Senate bill to regulate wind energy heads to committee

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After just three weeks, we are now almost a third of the way through the 2014 legislative session. This week will see the first conservation related bill make its way to committee.

On Wednesday, the Senate Energy and Natural Resources committee will hold a public hearing and vote on SB12, the Alabama Wind Energy Conversion Act.  Introduced by Senator Phil Williams (R-Rainbow City), this bill would place many restrictions on wind energy producers that would, in all likelihood, prevent wind energy from ever happening in the state of Alabama.

Last week, more than 180 people sent comments to Senate committee members urging them to vote no on SB12.  One of the regulations in SB12 prohibits wind energy conversion systems in cities or counties unless those localities allow it.  This provision creates backdoor zoning, placing restrictions on wind energy without providing similar restrictions on similar industries.

One of the harshest provisions in the bill states that “A wind energy conversion system or tower that does not operate continuously for 365 consecutive days may be deemed abandoned”.  Through this provision any windmill on any farm in the state could be shut down if it doesn’t operate for one day out of the year.

Visit the Conservation Alabama Action Center today to tell senate committee members to

vote no on SB12.

You can follow legislation related to the environment each week on Conservation Alabama’s Hot List at conservationalabama.org.

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