Developer to discontinue L'Anse Township wind farm development

Published: Apr. 19, 2019 at 11:13 AM EDT
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The developer behind a proposed wind farm in L'Anse Township says it is no longer pursuing the project.

In a press release Friday morning, Renewable Energy Systems said "continued delays in the planning process have ceased to make the project financially and logistically viable."

The Summit Lake Wind Project is a proposed 130 MW wind farm near the Huron Mountains on Weyerhaeuser Land.

“After a careful review of several factors, RES has decided to discontinue the development of the Summit Lake Wind project,” said Sean Stocker, RES Project Manager, in a statement. “We have enjoyed working with the local community and want to thank all the landowners and supporters of the Summit Lake Wind project.”

“We expected there would be some delays in the project and RES pulled out and all but if we desire we can go out looking for another company. There are many companies that put in wind turbines, maybe a better style of turbines will come along that don’t have the big blades on it," said Baraga County Commissioner, Bill Menge.

The project has drawn a lot of attention in Baraga County over the past two years from both supporters and opponents. L'Anse Township has a referendum on the May 7 ballot that could overturn new zoning changes on wind turbines.

“It’s a good day for the residents an visitors of Baraga County. The wind turbines would have had an impact on property values and tourism so these are things that would have not benefited the local residents here," Said President of the Friends of the Huron Mountains, Burt Mason.

Earlier this week, the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community said it believes industrialization of this area could harm their way of life. Supporters of the wind farm said it would provide a much-needed boost to the Baraga County economy.

“We have to protect the environment and these natural resources for seven generations to come I think that there are other opportunities now that we have this wind energy company walking away," said KBIC member Jeffery Loman.

This is a developing story and will be updated throughout the day. Watch your TV6 Early News for continuing coverage. See the related links section for previous stories about the proposal.