Archive for the ‘1 mile setback’ Category

Trempealeau County, Union Township, Chilton Township and others

March 22, 2008

*Operations – Low Frequency Noise*: A Wind Energy System that emits sound (or causes structural or human body vibration) with strong low frequency content where the time-average C-weighted sound level exceeds the A-weighted sound level by at least 20 dB when measured inside a structure and adversely affects the subjective habitability or use of any existing dwelling unit, hospital, school, library, nursing home, or other sensitive noise receptor shall be deemed unsafe and must be shut down immediately. Exceedances of any of the limits of the Table in Section 79-19 (a)(5) will also be considered as proof that the Wind Energy System is unsafe and must be shut down immediately.

http://www.windaction.org/documents/14789

This is the most important part of the document as far as I’m concerned, even though I haven’t read it all yet.
I argued with Marie LeGrow from the MOE  that “C weighting” should be included because of the low frequency or vibration. I cited the example from Calgary concerning problems with side yard air conditioners. Even though they met the “A weighted” requirements people were still complaining that the sound and vibration was penetrating there homes. Once “C weighting” was used they understood the complaints. I believe this the same with wind turbines.
I was told by LeGrow that the MOE would look into it. A further phone call to her office I was advised that the MOE did not feel “C weighting was required.
The MOE is putting people at risk and they know it. The MOE has ignored or rejected every suggestion from the experts and public to improve the siting of wind turbines. Not acceptable in  a Democracy.
Please be advised that LeGrow is the author of the E7 manual

File/*E7*html_

EIA_Manual_EN.pdf , now the E8, concerning the internationalization of energy. The E7 was set up be Maurice Strong.
Decisions for the Ont. Electrical system are being made from outside the Province and the Country.

From the E8 document

Projects targeting gases (HFC, N2O, CH4) with higher global warming potential than CO2 in order to generate a high volume of CO2 credits and revenue so as to be financially attractive.
http://windfarms.wordpress.com/2007/07/23/the-importance-of-large-hydro-clean-coal-and-nuclear-technologies-within-a-future-framework-on-climate-change/

Wind farms have little to nothing to do with energy production and everything to do with carbon credit and revenue. They win we lose.

I think we need to try and force the “C weighting” issue.

A hats off to the people of Wisconsin

Any comments or ideas on this

Ron

Before You Sign a Wind Turbine Contract

March 14, 2008

Editor
I know that many farmers are struggling these days but please be very careful what you agree to.

I haven’t seen a contract myself,  but I did have a farmer relate his version of the sales pitch.

He was told that if the wind turbines were not installed very quickly the lights would go out and he would be responsible. He was told he needed to do his part to keep the lights on and save the environment. Neither statement is true.
The farmers I know are very honest hard working people. They do not spend a lot of time on the internet doing research.

They are led to believe they are doing their civic duty and in return they are offered a very meager amount of money to give up their land rights.

The worst part is the govt. is a helping to facilitate this  fraud with the farmers own tax dollars.

[splashcast c TEWF7605YP]

Lots of interesting things in wind contracts

Having read several different industrial wind energy landowner contracts, I really have to hand it to wind developers. In exchange for a few thousand dollars, the wind company can preempt landowners’ rights to: extract sand and gravel from their property, develop mineral rights on their property, allow hunting, build additional outbuildings or plant trees, etc.

If, in the sole discretion of the wind developer, such activities would interfere with or alter the flow of wind currents over the property, or interfere in any way with the building or operation of the wind project.

The wind company has the sole discretion as to what electrical generation equipment will be placed where and when on leased property. In addition, these leases contain language which allows the wind developer to use other land owned by the landowner even if such acreage is not included in the lease agreement.

These landowner contracts subordinate the landowners’ rights in favor of the wind developers. Once landowners sign an option they are under obligation to sign the lease agreement if the developer decides to exercise the option.

