Community ownership may provide the solution for increasing resistance to wind power in the United States.
Wind power has expanded rapidly in recent years, but the new wind farms have a common characteristic: absentee ownership. These large wind farms promise a broad expansion of clean energy production, but not a commensurate expansion in local economic benefits. True, every wind power project will create some jobs and ripple effects in the local economy, but with absentee ownership most project benefits will leave the community (whereas locally owned projects have significantly higher rewards).
Without a say or stake in the turbines remaking their local skyline, communities have raised red flags. The result ismore restrictive wind siting policies and opposition to new high-voltage transmission lines that may carry wind power from remote areas to major cities.