The fight over Wisconsin’s wind future

Posted on May 10, 2010. Filed under: Wind |


From a story by Lou Hillman on WLUK Fox 11, Green Bay:

It’s free, it’s everywhere and some think it’s the answer to our ever-increasing energy needs.

“Wind is the most feasible resource for most states because of its ability to scale up,” said Michael Vickerman, the executive director of RENEW Wisconsin. The non-profit group has been advocating for nearly two decades for widespread wind development in the state.

Wind turbines also provide struggling farmers a financial lifeline of thousands of dollars each year.

“For me, it’s a good thing,” said Gary Koomen, a landowner in the town of Morrison.

But as the state Public Service Commission continues to green light large-scale wind developments throughout the state, more and more people are speaking out against the projects.

“We need to slow down until things get put into place to regulate these industrial monsters to a safe and healthy level,” said Jon Morehouse, the spokesman for Brown County Citizens for Responsible Wind Energy. The group represents more than 200 people who are against large scale wind development in southern Brown County.

Right now, 9 commercial wind farms are operating in the state, with a total of more than 300 wind turbines. Though, 18 more wind farms have been proposed, which could push the number of turbines in the state upwards of 1,000.

The largest proposal on the table is 100 turbines in southern Brown County. The project is being developed by a private company from Chicago called Invenergy.

“I’ve always been a supporter of alternate energy to start with so it kind of appealed to me a consumer,” said Gary Koomen.

Koomen signed up to have two turbines on his farmland. He stands to pocket roughly $10,000 per year for each turbine. That kind of money can make life a little easier.

“Fun money,” laughed Koomen. “I’ll probably take a vacation.”

The push for wind development in the state stems back to 1999 when Wisconsin set its first renewable energy goal. The idea is to find energy sources that are sustainable.

Currently, utility companies are required to be providing 10% of electricity from renewable sources by 2015. Experts say, right now, the utilities are only about half way there.

“Without the standards, they have no reason to add more renewable energy,” said Michael Vickerman, of RENEW Wisconsin.

Advertisements

Make a Comment

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

One Response to “The fight over Wisconsin’s wind future”

RSS Feed for Comments RSS Feed

Wind Energy is on the up, especially in the north east region…

There is a conference going on in Boston in June to talk about how to develop wind farms in the region

http://www.windenergyupdate.com/us-wind-site-selection if memory serves me right.


Where's The Comment Form?

    About

    A statewide nonprofit dedicated to promoting economically and environmentally sustainable energy policies and practices in Wisconsin.

    RSS

    Subscribe Via RSS

    • Subscribe with Bloglines
    • Add your feed to Newsburst from CNET News.com
    • Subscribe in Google Reader
    • Add to My Yahoo!
    • Subscribe in NewsGator Online
    • The latest comments to all posts in RSS

    Meta

Liked it here?
Why not try sites on the blogroll...

%d bloggers like this: