Wind Farm Creating Concern For Some Kansas Farmers

By: Jared Cerullo Email
By: Jared Cerullo Email

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Monday, October 3, 2011

Kansas farmers have relied on windmills for years to pump water out of the ground. Now energy officials hope the windy weather will fuel the state's largest wind farm.

BP Wind Energy has announced plans to build a 419-megawatt Flat Ridge Wind Farm in south central Kansas. The project will be spread across 66,000 acres in Barber, Harper, Kingman and Sumner counties.

But not everyone is pleased the Kansas landscape is about to change drastically.

Maynard Carrick signed a lease to BP Wind energy because he said he knew he would still be affected.

"If my neighbor had them and I didn't, then he would be getting money off of them and I wouldn't," Carrick said. "So I would still have to look at them."

Carrick said he is concerned about his cattle because workers drive through his pastures, causing ruts in the field. He said now he is finding large holes that have not been filled.

"We don't want to see the land destroyed," said Michael Carrick, landowner. "It's been in our family since 1883, we want to preserve the integrity."

The Carrick's said they are also concerned that the transmission lines will be suspended in the air. They said the pre-lease agreement
explained the lines would be buried under ground.

The Carricks are among 200 landowners that will receive at least $1 million a year in royalties.

BP plans to sell about 75-percent of the power generated to a Missouri electric company.

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