After one-year wait, Wisconsin siting rules take effect

After one-year wait, Wisconsin siting rules take effect

Wind energy industry members and advocates expressed relief and thanks Thursday when Wisconsin’s new wind farm siting rules, originally scheduled to take effect a year ago, became law.

The latest news came after a bill to repeal the rules was sent back to committee last week and subsequently was not further acted on in the final days of the legislative session. Actions by Wisconsin-based member companies and individuals in the state were critical to making sure that the state legislature did not act to permanently suspend the rules in the waning days of the session.

The siting rules, developed by a wide range of stakeholders and deemed a major accomplishment by participants, were put in place by the Wisconsin Public Service Commission in 2010 and were set to take effect in March 2011.  The wind industry had embraced the rules because, while setting a high standard for siting, they provided the industry with the clarity needed to develop projects.

The original guidelines call for wind turbines to be set back from the nearest property line by 1.1 times the height of the turbine.  They also require turbines to be no closer than 1,250 feet from the nearest residence.  However, after the November 2010 elections, a bill was introduced to increase the property-line setback to 1,800 feet and the rules were suspended.

“The arrival of these siting rules is good news for Wisconsin because it means jobs for the Badger State—not only through the building of wind farms that produce clean, affordable electricity, but in manufacturing as well,” said AWEA Director of Business Development Jeff Anthony, a Wisconsin native who is currently based there. “The wind energy supply chain gravitates to areas where there are wind projects, and the industry is eager to tap Wisconsin’s manufacturing infrastructure and know-how. We thank the Wisconsin legislature for their careful deliberation on this issue.”

Related articles:

Wisconsin legislature mounts late-session attack on wind, March 6, 2012
Public Opinion Watch: Wisconsin says “Yes!” to wind power, April 25, 2011
Suspension of Wisconsin wind siting rules threatens to shut door on wind power industry in the state, March 1, 2011


Carl has been a part of the AWEA team since 2006. He brings both his expertise in communications as well as experience with the evolving wind energy industry to the job of overseeing AWEA's online and written publications including the Wind Energy Weekly, WINDPOWER Update, WINDPOWER Today, and various print materials. He has worked as a journalist in the energy industry as a staff writer for Public Utilities Fortnightly magazine and in the association sector as senior editor at Association Management magazine. He also has covered the home-building industry, where his areas of greatest interest were sustainable development and "smart growth," and has written articles for numerous other publications as a freelance writer. Carl received his B.A. from James Madison University and spent some time in New Orleans employed as a teacher as well as working with homeless youth.

More in Uncategorized

Into the Wind provides the latest news and expert opinion from the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA).

1501 M Street, NW, Suite 900 | Washington, DC 20005

Phone: 202.383.2500 | Fax: 202.383.2505

Sitemap | Privacy | Terms of Use

Copyright 2020 American Wind Energy Association. All Rights Reserved.