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Wind farms, military compromise sought

RALEIGH Efforts to find a compromise between the wind-energy industry and the safety of military aircraft flying near the industry’s turbine towers advanced in a bill approved by a House committee on Wednesday. Viewed as a w ork in progress, a new version of House Bill 574 introduced in the House Energy and Public Utilities Committee was praised as a step in the right direction, but drew criticism from environmental regulators, military-related groups and legislators. The bill advanced on a split vote, and heads next to the House Homeland Security Committee, the Military and Veterans Affairs Committee and the Rules Committee. Changes introduced on Wednesday include giving the state Departmen

NC wind farm restrictions with 30-mile military buffer are defeated, for now

A proposal that would severely curtail wind farm development in North Carolina failed to pass a House committee Wednesday after retired military officials condemned it as regulatory overkill that would eliminate a valuable source of income for local landowners. Among those opposing the bill was timber grower Weyerhaeuser Corp., the largest landowner in the state that stands to reap at least $40 million over three decades for hosting 74 turbines planned by Apex Clean Energy in two counties. But the bill’s Republican sponsor, Rep. Chris Millis, said after the losing vote that his proposal is not dead. He plans to bring it back for another vote in some form, with possible changes. Dubbed the Re

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