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Foes organizing against central Indiana wind farm plans

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Many people living in a central Indiana county are organizing against construction of a wind farm proposed by a company that's putting up hundreds of the electricity-generating turbines in nearby counties.

A Chicago-based company is seeking permission from Delaware County officials to build about 30 turbines across 15,000 acres of agricultural areas northeast of Muncie.

About 75 people attended a county plan commission meeting this month to voice objections to the plan, and about 125 people met last week to organize their opposition, The Star Press reported Monday.

One of the organizers, Kathy Gresh, said many Delaware County residents still "don't know anything about this."

"We're still trying to get the word out to everybody," Gresh said.

The county plan commission has delayed until its June 6 meeting any action on rules for wind turbines such as those proposed by E.ON Climate and Renewables of Chicago.

The commission's director proposed rules that the turbines be at least 1,320 feet from homes, but Gresh wants that minimum distance set at two miles, or 10,560 feet.

Gresh said the opponents believed that too many people lived in Delaware County's rural area for it to be appropriate for the wind farm, citing concerns about noise, impact to property values and dangers from the turbine blades.

"No one is opposed to green energy. That's not our dispute," she said. "But there's a place for these, and it's not in the middle of our neighborhoods."

Lael Eason, an E.ON development manager, said many of the arguments made by the project opponents "are simply false."

The company is looking to build about 30 turbines standing perhaps 500 feet tall in Delaware County, according to county officials.

E.ON also is building the Wildcat Wind Farm in counties neighboring to the west.

Construction finished late last year on 125 turbines are in eastern Tipton County and northern Madison County, in the area about 40 miles north of Indianapolis. Nearly 200 more turbines are planned in neighboring Howard and Grant counties in later phases.

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  • Fleece No More
    State Governors need to declare a moratorium on Wind and Solar farms until all taxpayer subsidies can be terminated, and IPL customers need protection from IPL paying exorbitant rates for such variable and costly power.

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  1. How much you wanna bet, that 70% of the jobs created there (after construction) are minimum wage? And Harvey is correct, the vast majority of residents in this project will drive to their jobs, and to think otherwise, is like Harvey says, a pipe dream. Someone working at a restaurant or retail store will not be able to afford living there. What ever happened to people who wanted to build buildings, paying for it themselves? Not a fan of these tax deals.

  2. Uh, no GeorgeP. The project is supposed to bring on 1,000 jobs and those people along with the people that will be living in the new residential will be driving to their jobs. The walkable stuff is a pipe dream. Besides, walkable is defined as having all daily necessities within 1/2 mile. That's not the case here. Never will be.

  3. Brad is on to something there. The merger of the Formula E and IndyCar Series would give IndyCar access to International markets and Formula E access the Indianapolis 500, not to mention some other events in the USA. Maybe after 2016 but before the new Dallara is rolled out for 2018. This give IndyCar two more seasons to run the DW12 and Formula E to get charged up, pun intended. Then shock the racing world, pun intended, but making the 101st Indianapolis 500 a stellar, groundbreaking event: The first all-electric Indy 500, and use that platform to promote the future of the sport.

  4. No, HarveyF, the exact opposite. Greater density and closeness to retail and everyday necessities reduces traffic. When one has to drive miles for necessities, all those cars are on the roads for many miles. When reasonable density is built, low rise in this case, in the middle of a thriving retail area, one has to drive far less, actually reducing the number of cars on the road.

  5. The Indy Star announced today the appointment of a new Beverage Reporter! So instead of insightful reports on Indy pro sports and Indiana college teams, you now get to read stories about the 432nd new brewery open or some obscure Hoosier winery winning a county fair blue ribbon. Yep, that's the coverage we Star readers crave. Not.

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