One of the reasons these contracts are so restrictive is explained in comments made by NYSERDA about wind energy lease agreements: “Before allowing wind turbines to be purchased and installed, project investors, financing organizations, and power purchasers will want to be sure the lease provides clear, unimpeded rights to use of the land over the expected life of the project.”

“Termination clauses need to be ‘reasonable’ so that the risk of installing the wind turbine equipment and having the lease terminated is low and manageable. If the risk of termination is deemed too high, it will be difficult for the project developer to obtain financing for the project.”

These leases typically prevent a landowner from complaining or taking action against the wind company because of noise, flicker, visual, audio, vibrations, air turbulence, electromagnetic, electric and radio frequency disturbances and other side effects caused by the operation of the project.

Yes, I really have to hand it to these wind developers, and if you have signed one of these leases, you probably already have.

By Edna McGinnett

Edna McGinnett is a Ripley resident.

The Observer

Signing it all away for crumbs from the table

From Kirbymtn blogspot

“A copy of a boilerplate easement agreement between a windfarm developer and a landowner has crossed my desk. Those who have already seen such contracts have remarked on the irony of landowners defending their right to do what they want with their own land against the considerations of their neighbors but signing away that very right to the wind company.”

“The contract is for 2 years, and then 20 years once a turbine is installed, with the developer retaining the option to extend it another 30 years after that. Of course, the developer can terminate the deal at any time. The owner can’t.” Read more here

Wolfe Island Residents for the Environment

March 2, 2008

Read Ministry of Energy’s proposed changes i.e. all the legal requirements that will enable wind and other energy projects to be approved and erected without public consultation, under what they are calling “the substituted process”.

All Ministries apparently should abdicate all their regulatory and approval responsibilities in favour of this new “substituted process”, and in this new perfect, energy driven world, the Ontario Energy Board (OEB) will become the sole approval authority for siting and environmental issues.  The new “Environmental Assessment Report”, or EAR, as they are calling it, will take care of all these permitting delays by removing municipalities and other stakeholders from the entire process in the name of the public good – ie must have new energy at all costs.  Our democratic rights are being taken away from us. Please write to the Ministry of Energy to make known your position to this proposed change.

http://www.energy.gov.on.ca/index.cfm?fuseaction=electricity.reports
Go to – Agency Review Panel: Phase 2 Report

Visit Wolfe Island Residents for the Environment

Wind turbine noise affects health

February 24, 2008

Editor
This is a damning report of the govt., the wind industry and the Provincial and Federal health departments.


research has suggested that those effects don’t cause long-term health impacts after people are no longer living near wind farms”.

Health Canada has never done a study of the health affects of wind turbines on the health of the people. I’ve asked, as have many others, both the Provincial and Federal Health Ministries why there hasn’t been a health study conducted. Now we know.

They already know industrial wind turbines are being placed too close to people and they know they have negative affects. Once you have been run off your property, the ill affects you experienced living next to a 400 ft. high wind turbine will disappear. Using their logic, there is no need for a health study.

d_entremont-point-pubnico.jpg
Daniel d’entremont and his family were forced from their home. The good news is their health is slowly returning to normal. They can’t live in their home any longer, but who cares about a home when you have your health.

Your government doesn’t give a damn, it’s that simple.

.

Wind farm raises health concerns; No long-term effect, says Kingston doctor

Posted By Jennifer Pritchett

Kingston’s public health department will lobby government for more research into the health effects of wind turbines.

Dr. Ian Gemmill, Kingston’s medical officer of health, says there hasn’t been enough monitoring done to determine whether they’re harmful.

Gemmill made the declaration at a board of health meeting this week in response to residents who live near the proposed site of a wind farm to be built on Wolfe Island.

The citizens had asked public health to assess the health risks associated with the turbines, but based on the information that is available, Gemmill said, there is nothing to indicate that wind turbines have any long-term effect on people’s health.

