Articles from Illinois
MONTICELLO, Ill. — A county board in central Illinois will decide next month whether to approve taller wind turbines despite some residents’ concerns that the loftier structures would become eyesores.
Board member Jim Harrington said it would likely depend on where the turbines were, noting the taller ones could be “more obtrusive,” depending on the layout. “It depends on where they end up,” he said. “If it is a taller structure, it would be more obtrusive to non- and participating structures to that spot, wherever it is.” Oliger said Federal Aviation Administration permits submitted by Apex propose locations of 75 of the towers and assume heights of up to 743 feet.
If wind or solar farm developers want to build on your property, the Illinois Farm Bureau says don’t rush into signing a contract. The Vermilion County Farm Bureau hosted a virtual meeting Monday on how landowners can protect their rights when considering a developer’s proposal.
After hearing testimony both in favor of keeping current noise restrictions in place and pleas to make them more strict, the Piatt County zoning board of appeals has recommended staying with existing code when it comes to allowable noise at large scale wind energy developments.
A lawsuit opposing development of an industrial wind complex in northwest DeWitt County has been filed on behalf of 69 constituents against the DeWitt County Board and Enel Energy, owner of Alta Farms II. “This was something we wanted to avoid, but at this point, we have no choice,” said Olivia Klemm, one of the opponents of the wind farm. “We are not done fighting.”
Wissemann said future Great Lakes projects will look more like those shaping up along the Atlantic Coast: larger and more competitive on cost. Winter ice endemic to the Great Lakes is not an engineering challenge for turbines affixed to the seabed, and there’s no need to demonstrate any particular technology for freshwater projects to advance, he said. “I think you can go bigger, faster in the Great Lakes.”
Tim Jolly is a fifth-generation McLean County farmer and is looking forward to a safe harvest this fall. However, while farming in the footprint of a wind farm near Lexington, Jolly has major concerns over the potential of falling debris from nearby wind farm turbines from the Bright Stalk Wind Farm.
The Christian County Board voted “Yes” on Tuesday to keep the Christian County Zoning Board of Appeals recommendations for setbacks and shadow flicker for wind turbines 10-6 effectively ending any chance of wind turbines being built in Christian County.
Controversy over the plan last summer prompted the county’s Board of Commissioners to put an 18-month moratorium on special-use-permit applications for wind farms to allow time for review of its 2012 Wind Energy Conversion Ordinance in light of changes in technology and health and safety standards.
The Piatt County board has extended its moratorium on wind farm applications for another six months, keeping it in effect until about mid-March. A six-month moratorium was scheduled to expire in September, but the county has yet to finalize changes to its wind energy conversion ordinance.
Mines in the Upper Midwest, like the Knight Hawk mine in southern Illinois, produce fuel that powers much of the region's electricity production. That could change as coal plants retire and new wind and solar facilities come online.
Jeffrey Butler, a member of the McDonough County Farm Bureau, told the county board’s law and legal committee Monday that having his farm near two wind turbines has caused some disruptions. He suggested the board consider adding language to its wind farm ordinance that might solve some of the problems.
The restrictiveness of proposed new regulations for wind farms in Ford County has led to at least one wind-farm developer pulling its project from the county and looking to build elsewhere, according to Randy Ferguson, chairman of the county board’s zoning committee.
Invenergy, a developer of sustainable energy, spoke the Logan County Board this month about plans to develop a wind project in the county.
DeWitt County residents sat in disbelief Tuesday as nightfell on the Clinton Square after the DeWitt County Board approved a special use permit for the Tradewind Energy Alta Farms II wind project in the northwest corner of DeWitt County.
CLINTON — The DeWitt County Board is considering a special use permit to allow the county’s first wind farm to build in three northwestern townships near Waynesville and Wapella.
“We are struggling to set up a public hearing,” Douglas said. “The hearing is a chance for the developer to make a case for the project, for the community to ask questions.” The county could organize a virtual meeting during which Apex would present its plans and participate in a question-and-answer period, but an in-person hearing is preferred, Douglas said.
The Christian County Zoning Board of Appeals will have a hearing at 6 p.m. Tuesday to discuss issues surrounding potential wind farms being proposed by two companies.
CLINTON — It will be another six weeks before the DeWitt County Board will make a decision on the county’s first proposed wind farm.
Orion Renewable Energy Group plans to start construction on the $150 million to $170 million wind farm, the first in Knox County, this year and hopes to have it operational by the end of 2021.