Michigan Farm Bureau (MFB) is partnering with Michigan State University to sponsor a series of workshops in December that will provide farmers, landowners, planning and zoning officials, local leaders and concerned citizens with the tools and resources necessary to create and implement strategic plans for wind energy development in their communities.

“What You Need to Know about Wind Energy Siting and Policy Issues,” comes on the heels of newly enacted state legislation that mandates that a portion of Michigan's future energy needs be met through renewable resources such as wind energy.

The new Renewable Portfolio Standard has prompted wind power companies to prospect for sites to locate wind turbines, thus necessitating proactive planning on the part of communities.

MFB member-developed policy supports local zoning for the harvest of wind energy on farms and recommends that the zoning “take into account sound science and benefits for the public,” says Matt Kapp, MFB land stewardship specialist.

“The Michigan Farm Bureau is a big supporter of education and community involvement and we see this workshop series as a prime opportunity to educate and involve the public. We want communities, when considering wind energy, to be able to make informed decisions that are ultimately within the public's best interest,” says Kapp.

The workshops will cover a variety of topics, including:

  • Current status of wind energy development in Michigan;
  • Important policy guidelines and new legislation.
  • Siting and zoning guidelines for wind power development.
  • Key steps to develop and implement local zoning regulations.
  • Essential resources, model codes and Michigan examples.


A total of nine sessions, each scheduled from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m, will be held as follows:

  • Dec. 2 - Holiday Inn West Bay, Traverse City
  • Dec. 3 - Michigan Tech University, Houghton
  • Dec. 4 - Marquette Holiday Inn, Marquette
  • Dec. 8 - Holiday Inn Hotel & Conference Center, Midland
  • Dec. 8 - Ramada Inn, Ludington
  • Dec. 9 - Mendel Center, Benton Harbor
  • Dec. 9 - Tuscola Technology Center, Caro
  • Dec. 10 - MSU Extension Kent County office, Grand Rapids
  • Dec. 11 - Kellogg Hotel & Conference Center, East Lansing

The workshop series is being presented by Michigan Citizen Planner, an MSU Extension program devoted to land use education and training within the MSU Land Policy Institute.

Cost to attend a workshop is $45 for Farm Bureau members and Master Citizen Planners; all others pay $55.

To register, click here.

Source: Michigan Farm Bureau