“We haven’t got a lot of evidence to go on right now,” said Gemmill. Gemmill said that though there are concerns about low-level noise, appearance and stress caused by the turbines, research has suggested that those effects don’t cause long-term health impacts after people are no longer living near wind farms.

As well, much of the research that is available, he said, doesn’t appear to come from reputable sources.

“Our conclusion is that while there may be some short-term concerns, this will not have a long-term health effect,” said Gemmill.

Board member Vicki Schmolka told the board that she wasn’t sure that she agreed with Gemmill’s conclusion. She indicated that she felt there are health concerns associated with the turbines that the board should investigate further.

“Seems to me what we’re really saying is that this person needs to move away and they’ll be OK,” she said.

Schmolka, who is also a city councillor, asked Gemmill if he was comfortable saying that there were definitively no long-term health effects from wind turbines.

“I’m saying it’s reversible,” he responded. “I know that people are bothered by this, but the question here is when do we become involved.”

thewhigJennifer Pritchett

Wind turbine noise affects health

According to the results of a new peer-reviewed study made available to us by the U.S. government’s National Institutes of Health, the connection between noise and coronary heart disease — particularly at night — is serious.

Wind energy ordinances must include a top limit for how much turbine noise can safely be added to our environment.

More than 15 million Americans currently have some form of coronary heart disease (CHD), which involves a narrowing of the small blood vessels that supply blood and oxygen to the heart. Risk factors for CHD include diabetes, high blood pressure, altered blood lipids, obesity, smoking, menopause, and inactivity.

To this list we can now add noise, thanks to a recent study and assessment of the evidence by the WHO Noise Environmental Burden on Disease working group.

“The new data indicate that noise pollution is causing more deaths from heart disease than was previously thought,” says working group member Deepak Prasher, a professor of audiology.

The working group compared households with abnormally high noise exposure with those with quieter homes. They also reviewed epidemiologic data on heart disease and hypertension, and then integrated these data.

“Many people become habituated to noise over time,” says Prasher. “The biological effects are imperceptible, so that even as you become accustomed to the noise, adverse physiological changes are nevertheless taking place, with potentially serious consequences to human health.”

Chronic high levels of stress hormones such as cortisol, adrenaline, and noradrenaline can lead to hypertension, stroke, heart failure, and immune problems. According to research, arousal associated with nighttime noise exposure increased blood and saliva concentrations of these hormones even during sleep.

“Taken together, recent epidemiologic data show us that noise is a major stressor that can influence health through the endocrine, immune, and cardiovascular systems,” says Prasher.

The broader implications of chronic noise exposure also need to be considered.

“Noise pollution contributes not only to cardiovascular disease, but also to hearing loss, sleep disruption, social handicaps, diminished productivity, impaired teaching and learning, absenteeism, increased drug use, and accidents,” says physician Louis Hagler, who coauthored a review on noise pollution in the March 2007 Southern Medical Journal.

Hagler added, “The public health repercussions of increasing noise pollution for future generations could be immense.”

M. Nathaniel Mead

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences

Wind Watch News

Letter from Dr. Pierpont to Kim Iles

February 18, 2008

Editor:
The Ontario govt. ie well aware of the problems caused by wind turbines. They are well documented. They know they are putting the health of citizens at risk. The govt. must stop this insanity now and they must be held responsible for their actions.

I would like to thank Nina Pierpont for her tireless efforts to bring these problems into the open. There are thousands of people around the world fighting the wind farm scourge. Fighting against governments that show no respect for their citizens. The fight will continue until the battle is won.

To all those who still think wind farms are about clean energy and fighting global warming – WAKE UP!

