Wisconsin PSC plans August 14 hearing on Highland Wind Farm

The Public Service Commission of Wisconsin said in a July 5 public notice that it plans an Aug. 14 hearing in Madison, Wisc., on an application of Highland Wind Farm LLC for a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity (CPCN).

The application covers a 102.5-MW wind farm to be located in the towns of Forest and Cylon in St. Croix County. Written comments must be received by Aug. 13.

Witnesses for Highland Wind Farm told the PSC in June 14 testimony that the project will meet turbine noise standards. Jesse Stowell, employed by consultant AWS Truepower as a Senior Business Development Manager, noted that the project would potentially use the Nordex N117 and Siemens SWT-2.3 turbines, which meet the 45 dBA nighttime sound limit contained in Wisconsin code.

JoAnne Blank, a Senior Scientist and Project Manager for Stantec Consulting Ltd., said the sound analyses for both the Nordex N117 and Siemens SWT-2.3 turbines were performed using parameters that represent “worst case conditions,” some of which are not even possible in real life.

Over the objections of one of its members, the PSC on May 14 agreed to reopen a case involving this project. Highland Wind Farm had asked the commission to either reopen or rehear this matter. Saying the company’s CPCN application didn’t meet state standards in areas like turbine noise, the Wisconsin commission on March 15 had issued a decision rejecting the project.

The project includes construction of up to 44 wind turbines, depending on turbine model selected, and associated facilities to interconnect with the existing Northern States Power-Wisconsin electric transmission system in the area.

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.