Articles filed under Energy Policy from Wisconsin
Commissioner Ellen Nowak said the revolving loan fund would "hold the renewable industry more accountable for its own development" and free up more dollars for energy efficiency incentives, which are more cost-effective initiatives for utility ratepayer dollars.
Despite acknowledging that it will not pass, Democratic legislators introduced the Wisconsin Renewable Energy Act, which would mandate a 30 percent renewable energy production requirement for utility companies by 2030. Wisconsin’s current renewable energy goal for utility companies is 10 percent by 2015.
With a local economy that has struggled with high unemployment, they defended their incentive package, which includes giving away industrial land and making a $1 million investment in a plan to turn garbage into electricity.
"This bill makes it easier for families that have been hurt by industrial wind turbines to receive compensation for their losses," Senator Lasee said. "It is unconscionable for a family that has invested hundreds of thousands of dollars in their home that they have lived in for years to be forced to move because an industrial wind tower is built nearby. Or wish that they could move and just can't afford it."
There are many cases where people living near large turbines have claimed to have suffered negative health effects due to their continuous operation. ...This week there was a small bit of hopeful news for those opposed to the wind farm concept when State Sen. Frank Lasee (R-DePere) suggested that the PUC adjust its rules and move future turbines further away from homes. He also suggests the state take a closer look the possible health impact of wind farms.
State Sen. Frank Lasee, R-Ledgeview, says low-frequency noise from wind turbines causes a variety of health problems, and says the Public Service Commission needs to enact new rules to protect the health of those living near turbines. "It's time for the PSC to admit the current rules are not good enough."
Sen. Frank Lasee, R-Ledgeview, recently introduced a bill that would allow officials in cities, villages, towns and counties to establish the minimum distance between a wind turbine and a home - even if those rules are more restrictive than any the state tries to enact.
"Local communities should be able to create their own rules for public safety," Lasee said. "We shouldn't leave it to bureaucrats in Madison to make these decisions that affect home values and people's lives. Madisonites aren't the ones living next to the turbines.
Officials with the Public Service Commission are still holding on to a set of wind siting rules that were supposed to go into effect almost nine months ago. Read more: http://host.madison.com/wsj/news/local/ask/catching-up-wind-turbine-regulations-still-up-in-air/article_2cceeccc-1f44-11e1-ad64-0019bb2963f4.html#ixzz1ffypIae8
Two families whom I represent have moved out of their homes because of illnesses they felt after eight wind turbines were built nearby; others want to move but can't afford to. A Fond du Lac family abandoned their $300,000 remodeled farm house because their 16-year-old daughter developed intestinal lesions and was hospitalized for them. After they moved away, she recovered.
Walker and others, including Rep. Frank Lasee, R-Ledgeview, have said the rules should be reviewed again, with more consideration given to those living near wind farms. Some residents have complained of noise and visual impacts from wind turbines, which can be up to 300 feet tall.
Hundreds of jobs and millions of dollars in potential economic development are stuck in limbo as officials continue to argue over new wind siting rules. ...Now, some seven months later, PSC officials say they are no closer to a deal than when they started. Meanwhile, wind farm developers such as Midwest Wind Energy and Redwind Consulting are sitting on their hands, and their money.
State Sen. Frank Lasee plans this afternoon to introduce a bill that would prohibit the construction of wind turbines in Wisconsin until the state Public Service Commission receives a report on the health impacts of the turbines on people and animals.
Probably the oddest aspect of the business-vs.-environment debate is the role of wind energy. One might assume a fast-growing "clean energy" industry such as wind would appeal equally to both sides. But so far, that has not been the case. The argument over wind power has divided entire communities in the state's rural areas.
Under Assembly Bill 146 and Wisconsin's renewable portfolio standard, 10 per cent of electricity must come from renewable sources by 2015. The Bill was not without opposition. Critics said it was another blow to the state's struggling wind power industry.
The Legislature's joint committee for review of administrative rules voted earlier this month to temporarily block a wind farm site rule developed by the state Public Service Commission. But that action was only good for 30 days. To keep the rule from taking effect Friday, the committee will meet again Tuesday to consider a bill that would send the issue back to the PSC.
A legislative committee voted 5-2 to suspend statewide wind farm siting rules. The Public Service Commission's rules were supposed to take effect Tuesday, but the vote of the Joint Committee for Review of Administration Rules stopped the measure.
On the very day it was supposed to take effect, a legislative committee will be voting Tuesday on a measure that would suspend a rule package that creates uniform statewide standards for the development of wind farms in Wisconsin.
The move to suspend the rules comes after legislative leaders did not schedule a vote on Walker's wind siting bill, which would have required wind turbines to be located 1,800 feet from the nearest property line. It was the first bill proposed by the new governor during its special session that didn't pass the state Assembly.
"There are few long term jobs after the turbines are built, and the there will be no other development for years and years, no new homes or farm buildings, no industry, nothing," said Theresa Lark of Holland. "This is not progress. It's stunting the growth and development that our economy needs."