Library from Michigan
Nevertheless, the public remains mostly unaware of the degree to which the heavily subsidized or mandated renewable energy sources, including wind and solar, rely on fossil fuels. More than half the electric generation nominally credited to wind power is actually produced by fossil fuels, mostly natural gas.
Waters says DTE is exploring several potential wind energy projects, both outside and inside Huron County, as a replacement for the Meade Wind Park ...In a May referendum, 60 percent of Meade Township voters decided against the Meade Wind Park.
As officials further debate the chapters of a new rule book for wind projects, the threat of litigation against the county is becoming a recurring concern. In July, the attorney for the board of commissioners, Stephen Allen, cautioned that new wind energy regulations should be based on reason, rather than opinion.
But, she says she follows a routine in order to adapt and “get some sleep.” “Close windows (even in summer, turn on the air conditioner in the window). Then I turn on the TV (usually to CNN) and put earplugs in my ears (helps drown out the turbine sound). It has enabled (me) to get to sleep and have a fairly good sleep pattern,” the letter states.
Buda said lightning has struck 11 to 12 turbine blades owned by DTE in the Thumb area, while another five have been jolted at the utility’s Echo Wind Park, grounded mostly in Oliver and Chandler townships. Add that to three more strikes that Buda said occurred this week.
Seneca Township residents voted 135-130 Tuesday to repeal a township wind turbine ordinance approved unanimously by the township board of trustees in March.
Three Clinton County townships are seeking a hearing before the Michigan Supreme Court in their legal battle against a proposed wind farm.
The extension will give officials more time to finish an overhaul of the 2010 wind energy ordinance. The new version will act as a more defined rule book developers must follow if they want to build projects in the county leading the state in the number of wind turbines, with 328.
On Tuesday, Board Chair John Nugent made county commissioners well aware of their power to change any proposed new regulations for wind turbines coming from county planners. But basing a change on opinion, rather than reason, it wouldn’t be wise, according to the board of commissioners’ attorney, Steve Allen.
The energy proposal was more than a year in the making, and to the disappointment of environmental advocates, it does not include mandates for renewable energy or energy efficiency. But in a new twist in an old argument, people would be able to control their own renewable energy future.
Clark Brock, the county planning commission chairman, came to a realization Wednesday. “We are not going to get through this document tonight,” he said, after planners spent more than two hours forging through proposed new rules governing wind turbines.
The Mason County, Michigan Planning Commission adopted thie wind energy ordinance effective July, 2015. This ordinance was developed following noise and shadow flicker complaints tied to Consumers Energy Lake Winds wind project. Portions of the ordinance are posted below. The full ordinance can be accessed by clicking the links on this page.
Following the ordinance approval, Raymond Ellis II, of Snover, submitted a petition June 16 asking for a referendum of the ordinance, meaning that the ordinance is frozen until township residents vote on it in November’s general election. Greg Dorman, Moore Township supervisor, said if residents vote down the ordinance than the township board will have to re-write it.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is developing an environmental impact statement to evaluate the potential of issuing incidental take permits for protected bird and bat species if regional wind industry development grows. According to a news release by the service, the states within the plan are Missouri, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin. It is called the Midwest Wind Energy Multi-Species Habitat Conservation Plan.
Township officials have not stood by waiting for the decision. Essex Township enacted new regulations on wind farms, but did not include restrictions on height, distance and setbacks. Dallas Township enacted an interim zoning ordinance in February that restricts the height of wind energy systems to 380 feet. Bengal Township is also considering a zoning ordinance.
After hearing several people in the audience urge them to approve changes to the Mason County zoning ordinance regarding placement of future wind turbines in the county, the county board did unanimously approve those changes.
During most meetings in the past year, planners have sat in front of five-inch binders detailing wind developers’ project plans. Other communications, from letters to emails regarding wind energy, flood the building and zoning office. When planers ask Smith of progress toward unfinished business items unrelated to wind energy, he typically says he has not had time.
DTE Energy says a decision has not been made on whether it will build the remainder of a 58-turbine project planned for Colfax and Chandler townships — another factor hinting at a shift in wind development in Huron County. In a May 5 referendum, 60 percent of Meade Township voters decided they didn’t want to see 48 wind turbines built in their township as part of DTE’s Meade Wind Park. Six turbines were planned for Colfax and four in Chandler.
The sky above a tabletop-flat expanse of eastern Michigan farmland near Lake Huron is a well-traveled pathway for migratory birds journeying between summer nesting areas in Canada's boreal forests and wintering grounds to the south. Thanks to reliably brisk winds, the ground below is dotted with hundreds of electricity-generating turbines.
Heritage's lawsuit focuses on a pair of recently-adopted Garden Township noise ordinances - Ordinance 2014-1, and a revised version called Ordinance 2015-2. If it goes into effect on June 1 as scheduled, Ordinance 2015-2 will limit noise to a maximum of 35 dB(A) and/or 50 dB(C) between the hours of 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. Heritage alleges that these restrictions would essentially make it impossible for the wind farm to continue operating at full capacity during these times.