Documents filed under Legal
The American Bird Conservancy has notified the Obama Administration that it intends to file a lawsuit challenging recent changes in wildlife protection laws allowing wind farms that kill eagles accidentally to continue operating for a period of 30 years without needing to apply for new permits. The intent to sue document filed with the Department of the Interior can be accessed by clicking the link(s) on this page.
The NH State Fire Marshal has recommended that Iberdrola's Groton Wind energy facility cease operation until fire safety concerns have been addressed. A letter as well as prefiled testimony submitted by the Fire Marshal's office asserting the facts in the case can be accessed by clicking the links on this page. The NH Site Evaluation Committee has initiated enforcement proceedings against Iberdrola for this an other complaints.
A Maine Superior Court judge has found in favor of wind turbine neighbors (Fox Island Wind Neighbors) complaining about excessive noise from three nearby 1.5 megawatt GE wind turbines. This is believed to be the first court case where a state judge has found against a state agency charged with enforcement; the Maine Department of Environmental Protection. The judge’s decision follows the key claim of the plaintiffs who proved that FIW (Fox Islands Wind) was not complying with the State’s noise limits and that the DEP failed to enforce against the turbine operator or to require compliance. An excerpt of the ruling is provided below. The full order can be accessed by clicking the links on this page.
The Maine Supreme Judicial Court ruled that the Maine PUC erred in approving a merger between wind developer, First Wind, and the utility Emera which owns generation assets in the State. This order vacates the PUC ruling from three years ago. The order can be accessed by clicking the links on this page. A portion of the Court's order can be found below.
The Lake Winds Energy Park has been found in violation of the Mason County Michigan zoning ordinance due to noise levels exceeding the permitted levels. The Mason County Planning Commission notified Consumers Energy of the exceedences and the matter is before the Courts. The attached document is the proposed sound mitigation plan. In addition, one of the residents pursuing the court case, Cary Shineldecker, filed a review of the mitigation plan. Both Consumers Sound Mitigation Plan and Mr. Shineldecker's review can be accessed by clicking the links on this page.
Paul Brouha, a resident of Sutton, Vermont, filed suit in Caledonia Superior Court against Vermont Wind, Northeast Wind Partners II, and First Wind Holdings over the Sheffield Wind Project, a 40 megawatt (16 turbine) facility. The filing states that the noise from and the visual impact of the project are out of character with the surrounding area, continue for extended periods, and constitute a nuisance. The complaint document can be accessed by clicking the link on this page.
The New York Supreme Court Judge Donald J. Cerio annulled the Special Use Permit issued in September 2014 by the Town of Richfield Planning Board to Monticello Hills, LLC to construct six 492-ft wind turbines and related infrastructure in the western portion of Richfield. The ruling stated that the project did not comply with two of the eight standards required by the Town of Richfield Land Use Ordinance. The full ruling can be accessed by clicking the links on this page.
Town officials in St. Croix county are suing Wisconsin's Public Service Commission after the regulator reversed itself and approved the Highland Wind Farm last year. Emerging Energies is seeking to erect 44 wind turbines, each standing up to 500-feet tall, in the Town of Forest. In February 2013, Wisconsin's Public Service Commission denied a permit for the project due to noise concerns, but Emerging Energies officials urged the commission to reopen the case, citing new technology that permitted the project owner to control the turbine speeds at night. The PSC agreed and approved the permit shortly after.
In this important ruling by the Idaho Supreme Court, the Court upheld the decision of the Idaho Public Utilities Commission to deny approval of power purchase contracts between an electric utility and two wind farms on the grounds that the contract rate for purchasing the power was contrary to public policy because it exceeded the utility’s avoided costs. The ruling examines the rights granted to States in defining 'avoided costs' as found under PURPA. A portion of the ruling is provided below. The full ruling can be accessed by clicking the link on this page.
Duke Energy Renewables Inc., a subsidiary of Duke Energy Corp., based in Charlotte, N.C., pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Wyoming today to violating the federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA) in connection with the deaths of protected birds, including golden eagles, at two of the company’s wind projects in Wyoming. This case represents the first ever criminal enforcement of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act for unpermitted avian takings at wind projects.
