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You Don't Own the Wind . . . ?

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posted on May, 10 2014 @ 10:05 PM
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This is an interesting one to come across and looks like a pretty simple matter for a court to decide, but it also goes to highlight what seems to be a growing problem.

While some folks rally and lobby for clean alternative energy, it's a whole different matter when it comes to turning that into real world units running on power plant scales or much smaller scales, as this is about.


MINNEAPOLIS (CN) - The city of Orono, Minn., adopted an illegal ban on wind power stations, a wind power company and landowners claim in court.

Go Green Energy and Jay and Kendall Nygard sued Orono in Hennepin County Court, joined by plaintiff the Micro Wind Advisory Council.


Okay, not just rude toward the more green among us, but outright illegal.


They claim that Minnesota has enacted laws and policies to encourage sustainable and renewable energy sources, including "small wind energy conversion systems," defined as "any combination of wind energy conversion system and any device such as a wind charger, windmill, or wind turbine and associated facilities that convert wind energy to electrical energy and have a capacity of less than 5,000 kilowatts."

. . .

The plaintiffs claim this ordinance is pre-empted by Minnesota Statute § 216F.02(b), "which prohibits local governments from enacting complete bans on businesses and homeowners using SWECS [small wind energy conversion systems] to generate electricity."
Source: Courthouse News

The story also mentions the fact the city and neighorhoods involved are distinctly affluent, with median home prices being North of $500,000. What is also a shame is that the area this is happening in sits on the North shore of Lake Minnetonka. A lake which most of us would probably call good size, although more common in that part of the country than most. Lakes are nice conduits of wind. This lake is just West of Minneapolis.

National Wind Map

(Source)

Given the state of things with pollution, increasingly difficult regulation for older plants to stay current with and market factors?

(Source)

I think the renewable power like Wind needs all the help it can get. Especially in places apt to have useful wind for it. Now I know one of the main issues when people thing of wind is the size and noise of the turbines we tend to think about. The fields of them in Oklahoma, Texas and parts of California are what is most often photographed in stories about those issues. This isn't dealing with especially large systems though. The state law addresses 5,000 Kilowatts or less, actually.

I looked online and found one example with specs to see for an idea of scale and appearance.

WindiStar 4500

That one is roughly 15 feet in rotor diameter.

Few, if any of these systems are realistic for the majority, in my opinion. They are $10,000 and up in this range, and it goes up real quick.

In an area of half million dollar properties though? I can see the ability to add one, and the help it may do in a measurable way if enough do likewise. I don't have to be a Green minded person to see that passing laws against using clean and simple methods on an individual level is foolish.

At least in my humble opinion.




posted on May, 10 2014 @ 10:12 PM
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I don't blame them for not wanting those things in their back yards. In Minnesota they get a lot of ice, would you want those turbines anywhere near you slinging around those big blades with all that ice on them, just waiting to fly off in long daggers?

Those are dangerous, and there is a lot of winter up there.

Imagine the potential for property damage.



posted on May, 10 2014 @ 10:35 PM
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originally posted by: ketsuko
I don't blame them for not wanting those things in their back yards. In Minnesota they get a lot of ice, would you want those turbines anywhere near you slinging around those big blades with all that ice on them, just waiting to fly off in long daggers?

Those are dangerous, and there is a lot of winter up there.

Imagine the potential for property damage.


Hmmm I had not thought of that, interesting complication.

The big corps and government do not want independent green energy. The goal is centralized green energy that maintains control over the populace.

It is simple governance philosophy not to allow the people to be independent. That would allow people to not suffer (as much) when they want to deviate from the group. Especially in more affluent areas where most uprising are financed and directed.

The top levels of governments around the world are pushing towards the Type-# global civilization outlined by Michio Kaku. It would make absolutely no sense to support systems which allow folks to opt-out.

Good find OP!

-FBB



posted on May, 10 2014 @ 10:41 PM
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a reply to: Wrabbit2000

Each day I think this country resembles the movie Idiocracy more. Just more government getting in the way of things. The windmills description you have there are too small to be any nuisance unless people feel trees are a nuisance as well.

As I have been looking into energy alternatives I keep coming back to the same conclusion that we are seriously squandering our resources and for some reason overlooking geothermal in this country. Geothermal would be cheaper than coal and there are areas in this country that could supply many times the amount of electric we could ever need, but you never hear much talk about tapping that resource.

