems be installed on turbines or else ConnectGen seek a variance from the commission. “A good faith effort isn’t quite enough for me,” Gosar said. “The university has been here and has determined that night skies are important for a grant that they would like to maintain. That’s a fair arrangement — if you cannot secure ADLS, you petition to the county for a variance for those turbines, or you remove them from the project.”
There is growing concern among the board of supervisors that Invenergy may take legal action if the Worth County supervisors attempts to enforce a wind ordinance or some other form of regulation on the Worthwhile Wind project. According to supervisor AJ Stone, Invenergy has already raised the possibility of pursuing legal action twice since the county implemented a moratorium on commercial wind projects in April.
The longstanding debate over how much society is willing to sacrifice private property rights in order to erect mammoth, commercial-scale wind turbines has been energized — perhaps even electrified, if you will — by the Ohio Power Siting Board. In a surprise move, the OPSB unanimously agreed on June 24 that it will not allow the proposed 47-turbine Republic Wind Farm to be built in Seneca County. It's a surprise move not because there was fierce opposition — which there was — but because the siting board actually listened to it.