Library from Illinois
Winnebago County Board members are set to put an end to what turned into several months of intense lobbying by unions, environmental groups and others when they vote Thursday night on an ordinance to allow wind farms in the county. Most of the details - such has how far back a wind turbine should be from a property line - have been worked out and agreed upon by most everyone involved.
A request for a new wind farm that would be larger than the existing Twin Groves Wind Farm is under review by the McLean County Zoning Board of Appeals. The hearing began Monday night at the Bloomington Center for the Performing Arts and will continue at 6 p.m. today at the BCPA, 600 N. East St. Horizon Wind Energy LLC is seeking a special-use permit to build its Black Prairie Wind Farm.
As the nation moves to find more energy efficient ways to use resources, surrounding counties are deciding if a 100-turbine wind farm would be a step in the right direction. Winnebago County currently doesn't have an ordinance allowing or restricting the use of wind farms. A proposal by Navitas Energy Corp. was submitted in April and is the first wind farm plan to go before the northern Illinois county board.
Even though some of 151 wind turbines planned for DeKalb and Lee counties have already been built, citizens who oppose the project are confident they can still halt construction. "If we indeed prevail, and in our opinion, we will ... they will be stopped from ever turning (the turbines) on and will be asked to remove them," said Rick Porter, attorney for a 39-person group known as the Citizens for Open Government. On July 21, the group filed a lawsuit against all 24 DeKalb County board members, and Florida Power & Light Energy Illinois Wind LLC.
An attorney representing the Bureau County Board has released details of a dispute over a road agreement the county claims a wind farm company has failed to honor. Earlier this week, the county board voted to take legal action, in an apparent attempt to force Iberdrola Renewables Inc. to agree to assessed road damage linked to the company's work on Providence Heights wind farm in rural Tiskilwa.
Officials here are looking at harnessing the wind to help provide power to residents. A number of Geneva officials, both elected and city staff, attended a meeting last week dedicated to providing information about a project to build a power wind farm in Rochelle. The eight-turbine farm, scaled down significantly from the 100-acre farm originally proposed, would not be built until 2011.
After much soul-searching as an advocate of both growing our needed renewable energy and protecting our honey pot of the environment, I have chosen to be an opponent of the proposed wind ordinance. I make this choice mainly because of the "back-room" way it has been drafted. I'm really sick of the cowardly darkness of the "behind-the-scenes" smugness emanating from those who must creep away before the fair input of the public sun can rise. Despite their political pretenses, they drain energy and our future quality of life, rather than renew our wherewithal and protect our powerful natural resources.
The Bureau County Board and a wind farm company could be headed to court over road repairs the county claims the company is responsible for, following its work at Providence Heights wind farm in rural Tiskilwa. Following a closed session Tuesday, the county board voted to take legal action in an apparent attempt to force wind farm company Iberdrola Renewables to comply with a county road agreement.
In other news, a proposed wind farm ordinance was on the floor for discussion during the board’s Oct. 8 meeting. But because of changes crafted the same day, which most board members were seeing for the first time, some were uneasy about putting the ordinance to a vote. Zoning Officer Troy Krup assured the board the intentions of the Zoning Board of Appeals and Zoning Committee had been maintained through the changes, but others weren’t so sure.
A wind farm could be coming to the area if a proposed project by the Northern Illinois Municipal Power Agency continues to progress. The proposal of the joint-action agency is for the Eagle View community wind project, a set of wind turbines that might be located in the Rochelle area. Rochelle Municipal Utilities General Manager Gary Larsen said the proposed project includes up to eight wind turbines that would be located near IL Route 64, west of IL Route 251, near the Village of Kings.
I have three notebooks full like this" says Peggy Whitney. Whitney has done her research on wind farms. And from what she's found, she doesn't want them anywhere near her home. "They all come to the same conclusion these can cause dizziness, nausea, increase in migraine headaches" says Whitney.
Lincolnshire officials expect to extend a temporary ban on the construction of wind turbines and other alternative-energy generators, Mayor Brett Blomberg said. The moratorium was enacted in June with a four-month life span. ...The moratorium was enacted to allow village staffers to study the pros and cons of alternative energy sources, such as wind turbines and solar panels, and to draft a policy governing their use.
The Edgar County Board tabled action on a Wind Energy Conversion System Ordinance at a meeting Wednesday morning. The goal of the ordinance is to protect county and township infrastructure during the building of giant towers that convert wind power into electricity. Board member Dan Winans has mostly worked alone to create the ordinance by borrowing from existing ordinances in neighboring counties.
I am writing to express my desire to carefully review the wind turbine proposal for Winnebago County. As a resident, I want to see several things in our decision process. I would like to assure that we are taking into account that human development and environmental sustainability are both considered. A connected plan will best serve the long-term interests in our county. Let us use the direction of experts such as the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the available research.
Research indicates the best site for a wind turbine to be a windy spot in the middle of nowhere. Winnebago County is in no such location, nor is the name of my hometown Middle-of-Nowhere, Illinois! If an ordinance is to be written, and I acknowledge that this is necessary, let that ordinance be an innovative and original document. As is now presented, this ordinance is a cookie-cutter document provided by Navitas for the specific purpose of advancing that company's goals.
Officials with a Houston-based wind-energy company have applied for a special-use permit to make way for the first phase of a massive wind farm spanning from Gibson City to Sibley to near Elliott. The Ford Ridge Wind Farm is targeted for construction late next year or in early 2011, said Roger Brown, business developer for BP Wind Energy North America Inc.
The McLean County Zoning Board of Appeals will have a public hearing Oct. 19 on a request for a special-use permit that would allow Twin Groves Wind Farm to expand by as many as 333 turbines. Horizon Wind Energy LLC and its affiliates want to generate 500 megawatts of power with the turbines that would be located on 38,248 acres in Towanda, Blue Mound, Martin and Anchor townships.
Community Unit School District 300's plan to invest in a wind farm as part of a consortium of school districts from across the state is more than just hot air. Now that plan has $44,000 behind it. The D300 Board of Education voted Monday to approve Phase I of its School Wind Consortium plan, which would create the first wind farm owned by such a consortium in Illinois.
Lawyers for the Village of Lee are asking a judge to examine how court summons were served to village board members who are being sued for rejecting a request by an energy company to build six wind turbines near the village. ...The document filed Wednesday asks a judge to investigate who was involved in filing the lawsuit and serving the summons. The document also asks a judge to throw the lawsuit out because it was filed improperly.
Gurnee has become the most recent community to take pause on wind and solar power. The village board this week in a 5-0 vote decided to impose a nine-month moratorium on wind turbines, solar panels and other such devices. Like other communities, the village anticipates an influx in requests to use wind turbines or solar energy devices, be it for commercial or individual use, and wants to make sure guidelines are in place to deal with issues such as size, noise and "shadow flicker."