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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
Feds call for no coastal turbines — unless county thinks otherwise
Huron Daily Tribune (11/17)
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service recommends Huron County, Mich., include in its wind energy ordinance a “three-mile buffer inland from the shoreline that precludes development of wind power projects,” according to a letter sent to the county.

Agency urges greater wildlife protection from wind turbines
Huron Daily Tribune (11/8)
Land area within three miles of the Lake Huron and Saginaw Bay shorelines deserves to be protected from wind energy development, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said in a letter addressed to county commissioners.

Bills would limit wind turbine lawsuits
Michigan Capitol Confidential (11/6)
Industrial wind turbines are supposed to produce electricity. But they have also been producing lawsuits over issues such as noise and the associated negative health impacts they allegedly have on residents.

No definitive link between wind turbines and poor health, says Health Canada study
The Toronto Star (11/6)
There is no connection between exposure to the wind turbine noise and health effects, says a new comprehensive Health Canada study, but some in the Great Lakes region are still concerned.

Big wind farm proposed near Lake Ontario shore
Rochester Democrat and Chronicle (11/6)
It's the first time in years that a new wind farm has been proposed near the Lake Ontario shoreline in western New York. Other proposals never came to fruition.

Michigan National Guard tests novel wind funnels
Great Lakes Echo (10/22)
The Michigan National Guard is spending $1.5 million on two new machines to generate electricity from wind funnels. Unlike traditional windmills, the systems capture and concentrate wind from all directions.

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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: November 23, 2014
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