Two weeks ago, in the injunction hearing in the Town of Falmouth vs. the Falmouth Zoning Board of Appeals case where the ZBA decided that the wind turbines were a nuisance to Neil Andersen, both parties presented a 7AM to 7PM agreement to the judge. Falmouth Selectmen subsequently disregarded that agreement and continued to run the wind turbines 5AM to 9PM. One selectboard member advocated running the turbines 24/7 in spite of the Court's request. Hearing this, Superior Court Justice Christopher Muse granted the injunction sought by nearby residents. The order is available by clicking the link on this page.
The New Hampshire SIte Evaluation Committee (NHSEC) issued this procedural order involving Iberdrola's Groton Wind Energy facility. The controversial Groton Wind project consists of 24 Gamesa G87-2MW (48 MW total) turbines. The project was permitted by the Committee in May 2011 and placed in service December 2012. The order is in response to documented project construction changes made by Iberdrola which deviated from the approved project plans.
The Grand Jury alleges that ROWAN made numerous false and deceptive claims to his U.S. based distributors and customers about the Mag-Wind Turbine by exaggerating its power generation capacity, falsifying scientific and technical data, and falsifying information regarding his capacity to manufacture and distribute the Mag-Wind turbines.
Tribunal de Grande in Montpellier in France found that the visual and audible impacts of an operating wind facility on the owners of the Eighteenth Century Château de Flers in the northern French province of Nord-Pas-de-Calais were unreasonable and ordered the ten turbines be removed. A summary of the Tribunal's ruling is provided below. The full order can be found by clicking the link(s) on this page.
This complaint was filed in US District Court in reference to Invenergy's Willow Creek wind energy facility, Invenergy's furst project in the Sttae of Oregon. THe project which consists of 48 turbines with a maximum output of 78 megawatts became operational in December 2008. Noise complaint were ongoing since before the project was fully operational. An excerpt of the complaint is provided below. The full complaint can be accessed by clicking on the link(s) at the bottom of this page.
This document details the land lease agreement between host landowners in Tipton County Indiana and juwi Wind LLC, the German company proposing to erect up to 94 industrial scale wind turbines for a total installed capacity of 150 megawatts. The full lease agreement can be accessed by clicking on the link at the bottom of this page.
The wind project formerly known as AWA Goodhue Wind received this final blow by the Minnesota PUC refusing any further extensions of the permit. The utility giant, XCEL has also canceled the power purchase agreement for the energy. Excerpts of the order are provided below. The full order can be accessed by clicking on the link at the bottom of this page.
In this case, Glenmore Windfarm # 1, LLC obtained a conditional use permit from the town of Glenmore, Wisconsin, to develop a wind farm there. The company failed to obtain the necessary building permits in time to take advantage of an offer to sell the project's output to a Wisconsin utility. CEnergy sued the town claiming its Fourteenth Amendment due process were violated. In this decision, the district court dismisses CEnergy's complaint. A portion of the decision is provided below and can be accessed in full at the links on this page.
The Ontario Environmental Review Tribunal has permitted the appeal of the Ostrander Point Wind Energy Project to proceed on the grounds that serious and irreversible harm to the natural environment will occur if the project is built. The permit granted by the Director of Ontario's Ministry of the Environment was revoked. The overview of the decision is provided below. The full decision can be accessed by clicking on the link at the bottom of this page.
These appeal documents challenge decisions made by the Washington State Energy Facility Site Evaluation Council and former WA Governor Christine O. Gregoire in approving the Whistling Ridge Energy Project, a 75 megawatt wind energy project proposed to be sited in Skamania County in the Columbia River Gorge. The appeal was filed by Friends of the Columbia Gorge, Inc., and Save Our Scenic Area. Excerpts of the opening and reply briefs filed by the appellants are provided below. The complete documents can be accessed by clicking on the link(s) at the bottom of the page.