BigWind seeks to ‘silence’ Ohioans

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“What Susan Munroe and the Ohio Chamber of Commerce have in common is that they both represent a big business intent on transforming entire communities from agricultural/residential to heavy industrial without the consent of the local citizens. No other form of development transforms such large portions of local areas, 250 square miles and tens of thousands of people affected in the Seneca County area alone. When big business lobbies for voter suppression on such a large issue then as citizens we should be very wary of their intentions no matter which side of the wind decision we may be on“…Amen and thank you Mr. Feasel for your wise comments!

Business and environmental groups told state lawmakers Tuesday that subjecting proposed wind farms to votes of the people would likely kill the industry in Ohio.

“House Bill 401 is an alarming proposal that would take away landowners’ rights by subjecting wind energy development to a local vote that could result in the cancellation of a project after the permitting,” said Susan Munroe, economic development director for Chambers for Innovation and Clean Energy and former president of the Van Wert Area Chamber of Commerce.

“It pits neighbor against neighbor,” she told the House Energy and Natural Resources Committee. “It’s an attack on landowner property rights. No other development, much less energy resource development, has to endure this type of legislation at the local level.”…

The measure would allow voters living in townships to petition to place a referendum on the ballot to undo wind farm site approvals by the Ohio Power Siting Board. The effort is largely driven by opponents of several large wind farms in varying stages of development, with a total of 189 turbines, on farmland in Seneca, Sandusky, Erie, and Huron counties.

Paulding County has four wind farms totaling 182 turbines, a fifth under construction with 31 turbines, and a sixth in development, generating income that Commissioner Roy Klopfenstein said could not be duplicated by other development. A turbine will soon be built on his own property.

“It is our opinion that the referendum process in this case is just wrong,” he said. “We as commissioners receive far more calls on livestock operations than wind farms. Are we as a community going to permit other industries to be subject to a ‘do I like my neighbor?’ vote?”

Some committee members questioned why Paulding should be concerned given the support wind farms have received in that rural, sparsely populated county. Testimony on Tuesday was limited to those opposing the measure.

The committee’s chairman, Rep. Nino Vitale (R., Urbana), noted that, as an energy source, wind farms take up thousands of more acres than, for instance, Lake County’s Perry nuclear power plant in Lake County.

That is a big impact difference when you’re talking about 120,000 acres versus a thousand acres,” he said. “Maybe that is where some of the tension occurs in terms of why is this coming up.”

Rep. Jon Cross (R., Kenton), who has a wind farm in his home county of Hardin, asked Mr. Klopfenstein whether some of the impact on the wind industry might be alleviated if the referendum took place prior to a siting decision by the state board rather than after approval….

Toledo Blade article


BigWind ‘Carbon laundering’ and Green washing in Ohio

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We ran across an interesting concept this week concerning the term ”carbon neutral”.   It is used to justify Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) and other schemes for the purpose of evading responsibility for carbon emissions.   It has been suggested that “carbon laundering” might be a more accurate term since it has distasteful associations with “money laundering”.   So when FB, Google or other tech companies say they are carbon neutral because they bought Renewable Energy Credits from a wind developer, they are really engaged in “carbon laundering” to make it look like they are powered by renewable energy.  Lock ‘em up!

There is some interesting legislative news to report this week.  Rep. Haraz Ghanbari of Perrysburg in Wood County has been selected to represent the 3rd Ohio House District.  Following this appointment,  Ghanbari was named to replace Rep. Kris Jordan on the House Energy and Natural Resources Committee.   Rep. Jordan was also replaced on the Subcommittee on Energy Generation by Rep. Jon Cross of Kenton of Hardin County.  We would like to point out that Hardin is also a county that has rescinded its Alternative Energy Zone designation. We neglected to include Hardin last week.


The OPSB approved the Willowbrook Solar facility, a 150 MW project by Open Road Renewables covering 1,762 acres of land in Brown and Highland Counties.  The project was backed by AEP which filed a 20 year commitment to buy power from Willowbrook. A second 300 MW solar facility in Highland County is  being developed by Hecate Energy and AEP intends to purchase this as well. AEP is forecasting $200 million in consumer savings over the life of the 20 year renewable energy purchase agreement (REPA) but says residential customers using 1,000 kilowatt hours of electricity would see an immediate increase of 28 cents per month in their bill.


