Wednesday, April 23, 2014
By Jan Ellen Spiegelwww.ctmirror.org
After nearly three years with wind energy development in Connecticut at a standstill – siting regulations for wind turbines have finally been approved. But how quickly or energetically wind will move ahead is still a question.
It took five tries before the Regulation Review Committee approved the Connecticut Siting Council proposal that establishes setbacks and heights for turbines, noise and “flicker” from their turning blades, decommissioning and other contentious details. While some tweaks had been made over time, the provisions have largely stayed intact.
But what has changed is that the key federal incentive for wind development—known as the production tax credit—has expired, and that may mean even with siting regulations on the books in Connecticut, nothing may happen with large-scale wind projects.
“It could be too little, too late possibly,” said Paul Michaud, executive director of the Renewable Energy and Efficiency Business Association and a lawyer whose clients have included wind developers.
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