Members of the Buchanan County Planning and Zoning Commission in northwest Missouri have gone beyond proposing regulations for wind farms in the county. The commission, instead, has proposed banning wind farms in Buchanan County altogether.
The commission, meeting to discuss proposed regulations for commercial wind energy development, voted 8 to 4 to ban wind turbines. Its recommendation now goes to the Buchanan County Commission to consider.
The vote comes after 13 months of study which included hiring a consultant to draft proposed wind energy regulations.
Northwest Missouri has several large wind farms, including outside of Maryville and Burlington Junction in Nodaway County and Grant City in Worth County.
A group, Friends of Buchanan County, formed to fight against wind energy. The group argued wind power turbines made for a poor fit in a densely-populated county. It advocated a ban, but also gathered more than 700 signatures on petitions that called for a mile setback from property lines for commercial wind developments if the county did adopt regulations, a requirement which would have been difficult for any wind energy company to meet.
The County Commissioners and the Planning and Zoning Commission held two nights of public hearings last month on proposed wind regulations. All who testified opposed wind power development in Buchanan County. No one spoke in favor.
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By Brent Martin of Missourinet affiliate KFEQ in St. Joseph
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