A new statewide group has announced its formation.  The Ohio Consumers Energy Alliance describes themselves as a statewide, non-partisan consumer advocate focused on keeping electricity rates low through diversifying Ohio’s energy portfolio.  In a press release, the Director of the Alliance said “”Consumers have opinions about our state’s energy but are seldom heard over the noise of utility lobbyists and industry leaders,”. “Our role is to be the megaphone for the voice of consumers.”  “The alliance is opposed to bailing out Ohio’s old, uneconomical nuclear plants by assessing a fee from every electric consumer in Ohio,” Belz said of the FirstEnergy proposal. “This does not move Ohio forward.”   The group said it will look to recruit members from around Ohio and engage decision-makers through grassroots activities including letters, phone calls and visits.  “We formed this group because for far too long the needs of the consumers have been largely ignored when it comes to energy matters,” said Belz. “Decisions about energy and electric costs have been made by legislators and the special interests who are supporting those legislators. It is now time for consumers to have a way to voice their opinions on these critical matters.”

Okay – this is an anti-nuclear group and we doubt they are seeking to diversify Ohio’s energy portfolio with more fracked oil and gas or coal but who knows?  Against this backdrop, we include in this issue a number of calls for greater adoption of nuclear energy to combat climate change.   These calls do not come from the Consumers Energy Alliance.   It is rumored that a “clean air”  bill will be introduced this week in the General Assembly.  We will have a report on this as we learn more but there is sure to be lots of discussion.  

An absolutely outstanding article co-authored by Michael Shellenberger in Forbes is a must read.  In Why Renewables Advocates Protect Fossil Fuel Interests, Not The Climate, he pulls back the covers on groups like Sierra, the Environmental Defense Fund and the Natural Resources Defense Council. 

In other news:


  • The Toledo Blade gives extensive coverage to wind developments in Van Wert and Paulding Counties.  Wind warriors are kind of written off as NIMBYs although Jeremy Kitson gets some ink.  We see a lot of irony in the new Lincolnview Community Center with the latest bells and whistles that provides a place for the community to recreate.  It is too bad they need to be indoors.  Maybe if they had to be outside, they would care more about their natural environment.


  • A judge presiding over the litigation in Paulding County against the State of Ohio for changing the 2014 setback law by inserting language in a budget bill has ruled that Seneca County homeowners can intervene in the suit.  The homeowners are asking that the suit be dismissed and that the law measuring setbacks from the property line be upheld. 


  • On Thursday, Seneca Wind, LLC and the OPSB staff filed a joint motion to suspend the hearing schedule to allow additional time for Seneca Wind to provide information required for the staff to complete its report of investigation. The OPSB will establish a new hearing schedule at a later date.  It is unclear what the information requested is.  It could be military aviation interference as well as other aviation issues including aerial spraying for cover crops to comply with the state’s efforts to clean up Lake Erie, the number of karst areas and underground water flow concerns, and so forth. The list could be long.  We note that sPower is represented by a very high-powered PR firm in Columbus, Paul Werth & Associates.


  • The Editors of Seneca County’s Advertiser Tribune wrote an Editorial favoring taking a time out on granting PILOT for wind projects.  Seneca recently rescinded its Alternative Energy Zone designation but two previously approved projects  will receive the tax abatement if they go forward as planned. “As for other potential projects — and other parts of the county are ripe for wind development — county commissioners and residents should take a wait-and-see approach to allowing energy-zone benefits. Wait until current projects are built, and see whether we want more of them.”


  • In Lordstown, Ohio (home to the closing GM plant) two smaller turbines are coming down.  They are not operating but continue to spin in the wind. One local citizen said. “It sounds like a helicopter is landing.” When the turbines were installed in 2011, the village was told to expect them to generate enough electricity to reduce the electric bill for the village hall by $300 to $500 per month. Hill said the actual amount of savings was “about $550 per year.”  “They didn’t pan out,” Hill said. “We said just get rid of ‘em and get them out of there.”


