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.
A Sanilac County judge will not force a township planning commission to hold a public hearing this summer on a wind company’s special land use application. Sanilac County Circuit Judge Donald Teeple denied Exelon’s complaint Monday for immediate superintending control after hearing arguments from lawyers for both the wind company and Bridgehampton Township. Exelon had filed the complaint – which requested the judge overrule the Bridgehampton Township planning commission – 10 days after the planning commission voted to table a public hearing . . .
Sanilac County Circuit Court Judge Donald Teeple ruled this morning that he was denying a request that the court require Bridgehampton Township’s Planning Commission to hold a special use permit hearing on a proposed wind energy project. Judge Teeple said he didn’t feel that the plaintiff had been denied due process and denied the request from Excelon Wind. There was applause in the packed courtroom when the Teeple announced his decision during Monday’s civil docket. Bridgehampton Township has been discussing . . .
FAIRGROVE – Residents from two Tuscola County townships allege a conflict of interest could jeopardize public health, safety and welfare when it comes to a planned $200 million wind turbine project near Caro. The group of residents from Almer and Ellington want their respective townships to dump Spicer Engineering – similar to the way Sanilac County’s Moore Township did recently. They claim the Saginaw-based firm is a little too cozy with wind developer NextEra Energy Resources L.L.C., which plans to . . .
The company that wants to build 50 wind turbines in Bridgehampton Township is suing over delays in its special land use application. On May 3, the township planning commission voted to postpone the public hearing scheduled for June 14 on Michigan Wind 3’s application for a special land use permit. The commission put the hearing off until after the August referendum on the township’s public notice ordinance for special land use permits. Last Thursday, Michigan Wind 3, owned by Exelon . . .
GILFORD – Questions raised Thursday by a member of the Almer Township Planning Commission in Gilford Township shed light on what happens when a wind turbine project comes to town. Among other things, members of the Gilford Township Board of Trustees said shadow flicker and noise from turbines are real, construction can cause extensive damage to drainage tiles on farms, financial windfall from taxes isn’t guaranteed, and that officials shouldn’t “waste a lot of everybody’s time” discussing wind ordinances. Darwin . . .
A company planning a 68-turbine wind farm in Sanilac County has taken a township to court, demanding its planning commission hold a June 14 public hearing on the company’s special land use permit. Bridgehampton Township Supervisor Mike Haggerty said he was served the lawsuit during the township’s Thursday meeting. “We weren’t expecting it now,” Haggerty said. “But we were expecting one side or another was going to end up filing suit.” Haggerty said the township is looking for a law . . .
HURON COUNTY – Representatives from the companies responsible for the turbine that collapsed Feb. 25 in Oliver Township said they’ve discovered the cause and taken measures to ensure it never happens again. Mark Van Diepenbeek, senior operations manager for Vestas Americas Great Lakes Region, the turbine’s manufacturer, said three factors came into play to create the perfect storm that caused the turbine to spin too fast and eventually collapse. First, each blade had worn seals on the cylinders in the pitch . . .
BAD AXE – The county will spend up to $5,000 for a legal opinion on how to handle a request from dozens of residents asking to be excluded from a wind energy project. The decision came Tuesday following recommendation from the board’s attorney, Stephen Allen. Allen said the county should get outside legal opinion because wind project planner DTE Energy has shown a “subtle saber-rattling” and implied threats of being treated unfairly by officials – a view Allen said he’s not sympathetic . . .
CARO – The Almer Township Planning Commission voted 4-3 to recommend a six-month moratorium on wind turbine development, citing a need to learn more about the machines and their impact. They also voted to table the discussion and resume at its June 1 meeting. The actions were taken in light of questions board members said they still have about light, sound and decommissioning (what happens to turbines when they’re no longer used), among other things. “For our next step, I . . .
Bridgehampton Township has delayed a decision on a special land use permit for a large wind farm development. The township planning board canceled a June public hearing for Exelon special land use permit at its Tuesday meeting. It tabled the hearing until after a referendum vote in August. “There is a referendum in the August election regarding the noticing of landowners and residents in the event of a special land use hearing,” Supervisor Michael Haggerty said. The referendum is one . . .