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Knox County residents push back against wind turbine proposal

EDINA, Mo. – You’ve probably seen them along the highway if you’ve driven through Adair and Schuyler County.

They are said to be the future of renewable resources, particularly in areas such as northeast Missouri that have strong consistent wind and flat land.

But, some Heartland residents are pushing back against the efforts to bring wind turbines to their county.

Knox County residents attended a public meeting on Thursday where they voiced their concerns. Some residents fear project developers will take the rights away from hunters and property owners.

” First off the lease very plainly explains that a wind company reduces the hunting rights or in some cases, can eliminate hunting rights. There’s a clause in the agreement called the ‘Quiet Enjoyment’ clause and it’s actually that the lessee, that the wind company has quiet enjoyment of the lease owner’s property. Me personally as a property owner, that’s why I buy property, is for the quiet enjoyment of my own property,” said Knox County Resident Ben Bradley.

Michelle Davis, who has a background in nursing, also voiced opposition. She said wind turbines have been known to cause health issues.

“There is scientific data proving since 1971, and also peer reviews, proving that tinnitus, nausea, dizziness, inadequate sleep, also psychosis,” Davis said.

Other concerns were centered around property value, effects on livestock and crops, and the sustainability of the turbines.

Many community members questioned whether the benefits of having a wind farm are worth the costs.

“Federal subsidy and in many cases subsidies on many levels to make it viable. There’s a lot of oil and heat reduction that goes into each of the turbines and they only operate at best 35% efficiency,” Bradley said.

The residents had multiple petitions at the meeting and several county commissioners were in attendance, with the group wanting to convince them not to go forward with the project.

The residents say they are protecting their community.

“My father was not in favor of it, I am definitely not in favor of it and in my eyes I am overseer of my parent’s legacy, I am taking care of that property. I am not going to allow another company to come in and take over what my whole family, my whole heritage has worked so hard for,” said Davis.

Two representatives for the project were at the event and declined a chance for an interview, directing us to the company’s Public Relations Department.

KTVO News tried contacting them and left a voicemail. A representative returned our call late Friday afternoon and told us they would like to set up an interview for early next week to discuss residents’ concerns.

We will keep you updated on this story.