  • President Trump took off after wind energy in several public forums recently, even going so far as to claim that the noise from turbines causes cancer.  U.S. Senator Grassley, who is wind’s chief proponent in the Senate, called Trump’s remarks “idiotic”  while the New York Times spun a bit of its own fake news and magical thinking  to rebut Trumps claims.


  • One reason for wind developers to avoid bat habitat is that mitigation of bat fatality requires curtailment of the wind turbines during certain periods.  This results in reduced production and less revenue.  Now a new bat avoidance technology is being developed and tested in Illinois.   “Results from trials at EDF Renewables’ 175MW Pilot Hill development in Illinois, where a spread of 15 ultrasonic acoustic systems were installed on turbines last year, showed an overall improvement in AEP of almost 2% and a reduction in bat fatalities of an average of 67%.  Testing of NRG’s system — which generates ultrasonic waves out to the blade-tips that “jams” the bats echolocation frequency and so prompts them to forage in airspace outside the wind farm site — was conducted at the 103-turbine development over three months, with a five-metre per second cut-in speed applied at the deterrent-equipped turbines.”


  • Democrats in the Congress are urging the House Ways and Means Committee to reinstate and extend the Production Tax Credit for wind and solar.  Ohio Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur is among the signers of a letter of support.


  • In Illinois, the legislature has passed a bill that provides that only a county may enact zoning regulations for wind farms in the rural parts of a county, outside the zoning jurisdiction of incorporated cities, even in counties that don’t have countywide zoning regulations.  The bill is aimed at Douglas County, where a Houston-based company, EDP Renewables North America LLC, plans build a 200-megawatt wind farm, known as the Harvest Ridge Wind Farm.  Townships with their own stricter zoning could be overruled by the new law.  Local officials lobbied against the bill, arguing that it would strip them of local control, but that argument largely fell on deaf ears.   This is not a good sign!


  • Wall Street Journal  “Many environmentalists have changed their minds about nuclear energy over the past decade. While the share of energy produced by solar and wind has grown rapidly, nuclear remains America’s largest source of clean, zero-emissions electricity. Anyone seriously interested in preventing dangerous levels of global warming should be advocating nuclear power.”


  • Wisconsin Public Radio: Setting aside the ambitious Green New Deal and its goal of achieving 100 percent renewable energy by 2030, Congressional Democrats are sectioning off portions of that resolution to deliver more moderate measures that might find greater support.  But largely missing from these proposals and the Green New Deal itself is nuclear power.  Paul Wilson, a University of Wisconsin-Madison nuclear engineering professor, disagrees, saying nuclear can play a role in the reduction of carbon so long as the U.S.’s current fleet of about 100 nuclear power plants is maintained and innovation in the field — such as building smaller reactors that are less expensive — is supported.  Including nuclear power in a national energy policy also would help give the industry a sense of direction, Wilson said’’’


  • Energy Central:  A major step forward in congressional support for the next generation of nuclear reactor technology took place this past week with the introduction in the Senate of the bipartisan Nuclear Energy Leadership Act (NELA), It is seen by an across- the-board coalition of nine nuclear industry organizations as an important step in creating a comprehensive blueprint to bring these designs to fruition. A key voice is Bill Gates who tweeted “I can’t overstate how important this is.”


  • Pittsburgh Post Gazette:  Former PA Governor Tom Ridge writes “Nuclear is the nation’s and the commonwealth’s most abundant source of clean energy. Nuclear plants emit no greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change. They provide “baseload” power, which means they reliably run 24/7 — and for 18 months to 24 months without refueling. Nuclear is a critical component of a resilient electricity grid, which is essential to national security. Our security depends on energy sources that are stable and diverse to consistently meet demands from critical customers such as military bases and government facilities.”  By taking the commonsense approach of amending the AEPS statute to include nuclear energy, we can blend Pennsylvania’s competitive market structure with environmental protection, provide thousands of family-sustaining jobs and contribute to our national security.”


  • Also under development in Washington by Sen. Mo Udall (D-New Mexico) is a bill to establish a federal renewable or clean energy mandate.  We do not know if it will include nuclear….

