Wind turbine debate continues in northwest Missouri

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Wind Turbine

Photo by Sarah Thomack

Opponents of a wind energy project in northwest Missouri are voicing their concerns.

Ivan Klipenstein with Concerned Citizens for Clinton and DeKalb counties said the movement against the turbines started in August of 2015.

“By the time August came around many landowners already had contracts signed prior to that time,” Klipenstein said. “We were kind of on the following edge of learning about this and trying to decide what it is it was about and what needed to be done.”

A wind farm is being constructed by NextEra Energy Resources in DeKalb County.  As we previously reported, it’s expected to reach commercial operation by the end of 2016.

Klipenstein said he doesn’t believe wind projects in Clinton and Dekalb counties were highly publicized.

“I wouldn’t say that it was necessarily hidden but it sure wasn’t offered up for public discussion,” Klipenstein said. “We’ve created this group to ultimately oppose this project.”

Larry Runyan with Concerned Citizens for Clinton and DeKalb counties said meetings are being held to talk about the issues.

“In the zoned areas like in Clinton County we have hearings going on at present,” Runyun said. “We have hearings scheduled twice a month on different issues. We had one two weeks ago.  They are hearings presented to the county zoning board and they will take into consideration all the newest data we can present and also that the wind turbine companies can present.”

Signs can be seen along Mo 33 on the way to Maysville that read, “Have Pride In No (photo of a wind turbine) Our Community.”

Some of the issues the group said it has with the turbines include the sounds and flashing light made by the turbines, declining property values, and environmental issues including wildlife being killed by the turbines.

“Birds and bats and several other species of bird,” Klipenstein said. “Obviously the Eagle is part of our heritage but the bat kill is a great number so those are the two that are spoken of the most.”