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Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Coalition supports legislation to set wind-siting standards

From a news release issued by Clean, Responsible Energy for Wisconsin's Economy (CREWE):

MADISON, Wis.— CREWE supports the current legislative proposal recommending uniform standards for the siting of large and small wind energy systems to be set by the Public Service Commission (PSC).

The bill proposed by State Sen. Jeff Plale (D- South Milwaukee), chair of the Senate Energy and Utilities Committee advocates that the Public Service Commission develop uniform siting standards for wind power projects across the state. The bill is circulating in the legislature but has not yet been introduced.

The current siting rules are just not fair says Curt Pawlisch, attorney for Wind for Wisconsin, a member of CREWE. Recent disputes over municipal ordinances have had a negative impact on developing energy alternatives and a greener economy.

Wind power is a growing and maturing industry that can play a significant role in Wisconsin. Perhaps the single greatest barrier to the development of this sector of energy policy is a lack of consistent and stable policy.

“Adopting a consistent and uniform siting policy will signal to land owners, wind developers, wind turbine manufacturers and in essence, to the rest of the nation, that Wisconsin is open for business in terms of wind development and growth.” Supporters of this legislation also contend that the single biggest constraint to increasing wind generation in Wisconsin is the current permitting environment which is far more problematic in Wisconsin than other states in the region. . . .

CREWE members include Wisconsin Energy Corp., Alliant Energy, Xcel Energy, EcoEnergy LLC MillerCoors, Johnson Controls, the Forest County Potawatomi Tribe, Madison Gas & Electric, Orion Energy Systems, C5•6 Technologies, American Transmission Co., Wind for Wisconsin, WPPI Energy and Emerging Energies of Wisconsin.

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