Articles filed under General from North Dakota
Baldwin Wind's plans to build another wind farm in northern Burleigh County got mixed reviews from nearby residents at a formal hearing for the company before the Public Service Commission. ..."There has become an atmosphere of resentment among everybody. You're either for it [the wind project] or against it," Miller said, adding the tide is turning against those who ask questions about wind development. "But now the attitude is becoming, ‘succumb, or else.'"
Vern Spitzer enjoys the view from his farm near Baldwin. "There`s something to say about our landscape in North dakota," he said. "Clear open views and the prairie." But Vern is concerned that view will become cluttered as more and more wind farms are approved.
The city of Wishek is in South Central District Court to force a Wishek homeowner to remove a wind turbine from his yard. No court date has been set in the matter, which is slowly spinning its way through a series of claims and counterclaims filed at the McIntosh County Courthouse in Ashley.
Plans for a wind tower manufacturing plant in Bismarck have become less certain because of the slowing of wind energy development.
Burleigh County inched closer to completing a wind tower policy for townships using county zoning. Its planning and zoning commission fielded comments this week at the Baldwin School about landowners' property rights, towers marring the landscape, setbacks and noise limits.
Otter Tail Power Co. wants to increase a monthly charge that its North Dakota customers pay for wind power. An average Otter Tail residential customer who uses 750 kilowatt-hours of electricity each month now pays a $2.77 charge for wind-generated power.
Though wind turbines utilize North Dakota's plentiful gusts to generate energy, some agency officials say they are shut down in times of extreme temperature. Daryl Hill, media relations supervisor with Basin Electric Power Cooperative, which has about 80 wind turbines south of Minot, said extreme cold can affect the turbines.
Developers of a wind energy project have asked North Dakota's Public Service Commission to cancel a public hearing on the proposed locations of six wind towers. The commission agreed on Wednesday to cancel the Jan. 26 hearing.
The Wishek City Council will go to court to force a couple to remove a wind turbine from their yard at the edge of town. The council voted unanimously Tuesday night to seek an order in district court to force Larry and Jeanne Walth to remove their turbine, which the city says the Walths installed in June after being denied a building permit to do so.
Drafting a uniform turbine policy for Burleigh County winded a few Thursday night at the Baldwin School. Nearly 100 crowded the small gymnasium to debate setbacks, noise, shadow flickering and health risks the wind farms might pose. Reclamation bonds for tearing them down were demanded as residents feared a company could suddenly pull out. Some simply didn’t want to mar their view of the horizon. Many residents called for at least a mile setback from their homes.
North Dakota regulators say they're leery of a wind developer's request to locate six turbines less than a quarter-mile from people's homes. The Just Wind company wants to build 160 turbines in rural Logan County, near Napoleon.
Assistant county state's attorney Cynthia Feland said a moratorium wasn't possible because the county simply didn't have that type of ordinance in its books yet. Nor is it needed since half of one project can't move ahead without a county wind policy in place.
Many people in North Dakota are thrilled that wind turbines are dotting the state. It is an alternate source of energy, and financially, it is good for the state's economy. But there are two sides to every story, and state legislators heard both sides on Wednesday in Valley City. The Energy Development and Transmission Committee first listened to NextEra Energy Resources representatives on wind facility construction and operation.
Just Wind asked the Stutsman County Commission to lower the application fee for a wind farm zoning permit during the commission's regular meeting Tuesday. The fee was set at $500 per wind turbine when the wind farm zoning ordinance was passed this spring. ..."According to your figures, a 250-turbine project will cost about $1.5 billion," said Noel Johnson, chief operating officer of the county. "And you're saying the $125,000 permit fee would kill it?"
Ever since settlers begain moving into Dakota Territory, which later became North and South Dakota, the landscape of the region has been under a constant change. In what is present-day North Dakota, only a few small tracts of land in the Red River Valley had been turned by a plow and were producing food crops by 1870.
The Morton County Commission heard a new pitch for a wind farm at its Oct. 8 meeting. In 2010, Nextera Energy of Juno Beach, Fla., wants to place 33 wind turbines between west of Mandan and New Salem. Thirty-three will be added for the next project. ...The company has submitted a letter of intent to the North Dakota Public Service Commission and a permit application to the Morton County Auditor's Office.
Fargo school and park officials are letting a potential wind turbine project blow by. The Fargo School Board and Fargo Park Board both unanimously voted Tuesday to drop the project. "A single wind turbine in today's economy is not financially feasible," said Dan Huffman, assistant superintendent of business services for Fargo Public Schools. "The revenue coming back from a tower that size doesn't really cover your upfront costs."
More than 60 people turned out Wednesday evening in Devils Lake to hear Jeff Metzger, president of Just Wind, LLC., explain its philosophy and to begin gauging local interest in a potential wind farm in the county. ...The company currently is developing large-scale wind farms in Logan and Emmons counties.
Newly approved projects should push North Dakota's wind energy generating capacity to more than 1,000 megawatts, state regulators say. When the decade began, the state had no commercial wind power. North Dakota's Public Service Commission on Wednesday approved construction of two wind developments that, when completed, will be capable of generating almost 300 megawatts of electricity.
State regulators have approved a new wind farm in east central North Dakota despite complaints about noise. North Dakota's Public Service Commission concluded most of the proposed wind towers will be far enough away from homes to meet federal noise guidelines.