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Chicago company suspends plans for Wis. wind farms

A house sits near a wind turbine at the Butler Ridge Wind Energy Project in Dodge County recently. On Wednesday, Chicago-based Midwest Wind Energy said it had suspended plans for wind farms in Wisconsin. (Staff photo by Joe Yovino)

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A Chicago-based wind energy company has suspended development plans in Wisconsin.

Midwest Wind Energy’s president, Stefan Noe, said the company was working on a 98-megawatt farm in Calumet County and another project it hadn’t announced publicly. But he said Wisconsin’s regulatory climate has grown too unstable.

Republican legislators are trying to pull back from the state’s current wind turbine siting standards. They say the rules allow developers to build turbines too close to neighbors’ property, driving down land values and increasing the risk of injury.

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The Legislature’s rules committee introduced a bill on Tuesday directing state regulators to draft new standards.

The rules committee’s two GOP co-chairs didn’t immediately return messages seeking comment on the company’s move.

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