The settlement agreements for Minnesota’s first landowner buyouts were approved by the Public Utilities Commission at its agenda meeting on May 17, 2018.  Today, it’s REAL, the written order has been filed.


Thanks to Alliant/Wisconsin Power & Light for their work in getting this done. Now, time for a couple of closings!

And at the same time, let’s whip this wind siting process into shape!

Look who’s in the news!

January 5th, 2018

Sustainable: Planners charting Minnesota’s energy future

Yes, we all know that Mike Bull wrote most of the energy law now in place!  But there’s no mention of those many years of work at House Regulated Industries Committee though…

And we all know that there are some big holes and problems with the wind siting statutes, rules, and standards.  What will it take to get some of the problems worked through, like some respectful wind siting standards?  We’re just starting to see, at long last, after years and years of complaints, some Public Utilities Commission action on wind noise issues.

Bent Tree_Noise Monitoring and Monitoring Report_20179-135856-01

Siting will have to be addressed, because despite sound modeling that says “no problem,” there are indeed problems.  Despite shadow flicker modeling that says “no problem,” there are indeed problems.

Preventative siting is long overdue and needs to start NOW!  And what about those already  affected?  “Buy the Farm” for wind?  It’s overdue.  Action after the fact is not the best of options, prevention is always the key, but for those now attempting to live in untenable circumstances, foisted on them by the nuisance moving into their community, and permitted by the Commission, what are the options?

Wind project in southern Minnesota gets pushback

Hey Mikey, how ’bout helping get to some solutions???

Here are Comments filed on behalf of Association of Freeborn County Landowners:

Association of Freeborn CountyLandowners_Petition & Initial Comments – Filed July 6, 2017

Association of Freeborn County Landowners — Add to Service List

Process Issue – Timing of Request for Contested Case

Reply CommentsCompleteness – Association of Freeborn County Landowners

From the “Circular Logic” department, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency responded to my rulemaking Petition, looking for them to set wind turbine noise standards, specifically infrasound standards:

Overland – MPCA_Petition for Rulemaking

Overland – PUC Coerespondence re: Petition for Rulemaking

And here’s the response:

20169-124844-01_Letter_MPCA Commissioner Stine_9-12-2016

The bottom line… the full letter:

After consulting with colleagues at the Minnesota Departments of Health and Commerce, I have concluded that the current understanding of wind turbine noise and its potential effects is insufficient to support rulemaking at this time.  Discussions will continue among the agencies listed above, and we will monitor the science (as resources allow) to inform our decision about rulemaking in the future.

Right…  And note there was no consultation with the Environmental Quality Board.

On to the next step.  It never ends.

For more info, check the video of testimony of Rick James, INCE, at the Goodhue Wind Project public hearing:

Rick James testimony for Goodhue Wind Truth

And prefiled testimony:

testimony of Richard R. James, INCE, for Wednesday’s hearing over in Goodhue:

Direct Testimony – Richard R. James, INCE

A must read:

The “How-To” Guide to Siting Wind Turbines to Prevent Health Risks from Sound

And this was published earlier this month:

Wind Turbine Noise – What Audiologists Should Know

BlackOakGetty Modeled Residences and Project Turbines

More interesting filings today, these from the Black Oak Getty wind project, the construction plans, and a new noise report.  There are also “Environmental Supplements” and other new filings.  You can find them all at the PUC’s site — go to SEARCH and search for eDockets 10-1240 or 11-831.

Here are the filings of the Construction Plans:

20162-118362-01_Part 1

20162-118362-03_Part 2

20162-118362-05_Part 3

20162-118362-07_Part 4

20162-118362-09_Part 5

20162-118362-11_Part 6

20162-118362-13_Part 7

I’ve separated out the noise report to make it easier to send around:

Noise Technical Report_ Black Oak Getty Wind Project

And for reference, here are the Minnesota Noise Rules, found in Minn. R. Ch. 7030 — we’re long overdue for a rulemaking for Noise Rules specifically regulating wind noise:

7030.0020 DEFINITIONS.
7030.0080 VARIANCE.