Wind turbines, phase 2

Bridgewater Township supervisor Bruce Morlan has a column in this week’s Northfield News titled Turbulance over wind turbines.

Bruce MorlanBridgewater will be holding public hearings about changes in the wind turbine portions of the zoning codes. That process includes engaging interested citizens in a dialogue as we educate each other on this issue. The three things I think will drive the discussion include how high we can build these turbines, how noisy and how distracting will they be.

I expect to hear engineering evidence showing that the efficiency of the turbine is improved by making it taller, that there is no medical evidence suggesting that the low frequency sound emitted by the blades causes health problems, and that the flicker from the blades is an issue mostly for road traffic. But more, I also expect to hear that people in the country are fiercely protective of their property rights and their right to install these turbines.

Earlier this week, the Strib reprinted this article from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Walker bill puts $500 million in wind turbine investment at risk; 1,800-foot setback requirement would halt most projects.

About $500 million in investment in renewable energy over the next two years could be at risk if lawmakers approve Gov. Scott Walker’s wind turbine siting bill… Walker’s bill, proposed as part of a regulatory reform package, would mandate minimum setbacks of 1,800 feet between a wind turbine and the nearest property line. That compares with a setback of 1,250 feet from a neighboring residence approved by the Public Service Commission in a rule adopted last year and set to take effect this year.

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