The Basic Steps to Winning a Local Wind War


1 – Know your civil rights: then repeatedly make them the foundation of your arguments.

[In most States these rights are specified in the State Constitution. If not there, they will be found in state statutes.]

2 – Your objective is to protect your civil rights (not to exclude wind turbines from your community). For Home Rule States, this starts by getting a proper local Wind Ordinance passed.*

[A proper wind ordinance includes five (5) key science-based protective regulations (that also have legal precedents). See our Model Wind Ordinance for suggested words.]

3 – To convince local legislators to pass a proper Wind Ordinance, the most effective PR plan is to make a strong and specific case about the wind project’s local economics.

[Wind developers promote their project based on local economics, so pushing back on the same point is effective. Contrary to their tactics, you will focus on the NET economic impact. If calculated carefully, this will almost certainly result in a negative annual net dollar amount.]

4 – The public is the focus of your net economic message (not local legislators).

[If community citizens (the public) are shown that the proposed wind project will likely be a local financial liability, local legislators will be inclined to pass a proper wind ordinance.]

5 – Organization + Education + Communication are essential ingredients to winning.

[This campaign is a teamwork project. The more educated local citizens are, and the better the communication they use, their chances of success are significantly improved.]

6 – Legal action against irresponsible representatives should be a last recourse.

[It is preferential to win these people over through education. If that’s not possible, citizens’ most powerful recourse is to file a Federal 1983 claim.]


*For Non-Home Rule [Dillon] States (and later in the process for Home Rule States), defending citizen rights moves to the higher (State) level.

[There are typically three key State-level issues that need to be properly addressed regarding the wind project: a) is there a “public need” for it? b) is it reliable? and c) is it low-cost to ratepayers? You should question all three.]


For more details on each of these points, as well as supporting material, see Key Documents.


{As is explained elsewhere on this website, I am not an attorney, and I am not giving legal advice. For all legal matters it is recommended to contact a competent attorney, preferably one who is committed to this issue as a matter of principle.}