Renewable Advocates Protect Fossil Fuels

Cash cow

Statehouse News Monday, April 1, 2019 Paulding, Seneca residents At Odds in Wind Setback Lawsuit

Suspended hearing for Wind

Seneca delayed again

Time Out

Lordstown failed turbines

Trump steps up attack on ‘cancer-causing’ wind power-US president also asserts wind turbines destroy property values and are a ‘graveyard’ for birds By Richard Kessler in Fort Worth 03 April 2019Updated 04 April 2019

Sen. Grassley calls Trump comments idiotic

Trump fact checked

RECHARGE US bat deterrent trials show rise in energy output –Annual energy production from wind farms in bat-infested regions could be upped 2% and turbine-strikes reduced an average 67%. by Darius Snieckus 03 April 2019Updated 03 April 2019

Democrat renewable momentum

wind zoning to governor

We NEED nuclear

Nuclear at the table

Nuclear boost bill

Nuclear must be supported

Revive renewable mandate


BigWind is suing Ohio b/c they don’t like our laws!!!

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What a week.  In a nutshell, this is what happened:

Senators Randy Gardner and Matt Huffman were elected to the 3rd and 4th top leadership positions in the Senate.  Gardner’s district includes Erie, Fulton (part), Lucas (part), Ottawa and  Wood. Huffman’s district encompasses Allen, Auglaize (part), Champaign, Darke (part), Logan (part), Mercer and Shelby.  These areas are vital to our plight, as BigWind is relentless is pursuing large land takeovers. Many constituents, fighting against BigWind in these areas, want setbacks measured from property lines and a right of referendum or local vote on every proposed wind facility.

BigWind, on the other hand, has decided to fight back, ”the Mid-Atlantic Renewable Energy Coalition (MAREC) and three local landowners in Paulding County filed a lawsuit against the State of Ohio claiming the current property line setback law established in 2014 in HB 483 is unconstitutional.  MAREC seeks to have the law overturned.  Section 15 (D), Article II of the Ohio Constitution provides: “No bill shall contain more than one subject, which shall be clearly expressed in its title. No law shall be revised or amended unless the new act contains the entire act revived, or the section or sections amended, and the section or sections amended shall be repealed.”

The complaint notes that the purpose of HB 483 (also known as the Mid-Biennial Budget Review or MBR) was “to make operating and other appropriations and to provide authorization and conditions for the operation of state programs.”  The regulation of economically significant wind turbines is a state program run by the Ohio Power Siting Board.  If the setback change in HB 483 is deemed unconstitutional, it is likely to have the unintended consequence of also invalidating many other laws that were adopted in connection with appropriation bills.   The General Assembly would likely not be happy with such an outcome.

Is this is a “Hail Mary Pass” being thrown as the time is running out to enact legislation repealing the 2014 setback?  It is a serious matter nonetheless. The case is in the Paulding County Court of Common Pleas.  If BigWind can’t get what they want through obtaining sufficient Good Neighbor Agreements, they want to take what they need by invalidating the current law.  Paulding County Commissioner, Tony Zartman, is quoted saying, ““We strongly support this action. In fact, our concern over this unconstitutional maneuver is so great that we are currently considering joining the case ourselves. We believe filing this lawsuit is in the best interest of our community and our future economic growth.”

Of interest is the announcement of LafargeHolcim, a large cement company in Paulding.  Along with ONE Energy, LafargeHolcim will build three turbines to power its facilities.   We recall that in 2013, LafargeHolcim was featured in the press as a large provider to the wind industry. They provided the concrete for the Blue Creek turbine foundations and for the roads traveled by heavy equipment used to build the facility….

Paulding county link

Paulding county and farmers





BigWind’s ‘OILY’ secret spills out

Unfortunately, many people are MIS informed about the cleanliness of renewable energy.  Industrial wind turbines are anything BUT clean and green.  In reality, each turbine has thousands of moving parts that must be lubricated with hundreds of gallons of oil.  This oil, much like in your car, must be ‘changed’ every so often, but how? By building a crane, on site, that can reach to the top of the mighty high nacelle.  This crane compacts soil and costs a lot of $ to transport to the site. Industrial wind turbines are manufactured from machines that USE oil, they are transported to the jobsite by vehicles that USE oil, and they then USE oil to lubricate their parts. Additionally, they utilize hundreds of pounds of rare earth elements, fiberglass, etc….all items that generate toxic, dangerous conditions for individuals.  The only ‘green’ that these machines generate are in the form of tax credits for the international companies that own them.  If you reside in NW Ohio, please feel free to inform Senator Cliff Hite of these truths, as he is an avid supporter of BigWind. The wind turbines in NW Ohio should begin to show similar problems as they age…

Wind turbines were planted along a strip of Mexico’s southern coast to make the country’s power industry cleaner. Now they’re spilling oil.

