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Wind farm finally breaks ground

Staff writer

Ground was broken Thursday on a wind farm in the southern portion of the county nine years in the making.

Sunflower Wind, owned by Orsted, was originally owned by “Windborne Energy” in 2009 when the idea was an effort spearheaded by Florence resident Rex Savage.

Throughout the years, the wind farm has faced many challenges.

From the beginning, there was local opposition to the idea of a wind farm in the county.

Florence residents spoke out against it at county commission meetings — a scenario that lasted through the month of June.

Sunwind purchased the project in 2013. Because of bankruptcy, Sunwind defaulted on its contract with Windborne.

The project was purchased by Minnesota-based National Renewable Solutions in 2019.

As NRS pushed forward, opponents began suing. The first suit was filed in 2019.

Expedition Wind retaliated in 2020, filing suit against the opponents who had slowed down progress.

A cease-fire agreement ended the lawsuits.

NRS sold the project to Norway-based Orsted, which broke ground Thursday and held a lunch afterward.

“I’m tickled to see it moving forward at long last,” Savage said. “I believe it will make a positive difference for the county.”

Last modified July 7, 2022

 

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