The whole thing is one big FRAUD

Dear Ms. Iles,

February 16,2008

Dear Ms. Iles,
Yes, there are indeed medical problems caused by noise and vibration from current, upwind, three-bladed industrial wind turbines. I am in the process of preparing a paper for publication in a medical journal documenting the consistency of these problems from family to family, the study subjects being a collection of families in several countries who have been
driven from their homes by problems with sleep, headaches, tinnitus, equilibrium, concentration, memory, learning, mood, and child behavior-problems which started when the turbines went into operation and which resolve when the family is away from the turbines. These problems all occur in proximity to recently built industrial turbines, put into operation in 2005,2006, and 2007.

The ear is indeed the most sensitive receptor for noise and vibration. This does not mean,
however, that if you cannot hear it, it cannot hurt you. The ear does more than hear. A number of the effects of noise and vibration from wind turbines appear to be mediated by
the inner ear, which is a complex organ, only one of whose functions is detecting certain sorts of vibration as noise. The inner ear also detects movement, acceleration, and position relative to gravity. Inner ear (vestibular) signals ramify throughout the central nervous system, influencing brain functions related to sleep, vision, hearing, movement, digestion, thinking, and learning and memory. My data indicate that one of the principal effects in Wind Turbine Syndrome is vestibular detection of either airborne pressure waves or solid borne vibration (via bone conduction), which is influencing the vestibular system as if the
body or head were moving, when it’s not.

Continue Reading

A Fight Against Windmills In Denmark

February 18, 2008

Editor:
Wind farms are quiet and cause no problems. That’s what we were told. Yet, in Denmark  people don’t want wind turbines near them because of noise, flicker and other problems. Both the industry and the govt. continue to ignore any and all of the problems associated with the wind industry. Why?

Property values do go down once a wind farm is built near homes.

That’s a fact.  

Local politics could short-circuit a national plan to concentrate wind turbines in the country’s windiest areas

Local councils in the country’s 28 windiest towns are digging in their heels against a national plan that would cluster the next generation of high-efficiency wind turbines within their borders, Politiken newspaper reports.

In order to meet its goal of doubling wind power capacity by 2025 as inexpensively as possible, the government will need to place 90 percent of an estimated 1000 land-based windmills, each standing up to 150m, in the windiest areas.

Facing the prospect of asking their residents to accept an average of 35 giant wind turbines, local councillors are already warning national politicians that they are preparing to put up a fight.

‘I think that the 60,000 people that live here in our town would head straight to Copenhagen to protest,’ said John Christensen, chairman of the planning board of the Frederikshavn council in windy northern Jutland.

A number of other councils have already rejected plans to begin building new land-based turbines, many out of concern about problems related to noise and shadows created by the giant turbines.

‘There aren’t a lot of politicians out there saying, “We just have to have this, and we’re willing to risk our seats for it,” ‘ said Søren Hermansen, head of the Energy Academy on the island of Samsø, which this year marks 10 years of energy independence. ‘They don’t dare. If they force windmill projects on their constituents, they won’t be re-elected.’

Two other models for building new windmills, such as offshore windparks and an even distribution throughout the entire country have been looked at by the national Planning Committee for Land-based Wind Turbines.

Both, however, were found to be less cost-effective than concentrating new windmills in the windiest regions.

Source 

C-K business owner makes case for wind turbine setbacks

February 13, 2008

C-K business owner makes case for wind turbine setbacks

The need for proper setbacks in Chatham-Kent between wind turbines and homes and natural settings was voiced loudly Tuesday by Chatham businessman Harry Verhey.

Verhey told Chatham Sunrise Rotary Club members — of which he is a member — that he isn’t challenging the use of wind turbines, but is convinced there is an urgent need to determine setbacks that are right for the municipality.

“The recent proliferation of industrial wind projects will have a negative impact on the community,” he said. “The massive size of industrial wind turbines conflicts with the scale and character of the Chatham-Kent landscape.”

Verhey said the improper siting of industrial wind turbines will result in the loss of the scenic rural landscape, wildlife habitats and migration routes, peace, quiet and health of our citizens and future economic development opportunities.

Verhey made his comments while introducing Chatham-Kent planning official Ralph Pugliese, the club’s guest speaker.