 In the town of Juchitan last month, a clean-up was under way around a generator owned by Electricite de France. Workers wearing goggles and masks were scrubbing off a copper-colored lubricant that dripped down from the turbine. They’d wrapped cloth around its base, to absorb further leakage, and stuffed contaminated soil and stones into plastic trash-bags.

Flor, who owns the land where the turbine is sited and rents it to EDF, said she arrived on the scene after being alerted by a neighbor. “The stench was terrible, like a sort of burned fuel or ammonia,” she said, asking not to be identified by her surname out of concern over reprisals. “The trees were glistening with oil.” Similar problems have been reported all along the Tehuantepec isthmus, one of the western hemisphere’s windiest places….

He said oil from Acciona’s turbines never reached the ground, and the company is working on a fix: a sheath for the gearbox which will prevent the lubricant from running down the mast or onto the blades.

Gamesa Corp Tecnologica, which made the EDF turbines used at the Juchitan wind park, said oil leaks occur with “relative frequency” and operators are equipped with “spill kits” to deal with them. Most leaks are contained, though “small amounts habitually” spill from the turbines, the company said in an emailed response to questions….

Source: Wind-power pollution: turbine oil seeps into the land in Mexico

pic source:

OPSB issues draft BigWind siting rules- the joke is on us

This past week the Ohio Power Siting Board released its industrial wind facility “Draft Rules” for comment. The OPSB release states:

The public is invited to submit comments on these rules. In an entry dated September 22, 2016, the Ohio Power Siting Board (OPSB) issued proposed rules applicable to wind‑powered electric generation facilities in amended Ohio Administrative Code 4906‑4‑08 and newly proposed 4906‑4‑09. The OPSB requests that interested persons submit formal written comments on the proposed rules by October 24, 2016 and reply comments by November 8, 2016. The entry and proposed rules are available in the online record for case number 16-1109-GE-BRO. (We have also attached the proposed rules below.)

Stakeholders may submit comments in case number 16-1109-GE-BRO via electronic filing or in hard copy to: PUCO Docketing Division, 11th Floor, 180 East Broad Street, Columbus, Ohio 43215. Following the conclusion of the comment and reply comment period, the OPSB will later issue final rules to be reviewed by the Ohio Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review before taking effect.

Questions regarding the rulemaking may be directed to


Having only given the draft rules a cursory look, we cannot provide you with our detailed assessment at this time BUT we can say they appear to be a complete farce and that they fail to provide any real enforceable protection for residents and property owners. For instance, the draft rule at page 28 addresses noise at adjacent non-participating property. Everyone knows that sound from wind turbines can propagate across miles and varies depending on topography. This alone is an indicator that the rules are designed to facilitate the construction of industrial wind and nothing else. In order to make the industrial power plants seem benign, the rule actually changes the word wind “facility” to wind “farm”. Gee – will fracking sites become oil and gas farms? Anyone up for a nuclear farm?

We all remember the blade failure in Paulding County which occurred as a result of human error when an employee in some remote control center restarted a turbine that had been automatically shut down. Not to worry going forward! The new rules outlaw human error! “Bypass or override of wind turbine safety features or equipment is prohibited.” Feel better now? Not only that, the rules now require the developer to give their best guess on “probabilities” of bad things happening. If the developer doesn’t think that there is a real good chance that high winds could be dangerous, or ice throws could smash through your car window while you are driving down a road, or hit your children while playing in their yards, then Hakuna Matata! No worries!

The rules include the following provisions:

(6) High winds. The applicant shall provide an analysis of the prospects of high winds for the area, including the probability of occurrences and likely consequences of various wind velocities, and describe plans to mitigate any likely adverse consequences.

