Articles from Illinois
DECATUR – Construction on the Radford’s Run Wind Farm project in northwestern Macon County will continue after a Macon County judge denied a motion to grant summary judgment for three dozen landowners suing to halt the project.
When Eswood Elementary in Lindenwood, IL, got a wind turbine in 2012, it was supposed to cover its energy costs. Instead, its caused a whirlwind of problems. ...Since its installation, the turbine hasn't produced any electricity.
Steve Faivre (D-4), Planning and Zoning committee chairman, said the moratorium applies to the wind turbines themselves, as well as solar panels used to generate commercial energy, not the testing towers. "The testing just gives EDF the information as to whether or not it would be commercially viable to do that from a wind standpoint," Faivre said.
Lake Land College has removed two wind turbines after they suffered enough damage to render them inoperable. "The situation with the two 100 kW wind turbines is a snapshot of renewable energy in the United States in 2017," said Joseph Tillman, the division chair and Lake Land College's renewable energy instructor and coordinator. Wind is going to be around for a while, but other forms of renewable (energy) are gaining in use.
Three dozen landowners in the area of the wind turbine filed a lawsuit to halt the project in 2015, and a summary judgment hearing is scheduled for June 27. The court could determine whether the landowners’ case has merit and halt the turbine project or let it move forward. “When they decided to move forward with this project despite the pending lawsuit, they did it at their own risk,” said Richard Porter, a Rockford attorney representing 36 landowners in the lawsuit.
The DeKalb County Board unanimously approved a moratorium Wednesday on developing wind and solar farms for 18 months or until a sustainable energy ordinance is passed.
The DeKalb County Planning and Zoning Committee agreed Wednesday to hold a second public hearing on whether to build two 200-foot-tall wind testing towers after the first hearing was criticized for being held in too small a venue and not giving enough public notice. ...The moratorium is expected to be heard at the next County Board meeting March 15.
Rock Island Clean Line withdrew its petition Thursday seeking permission from the Iowa Utilities Board to build an electric transmission line across Iowa — a move that the project's opponents hailed as a victory for state landowners.
The energy company has faced 4 years of fierce legal opposition led by the Illinois Landowners Alliance, the Illinois Farm Bureau, and ComEd. Clean Line Energy learned Nov. 23 of the high court’s decision to review the appellate court’s ruling. The company maintains that the project would bring low-cost clean energy, hundreds of good jobs, and revenue for communities in the project areas.
Members of the Clean Jobs Coalition who have negotiated together for many months over a massive Illinois energy bill have broken ranks after the bill’s introduction Tuesday, with some still supporting the bill, some opposing it, some hoping for pieces to be spun off and others remaining silent.
The Lake Land Board of Trustees voted Monday evening to authorize removing the north wind turbine near the West Building. In addition, the board authorized removing the blades from the nearby south turbine so this unit can continue to be utilized for educational purposes for Lake Land students. This project would cost Lake Land an estimated $30,000.
When the board meets at 9 a.m. Tuesday, it will consider approving a policy mandating specific setbacks, turbine heights, decommissioning requirements and wildlife impact studies for future wind projects.
In a letter sent to residents who agreed to lease farmland for wind turbines, Chicago-based Mainstream Renewable Power says a more-restrictive county ordinance approved last year makes it too difficult to move forward with the six-year project.
Backers of the first major wind farm proposed in Sangamon County say they would like to start construction next year after sale of the project to one of the nation's largest wind-energy developers.
The policy is intended to replace a vague ordinance, and “many of the things in our proposed text were imposed by the Zoning Board in previous special use permits," said Anna Ziegler, assistant manager at the McLean County Farm Bureau — which helped draft the rules.
Built in 2009, Minonk Wind Farm did not provide the county with an updated decommissioning report until this year. Last year, the county hired an independent engineering company to create an updated report, which the wind farm initially agreed to pay for. The company later changed its mind and provided a simplified report of its own.
As a result, the lawsuit alleges, the Haleys' farm was "subject to large amounts of debris and soil infiltration, degrading the effectiveness of the soil on much of the 160 acres."
Northeast McLean County is the site of unlikely turf war. In Chenoa, Lawndale, Lexington and Yates townships, two energy companies are vying to secure property that may be McLean County's next wind farm.
In a May 21 letter to the News-Press, NextEra manager Jeremy Ferrell encouraged residents to get the facts about wind energy rather than hearken to “myths and fears.” So, I have some facts to share.
"If our problem was isolated and was natural gas, then we'd be talking about retiring 11 units, not three," Dominguez said in an interview. "It is the combination of gas prices that have lowered wholesale energy prices, and the distortive effect of congestion caused by subsidized generation that overwhelms these areas, particularly in the off-peak hours." According to Exelon, nearly 10 percent of off-peak prices, which its Midwest nuclear fleet is subject to, trade below zero -- a fact that he attributes to the penetration of wind energy.