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7/811 Residents get ordinance, wind company takes ball, goes home ANDThe noise heard 'round the world: residents fight back




July 7, 2011

By Tim Miller,

Opponents of wind turbines in Lenawee Co. may have won a bigger victory then they realize.

Thursday, the developers announced they are backing down.

Wednesday night, hundreds of people against wind turbines cheered at a meeting when the Riga Township trustees approved a new zoning ordinance.

It allows wind turbines, but puts major restrictions on where they can go.

Developers must have setbacks from non-participating properties, of four times the height of the turbine. Noise generated by the turbines cannot exceed 45 decibels during the day, and 40 at night.

Because of the strong setbacks, Exelon Wind and Great Lakes Wind, partners in the so-called Blissfield Wind Project, say they cannot put one turbine in Riga Township, despite having more than 4,500 acres of land available under signed agreements with landowners.

Doug Duimering of Exelon Wind said, “We don’t have enough land to place turbines legally in Riga Township. Being compliant with the technical limits in this ordinance is impossible.”

Duimering said they’ve determined Exelon would have to get almost every landowner in the township to sign on.

“Frankly, they need to be sited in the west where there is a lot of open space,” Kevon Martis of the Informed Citizens Coalition said.

Martis says the Riga trustees sided with the citizens, over outside developers.

But many in his group at first saw it as a compromise, and not the total victory it appears to be.

“It took a little while on the phone and we will be handling out some mailers and stuff around the township to make people aware,” Martis said.

Exelon Wind will now turn its attention to neighboring Ogden and Palmyra Townships, hoping any ordinance they approve would have fewer restrictions. The Informed Citizens Coalition likely has more battles ahead.

Exelon Wind says it will have representatives at any future meetings in the other towns.

Another wind developer, Juwi Wind LLC, has been interested in Riga Township.

An official told WTOL 11 he can’t comment yet on their future plans.

But if the surrounding areas use the Riga ordinance as a model, the developers’ green energy dreams may drift away.

From the UK



July 2011 09:00

A COUPLE who have been thrust into the national media spotlight with their High Court wind farm battle say everyone has been “very supportive” so far.

Television cameras, photographers and reporters have been following Jane and Julian Davis’s plight since the trial started on Monday.

The case will decide whether the sound produced by eight wind turbines near to their farm in Deeping St Nicholas – which they claim left them unable to sleep – is causing a noise nuisance.

The couple were joined by their daughter Emily (21) at the High Court to hear opening submissions on Monday.

Mrs Davis said: “The High Court is a wonderful old building. It’s very atmospheric. It’s quite amazing to be there.”

She added: “Everyone has been very supportive. People have seen the story and made their own minds up about whether there is an issue or not.

“I think it’s less about wind farms than a family where things have gone wrong.”

The judge, Mr Justice Hickinbottom, visited Deeping St Nicholas for several hours with legal teams on Tuesday.

Yesterday Mrs Davis was due to give evidence to the court, while her husband will appear in the witness box today. Two of the defendants – Nicholas Watts and RC Tinsley Ltd – are due to give their evidence on Tuesday and Wednesday.

The Davis family are seeking an injunction for the alleged noise to be stopped by removing two turbines and modifying the operation of a third, and for their losses and damages of about £150,000 and legal costs to be paid.

Alternatively, they want the defendants to pay for a new three-bedroom house with the same acreage of land they had at the farm which is estimated to cost about £260,000, as well as losses, damages and legal costs.

Their story so far has appeared on the BBC, Daily Express, Daily Mail,

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