(1) The ice throw analysis shall, at a minimum, include the probability of ice throw impacts at the nearest property boundary and public road.

(3) In addition to the use of the safety measures enumerated in paragraph (E)(2) of this rule, the potential impact from ice throw shall be presumptively deemed to satisfy safety considerations if the probability of one kilogram of ice landing beyond the statutory property line setback for each turbine location is less than one per cent per year.

We invite you to consider the proposed rule on Noise below which is followed by Union Neighbors United’s January 18th noise comments filed with the OPSB. UNU’s comments were more fully described by its expert noise advisor again on June 9, 2016. Those written comments are attached. The only thing one can say about these “rules” is that once again the OPSB is attempting to provide wind developers with an “unregulated” environment under the guise of “regulation.” Regulation that protects no one is hardly regulation.

OPSB Draft Noise Rule

(2) The facility shall be operated so that the facility noise contribution does not result in noise levels at the adjacent non-participating property that exceed the project area ambient nighttime average sound level (Leq) by five A-weighted decibels (dBA). Non-participating property, for the purpose of this rule, refers to properties not under lease or agreement with the applicant regarding any components of the facility or project. During daytime operation only {seven a.m. to ten p.m.), the facility may operate at the greater of: the project area ambient nighttime Leq plus five dBA; or the validly measured ambient Leq plus five dBA at the location of the adjacent non-participating property. After commencement of commercial operation, the applicant shall conduct further review of the impact and possible mitigation of all project-related noise complaints through its complaint resolution process.

UNU Comment January 18, 2016

(a) Noise:

(i) To prevent annoyance and sleep deprivation from inherently intrusive wind turbine noise, operational noise levels of wind energy facilities should not exceed five dBA above the background sound level at nonparticipating properties. UNU Brief at 22-25. Since this proposed standard applies to nonparticipating properties, the rule should require all background noise measurements to be taken on location at nonparticipating properties wherever possible.2 For purposes of determining compliance with this standard, background noise assessments must be based on the L90 statistical standard, as universally acknowledged in the acoustical engineering profession. Id. at 30. The L90, known as the residual sound level, is the sound level exceeded during 90% of the measurement period. The L90 measures the quietest 10% of a time interval in order to identify the amount of background sound that is normally available to mask turbine noise that otherwise would awaken a person. By measuring the quietest 10% interval, the L90 statistic filters out the sporadic noise from noise events of short duration, such as passing cars.

By removing brief noise spikes, the L90 metric eliminates short-term noise spikes that serve no purpose for masking the sound of a new noise source. Id. (ii) No nonparticipating resident or landowner should be exposed to noise levels greater than 35 dBA and 50 dBC at any time. UNU Brief at 35-40, 44. (iii) The above standards should apply at the property lines of nonparticipating properties, not merely at neighboring residences. Id. at 44-45. (iv) Proposed subsection 4906-4-08(C)(3)(B) requires that the application address “cumulative operational noise levels at the property boundary for each non-participating property adjacent to or within the project area, under both day and nighttime conditions.” As the Board is well aware, wind energy developers often plan their facilities in phases, while in other cases, one developer’s facility is proposed in or near the location of another developer’s facility. In order to assess the cumulative impact of multiple facilities, it is critical that such assessment take into account impacts from other existing, proposed, or planned wind power facilities in addition to impacts from the facility that is the subject of the application. This comment applies not only to assessment of cumulative noise impacts, but also to visual impacts, shadow flicker, and othercumulative facility impacts.

Last June when the OPSB presented an earlier draft of wind rules, UNU asserted the proposed rules conflicted with the intent of legislation to protect the public and that they lacked enforceable standards. We have reprinted a portion of the news report from the Hannah Statehouse News Service from last June wherein” JCARR Chairman Sen. Joe Uecker (R-Loveland) said the General Assembly only required OPSB write “reasonable regulations,” and did not include the phrase “for the protection of the public.” Notwithstanding we recall that Senator Troy Balderson pointed out to the OPSB’s Legal Director, Angela Hawkins, that there were, in fact, deficiencies in the rules and he expects those deficiencies to be fixed in the upcoming new rulemaking process.

