Meteorological towers to go up in rural Douglas County to study wind patterns

Two meteorological towers will be erected in rural Douglas County to study the area’s wind patterns with the possible construction of a wind farm in mind.

The Douglas County Commission approved the conditional use permits for two towers, which are essentially 200-foot tall poles anchored by several wires. The permits last six years.

The towers will go up in two separate properties that are north of U.S. Highway 56 and west of U.S. Highway 59 in southern Douglas County.

NextEra Energy Resources, the largest wind energy developer in the country, is the company behind the towers. In a February meeting with the County Commission, Noah Hyte, a project developer, said they would need to study wind patterns for one to five years to determine whether a wind farm would be feasible.

The permits passed unanimously; however Jim Flory, who’s third district hosts the site of the towers, again indicated nearby residents may not welcome a wind farm should one be pursued in the future.

“Going forward with this, that certainly doesn’t mean that if the data supports a high-intensity wind operation, that there won’t be differences of opinion,” he said.