Company behind Botetourt County wind farm asks for removal of height cap for turbines

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BOTETOURT COUNTY, Va. (WFXR) – On Thursday, Botetourt County leaders heard about proposed changes that could be coming to Virginia’s first inland wind farm.

Apex Clean Energy, the company behind the wind farm, is asking for changes to an existing permit.

One of the changes they are asking for includes the removal of the 550-foot height cap for the turbines.

They are proposing installing turbines that could be as high as 680 feet.

Apex is also proposing reducing the total number of wind turbines.

The meeting drew public comments from people who supported and opposed the project. Those in support said it would boost the local economy, bringing revenue and jobs to the area.

“This project will put Botetourt County on the map and help recruit future industries here because we are forward thinking and progressive,” said Terry Austin.

Others expressed concern about the project’s impact on the environment and property values.

“Erecting 680-foot man made structures destroys this natural beauty, and these proposed turbines would be visible from the Blue Ridge Parkway,” said Darlene Scarborough.

The Botetourt County Board of Supervisors Chair stressed that this meeting was not a public hearing. If the proposal to increase the height of the wind turbines were to move forward, a public hearing would be held before any final decision was made.

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