We will report further on these draft rules after we study them a bit more. In the meantime, be thinking about having your local elected officials join you in commenting on the rules when they are due one month from today on October 24th. For now, we think anyone who signs a wind lease, a “good neighbor agreement,” or a waiver should question whether their family, neighbors or community will ever truly be protected by OPSB rules….

The Hannah Statehouse News Service Reported the hearing as follows (emphasis added by Wind News):

Wind Farm Certification Rules Clear JCARR despite Opposition

A new rule revising the content and substance of certificate applications for electric generation facilities, including wind farms, cleared the Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review (JCARR) on Monday.

The Ohio Power Siting Board (OPSB) rule addresses new wind turbine setback requirements set in 130-HB483…

Lawyer Christopher Walker, representing Union Neighbors United (UNU), testified in opposition to the rule saying it violates the third JCARR prong — conflicting with legislative intent.

“Today’s rule purports to contain the board’s regulations governing health and safety, land use, and ecological impacts of wind energy projects. However, this rule lacks the standards explicitly required by the General Assembly to protect the public health and public interest from the impacts of wind farm operations,” Walker said.

“Neither Rule 4906-4-08 nor the remainder of the board’s rules establish any requirements governing the reconstruction or enlargement of wind turbines, protection of recreational lands or wildlife,” Walker continued. “Furthermore, the rules contain no enforceable standards for wind facility decommissioning or for protection of the public from ice throw, wind turbine noise, blade shear, or shadow flicker. Instead, this rule, which purports to address health and safety impacts of wind energy facilities, is merely a laundry list of various information that a wind energy facility developer must submit to the board and its staff in its application.”

Walker said he was particularly concerned that the rule does not set specific standards for blade and ice throw, noting turbines can fling fragments 1,640 feet. He said the rule is “silent” on this issue.

Rep. Dan Ramos (D-Lorain) pointed out the rule requires applicants to evaluate and describe the potential impact from blade shear and ice throw at the nearest property boundary and public road and include plans to mitigate the potential effects and instruct workers of potential hazards. Walker responded by saying he meant the rule does not include enforceable standards on these issues.

Walker said several times that HB562 required “reasonable regulations” “for the protection of the public.” JCARR Chairman Sen. Joe Uecker (R-Loveland) said the General Assembly only required OPSB write “reasonable regulations,” and did not include the phrase “for the protection of the public.” Walker acknowledged the latter phrase was not included in the law….


BigWind graveyard or birthplace? Van Wert, Ohio

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On Hoaglin Center Rd in Van Wert, Ohio this BigWind graveyard and birthplace exists. Some believe it is a graveyard because damaged blades seem to appear, regularly, as if they are being changed out at night. This is also a birthplace, as the replacement blades regularly move in/out of this lot (via train).  The Van Wert industrial turbine site is a mere 5 years old, to have this problem. Although the gear box is an achilles heel of this industry, it appears as though blades are a problem, too.  This seems mighty expensive, doesn’t it, for regular maintenance??????? Unfortunately, for the resident who posted the ‘noisy turbine’ in Van Wert, these blades have not gone to fix her backyard problem….

Van Wert BigWind developer SELLS (as expected) before the $$ runs out…

This article is WRONG. It is NOT the Blue Creek wind farm that is expanding, it is one of the Paulding projects. Iberdrola has SOLD their Blue Creek wind farm to Avangrid….something we have warned you about for years. The developers like to sell their industrial wind site BEFORE year 10, because maintenance issues become problematic and expensive and because they lose the Production Tax Credit at year 10.  The Iberdrola rep, Dan Litchfield, moved out of the area approximately 2 months ago.  Remember the video that we posted last week? It showed a noisy turbine in the back yard of a Van Wert resident. That resident has found ZERO help with her plight. Why? The new company, Avangrid, does not have a working phone number. She is pleading for help, but no one can come to her aid.  As the turbines in our region age, these stories will become more common. And now, more residents will become aware of this problem…

Your drive through the northern part of the region could have a delay or two over the next 10 weeks.

Windmills, part of the Blue Creek Wind Farm project, will be trucked from Toledo to Paulding, making a winding route to avoid as many obstacles as possible….

Source: The Lima News | Caution: Windmills to be trucked through area for 10 weeks