Senator Tom Brewer of Gordon has introduced LB 1054, which he says would force wind energy companies to appear before the Nebraska Power Review Board, giving the public more input into the wind farm process.
“The bill simply requires wind and only wind, the way we set it, so they would have to go before that Power Review Board with their projects,” Brewer says, “and when they do that, they have to make sure that the project meets the public convenience, the economic feasibility.”
Brewer says there’s no reason to build more wind farms in Nebraska.
“For Nebraska, we are producing way more power than we’re using so how do you justify building more wind farms if there’s no need?” Brewer says. “In a way, wind energy is a great government subsidy for those that are building them, but in reality, for the American people and Nebraska’s taxpayers, it’s not a very good deal.”
Brewer says he’s concerned about large wind operators and their commitment to serving Nebraskans.
“It is a way to produce energy that is probably the least efficient of all of them and the long-term questions, very few have answers for because it won’t be these companies that own those towers in 20 years when they quit working,” Brewer says. “Most of these companies switch hands in a matter of two or three times in just a few years. There is legitimate concern about what the future is going to look like with these wind farms.”
Brewer anticipates a close vote in committee on his legislation. He says if he can get it to the floor, it has a good chance of passage.
By Jerry Oster, WNAX, Yankton