Q:

Do you need any permits or approvals before building a homemade wind generator?

A:

Quick Answer

As of 2015, most states within the United States do require permits for building wind generators or turbines and putting them in place. Some states and regions may also require hearings before approval to proceed is granted.

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Full Answer

The requirements for permits and approvals of wind turbines vary greatly by area. Those who wish to place wind turbines on their property should contact local agencies for specific guidelines and approval process procedures.

The permit and approval process takes an average of 6 to 12 months, and in some cases longer. Some ordinances also have height restrictions, and any structures that are above 35 feet in height require the approval of a special-use permit. The installation of a wind generator is not classified as an allowable use of property, and consequently, the development of a wind turbine and its location are a costly and time-consuming process.

The bylaws in most states require property owners to have at minimum 1 acre of land. The generators cannot be more than 20 to 30 feet higher than any other structure on the property, nor can they be placed within a specific distance of the boundary of a town or densely populated area. In most areas, installation must be performed by a licensed electrician or contractor.

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