Ohio wind turbine setbacks are WEAK vs. international ones


The comments below are from a review of wind turbine setbacks from around the world that was conducted by the State of Minnesota.  It appears that Ohio’s siting regulations are among the least protective in the world.   The report notes that “For countries with required or recommended wind turbine setback distances, the average lower setback distance is approximately 470 meters (1,542 feet), and the average upper setback distance is approximately 700 meters (2,297 feet).”   Interesting, too, is the discussion of shadow flicker which generally has been recommended as being limited to 30 hours per year.  The Minnesota report makes it clear that 30 hours is the worst maximum allowed and that 8 hours per year of actual flicker is the more acceptable standard.  Ohio uses 30 hours as their standard.  It does not appear that most countries have standards for inaudible noise which has come to prominence with the increasing size of turbines.  Infrasound is a significant issue and it largely absent from the Minnesota Report….paste the link below to see the entire report...

The generation of electrical energy from wind, or wind energy, is a priority for the United States and the state of Minnesota. At the national level, the United States Department of Energy has published a report called 20% Wind Energy by 2030, created tax credit breaks for developing and using renewable energy, and funded wind energy research and development.1 However, there is no federal renewable portfolio standard requiring that increased amounts of the United States’ energy come from renewable energy sources, although thirty of the fifty states have such a standard.2 Minnesota’s renewable energy objective calls for 25% of the state’s electrical energy to come from renewable sources including wind energy by 2025.3

While many people support wind energy, some have become concerned about possible impacts to their quality of life due to wind turbines, including noise, shadow flicker, and visual impacts, especially when they believe a wind turbine may be placed too close to their home. There is no worldwide agreement on appropriate wind turbine setback distances from homes; in fact, there is very limited awareness of wind turbine setbacks in other countries, or why a particular setback distance or limit was chosen. This report attempts to identify and clarify existing governmental requirements and recommendations regarding wind turbine setbacks from residences. It also attempts to identify the rationale behind current policies and whether or not the policies are based on public opinion or research. This report does not argue in favor of or against wind power, nor does it identify a best setback distance or measure. The goal of this report is to provide a resource of existing policies and recommendations regarding setbacks from residences in major wind energy-producing countries besides the United States.