"The impact that it has on our lives. Instead of having a peaceful, quiet little place to be enjoying life from the hustle and bustle, now all of the sudden we can't look at our stars and enjoy them without looking at flashing lights everywhere," said Jodane Bergstrom.
There is plenty of oil activity in the Bakken. But one company is proposing harnessing the wind for clean energy.
Thursday, the Lindahl Wind Project made their case for their project in front of the Public Service Commission.
The room was filled with people that were eager for their voices to be heard.
“I think this project is unique. I have worked on a lot of wind projects in a lot of states,” said Joe Arb, Trade Wind Energy director of development.
The project already has received approval from the Williams County Commission. On Thursday, Trade Wind Energy officials, who will develop the wind farm, presented their case for the 150 megawatt project that will consist of 75 wind turbines north of Tioga.
Very rarely do you have the combination of a high wind resource, staggering electricity demands and a wonderful group of landowners who are supportive,” Arb said.
The estimated cost for the project is $248.5 million and the project will encompass 13,000 acres. Since this project was started at the grassroots level, those in favor want to see this project go through, so it can be something they can be proud of.
“We need to be part of this project because we have some local businesses. And earn money in addition to just farming and oil production. This will also benefit our state government, our local government and our school district from taxation from this project,” said Lorina McGinnity.
Others don’t see the benefit of it and feel a piece of their life is being taken away.
“The impact that it has on our lives. Instead of having a peaceful, quiet little place to be enjoying life from the hustle and bustle, now all of the sudden we can’t look at our stars and enjoy them without looking at flashing lights everywhere,” said Jodane Bergstrom.
The project is only expected to last 25 years. The state already has 2,000 megawatts of wind farms operating. If approved, this will be the first one in the Bakken.
“I think it really showcases the energy diversity of North Dakota. Having a potential wind farm right in the heart of oil and gas country. Really showing the fossil fuels and the renewables, that is special trait for North Dakota and something that we ought to be proud of and appreciate,” said Julie Fedorchak, PSC commissioner.
The Bakken is known for its oil activity, but if approved, harnessing the wind will help diversify the region’s portfolio.
If approved, construction on the project will begin this spring. Trade Wind is hoping the wind farm will be operational by the end of next year.
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