This important ruling by the Massachusetts appeals court found that the Town of Falmouth was required to obtain a special permit for the wind turbine (Wind 1) sited at the town's wastewater treatment center. The town argued that no permit was necessary since the turbine was viewed as a municipal purpose and therefore exempt from the zoning ordinance. The appeals court voided the decision of the lower court.
Acousticians Paul D. Schomer and George Hessler critiqued, and positively supported Steven Cooper's study of infrasonic emissions at the Cape Bridgewater wind facility. An initial critique is provided below and can be accessed by clicking the links on this page. In addition, Dr. Schomer and Mr. Hessler have supplemented their review with a response to the Australian wind energy supporters who have been critical of Steven Cooper's report. The supplemental commets can also be accessed from this page.
This important study concludes that more than 250,000 bats are killed annually due to interactions with German wind turbines, and total losses may account for more than two million killed bats over the past 10 years, if mitigation measures were not practiced. The abstract to the paper is provided below. The full paper can be accessed by clicking the links on this page.
In this important decision by the federal district court in Nevada, Judge Miranda M. Du found that the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) did not sufficiently explain their decision to authorize the Searchlight Wind Energy Project (87 turbines) proposed on land south of Las Vegas, Nevada. The court remanded the decision to BLM for analysis and ordered the agency prepare a supplemental environmental impact statement (EIS) to address new information regarding the presence of golden eagles within the project area. Concerns regarding the impact of blasting on desert tortoises were also cited. The full decision can be accessed by clicking the links on this page.
The Acoustic Group’s Principal, Mr Steven Cooper, was commissioned by wind developer Pacific Hydro to undertake an investigation into “noise” emitted at the Cape Bridgewater wind energy facility. Symptoms reported by residents living near the turbines include severe nausea, headaches, ear pressure, inability to concentrate, and severe and debilitating sleep problems. The primary document explaining the study and the results can be downloaded from this page. The full study, including six appendices, can be accessed by clicking the links on this page.
This report by the Yankee Institute examines the State of Connecticut's mandate requiring electricity providers to get a certain percentage of their power from renewable energy sources. The executive summary of the report is provided below. The full report can be accessed by clicking the links on this page.
Cape Wind, the first proposed offshore wind project in the United States, sent letters to the two utilities that contracted to purchase nearly 80% of the project's output, including energy, renewable energy credits (RECs) and capacity. The letters, one to National Grid, the other to NSTAR, stated the company was invoking the 'Force Majeure' clause of the contracts due to on-going litigation as its reason for not meeting the December 31, 2014 deadline for securing project financing. Both utilities responded within six days with official notice that the contracts were terminated. Cape Wind could have sought a six-month extension of the contracts by paying $1.29 million in consideration but opted not to take advantage of that option.
A petition signed by more than 120 people was submitted to Meade Township's clerk seeking a vote on whether areas in the township should be found suitable for wind energy development. The township clerk insisted the wording on the petition was inadequate, thus no ballot vote would happen. The deadline for submitting a petition has now passed. This letter, prepared by Attorney Joshua Nolan, explains Michigan's law on petitions and argues that the town clerk's decision to disqualify the petition was not lawful. A portion of the letter is posted below. The full letter can be accessed by clicking the link on this page.
Daniel Brian Williams filed a claim of statutory nuisance, common-law nuisance, and trespass to land agains Invenergy LLC in relation to the operating Willow Creek Energy wind farm consisting of 48 turbines near Willaims property. His original claim can be found here. The final ruling by the court can be accessed by clicking the links on this page. Ultimately, the court denied Willams' claims for nuisance per se, statutory nuisance, and trespass.
The Osage Nation has filed a request for injunctive relief involving violations of Enel Kansas LLC and the construction of wind turbine foundations on Osage lands without permission a license. A portion of the filing is excerpted below. The full filing can be accessed by clicking the links on this page.
The Deputy Secretary of Defense has filed an official objection to the Great Bay Wind Energy Center project proposed by Pioneer Green Energy to be located in Somerset County, Maryland, and in the vicinity of Naval Air Station Patuxent River (NAS Patuxent River) and the Atlantic Test Range (ATR). This notification follows a detailed study of methods to mitigate for impacts of spinning turbines on the naval base mission. The objections raised and conclusion of the DOD report are provided below. The full report can be accessed by clicking the links on this page.
The authors of this paper conducted an extensive literature review of scientific articles that address the association between wind turbine noise exposure and any suspected health-related outcomes. The abstract of their findings is provided below. The full paper can be accessed by clicking the links on this page.
The U.S. government filed a federal lawsuit against Osage Wind, an industrial wind energy project consisting of approximately 84-94 turbines that is now under construction. The US is seeking a full stop of project construction due to the unauthorized mining activities taking place at the site. A portion of the filing is provided below including the factual background. The full filing can be accessed by clicking the links on this page.
This paper focuses on public concerns about real estate value loss in communities in the vicinity of wind turbines. There are some conflicting results in recent academic and non-academic literatures on the issue of property values in general—yet little has been studied about how residents near turbines view the value of their own properties. The abstract and portions of the conclusion of this paper can be found below. The full paper can be accessed by clicking the links on this page.
PacifiCorp, a wind energy developer, filed a complaint with the US District Court of Utah seeking a declaratory and permanent injunction against the US Department of the Interior and the US Fish and Wildlife Service over the release of information about bird mortality at the company's operating wind projects. PacifiCorp insists that the requested information "constitutes confidential commercial information that is exempt from disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). The complaint filed by PacifiCorp and the response by the US Department of the Interior can be accessed at the links provided on this page.
The U.S. Department of Interior filed a suit against Enel Green Power claiming the company is breaking the law by damaging and destroying rocks that belong to the Osage Nation during the construction of the Osage wind energy facility. This filing submitted by Enel Green Power responds to the law suit. According to the lawsuit, EnelGreen Power will excavate more than 60,000 cubic yards of minerals, which the suit said is considered mining by law.The company is excavating sand, soil and rock, then crushing some of the materials to use as reinforcement for the concrete turbine foundations.The full document can be accessed by clicking the link on this page.
The aim of this study was to investigate the time dependent nature of unweighted wind farm noise and its perceptibility, with a focus on infrasound. Measurements were carried out during shutdown and operational conditions and results show that wind farm infrasound could be detectable by the human ear although not perceived as sound. The abstract and conclusion of the paper can be read below. The full paper can be accessed by clicking the link(s) on this page.
This important study examines the noise emissions of an operating wind facility during periods when the turbines are generating electricity and when the turbines are shut off. The abstract of conclusion of the study are provided below. The full study can be accessed at the links on this page. The study found "consistent and significant differences in noise spectra ...for the shutdown and operational cases, particularly for frequencies below 100 Hz. These differences can be observed at distances up to 8.7 km from the wind farm.
The Inspector General of the Department of Interior released this report involving an investigation of Steven Black, a senior official who is now retired from the US Fish and Wildlife Service. Mr. Black had apparent close ties with the renewable energy industry and was accused of pressuring subordinates to ignore environmental concerns in favor of supporting the construction of wind energy and other renewable projects. The summary of the investigation is provided below. The full report can be accessed by clicking the link(s) on this page.
In this paper, William K.G. Palmer discusses how interior room shape and size contribute to turbine noise complaints when wind turbines are sited nearby. The abstract of the paper is provided below. The full paper, with presentation slides, can be accessed by clicking the link(s) on this page. Mr. Palmer presented his findings at the October 2014 Acoustical Society of America proceedings.