Buch. Co. zoning board recommends against wind turbines

Onlookers applaud as county board forwards ordinance that would ban wind turbines in Buchanan County. County commissioners to make final decision.

Posted: Feb 19, 2020 9:16 PM
Updated: Feb 20, 2020 10:17 AM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) -  Buchanan County's Zoning and Planning Board voted 8-4 Wednesday evening to advance an ordinance that would ban wind turbines in the county.

In front of a full room of interested onlookers in the Thomas Mann Conference Room at the county courthouse, board members voting for the measure said they were just listening to their constituents. Many who live in eastern Buchanan County could be affected by allowing the turbines and have been outspoken in their opposition.

Board member Steve Reardon crafted the language banning the turbines. He said after careful research he believed the turbines were not the right fit for Buchanan County.

"I think our urban density was too much," he said. "We couldn't get setbacks. Probably for the wind turbine companies they couldn't get enough parcels to make it feasable and there was a general lack of enthusiasm from anyone in the county."

Reardon says there are already around 240 counties nationwide with similar bans to the measure adopted by the board. 

The ordinance for the ban will now advance to Buchanan County's three commissioners. They will make the final decision. Two of them talking to KQ2 News following the meeting said they wanted to do more research before making a commitment either way.

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A very weak cold front has moved through Wednesday night and will continue to give us the chance for showers and thunderstorms across the area once again on Thursday night and Friday morning. Temperatures will remain in the low 90s through Saturday.
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