County approves meteorological tower for Root River Energy

With one wind farm project potentially starting in the county in the next year, another is still in the planning stages.

The county board approved Root River Energy’s request to install a 196-foot meteorological tower in Bennington Township. The tower could play a key role in determining how much of the wind farm could be built in Mower County.

Last year, Root River Energy expanded the project from Fillmore County to include Mower County.

Root River Energy plans to begin construction on a 300-megawatt wind farm in Fillmore and Mower counties within the next three years.

If construction doesn’t start within two years, the conditional use permit approved by the county Tuesday will expire.

Barry Rogne, who is working to secure land for the project, said the poposed wind farm is a community based project.

Rogne said the project will likely be split 50-50 between Mower and Fillmore counties, though he said the project will be weighted more toward the county with better wind.

National Wind is managing the project.