“We are a unique community and cannot follow provincial minimum setback guidelines of only 250 to 600 metres,” said Verhey.

He said there is a need to come up with new setbacks that are right for the municipality.

“I love this community, its people, the rural landscape and the lifestyle available to us here,” said Verhey. “It’s my hope we will all be able to feel the same way in the future.”

Verhey noted Chatham-Kent is playing host to applications for the installation of hundreds of industrial-sized wind turbines.

“These turbines are of monstrous proportion,” he said. “The Greenfield Ethanol plant stack in Chatham is 260 feet high. The proposed turbines are nearly 400 feet high — as tall as a 40-storey apartment building.”

Verhey said there are many questions regarding how wind turbine developments will affect the surrounding area.

“Will property values decrease, will it stop new construction and future housing developments near by, is wildlife at risk and are there negative health affects?” he asked.

Verhey said he’s convinced the public is unaware of wind turbine developments in Chatham-Kent, planned locations for each turbine and any associated adverse affects.

“We need to evaluate the landscape of the potentially-affected areas, consult with the public and develop a criteria for the public input process,” he said.

Verhey said ads run in local papers by the proponents of wind farms aren’t enough — “for the most part the public is unaware of turbine developments and locations.”

He said significant cultural heritage landscapes, important bird areas, which include wetlands and staging areas, shorelines, the Thames River valley, small rural community’s areas for future development and rural homes need to be protected.

Club member Paul Roy of Pain Court said there is a need for the municipality to hold public meetings to help clear up the confusion that exists about wind turbines.

Larry and Linda Reaume of Erie Beach, club guests, said they would never have purchased their “dream” home at Erie Beach if they knew wind turbines were going to be erected in their backyard.

“We looked for a place to buy for years and finally settled on a home near the lake in south Chatham-Kent in 2006,” said Larry Reaume. “We had no idea the area was ripe for wind turbines.”

Source C-K News 

Sound specialist offers expertise on industrial wind installations

February 6, 2008
Sound specialist offers expertise on industrial wind installations

[ News Watch Home ]

“Understanding Sound Associated with Industrial Wind Developments”, was the theme of the presentation by Rick Bolton, Engineer & Sound Specialist, and sponsored by Citizens for a Healthy Rural Neighborhood (CHRN), on Wednesday, January 30, at Perry’s Masonic Temple.

Though Wednesday’s inclement weather prohibited attendance by many from outlying areas, citizens and Town Board members from Perry, Gainesville, Leicester, and Orangeville were there. Mr. Bolton’s presentation was designed to convey a basic understanding of the complexities of sound, effects on humans, and flaws in current analysis standards being employed by wind developers in the U.S.

Mr. Bolton began by explaining that sound associated with wind turbines is an extremely complex issue, and one that needs thorough analysis. “Sounds are waves – just like light and water,” he said. These sound waves are measured in deci-Bels (dB, or dBA – A-weighted deci-Bels – most closely imitate the human ear).

“Human audibility is extremely sensitive,” he said. “In fact, far more sensitive than anything we can use to record sound electronically. While the human ear can detect to 0 dBA, the lowest range even the most expensive noise meters can measure is 14 dBA.”

Elaborating on the factors that can amplify sound, Bolton pointed out:

1.) Sound can propagate for over a mile, and even further over water;

2.) Sound gets worse in water (i.e. – ice, fog);

3.) Low frequencies can double sound by refraction off hard surfaces (hillsides, snow-pack);

4.) ‘Wave Coherence’, created by a number of turbines together, amplifies sound;

5.) When the wind is blowing, it can refract noise from the elevated source-point downward;

6.) Sounds below 30 Hz, termed ‘infrasound’, create serious health problems (turbines have been indicated as being a strong source of ‘infrasound’)

7.) Ice-loading on the front edge of turbine blade tips disturbs air flow around the blade, creating turbulence, and increasing sound.

