Library filed under Zoning/Planning from Nebraska
The county’s repeated failure to adopt zoning regulations for wind energy causes concerned citizens to feel like they don’t have a voice. Ignored people quickly become angry people. They are forced to file lawsuits so they can finally be heard. LB 373 makes wind energy zoning mandatory. Creating new county zoning regulations is a very public process. It provides numerous opportunities for everyone to participate regardless of their position on the subject. No one can say their voice wasn’t heard.
Lancaster County will still have the most stringent setbacks for wind farms of any county in the state, but they will now be a little less stringent.
Vest, who wants to find a compromise on the county setback rule, which at 1 mile is among the most stringent in the state, then asked the board to put the issue on the March 19 board agenda.
Vest said his goal from the beginning has been to allow for development of the wind energy project while providing as much protection as possible for those who don’t want turbines next door. "I am trying to find that balance," he said.
Wind energy developers in Lancaster County will be required to place turbines at least 1 mile from any home that is not being paid to participate in the project. The 1-mile rule, the strictest in the state, will give homeowners some comfort and protect the quality of life in rural areas, said County Commissioner Deb Schorr.
Terry Madson is from Nuckolls County and belongs to Preserve Rural Nebraska. His county in south-central Nebraska, he said, has no zoning, and some of those that do created zoning before anyone was thinking of wind turbines. Other county zoning may not have taken into consideration escalating tower heights, larger generators, more noise and shadow flicker because of size changes. The bill gives those counties and others in the state the chance to get current, Madson said.
Rath and others who are concerned about the Nebraska Public Power District's R Project power line and the wind farms that are popping up across the land — and the whooping cranes — have found a champion in the Nebraska Legislature. Sen. Tom Brewer of Gordon has taken up their cause with proposed legislation and advocacy, working from his Capitol office in Lincoln.
Despite strong opposition from residents of southwestern Lancaster County, the Lincoln-Lancaster County Planning Commission on Wednesday approved changes to the noise limits in its zoning code for wind farms. The change was sought by NextEra Energy Resources ...that is considering building a wind farm with up to 50 turbines in southern Lancaster and northern Gage counties.
It’s taken about seven months to put the proposed regulations together, so it was not surprising Wednesday that the Madison County board of commissioners spent as much time as necessary listening to testimony and discussing the updated wind energy regulations.
Plans for a wind farm in northern Gage and southern Lancaster counties that failed to materialize may be resurrected by a different company. The Blue Prairie Wind Project, an affiliate of NextEra Energy Resources, is proposing to build a wind energy generation facility in the two counties.
Members of the Adams County Planning and Zoning Commission are looking to change the county’s wind energy regulations. ...All the counties also have similar regulations for commercial wind energy systems. However, towers in Adams County shall not exceed 300 feet for the tower and 400 feet for the entire structure.
The regulations that were approved establish a set of rules more stringent than state regulations. At earlier county board meetings, it was disclosed that some landowners in the county had been approached by two wind energy companies seeking easements.
On Wednesday, the Cherry County Board of Commissioners voted 2 to 1 to reject recommendations by the county's planning and zoning board in regards to wind energy.
A vast majority were against any wind development. “You're going to destroy our environment with tall, massive wind turbines so (people in Omaha) can feel comfortable,” Stanton resident Tony Wortman said. “Do they put wind turbines in Omaha? Do you put wind turbines in Stanton? No, but you'll go out in the country and you'll irritate a neighbor… so bad that they're talking about moving. ”
Sound levels and setbacks continued to be problematic for the Antelope County Board of Commissioners when adopting changes to and approving a resolution for zoning regulations at the commissioners board meeting Tuesday, Nov. 7.
Approval or any other action on proposed wind-farm regulations in Pierce County could come as soon as two weeks. Then again, it could be later.
Much of the discussion by commission members centered around set-backs, how far away wind towers would be set back from existing buildings and houses. There was also discussion about the costs of decommissioning the towers, how the costs to remove them would be covered and by whom, should the towers be abandoned 15-20 years in the future.
Marvin said the new measurement for setback distances would be measured from the center of the base of the turbine instead of the center of the hub. The commission targeted change in the setback distance. Currently, turbines must be 2,000 feet from the residence of a non-participating landowner. The new regulations require a 2,700 ft. distance.
Monday’s nearly 3½ hour public hearing on zoning regulations nearly wrapped up without much comment on the wind turbines.
A controversial proposal for a wind farm in Nebraska’s scenic Sand Hills was shot down by the Cherry County Board on Monday. ...Johnson said that the backers of the wind farm must now decide how to proceed.