In our July 8, 2011 post we wrote about new ordinances adopted in Umatilla County that severely limit where wind turbines can be constructed. Property owners throughout the county have challenged the ordinances with an appeal at LUBA and oral argument is set for December 15th. The tradeoff between green energy and aesthetics continues to be an ongoing debate in that locale.
Meanwhile, Sherman County has taken a different approach by embracing the development that captures the energy from gusts breezing through their backyards. The Oregonian recently published the article, “Wind blows money into pockets of Sherman County residents,” describing the county’s decision to share the wealth when it comes to windfalls from turbine development (read the full article here.) Although some community members may find the view of wind turbines less aesthetically pleasing than undeveloped high desert land, the county has attempted to give economic value to that impact. (more…)