Initial noise testing at Madsons’ home — Xcel refuses to release results!

Freeborn Wind permit (and standard language in all permits) has noise limits, the state standard (Minn. R. 7030.0040) and permit condition limits:

Xcel’s conslutant’s noise monitoring report (2 parts):

And then Commerce-EERA wants to review and “analyze” it and here’s the result, released yesterday:

Despite documented noise exceedences, they craft it to this result:

… sigh… it starts out promising:

What it looks like is that the measurements of noise monitoring aren’t taken seriously, and that “binning” is used to obfuscate and dismiss testing and monitoring results that show noise levels above those permitted.

Remember the ALJ’s recommendation for this project, that the permit be denied because Freeborn had not demonstrated it could comply with noise standards?

OAH+80-2500-34633+Final+Order

WE WON!!! ALJ Recommend Freeborn Permit be DENIED, or… May 14th, 2018

And then the PUC bends over and gives Freeborn/Xcel what it wants:

Freeborn? PUC upends ALJ’s Freeborn Wind Recommendation September 21st, 2018

To challenge this, hiring a noise expert is necessary, and then it’s time to sue their collective asses. It becomes the responsibility of those affected by the wind project’s incursion on their land to raise the objections and foot the bill. Fair? Equity? Justice? In what world…

Freeborn Wind Noise Again!

November 9th, 2021

The Xcel Energy Freeborn Wind post-construction noise modeling equipment is up, this time at the tree line, not behind it.

Just filed today at the Public Utilities Commission:

Xcel Energy has 14 days to respond, and then off to the Public Utilities Commission for consideration. The Commission needs to take a hard look at what they’re doing, because these wind projects sited without rules and too close to people is harming those living in the project footprint.

Noise remains a problem for those trying to live in the middle of a wind project. No surprise when the owner uses a 0.5 ground factor to model bigger, louder turbines, several hundred feet above the ground (these have rotor diameter of 120 meters, or 393.701 feet!). This has been ongoing for so long, going on 5 years, I find I’m forgetting crucial details. But what’s happened in this docket, and what has happened in other dockets, all adds up, particularly with the Bent Tree noise exceedences demonstrated, and resulting settlements, and the Blazing Star noise issues going on right now.

Noise was a problem in Bent Tree with Vestas V-82 for the Hagens and Langruds.

Bent Tree Noise report confirms permit violations!

Wind turbine noise is a problem for the Blazing Star wind project with these bigger and louder Vestas V-120:

Blazing Star Wind NOISE!

More on Blazing Star noise

Freeborn Wind noise has long been an issue. Noise was a problem when the Freeborn Wind ALJ recommended denial of the permit because they had not demonstrated, using 0.0 ground factor, that they could comply. Yes, do not forget that we won that round, first recommendation of denial of wind permit application ever:

WE WON!!! ALJ Recommend Freeborn Permit be DENIED, or…

So then the PUC changes the rules, moves the goal posts, and allows use of 0.5 ground factor in modeling to predict noise, and don’t forget, these are now Vestas V-120 turbines, bigger and louder.

Freeborn? PUC upends ALJ’s Freeborn Wind Recommendation

Can you spell U-N-D-E-R-E-S-T-I-M-A-T-E ?? GI-GO???

Tried for an Environmental Assessment Worksheet and got the gong:

PUC Freeborn Mtg 2-6-2020

Filed a MERA claim (Minn. Stat. 116B.03) and we were booted out of court:

Association of Freeborn County Landowners v. Public Utilities Commission

And we appealed the Commission’s final decision on Freeborn:

Freeborn Wind appeal – we lose…

We are persistent. The noise numbers are too high, and they’re higher than pre-construction noise modeling predicted. Yeah, well, DOH, using the wrong ground factor.

The Commission needs to address this obvious problem and deal with the consequences. Avoidance just doesn’t cut it. This is real, and it’s not going away.

ONWARD!