Library from Illinois
A unanimous vote Tuesday by the county's Zoning Board of Appeals brings a wind farm one step closer to reality in southwestern Winnebago County. The final vote came after more than nine hours of testimony at a public hearing spread over two nights in the Lincoln Lyceum of Veterans Memorial Hall. The vote was on a 16-page ordinance drafted by Navitas Energy.
Some farmers who signed contracts with Navitas Energy for a wind tower have become disillusioned with the project near El Paso. "If I had it to do all over again today, I wouldn't sign the contract," John DeLaney, who farms southwest of El Paso, told the Woodford County Conservation, Planning and Zoning Committee Tuesday. "I'm really getting the feeling that we've been taken advantage of," he said.
District 300 would shoulder 80 percent of the costs - as well as potential benefits and decision-making - associated with the consortium that would build wind turbines to generate the electricity. Dave Ulm, the district's energy coordinator, said the entire project is estimated to cost between $46 million and $50 million.
The lone wind turbine in Libertyville has riled neighbors and created enough negative energy that the village board decided to put the brakes on any plans for new ones. While applications can be made, no building permits or zoning certificates for additional turbines will be issued for six months, the village board unanimously decided Tuesday.
A Kane County judge has assigned himself to a case in which a citizen's group is trying to halt construction of a wind farm in southwestern DeKalb County. But no firm date has been set for arguments in the case. Citizens for Open Government wants a judge to issue a temporary restraining order to stop work on the wind farm project.
Citizens for the Protection of Libertyville addressed the Village Board at its last meeting over their concerns about a wind turbine operating near their residences. Dave Gates, a member of Citizens for the Protection of Libertyville, said the group is upset over a 120-foot wind turbine located at Aldridge Electric, 844 E. Rockland Road, within 250-feet of their homes.
A settlement agreement has been reached in the lawsuit filed to halt a $120 million wind farm project between Freeport and Dakota, and construction on the farm may begin as soon as 2011, said company officials. "By this late time, it would be difficult to build in 2010, because of the long lead time for ordering equipment," said Wanda Davies, director of development for the Midwest region for Gamesa Energy.
Navitas Energy has been dotting the northwestern Illinois landscape with wind turbines for six years. Now the company is looking to make a southwestern section of Winnebago County part of its next wind farm project. Problem is, until Navitas came knocking, county government never had a reason to figure out where wind farms should go, what they should look like or what restrictions should be placed on them.
When state Sen. Michael Noland and state Rep. Fred Crespo went to bat for wind power last year, they predicted a hard-fought battle against Illinois' electric utilities. They were right. The freshman state lawmakers and the more than 60 Illinois school districts that supported their efforts effectively lost that battle when a state House committee ...voted against sending their bill to the full House for a vote. ...Undeterred, three suburban school districts are considering a different strategy that would allow them to exploit wind power within the existing legal framework.
Three different companies are considering placing towering wind turbines on property leased from farmers and other Edgar County landowners. Indeck Energy Services, based in Buffalo Grove, is looking at potential turbine locations north of Kansas, while Eco Energy, based in Elgin, and Horizon Wind Energy, based in Houston, Texas, are looking at sites in northern Edgar County.
After hearing a litany of complaints about noise from angry neighbors of an industrial wind turbine, village trustees Tuesday promised to initiate a temporary moratorium at their next meeting on granting any more such permits until the noise problem is resolved. ...Sandra Cooper said she moved to the subdivision seeking peace and quiet. Instead, her ability to enjoy her home has been constantly sullied "by a most abusive sound" coming from the turbine.
Clean power is regarded as an exciting possibility, but few towns have ordinances on the books to regulate potential impacts, such as noise or flickering shadows. To avoid pitfalls, several towns have imposed moratoriums and about a dozen have teamed with the county in a task force to study issues surrounding wind power.
Residents living near a recently installed wind turbine in Libertyville will continue to fight what they say is a harmful presence in their neighborhood. Members of Citizens for the Protection of Libertyville, a grass roots group centered east of where the turbine is located, are scheduled to address the village board today regarding the 120-foot structure at Aldridge Electric Inc., 844 Rockland Road. "Our goal is to get them to rescind those special ordinances designed for Aldridge and start over again," said Dave Gates.
A request for an injunction to stop construction of a wind farm has yet to be heard in DeKalb County court as lawyers seek a way for an out-of-county judge to hear their case. Attorneys for Citizens for Open Government asked Presiding Judge Kurt Klein to assign a circuit judge from outside the county to the case. The 16th Judicial Circuit includes DeKalb, Kane and Kendall counties.
The District 300 school board approved a pilot all-day kindergarten program ...The money - an estimated $2 million a year after six years - made from the wind farm would be used to offset the district's energy costs. ...But board member Monica Clark questioned whether it is too good to be true.
The Town Council voted in favor of a three-month ban on wind energy development Monday after a public hearing on the measure. The move came on the heels of a six-month moratorium on wind energy facilities that ran out this month. The first ban was meant to prevent development while the Planning Board reviewed the portion of the town's zoning law that regulates wind energy generation facilities at the Town Council's request.
The residents of Libertyville, IL struggled since April 2009 with noise and flicker from a 120-foot, 50 kilowatt Entegrity wind turbine erected within 250-feet of residential properties. Following a civil proceeding seeking relief from the noise and other nuisances, the Court issued a compromise ruling ordering turbine operation be restricted to weekdays only during the hours of 9am to 3pm. Below is an excerpt of the court transcript explaining the law supporting the Court's ruling. The full transcript can be accessed by clicking on the link below.
It is also an emerging technology that few Lake County officials know much about, or know how much to trust. According to some, electricity-generating windmills are becoming less like the gargantuan eyesores most are familiar with, and more like the aesthetic afterthoughts that suburbanites would be comfortable to live with. A small, quiet, discreet windmill can cut owners' electricity bills and punch their tickets onto the green bandwagon -- if it indeed works as advertised.
A group of DeKalb County residents is suing the county over a wind farm that is set to be erected this year. County Planner Paul Miller announced the lawsuit, filed Tuesday by about three dozen people belonging to the anti-wind farm group Citizens for Open Government, to the county's planning and zoning committee, which met Wednesday.
The Sugar Grove Village Board has slapped a moratorium on the installation of all wind energy devices within the village. The temporary ban began this month and is scheduled to expire in six months. Sugar Grove Village Administrator Brent Eichelberger said the moratorium should not be taken to mean that the village is opposed to the notion of wind energy generation.