8.) Modulation occurs when the blade compresses air as passing the mast of the turbine, and is worsened by large groups of turbines’ blades not operating in sync. (Bolton has never seen modulation addressed in any wind developer provided studies.)

Bolton explained the many ways wind developers methodology is flawed. Field measurements are not done correctly (i.e. – improper microphone placement, no justification for sampling sites, etc.); accurate samplings need to be done for a full year to account for seasonal variations, but aren’t; and computer prediction models wind developers rely on are inadequate because they don’t account for modulation, coherence, refraction, and icing.

Facts contained in Perry’s DEIS from the sound study done by Horizon for Perry were brought up that highlighted Bolton’s point that sound studies being done are totally inadequate: “5 monitoring locations; Survey was carried out over roughly a 3-week period; Unfortunately, 3 primary & 2 backup instruments were destroyed by water infiltration, so octave band data could not be collected for ALL positions for the entire 3-week survey; There were a number of periods of either inclement weather or low wind speeds – conditions that are not generally useful; General conditions of temperature, barometric pressure, & wind for the survey period are shown in plots below as observed at DANSVILLE, NY – some 20 miles southeast of the site.”

Illustrating and explaining his points with numerous charts and graphs that were part of his presentation, he also included examples and measurements from homes that had been abandoned by their owners due to the resulting life-altering health effects of living too close to turbines. Not surprisingly, these health problems have been linked to sleep disturbances.

The World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines recommend that sound level should not exceed 30 dBA for a good night’s sleep. WHO also unanimously agrees that noise levels greater than 42 dBA create sleep disturbances, and that disturbed sleep has serious health effects.

Bolton explained that rural country settings currently enjoy extremely quiet night-time noise levels of 20 – 30 dBA. However, wind developers typically propose 50 dBA as acceptable noise levels at property lines of neighboring homes to their industrial wind installations. They do so despite the fact that the NYS DEC recommends no more than a 6 dBA increase over existing night-time ambient noise levels.

“Every 6 dBA is a perceived doubling of sound, or loudness,” Bolton said. When you understand this, you can begin to understand the problems that are occurring from siting these facilities far too close to people’s homes in rural areas. Bolton’s research suggests that 3,000′ – 5,000′ setbacks from the nearest property line should be the rule of thumb.

Neither citizens, nor the town officials being rushed through zoning, siting, and approval processes by wind developers truly understand the vast difference between 30 and 50 dBA until it is too late. Bolton stressed the importance of “getting it right” before allowing industrial wind facilities to be built, since mitigation after the fact is not available. He has yet to see wind developers do any follow-up studies for those now experiencing problems. They simply ignore them.

Bolton also explained that NY Townships are perpetuating flawed methods by accepting, and placing in their ordinances, the 50 dBA sound levels being submitted by wind developers, without demanding justifications – despite the fact that this is contrary to SEQR rules. NYS DEC’s Environmental Conservation Rules for SEQR state that the noise pollution potential must be evaluated at each affected “receptor”.

NYS DEC’s Program Policy, “Assessing & Mitigating Noise Impacts”, states: “When a sound level evaluation indicates that receptors may experience sound levels or characteristics that produce significant noise impacts, or impairment of property use, the Department is to require the permittee or applicant to employ necessary measures to either eliminate, or mitigate, adverse noise effects.”

If our townships fail to hold developers accountable to required standards, “we will lose the privilege, and precious asset, of having the peace and quiet of the country,” he said.

Mr. Bolton then took questions from the crowd. In response to questions asking what he thought of being “surrounded” by up to 23 turbines within 1.5 miles of their homes, he answered, “I would be VERY concerned if I were you.”

When asked if he has conducted any studies in the Perry area, Bolton replied that he had. Those who attended Perry’s Public Hearing October 16, 2006, will remember Mr. Bolton adding his comments, and handing in the study he did for Perry to the Board that evening. (Mr. Bolton’s comments on the Noise Issue can be found in the Comments to Perry’s DEIS under H-1, pages 1-24.)

