Governor Scott Walker’s office says it will keep trying to limit the locating of new wind energy farms in Wisconsin – even though his own Republicans in the Legislature are not going along with it for now.
Spokesman Cullen Werwie says Walker will try to get the state Public Service Commission to adopt his proposal. That’s after Republican legislative leaders said they wanted more time to review the impact.
Walker wants wind turbines to be at least 1,800 feet away from neighboring homes, instead of the current 1,250 feet. The Wisconsin Realtors Association pushed for the change.
Walker said it would help property owners who say the turbines cause too much noise and flickering light. But the wind energy industry says it would be the most restrictive setback in the nation – and they’re calling it a de-facto ban on new wind energy projects.
The group Renew Wisconsin says it could put up to $1.8 billion worth of future wind projects in jeopardy. And Denise Bode of the American Wind Energy Association said it would make a mockery of Walker’s claim that Wisconsin is “open for business.”
A spokesman for Senate Judiciary chairman Rich Zipperer says the bill is dead for now, but it could be revived later in the session. Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald says lawmakers want to give it some thought – and the idea is not going anywhere.
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