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South Dakota residents fail to get half-mile wind farm setbacks

Human impacts, News, Wind turbines Add comments

An excellent 3-part series on wind farm development ran this week in the Bismark Tribune. It has a good balance of the excitement and economic benefits that attract farmers to the industry, and well-stated concerns from those who want larger setbacks in order to protect neighbors from noise.  The grey area around health impacts is navigated quite well, with a well-grounded emphasis on sleep disruption; and most strikingly, the piece includes acknowledgement that there is individual variability in how easily people can adapt to a new and potentially intrusive noise source.

Interestingly, there are repeated indications that in this community, as in others, a half mile setback was seen as the “sweet spot” that could accommodate both industry and neighbors; in initial community meetings, there was significant support for a one-mile setback, while a general consensus emerged that a half mile would be tolerable to most people. ¬†Nonetheless, the county decided to go with a third of a mile (1750-foot) setback, which has some community members concerned that the turbines will be audible enough to be disruptive at times.

3 Responses to “South Dakota residents fail to get half-mile wind farm setbacks”

  1. chrisbryon Says:

    nice benefits for farmers…

  2. John Butler Says:

    I think that besides the benefits for the farmers it was very important to highlight and acknowledge that there was individual variability in how easily people can adapt to a new and potentially intrusive noise source.

    John

  3. Randy Says:

    Not only does this benefit the farmers directly, it also seems as though this technology will benefit 3rd parties considerably! Renewable resources are the wave of the future!

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