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Casnovia Township wind farm project called off

Plans for a large wind farm located about 20 miles northwest of Grand Rapids have been called off.

A spokesperson for American Electric Power Renewables, which is based in Ohio, says the company has decided to stop development on the Kenowa Ridge project. That project was to be located in Casnovia Township in eastern Muskegon County.

“A lot of people were losing sleep and a lot of stress,” homeowner Steve Sower said.

AEP Renewables says the township’s requirements didn’t match what they needed to move forward with an agreement. The company also acknowledged the project’s developer recently died.

The project, which was formerly headed up by Sempra Renewables, was slated to add 30 wind turbines in both Casnovia Township in Muskegon County and Tyrone Township in Kent County. A graphic from the original pitch states the project would have provided enough energy to power 38,000 homes.

Homeowners say while the environment is important to them, they had concerns about the project.

“People were mostly concerned with safety, the fact that (the turbines) are so close to people’s homes and property. People were concerned about the noise, concerned about the shadow flicker,” Sower said.

Sower says there was a turbine slated to go up within 800 feet of his home. He says many were also concerned about the impact the turbines might have on property values.

“We were concerned about losing our quality of life here,” said Sower.

The township was facing two lawsuits regarding this project. One lawsuit was from AEP, the other was from homeowners. Casnovia Township attorneys say litigation is still pending, but they’re currently in talks with the attorneys on the other side about the status of this litigation.