Agriculture

Wind Farms Add Variety To Hoosier Landscape

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Wind farms have been popping up across Indiana in recent years and Hoosiers have mixed feelings.  Indiana Public Broadcasting’s Jill Sheridan reports that the debate over turbines is likely just beginning.

Anyone who has driven I-65 between Indianapolis and Chicago recently has certainly noticed a new landmark.  Hundreds of wind turbines now populate fields in Tippencanoe County just north of Lafayette.  A notoriously boring drive, the windmills actually offer something interesting to look at while trekking through Indiana but how do Hoosiers that have to live next to them feel?  A recent study conducted by a Purdue researcher aims to answer that question.  Linda Prokopy, associate professor of natural resources planning, focused on three different counties.

Linda1   …wind turbines          :23

Linda says after the study was published she immediately began hearing a different story from people in Tipton County in North Central Indiana.

Linda2       …of them                  :17

Jeff Hoover is a board member with a wind farm opposition group that has been working to stop the growth of the turbines in their county.  The Tipton County Citizens for Responsible Development doesn’t want any more windmills.

Jeff1        ….companies       :23

Wind farms are relatively new to Indiana compared with states on the coasts.  People there have long been at battle over the benefits and downfalls of the energy source.  There are a wide variety of concerns over the gigantic turbines.

Linda3     ….livestock    :17

Jeff Hoover says some recent reports point to even worse consequences.

jeff3      ….put out     :13

A 2012 US Senate Committee report found that there was no evidence to suggest that turbine infrasound is creating health problems.  Other concerns relate to the land.

Linda5          ….by all means        :15

Many consider wind power, as an alternative to fossil fuels, clean, renewable and plentiful with less harmful effects on the environment.  Jeff says that point of view isn’t necessarily true.

Jeff4         ….that     :11

The back and forth isn’t likely to end anytime soon with more wind farms being proposed in numerous Indiana counties.  A recent Delaware County plan commission meeting was overflowing with people opposing a wind farm development project.  The commission postponing a decision until they have time to hear both sides.   For Indiana Public Broadcasting, I’m  Jill Sheridan.

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