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Siting recommendations to be presented

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GINA R. HEINE
January 29, 2008
— Months of research by a study committee will be unveiled Thursday night as members present how they think wind turbines should be sited in Union Township.

The Wind Turbine Study Committee will present its recommendations, including a proposed draft ordinance, to the town plan commission at 7 p.m. in the lower level of the Eager Free Public Library, 39 W. Main St., Evansville.


The committee was charged with investigating industrial wind turbines and writing a proposed ordinance that would regulate how turbines could be sited in the township, committee chairman Tom Alisankus said. Ordinances can only regulate turbines in regard to public health and safety, he said.


The committee’s results will go through the plan commission and town board, and the process will include public hearings. The town board has imposed a stay on construction of large wind energy systems until August.


EcoEnergy is proposing to build three wind turbines in the town with Wisconsin Public Power buying the power to be used by Evansville Water and Light customers. An open house on the proposal was held Monday night.


The study committee has met nearly every Saturday morning since September, and members were assigned tasks. Members Scott McElroy and Jim and Cathy Bembinster “invested their souls” in their research and visited several wind farms, Alisankus said.


“We decided that we wanted to base our ordinance strictly on information that was either scientific or medical that had been peer-reviewed by respectable people in the field,” he said.


Doing so eliminated committee members’ personal biases about wind energy, he said.


Town officials appointed the committee.



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