Wind Power News: Michigan
These news and opinion items are gathered by National Wind Watch to help keep readers informed about developments related to industrial wind energy. They are the products of the organizations or individuals noted and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of National Wind Watch.
When energy companies decided that the Thumb of Michigan was the best place in the state to locate wind turbines, they essentially decided to move into the community and become our neighbors. And as everyone knows, there are few secrets between close neighbors. That’s why we were pleased to see DTE Energy take precautions to halt its wind energy production after a recent turbine failure in Chandler Township. And, we were pleased to see DTE Energy provide a detailed explanation . . .
HURON COUNTY — DTE Energy officials gave more details about the wind turbine blade that broke in Chandler Township last week at a Huron County Commissioners board meeting Tuesday. “I’m sure a lot of people have a lot of questions,” DTE regional manager Ron Chriss said. “Here at DTE, we have a lot of questions as well.” The 164-foot blade broke off in three pieces close to 11 p.m. on Oct. 7 according to Chriss. The turbine, called CO-84, is . . .
CHANDLER TOWNSHIP — Work at DTE’s Echo Wind Park has stopped as the energy company tries to find the reason why a wind turbine blade broke at the park last week. “There’s not a timetable on this,” DTE spokesman Scott Simons said Monday. “We’re not going to put anyone or anything at risk until we get to the bottom of this. The 60 turbines that have already been constructed at the planned 70-turbine wind park will not operate until a . . .
PETOSKEY — Emmet County planning commissioners decided Thursday to recommend some updates to the county’s policies concerning wind energy systems. The planning commission supported the changes — including an upward adjustment in wind energy systems’ allowable noise levels in areas with most county zoning designations — by a 6-2 vote, with commissioner David Laughbaum absent from the meeting. The planning commission’s stance will serve as an advisory one for the Emmet County Board of Commissioners, which has final say in . . .
Another factor impacting the county’s general fund budget is the financial windfall initially promised from wind development is considerably less because state lawmakers arbitrarily changed the taxing formula on turbines to be 27 percent less and also shortened the depreciation schedule on life use. Because of those factors, low interest earnings, flat property values, and more, county officials still have to use about $209,000 in fund reserves to balance the next budget despite the additional revenue from turbines. With out the extra wind development revenue, even though reduced, major cuts and reduction would have to be made.
It was the third turbine to break in Huron County in the last 10 months and the second turbine owned by DTE to break down in that time. In March, a turbine blade in Sigel Township broke because of a manufacturing defect, said turbine supplier General Electric, according to a presentation by Buda at a Huron County Planning Commission meeting last month. In addition, a turbine was struck by lightning near Minden City at the Michigan Wind Project 2 in September. The turbine, owned by Exelon Energy also lost a blade and was set to be back online this week.
HURON COUNTY – Wind turbines might be ruffling some feathers in Huron County, but bird deaths aren’t a reason for energy companies to eat crow, according to a DTE Energy spokesman. The Huron County Planning Commission on Wednesday night discussed a Tribune article published in September: “Wind farms kill 67 eagles in Five Years.” During public discussion, DTE Program Manager Michael Serafin said that eagle fatalities are not an issue in Huron County. “When you look at the number, it . . .
PARIS TOWNSHIP — Voters here backed a proposal to restrict where wind turbines can be built Tuesday night by nearly a 2-to-1 margin. With a vote of 87-48, residents decided to reinforce a zoning ordinance approved in May by the Paris Township Board. The ordinance states that turbines must be 2,000 feet from all property owners who did not participate in the wind project. In contrast, the Huron County zoning ordinance only needs to be 1,320 feet from all non-participating . . .
Proposed updates to Emmet County’s wind energy system policies will get continued consideration from county planning commissioners today, Thursday, Nov. 7. A regular planning commission meeting begins at 7:30 p.m. today at the county building in downtown Petoskey. Any position that the planning commission takes concerning the updates will serve as an advisory one for the county board of commissioners, which has final say on such zoning matters. The proposed updates would adjust the allowable noise level for wind energy . . .
LANSING – The American Wind Energy Association hosted a wind forum Monday to look at the benefits and challenges of Michigan’s Wind Energy Industry. Participants included leaders in energy, education and politics. So far Michigan has invested nearly $2 billion in wind energy technology. But not everyone is happy about the growing use of wind energy. Some protestors showed up at Monday’s conference saying that wind turbines are inefficient and noisy. “We want these turbines turned off. They are not . . .