United States

United States

Caithness accused of offering $5000 for noise waivers

US: Caithness Energy has been accused by Oregon residents of offering cash to keep quiet about noise from a nearby 845MW wind farm.

GE's 2.5MW turbine is being used on the Shepherds Flat project
GE's 2.5MW turbine is being used on the Shepherds Flat project

The New York Times reported that a Caithness Energy employee offered $5,000 in cash, called "hush money" by one resident, to those living near the Shepherd’s Flat project in eastern Oregon.

In return, Caithness asked residents to sign waivers allowing noise at the wind farm to exceeds certain limits, the paper said.

Caithness has not returned Windpower Monthly’s call for comment.

Shepherd’s Flat, which is currently in development, will use 338 of GE’s new 2.5MW turbines.

Tom Stoops, council secretary for the Oregon Energy Facility Siting Council, told the New York Times that noise waivers are one way developers can comply with the state’s noise ordinance.

In the article, however, residents accused Caithness of subterfuge.

Farmer Jarrod Ogden reportedly said: "The lady that came said everyone else signed. But I know for a fact that some people didn’t."

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