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Wind Power News: Minnesota

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These news and opinion items are gathered by National Wind Watch to help keep readers informed about developments related to industrial wind energy. They are the products of the organizations or individuals noted and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of National Wind Watch.


February 6, 2019 • MinnesotaPrint storyE-mail story

Lawmakers want Minnesota’s energy to be carbon-free by 2050

Legislators want to make Minnesota the fourth state in the country to set a 100 percent clean energy plan, with the aim of having electricity providers generate all energy from renewable sources by 2050. “Business as usual and relying on markets is not going to get the job done in time. The crisis is urgent,” said the measure’s sponsor, Rep. Jamie Long, D-Minneapolis. Electric utility companies would need to meet a series of deadlines to reduce their use of fossil . . . Complete story »


January 17, 2019 • MinnesotaPrint storyE-mail story

PUC sets new standards for wind energy approval

WORTHINGTON – Two recent actions taken by the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission are poised to sharpen a focus on the hiring of local labor for wind energy projects. On Dec. 6, the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission set a new precedent for wind energy by postponing a vote on the Bitter Root Wind Farm due to concerns about local hiring. Two weeks later, at a Dec. 20 hearing, the PUC approved the Nobles 2 Wind Project in Nobles County – one of the . . . Complete story »


December 22, 2018 • MinnesotaPrint storyE-mail story

Minnesota Power adds large wind farm

The Minnesota Public Utilities Commission on Thursday gave unanimous approval to a plan for Minnesota Power to buy electricity from a proposed new wind farm in southwestern Minnesota. The PUC approved the plan for Minnesota Power to purchase electricity for 20 years from the Nobles 2 wind farm in Nobles County, along the wind-rich Buffalo Ridge area of the state that already holds thousands of wind generators. The Duluth-based utility will buy 250 megawatts from Tenaska, Inc. which will build . . . Complete story »


December 11, 2018 • MinnesotaPrint storyE-mail story

100-megawatt wind farm proposed in Renville County

BIRD ISLAND, Minn. – One of the country’s largest wind power developers is proposing to build a 100-megawatt wind farm in Renville County, which would be the largest wind project in the region. EDP Renewables of Houston, Texas, hosted an open house Wednesday evening, Dec. 5, in Bird Island to explain the project. The company was not obligated to hold the meeting as part of a permitting process. It wanted to provide information to the public because it is aware that . . . Complete story »


December 10, 2018 • MinnesotaPrint storyE-mail story

Norfolk Wind once sought to erect turbines near Bird Island

BIRD ISLAND – EDP Renewables’ proposal to build a wind farm near Bird Island is not the first time this area in Renville County has been considered for a renewable energy project. One decade ago, a group of local investors known as Norfolk Wind Energy LLC was very interested in developing what would have been a 40-megawatt wind farm just south of the community. The proximity to a major transmission line and a substation that can serve as the on-ramp to . . . Complete story »


December 7, 2018 • MinnesotaPrint storyE-mail story

Regulators table Canby area wind farm over labor concerns

State utility regulators postponed a vote to approve a western Minnesota wind farm Thursday after construction unions criticized the project’s nonunion builder for primarily hiring out-of-state workers. RES, a major renewable energy developer, last year proposed the Bitter Root wind farm near Canby with 44 wind turbines that could generate up to 152 megawatts of power, a decent-sized project. RES would both develop and build the wind farm. The Laborers’ union, representing several construction unions, asserted that the socio-economic benefits . . . Complete story »


November 25, 2018 • MinnesotaPrint storyE-mail story

DFL election wins could mean pressure on state’s renewable-energy goals

Wind turbines have created a rural skyline across Minnesota, one the nation’s leading states for wind energy. Solar farms, a rarity in Minnesota just a few years ago, now ring the Twin Cities. Minnesota’s largest electricity providers say they have already met the state’s goal for at least 25 percent renewable energy generation by 2025. Wind power has become particularly cheap – even without a federal-tax subsidy – and several new wind farms will be rolling out in the next couple of . . . Complete story »


November 21, 2018 • MinnesotaPrint storyE-mail story

After saga, turbines demolished

They were over 220 feet tall with rotor blades measuring almost 94 feet long. For around eight years, two 750-kilowatt wind turbines towered over farmland outside rural Altura. Winona County spent years and tens of thousands of dollars developing the project, but the turbines never functioned properly and later broke down. After a multi-million-dollar court battle, the turbines were demolished, cut up, and hauled away earlier this month. The company behind the project hopes to erect a new turbine at . . . Complete story »


November 8, 2018 • MinnesotaPrint storyE-mail story

Seller of wind turbines charged in $1 million fraud scheme

The owner of a southern Minnesota wind-power company has been charged with a $1 million fraud, allegedly spending his customers’ money on such personal items as Timberwolves season tickets and a down payment on a lakefront home. Kerry Kisslinger of suburban Houston was CEO of the now-defunct ES Windpower Inc. of Emmons, Minn., which sold wind turbines to farmers, ranchers and others in Minnesota and across the Midwest. From 2012 to 2015, Kisslinger allegedly defrauded customers by taking their money . . . Complete story »


October 11, 2018 • Letters, MinnesotaPrint storyE-mail story

Big problems in wind permitting

I am a day care provider living in the footprint of the proposed Freeborn Wind project. I’ve had day care in my home over 20 years and love my job. I am among the nearly 80 percent signing a petition against the project on the Minnesota side. There has been and still remains problems and rules not followed. There has been admitted lying and trespassing. There has been a lack of decommissioning the plan, the administrative law judge recommendations being . . . Complete story »


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