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Harrisburg residents discuss wind energy in Boone County

HARRISBURG – One Harrisburg resident took it upon herself to organize a community forum Saturday after a renewable energy company announced its intentions to some residents in the area last month.

“My goal was to get neighbors talking to neighbors,” Ashley Ernst said.

E.ON Climate & Renewables, or EC&R, sent out at least 200 letters inviting Harrisburg residents to eat barbecue and discuss the potential impact of a wind farm on their community and possibly on their land.

Ernst received the letter but felt bringing wind turbines to Boone County was an issue the entire community should discuss.

Ernst brought in city council members and people who have felt the effects of wind projects in their own communities to talk about their experiences.

Ryan Lidholm, a mid-Missouri realtor, said a client decided against building their dream home in Harrisburg because of the potential wind project.

Lidholm said he anticipates housing prices to depreciate if the project moves forward.

Ernst said she was impressed by the number of people who came out to learn about wind energy and its potential positive and negative events in Boone County.

“I think we’ve all got a lot to go home and think about now,” she said.

E.ON will host its barbecue dinner March 13.