Library filed under General from Michigan
The developer of a proposed 39-tower, $120 million wind energy project is suing to prevent three Clinton County townships from enforcing special ordinances that restrict turbines' height, noise, setbacks and shadow flicker beyond the terms specified in the county's zoning ordinance.
A wind turbine plant has closed just months after announcing a $2.5 million expansion and plans to add 90 workers. Ron McNees, co-owner of the plant's parent company, blamed the closing on the ongoing struggles with green energy. It joins a list of other faltering or failed green projects.
For now, wind power will stay out of Reading Township. That was the decision of residents of Reading, a township 11 miles southwest of Hillsdale, in a referendum on Feb. 26, the vote followed a long, fierce debate over Duke Energy's proposed Hillsdale Windpower Project.
The power purchase agreement with the MPPA for 16.8 MW of wind generation will start out at less than 4.5 cents per kwh and escalate at 2.5 percent per year over the course of 20 years. The HBPW anticipates Holland will start receiving energy through this contract by August 2014.
The university consulted with wind experts, and the subsequent studies in recent years show that it would take 27 years in energy cost savings to make back the money spent on a turbine-not factoring in the monetary cost of the maintenance the turbine would need during those years.
"Mr. Baldwin wants to interconnect a 100-kilowatt wind generator to the Alger Delta system. Mr. Baldwin's wind generator is 10 to 50 times larger than other renewable generation projects on our system. Mr. Baldwin's generator can create unsafe backfeed conditions on our system and/or create voltage problems that could damage other member-consumers electronics, equipment, and appliances."
Ken Wieber, a farmer who has fought the project at every step, compared the approval process to watching a traffic crash develop in slow motion over several years. He challenged commissioners to recognize what he said was growing evidence of adverse health effects related to wind turbines.
The windmill was considered unique when Traverse City Light & Power erected it in 1996 along M-72 in Leelanau County's Elmwood Township. But the utility still hasn't recovered the $785,000 cost, and the turbine recently was down for four months while officials hunted for a $38,000 part.
The wind turbine constructed in 1996 by Traverse City Light & Power on M-72 in Elmwood Township hasn't worked properly for over four months. The turbine initially broke down Aug. 28. It took four months to find and obtain a replacement part at a cost of almost $38,000.
And while 2013 is likely to see a decision on the $123 million project that dates to 2008, approval by the Planning Commission and Board of Commissioners still would not initiate construction. Years of litigation might be a more accurate forecast.
In a huge victory for wind-turbine heavy Huron County, Michigan lawmakers have approved language protecting revenue from local wind developments to a Senate Bill. ...Green said this assures personal property tax on new wind developments will not be eliminated.
The Mason County Board of Commissioners Tuesday agreed to halt new wind energy development in the county for one year - to Dec. 11, 2013 - or until there is resolution to issues raised by Commissioner Susan Boes.
A 5-0 vote by the Bengal Township board to adopt a more restrictive wind-turbine ordinance than the one passed earlier this year by Clinton County has not stopped Forest Hill Energy, LLC from pursuing is proposal to create and 40-tower project in the county. Bengal joins Dallas and Essex townships in approving the more restrictive ordinances.
The Huron County Board of Commissioners is still hoping for a legislative solution to its dispute over the taxation of wind turbines. Commissioner Steve Vaughan talked at Tuesday's meeting about a conference he had on Monday, discussing state Rep. Kurt Damrow's House Bills 5278 and 5279.
"With the instability, uncertainty and lack of direction related to the issues pertaining to wind energy throughout the State, the Huron County Board of Commissioners will not schedule any additional wind turbine action on the Board's agenda until there is resolution to these issues," the letter stated. The decision will not affect any ongoing wind turbine projects.
The Department of Environmental Quality has decided not to repair the wind turbine, which began malfunctioning last year, that once stood at the agency's Bay City office. Kevin King, chief of field operations facilities for the DEQ, said that the department donated the turbine to Kalamazoo Valley Community College due to the prohibitive cost of repairs.
Environmental groups are preparing their next move after voters overwhelmingly rejected a constitutional amendment to require 25 percent of the state’s electricity to come from renewable sources. Statewide, more than 62 percent opposed the renewable energy plan, based on unofficial returns collected by the Secretary of State.
The dispute's roots go back to the fall of 2011 when the state tax commission lowered the taxable value of wind turbines. Wind turbines went from a 100 percent assessment in year one, with a scheduled depreciation to 30 percent value in 15 years, to an 80 percent initial assessment, with a depreciation to 30 percent value in six years.
Police halted traffic downtown for a few minutes Thursday morning to allow very large wind turbine parts to pass through town on their way from the Mart Dock to a wind farm in the Gratiot County.
Richard James of E-coustic Solutions in East Lansing spoke in technical terms about the dangers of the noise emissions from the turbines. His primary message seemed to be that it isn't the audible sounds from the turbines that cause health problems. It's the deep, modulated rumble that causes nausea, migraines and other symptoms in sensitive individuals.