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Proposed wind farm meeting brings out critics, supporters

A proposed project would see the construction of 100 wind turbines, spread over two counties in two states. The farm would be built in Freeborn County, Minn. and Worth County, Iowa.

On Wednesday, residents on the Minnesota side of the border had their say in whether the project should move forward.

Because of the size of the proposed Freeborn Wind Energy Project, the decision of whether to issue a permit falls to the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission.

And part of the process, Wednesday’s meeting to take public comments. And they were both pro and con.

“My 11 acre far is going to be surrounded by eight wind turbines within a one-square mile,” said Michelle Severtson.

“We live right by the bent tree wind farm,” Chris Lynne added.

“I’m against it because my son has autism, and I don’t know the long-term health effects of that,” Severtson explained.

“As far as our quality of health, we’re healthy, aren’t we?” Lynne said, addressing the question to his 5-year-old daughter.

Developers of the project say it would provide stable, low-cost energy.

“Looking at the future and our children needing green energy for power,” Lynne said.

But opponents say there is a downside: “There’s a certainty of interference here with this project with TV and radio signals” one speaker explained.

The comments all become part of a decision-making process that’s not going to happen overnight.

“You’re looking into June of 2018 most likely if there is a permit issued, that’s when their decision would be made” said the commerce department’s Rich Davis.

ABC 6 News also wants to point that as part of this story, that the station has filed comments with the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission in regards to the Freeborn County Wind Farm, seeking to ensure the proposed project does not cause interference with our broadcast signals.