Proposed southern Illinois wind farm faces opposition

VALMEYER, Ill.  _ Environmentalists in southern Illinois have raised concerns that a proposed wind turbine project will diminish the area’s natural beauty and hurt animal habitat.

The Belleville News-Democrat reports that developer Joe Koppeis hopes to construct 50 wind turbines along 15 miles of bluffs south of Valmeyer and Waterloo. Koppeis, who owns Southern Illinois Wind, expects the project to cost $220 million.

Environmental conservation organizations and local residents have raised concerns that the wind farm could change the character of the rural landscape or lessen property values.

Koppeis says he’s working on feasibility studies to address the environmental concerns and help find suitable locations for the turbines. He hopes to apply for a special-use permit from the Monroe County Board of Commissioners in the coming months.

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