By Mary Kay Barton

Batavia Daily News

Wind turbines in Union Township would need to be at least one-half mile from homes

February 1, 2008

 Watch the video

— Regulations being considered for wind turbines in Union Township would make a proposed wind energy project in the township impossible, the wind developer said this morning.

Wind turbines in Union Township would need to be at least one-half mile from homes and 1,000 feet from property lines, according to a proposed wind ordinance presented to the Town of Union Plan Commission on Thursday night.

The town’s Wind Turbine Study Committee was charged with investigating wind turbines and writing a proposed ordinance to regulate them.

Curt Bjurlin, Wisconsin project developer for EcoEnergy, said he is disappointed with the draft ordinance because he said it is “far more restrictive” than the state’s model draft ordinance.

“I think the town leadership realizes the people in the town and surrounding area greatly desire the need to have renewable energy,” he said.

The proposed setbacks leave “very, very little land” available, he said, “and certainly not enough for a renewable energy project.”

Bjurlin said EcoEnergy staff will work with town officials and residents to answer questions.

“We’re dedicated to building this project and moving forward,” he said.

The recommended setbacks are the absolute minimum, committee chairman Tom Alisankus stressed, because the committee’s research suggested distances of up to 12 miles.

The town board appointed the seven-member committee in September, and it has met nearly every Saturday since. The town board imposed a stay on construction of large wind energy systems until August.

EcoEnergy is proposing to put three 397-foot tall wind turbines in the township. Wisconsin Public Power would buy the energy to be used by Evansville Water and Light customers.

A town attorney will review the committee’s recommendations, and the plan commission will discuss the ordinance at its Thursday, Feb. 28, meeting and likely hold a public hearing at its March 27 meeting.

Committee members worked hundreds of hours, and committee member Jim Bembinster visited wind farms as far away as Wasco, Ore., Alisankus said. The committee’s results are summarized in a 318-page report, along with a 25-page draft ordinance.

Members looked through thousands of pages of documents and only considered information that was peer-reviewed or cited by reputable sources, Alisankus said. Doing so eliminated any influence from members’ personal feelings, he said.

Committee members started with the state’s model draft ordinance, which Alisankus said left a sour taste in their mouths. They sent an open records request seeking the scientific and medical documentation used to develop the state’s model ordinance, which has an “aura” of state approval, he said.

“The committee was shocked to receive a response to this open records request that in fact there was no scientific or medical documentation used to create the model draft ordinance,” he said.

Instead, the state sent them 11 pages, most of which were notes from meetings used to write the ordinance. It appeared the ordinance was written predominantly by a Florida power company, Alisankus said.

In Ontario it appears rules governing wind farms were written predominantly by CanWEA (added by blog editor)

The committee also invited stakeholders to participate and sent lists of questions to the companies involved.

“We were not particularly pleased with the responses we got,” Alisankus said. “In one case, even though there were scores of questions, we only received five answers back.”

Setbacks and sound were key to the committee’s work, he said.

“If you control … the setbacks and the sound levels appropriately, there should be no issue with ultimate construction of these turbines, at least with respect to the health and safety boundaries that we had to live by,” he said.

The state’s model ordinance makes the “assumption” that a 1,000-foot setback is OK, Alisankus said.

EcoEnergy plans its projects to have at least a 1,150-foot setback, Bjurlin said.

But the majority of the scientific and medical documentation the committee found recommended a minimum of one-half mile from homes, Alisankus said.

Their research came from the World Health Organization, audiologists, physicists, acoustical engineers, doctors and residents, he said.

“The whole problem area that a lot of people have been focusing a lot of time on can be solved by proper siting and proper testing ahead of time,” he said. “If the community does that and if the wind industry goes along with that, there shouldn’t be too many issues left over beyond that.”

