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Ludington wind farm sparks legal, zoning fights

In the 15 months since the Lake Winds Energy Park came online, the relationship between operator Consumers Energy and many residents in that area near Lake Michigan has become less idyllic and more contentious. There have been disputes between company and county over zoning interpretations, a civil lawsuit and allegations of adverse health effects.
21 Mar 2014

Study finds wind turbines in violation of sound ordinance

The findings show that at least some, if not all, of the wind turbines produce sound which exceeds the maximum level allowed under the Mason County noise ordinance. Sound was recorded at five test sites. The data was collected and analyzed by an independent party, HGC, chosen by the zoning board and paid for by Consumer’s Energy ...Four of the sites tested were found to be in non-compliance with the 45-decibel limit.
20 Feb 2014

Expert: Consumers energy trying to ‘muddle’ wind turbine noise solution

"Here’s one way to explain what’s happening. Under the Mason County ordinance there is a maximum allowable noise level. That means the turbines are never supposed to exceed that level. When the Lake Winds Energy Plant exceeds the noise limit, that's the same as when someone in an automobile breaks the speed limit. "If a policeman stops you and says you've been clocked going over the speed limit, you get a ticket. Consumers Energy is ...acting as if the noise violation is about the average sound level, not whether or not the turbines periodically exceed it.
19 Feb 2014

Court orders utility to address wind turbine noise problems

Consumers Energy asked the 51st Circuit Court to overrule Mason County's finding that the Lake Winds industrial plant is not in compliance with the county's noise ordinance. ...the utility also wanted the court to issue a stay that would block efforts by Mason County to enforce the county's ordinance. On Monday, 51st Circuit Court Judge Richard Cooper denied the CMS request for a stay and ordered the utility to submit a plan to mitigate the noise problem.
7 Feb 2014

Citizen group discusses alleged dangers of turbines

"How would you like to see those blinking red tower lights all the time, on multiple turbines? I wouldn't.  My conclusion is wind energy is not green.  It's just duplicate, expensive power.  And, those who benefit is Duke Energy, the few, large landowners and the county government may see some revenue, but I wouldn't hold my breath."
10 Jan 2014

Energy company at odds with county over safety of wind turbines

Robert Rand, of Rand Acoustics, whose profession takes him from coast to coast, said wind plants are causing similar health and annoyance problems throughout the nation. "The problems are all the result of putting large industrial wind turbines too close to where people live," Rand said. "The only real solution to the noise problem is distance. Turbines have to be placed where they won't do harm to people."
13 Dec 2013

Lake township board hears turbine presentation

Swinbanks explained that noise is made up of many frequencies, and low-frequency noise is outside the range of human hearing. While people cannot hear low-frequency noise, it can impact a person's health. Unfortunately when measuring turbine noise, ordinances typically put more restrictions on noise within the human hearing range and do not restrict low-frequency noise enough.
1 Aug 2013

Lawsuit alleges wind turbines have caused harm

Residents living near wind turbines in Lake Winds Energy Park filed suit earlier this month in 51st Circuit Court and are seeking a jury trial for their case. ...The plaintiffs in the suit allege the wind farm has caused them physiological and monetary harm and will continue to do so if allowed to continue operations.
30 Apr 2013

Lawsuit alleges wind power; A threat to health and safety

"We've now moved our beds to the basement in a storage room," Shineldecker said. "After living in my house for 18 years, [we're sleeping] in a storage room on an air mattress so I can try to sleep . . . so my lovely wife can get up and go and try to teach second graders and be awake in the morning. "We have been up multiple, multiple nights and cannot sleep."
16 Apr 2013
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