Library from Michigan
The suit essentially claims a systematic effort has been underway to “kill” the planned Tuscola III project, starting with the formation of the Ellington-Almer Township Concerned Citizens (EATCC) group, continuing with the election of several group members last November, and culminating with a one-year moratorium on wind projects and denial of special-land use permit (SLUP) by the board in January. An answer hasn’t been filed to the complaint as of press time.
For a number of years, five of nine Huron County planning commissioners had wind contracts, said Robert McLean, vice chair of the Paris Township Planning Commission. He was a member of the former Huron County Wind Energy Zoning Committee, and is running for a seat on the county planning commission. “The fox was guarding the hen house way back when,” McLean told the Tribune recently.
Monday, the Township Board approved an ordinance that imposes a year-long moratorium on wind energy conversion systems, giving township officials time to review, adopt and amend local rules relating to wind farms. ...Apex Clean Energy representatives previously said the firm hopes to install 36 to 60 up-to-600-foot turbines across 16,000 rural acres in Shiawassee County.
Almer Township and its Board of Trustees face a federal lawsuit by a subsidiary of NextEra Energy Resources LLC over a proposed wind energy development. Tuscola Wind III LLC is seeking a court order to compel the township, located north of Caro, to allow development of a wind farm to proceed.
The suit essentially claims a systematic effort has been underway to “kill” the planned Tuscola III project, starting with the formation of the Ellington-Almer Township Concerned Citizens (EATCC) group, continuing with the election of several group members last November, and culminating with a one-year moratorium on wind projects and denial of special-land use permit (SLUP) by the board in January.
Contention over wind development started in 2011 when the Michigan Tax Commission (STC) arbitrarily changed the taxing methodology and depreciation on wind turbines. The change lowered taxable values on turbines along with a faster depreciation rate.
UPPER THUMB — Under a voluntary program by DTE Energy, customers can “reduce their carbon footprint” by contributing to the company’s green energy costs.
In the past two months, two rural Michigan counties have adopted one-year moratoriums on wind development, though they appear to be in vastly different positions when it comes to regulatory experience.
An Apex spokesman said his company is still interested in building a wind farm despite personnel changes and no contact with area townships in months.
Tuscola County commissioners are discounting over a year of contentious meetings, legal wrangling, and turnover of two township boards as a matter of personality differences, calling it a situation similar to the “Hatfields and McCoys” that’s hurting the county financially.
The Almer Township board of trustees denied an application for special land use permit that would have cleared the way for a Florida-based energy company to erect 19 wind turbines in the community.
Gauger said it’s been determined that the “old style” keyway pitch motor is “defective” and not able to handle the load that is being placed on them by longer blades. He said the motor is essentially trying to adjust itself so that there is less drag. “What happens is on the upswing or the downswing, it’s actually got some slack in there and that’s that clunking noise that people are hearing,” Gauger said.
A one-year moratorium has been enacted on a proposed wind energy farm to allow officials to check on regulations before making a decision on whether or not to allow work to move forward. The Shiawassee County Board of Commissioners approved the moratorium last month, but the Virginia-based company has said it will continue to push forward with plans for the Maple Rapids Wind project.
Another blade failure on a wind turbine recently occurred a couple miles south of Minden City on Minden Road in northern Sanilac County. Much of the blade has broken off. Work on replacing the blade will likely have to wait until Spring, leaving this unit out of service for some time.
The Almer Township planning commission denied issuing a special use land permit to allow a company to build wind turbines. ...The township ultimately decided the wind turbine company was not in compliance with the ordinance and posed too much of a health and safety risk.
Commissioners voted 5-1 to again halt wind-energy development during their final meeting of the year, Thursday, Dec. 29.
The Almer Township Planning Commission is required to make a recommendation today about an application for a special land-use permit, exactly 100 days since NextEra Energy Resources L.L.C. filed the paperwork for a $200 million wind turbine project.
I signed a wind turbine lease with Heritage Sustainable in 2008. If I had known then what I know now, I wouldn’t have signed. Since the turbines went up, I have had frequent headaches lasting three days. I never had these before.
Heritage Sustainable Energy lost a turbine to fire at the Stoney Corners Wind Farm located in parts of Missaukee and Osceola Counties, west of the City of McBain, Michigan. The project consists of 29 wind turbines at an installed capacity of 60.2 megawatts. Special thanks to Dianne Ziegler for allowing us to share her photos on the Windaction site.
“Unfortunately with the hazards because of the heavy machinery that's up there, there's not much that we could do until it falls down or wait until the point that it's safe and we can send somebody up there to make an inspection,” says Jay Deboer, the Deputy Chief for McBain Fire Department.