Minnesota Regulators Approve Controversial Wind Farm Despite Local Opposition

Minnesota’s Public Utilities Commission unanimously approved permits for a wind farm planned in Southern Minnesota despite opposition from local residents and property owners.

The Freeborn Wind Farm project was approved despite the fact that the industrial wind site would exceed noise standards established for these projects.

According to Local CBS affiliate WCCO, the project would construct about 40 turbines southeast of Albert Lea, with about 60 more built across the border in Iowa. The $300 million wind farm would produce up to 200 megawatts of electricity, but it will probably be much less than the rated capacity.

Freeborn County residents formed the Association of Freeborn County Landowners to oppose the project over concerns about noise and other issues.

Despite rosy numbers about economic impacts made by Freeborn Wind Energy, the impact of this project will ultimately be negative for Minnesota families and businesses because wind power is intermittent and more expensive than traditional sources of electricity.