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Commissioners Receive Draft Ordinance to Regulate Wind Energy Systems

Planning director Joe Furman said the proposed ordinance would make it relatively easy for people to receive permits for small systems for on-site use of the generated electricity. Larger commercial systems, designed to sell electricity off-site, were faced with “serious environmental and aesthetic considerations.”

The county commissioners received a draft of a proposed ordinance to regulate wind energy systems, or windmills. The county planning board recommended the ordinance after a county attorney’s opinion said windmills weren’t subject to the state “ridge law” and that counties had the authority to establish their own regulations.

Planning director Joe Furman said the proposed ordinance would make it relatively easy for people to receive permits for small systems for on-site use of the generated electricity. Larger commercial systems, designed to sell electricity off-site, were faced with “serious environmental and aesthetic considerations.”

The commissioners discussed the term “viewshed,” which appears in a clause regarding the Blue Ridge Parkway. Commissioner Keith Honeycutt said the term was vague.

“From some points, you can see 300 feet, and from other points, you can see 40 miles,” Honeycutt said. Furman said the ordinance had a provision that allowed Blue Ridge Parkway officials to comment on large wind farms that might be visible from the parkway. Furman said the parkway had satellite imaging maps that could be used to make analysis, but the parkway would not be able to restrict any windmills in the... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

The county commissioners received a draft of a proposed ordinance to regulate wind energy systems, or windmills. The county planning board recommended the ordinance after a county attorney’s opinion said windmills weren’t subject to the state “ridge law” and that counties had the authority to establish their own regulations.
 
Planning director Joe Furman said the proposed ordinance would make it relatively easy for people to receive permits for small systems for on-site use of the generated electricity. Larger commercial systems, designed to sell electricity off-site, were faced with “serious environmental and aesthetic considerations.”
 
The commissioners discussed the term “viewshed,” which appears in a clause regarding the Blue Ridge Parkway. Commissioner Keith Honeycutt said the term was vague.
 
“From some points, you can see 300 feet, and from other points, you can see 40 miles,” Honeycutt said. Furman said the ordinance had a provision that allowed Blue Ridge Parkway officials to comment on large wind farms that might be visible from the parkway. Furman said the parkway had satellite imaging maps that could be used to make analysis, but the parkway would not be able to restrict any windmills in the county. Large commercial wind farms would also be subject to the county’s high impact land use ordinance. The commissioners scheduled a public hearing July 18 to get input before further revisions of the draft.


Source: http://www.mountaintimes.co...

JUN 9 2006
http://www.windaction.org/posts/2985-commissioners-receive-draft-ordinance-to-regulate-wind-energy-systems
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