8. Zoning & Permitting

Before putting your project in the ground you will have to acquire the appropriate permits from your county zoning office or municipal zoning office. Many areas that have seen much wind energy development in recent years may have zoning ordinances designed specifically for smaller wind projects. If this is not the case you may have to obtain a special use permit from the county zoning board.

Having other small wind turbines in the area may make the process easier. However, you may have to be persistent with with the process because zoning board members may associate your proposed project with its larger utility scale cousins.

The issues that you will have to address while going through the zoning process include:

  • Setbacks from property lines, structures, roads, river beds, etc.
  • Safety standards for tower and electrical equipment and wiring, including proper grounding of turbine and tower
  • Aesthetics of tower and turbine design
  • Noise
  • Interference with electro-magnetic telecommunications


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