WIND COMMITTEE

Members of the Town of Union Wind Study Committee are Tom Alisankus, chairman; Renee Exum, secretary; Scott McElroy, Jim and Cathy Bembinster, Mike Leeder and Sue Pestor.

ORDINANCE HIGHLIGHTS

Under the Town of Union Wind Study Committee’s recommended draft ordinance:

— Wind turbines must be sited at least one-half mile from the nearest home, business, school, daycare facility, church, hospital and other inhabited structures.

— Turbines must be sited at least 1,000 feet from the nearest property line and at least five times the rotor diameter from the property lines of all adjoining property owners who have not granted an easement for a lesser setback.

— Turbines must be sited at least 1,000 feet or three times its total height from any road, railroad, power line right-of-way and above-ground public electric power line or telephone line.

— Applications for a wind energy system must include—in part—a pre-construction noise survey within a 1-mile radius of each proposed turbine location, a sound study, an environmental study, ice and blade throw calculations plans, a shadow flicker and blade glint map, a stray voltage and ambient voltage test/plan and a fire prevention, emergency response and rescue plan.

— Limits would be placed on the sound produced by turbines as measured from the outside of the nearest residence and other inhabited structures.

REGULATION LIMITS

Wind turbine ordinances can only regulate turbines in regard to public health and safety, said Tom Alisankus, chairman of the Town of Union Wind Study Committee.

Alisankus said the committee could not address:

— Necessity of a meteorological tower to gather data in a proposed site

— Impact on farmland

— Divisiveness in communities

— Impact on property values

— Decommissioning of turbines

— Other alternative energy sources

Watch the video

Gazette Xtra

Wind Generator and Wind Generating Facility Ordinance for Trempealeau County

December 18, 2007

Editor:
Reading the letter below showed me the real life problems associated with wind farms being sited too close to homes. That was just over a year ago. Anyone trying to convince any level of govt knows the frustration they have endured in their fight for reason. Mr. Monfils warned us and it seems fitting that the first realistic, not perfect, setbacks in North America should be passed in Mr. Monfils State of Wisconsin

This letter was written by Mr. Monfils, Lincoln Town Board Chairman, about living near wind turbines in Kewaunee County, Wisconsin. He wrote it hoping that it will help other communities facing wind power plant proposals. problems-associated-with-wind-turbines

Please make sure everyone gets a copy of this new ordinance

Wind Generator and Wind Generating Facility Ordinance for Trempealeau County

Setbacks: The following setbacks and separation requirements shall apply to Commercial Wind Turbines.
(a) Public Roads: Each Wind Turbine shall be set back from the nearest public road and its right of way a distance no less than two (2) times its Total Height.
(b) Railroads: Each Wind Turbine shall be set back from all railroads and their right of way a distance of no less than two (2) times its Total Height.
(c) Wind Turbine spacing: Each Wind Turbine shall have a separation distance from other Wind Turbines equal to one and two-tenths (1.2) times the total height of the tallest Wind Turbine.
(d) Communication and electrical lines: Each Wind Turbine shall be set back from the nearest above-ground public electric power line or telephone line a distance no less than two (2) times its Total Height.
(e) Inhabited structures: Each Wind Turbine shall be set back from the nearest structure used as a residence, school, hospital, church, place of employment or public library, a distance no less than one (1) mile, unless mitigation has taken place and agreed by owner/operator and affected property owners involved and recorded in the Trempealeau County Register of Deeds office which describes the benefited and burdened properties and which advises all subsequent owners of the burdened property.
(f) Property lines: Each Wind Turbine shall be set back from the nearest property line a distance no less than one-half (½) mile, unless mitigation has taken place and agreed by owner/operator and affected property owners involved, and recorded in the
Trempealeau County Register of Deeds office which describes the benefited and burdened properties and which advises all subsequent owners of the burdened property.
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wind_ordinance doc