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May 12, 2021

4/15/2021 9:31:00 AM
Easements for Turbines

Dear Editor;
Let's say my neighbor, who farms 400 acres, decides to sign an option easement with the wind turbine developer that is gaining a foothold in this part of the country. He will get $5 per acre plus a one time $4,000 signing bonus contingent upon signing the contract within 30 days of it being offered. The following year he will get just the $5 per acre. The developer or whomever it sells the easements to will control all 400 acres for the next 40 years.
The developer may then decide to take things further. It may put up one or more turbines at a possible future payout to the farmer of $13,500 per turbine per year (upper estimate). Or it may decide not to erect any turbines at all. Instead it may use the land for power lines (both above and below ground), access roads and substations while paying my neighbor $22 per acre per year. My neighbor will have to fence off his pastures from the access roads and substations. He may be limited by the developer (or subsequent power company) as to where to place outbuildings, build a new house, or sell off acreage, or even plant a tree. All options are totally at the developer's discretion.
It takes a tremendous amount of money to set up a wind factory conglomerate, but when the developer sells off, the profits are huge. That's why the investors do it. It's not because they "believe in green energy." These people are rich. They didn't get that way by being nice.
Stosh Potocki
Town of Linden

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