The wind energy ad hoc group was formed to research the issues brought by Calumet County citizens throughout the past year. To be effective, it needed to use unbiased data, which meant no information would be allowed from any anti-wind or pro-wind organizations.
If the wind companies feel cheated that their input was not sought, I question their honesty and ulterior motives.
Were they more concerned with trying to sway the results for their own best interests, or letting the committee do independent research and let the facts speak for themselves?
The committee’s purpose was to look out for the best interests of the county and to protect the health and safety of the people. If that means imposing larger setbacks and causing projects to be scaled back, then so be it.
And, if it means that in order to protect the health and safety of the citizens of Calumet County, the increased setbacks will not allow any projects to be developed at all, then it is unfortunate that our county is not the right location for wind energy development.
If the facts justify increased setbacks that could hinder these projects, that does not give the wind companies the right to try to force these projects through by threatening communities with the insinuation that they are violating Statute 66.0401.
We all support the development of safe and clean renewable energy done in a responsible manner. There is no reason why our county cannot do its part in helping to reduce carbon emissions. Calumet County’s alternative energy options are endless – solar, geothermal, biomass, etc.
It’s time we begin to look at all the available options instead of just focusing on wind energy development, which certainly has brought forth a lot of questions with very few concrete answers.
1 January 2008
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