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  Wind Energy
in the Great Lakes Region

What's New | Overview | General Resources | Related Resources
 
Energy: Biomass | Efficiency | Renewable | Wind

 
What's New
New conflicts buffet wind farms
The Times Herald (2/24)
As Michigan increasingly banks on wind power to drive the expansion of its renewable energy portfolio, wind farm projects are increasingly stirring up turbulence with the people next door to the turbines.

Developer to revive NY's Galloo Island wind project with underwater route
Watertown Daily Times (2/17)
The underwater transmission line could run under Lake Ontario from the island to the town of Scriba in Oswego County — a route of about 50 miles.

Commissioner to wind energy developer: Why did you ignore U.S. Fish and Wildlife
Huron Daily Tribune (2/14)
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service wrote to the county in October to say land area within three miles of the Lake Huron and Saginaw Bay shorelines needs to be protected from wind energy development. Months later, planners gave the go-ahead to a developer with plans to put at least 20 wind turbines within two to three miles of Saginaw Bay.

Whatever happened to offshore wind energy? Five years since Lake Michigan wind turbines proposed
Mlive.com (2/11)
Visions of large, white wind-energy blades sweeping up the horizon have faded five years since a wind farm was proposed for Lake Michigan off the West Michigan coast.

Upper Peninsula wind turbines kill eagles, other protected species, lawsuit says
MLive (2/5)
Some residents of Garden Peninsula, a scenic Upper Peninsula community on Lake Michigan's northern shore, say power-generating turbines have hurt their quality of life while killing birds, including eagles and other protected species, on migratory routes.

As Michigan wind farms expand, protests increase
Great Lakes ECHO (2/5)
Michigan is on pace to meet its renewable energy targets, largely thanks to wind power, but issues of transparency and turbine placement have some asking whether the shift toward wind is a smart one.

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Overview
There are numerous opportunities to be had from the development of both onshore and offshore wind energy. In the Great Lakes region, planning and construction are moving forward at a breakneck speed. The eight-state Great Lakes region has a tremendous capacity for new wind development, especially offshore. According to estimates provided in the 20% Wind Energy by 2030 report, the Great Lakes states would contribute 61,288 megawatts toward achieving the 20 percent scenario.

A primary benefit of using wind-generated electricity is its role in reducing the levels of carbon dioxide (CO2) emitted into the atmosphere. Wind-generated electricity is produced without emitting CO2, the greenhouse gas (GHG) that is the major cause of global climate change. In addition, wind energy does not require the level of water resources consumed by many other kinds of power generation. As a result, it may offer communities in water-stressed areas the option of economically meeting growing energy needs without increasing demands on valuable water resources. While we generally do not think of the Great Lakes region as being water stressed, lake levels are dropping all around the basin and the impacts of climate change to those levels are still unknown. Wind energy can also provide targeted energy production to serve critical local water system needs such as irrigation and municipal systems. In addition, wind energy can bring much-needed economic development to our region.

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General Resources
Great Lakes Regional Wind Energy Institute
The Great Lakes Wind Energy Institute is a regional collaboration that provides the tools for Wind Working Groups to better equip themselves with the knowledge and skills to promote wind energy within their states.

Great Lakes Wind Collaborative
The Great Lakes Wind Collaborative (GLWC) is a group established to build consensus and identify and address issues affecting the planning, development, and operation of wind power facilities in the Great Lakes region.

Habitat Conservation: Wind Power
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service: Ecological Services
The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service stands ready to work with industry and other governmental agencies and stakeholders to facilitate wind energy project design, siting, and operation to avoid or minimize adverse environmental impacts.

Wind Power and Wildlife
Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies
State fish and wildlife agencies are involved in different aspects of wind power development and to different degrees (e.g., consultation with developers, review of permits, cooperation with other states agencies and utility regulators).

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Related Resources
GLIN: Agencies and Organizations, Energy
GLIN: Renewable Energy in the Great Lakes Region

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Updated: March 4, 2015
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