Articles from Minnesota
The Laborers’ union, representing several construction unions, asserted that the socio-economic benefits of Bitter Root would be “substantially diminished” by a lack of Minnesota workers. RES has used nonunion trades workers on other wind farms in Minnesota, and the Laborers’ union says those workers were mostly from out of state. The Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (PUC) decided the unions’ claims need a closer look.
The Freeborn project marks the first "contested case" over a wind farm before the PUC, prompting the appointment of an administrative law judge to sort out the facts and make recommendations. The judge's ruling isn't binding on the PUC, but such recommendations often carry weight with the commission. ...Invenergy filed a proposal with the PUC that would include noise allowances of no more than 3 decibels above the standard.
The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) said the state's limit for wind-farm noise applies not only to sounds from turbines but also should include background noise such as road traffic, said the filing with the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (PUC).
The most powerful wind turbines ever seen in the state could soon be built in southwest Minnesota. The state needs to approve the proposed wind farm. The industry is ramping up turbine size in the name of efficiency, but the skyscraper-sized machines are also attracting more public opposition.
Shawn Dooling, 52, of Excelsior founded Renewable Energy SD, LLC in 2009. He marketed the company as one that sells, installs and maintains wind turbines to help local farmers save on their energy expenses, but he stole millions from customers in a scheme between 2010 and 2013.
The attempt by a London, England, company to build a wind farm in Yellow Medicine County is meeting resistance from a small community just across the South Dakota border ...The request is that RES and the MPUC respect and honor the ordinance that requires wind tower setbacks to be at least 3 miles away from the water.
Expiring tax credits and pushback from opposition groups pose barriers for the wind power in Minnesota, but the industry shows no signs of slowing down in the breezy southwestern part of the state.
WILMONT — Nobles 2 is sailing along smoothly.
Administrative Law Judge LauraSue Schlatter last month recommended that the Freeborn Wind farm be denied an operating permit, saying the southern Minnesota project failed to show it can meet state noise standards. Freeborn Wind’s developer, Invenergy, has objected.
Wind “farms” can present land-use conflict issues for nearby landowners by creating nuisance-related issues associated with turbine noise, eyesore from flicker effects, broken blades, ice-throws, and collapsing towers, for example. Courts have a great deal of flexibility in fashioning a remedy to deal with nuisance issues. A recent order by a public regulatory commission is an illustration of this point.
State agencies, in their rush to site wind, have dropped the ball — they have failed in their charge to regulate and protect the public and the public interest. We need a respectful siting process, and that is 20 years overdue.
In a rare move, a state judge has recommended that a proposed southern Minnesota wind farm — Freeborn Wind — be denied an operating permit, saying the project has failed to show it can meet state noise standards. Meanwhile, the owner of Bent Tree Wind Farm, which is also in Freeborn County, recently agreed to buy the homes of two families who have long complained about excessive noise.
The Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (PUC) on Thursday ordered owner Wisconsin Power and Light to "show cause" why its permit for the Bent Tree wind farm northwest of Albert Lea, Minn., shouldn't be suspended or revoked.
WILMONT — More than 100 people filled the Wilmont Community Center Wednesday night for a presentation on the upcoming Nobles 2 Wind project.
Days after several Freeborn County wind turbines had to be shut down after a chunk of ice fell off a blade and landed on a passing semi truck, a family whose home lies within feet of the proposed Freeborn Wind Farm project said they're concerned about something similar happening at their home. ..."I'm sorry but [...] there's no amount of money that's enough comfort for my kids being put in harm's way," he said.
Spokesperson Justin Foss said someone reported ice from a turbine on the Bent Tree Wind Farm hitting a semi-truck on Highway 13. The farm is located in Hartland.
Supporters and detractors of the proposed Freeborn Wind Farm discussed their views Tuesday during a public forum at Albert Lea Armory.
"Unwanted noise on our property, shadow flicker on our property the chance that marketability of our homes, if we decide we want to move is reduced. The potential of association from the turbines to have some ill health effects,” said Doreen Hansen of the Association Of Freeborn County landowners. “So we would like to see respectful sighting. Landowners that choose to have a turbine on their land, that's fine, but none of the ill effects should go on the land of a non-participant."
The Willmar Municipal Utilities Commission last week received an update from staff about problems with Wind Turbine 4. It is inoperable due to a broken hydraulic pitch control board failure, which moves the turbine's blades.