It is an Idiocracy indeed.



posted on May, 10 2014 @ 10:46 PM
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a reply to: Wrabbit2000

For me it would really depend on the size of the property. The median list price for homes in my neighborhood is $635,000. That doesn't get you a very big yard. I windmill with a 15 foot diameter would be incredibly unsightly, most likely annoying to listen to and drop property values.



posted on May, 10 2014 @ 10:58 PM
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a reply to: Domo1

Getting a sense of rural vs. city is why I included a picture of the lake. It's not a dense nieghborhood area. I have areas here too which run high dollars and come in both the acre or two or 20 variety as well as the conventional packed neighborhood version.

However, this is an entire city in direct contravention of state law, saying no one, regardless of available space, can use one.

@ Thread

It's interesting to watch as we really are getting into worse and worse trouble on energy. Global warming TOTALLY aside, as it often distracts from the bigger issues. Just plain old raw pollution for the sake of ingesting toxins. The more we can move off that, the better we'll all be.

I did find a site with more detailed information on small scale wind turbines, including safety reminders on de-icing (Ice would slow them down or prevent them from turning on these small 6-7 foot blades, if not damage them), a scale of diameters needed to produce how much power as a general rule, noise levels and designs. It's from Ontario, Canada, but I'm sure the concerns there aren't much different than elsewhere.

Electricity Generation Using Small Wind Turbines at Your Home or Farm



posted on May, 10 2014 @ 11:11 PM
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I'd rather go for one of the solar back-up generators myself. The kind that charges a bank of batteries so that if the day is cloudy when you need it, it's charged and ready. My husband and I have talked about it, and we've discussed where we'd mount the panels since it's bad to put them on your house - dangerous to firemen if your house catches fire.



posted on May, 10 2014 @ 11:19 PM
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a reply to: ketsuko

I had solar panels on my last house and they were on the roof. I loved them for two reasons. One of course the reduced electric bill but the second was they extended the life of the shingles underneath which also reduced cooling costs.

Now I never heard anything about fireman complaints and I live in Florida where there are only a few months when it can be considered cool. That house didn't have any battery backup I just fed into the grid when there was more than enough and at night I ran off the grid on off peak hours. After a year of doing that I started to receive checks from the power company for the excess.

I am planing on moving within the next year after selling this house and when I do I will make the investment into solar again. I travel a lot so all those months I am away my house will be making me money.



posted on May, 10 2014 @ 11:24 PM
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a reply to: Grimpachi

Apparently, if you put them on your roof and your house catches fire during the day, there is no way to shut them off, so firefighters risk electrocution when trying to negotiate your roof.

While they can't be sure if anyone has been injured, it may be enough to keep firefighters from doing more than defensive firefighting on your home.
edit on 10-5-2014 by ketsuko because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 10 2014 @ 11:34 PM
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a reply to: ketsuko

I could see that happening more so if you have battery banks but as I said I will not maintain batteries and simply sell my excess back to the grid.

The next house I plan to buy will be all on one floor. I really don't like second story homes so that should reduce my risk there as well. Honestly though I think keeping battery banks would be a bigger fire concern than panel placement, but each person knows what their needs will be. It has been a while since I have checked, but each year federal and state come out with rebate programs on solar when I get to my next home I will take advantage of any that are available. In some cases that can reduce the cost by more than half.



posted on May, 10 2014 @ 11:39 PM
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a reply to: Grimpachi

That's why we're discussing where we want it. We have a small lawn shed that wouldn't kill us if it burnt down. It has a roof that could hold solar panels. Then, it's just a matter of getting the power into the home proper.

But what do you do if the grid goes down? All that power you are gathering is gone.



posted on May, 10 2014 @ 11:50 PM
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a reply to: ketsuko

Your electrical box and meter will still register that. I did go through one hurricane and the power was off for about to days. It was enough to keep my freezer from defrosting and my neighbor on one side was able to run a few things because of what I fed back int the system.



posted on May, 11 2014 @ 03:19 AM
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originally posted by: ketsuko
I don't blame them for not wanting those things in their back yards. In Minnesota they get a lot of ice, would you want those turbines anywhere near you slinging around those big blades with all that ice on them, just waiting to fly off in long daggers?

Those are dangerous, and there is a lot of winter up there.

Imagine the potential for property damage.


There are several anti-icing and de-icing solutions these days from blade heating to hydrophobic coatings and safety systems that can detect the build up of ice and shut the turbines down.

It's not uncommon to hear about ice falling from buildings in the winter. In February, ice was falling from the Freedom Tower:


For the second day in a row, chunks of ice fell from the Freedom Tower — but this time streets remained open and Port Authority officials didn’t close the nearby PATH station.


Would it seem reasonable to suggest a ban on tall buildings in an area that experiences conditions conducive to icing? This simply isn't a valid reason for banning turbines.
edit on 2014-5-11 by theantediluvian because: (no reason given)



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