Fast Facts - Phase 1

  • Consumers Energy completed construction of the 111-megawatt (MW) Cross Winds® Energy Park in Tuscola County at the end of 2014. Designs for the wind farm meet or exceed the requirements of local zoning, permitting and building codes. They also comply with applicable federal, state and local requirements to protect human health, safety and welfare, and minimize impacts to the environment and local wildlife.

  • Consumers Energy signed a contract with GE to supply 62 1.79 (Capacity) MW wind turbine generators for the project, which is the most efficient turbine for the region’s wind speeds.

  • Consumers Energy selected Barton Malow, a Michigan based engineering, procurement and construction contractor, for the project. Consumers Energy considered Barton Malow’s competitive pricing, experience and history of good working relationships with landowners and communities during the construction phase of previous wind park projects in making this selection.

  • We have planned carefully to locate the turbines so that sound levels from the wind turbines are less than the township ordinance levels, having first completed studies of the background sound levels as well as using computer models to demonstrate what the sound levels will be due to the turbines during operation. With completion of these studies, we selected a wind turbine that is best suited to operate the Cross Winds project to maximize its generating capacity while resulting in sound levels below than the ordinance levels.

  • We have also taken shadow flicker (an effect that may, under certain conditions, be caused by the shadows of rotating wind turbine blades) into account in locating wind turbines. We completed detailed studies to ensure we are in compliance with local zoning requirements with regard to the potential of shadow flicker from the wind turbines.

  • Consumers Energy undertook two years of wildlife studies based on recommendations from the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and the Michigan Department of Natural Resources when considering placement of a wind energy farm in the project area. These studies included two years of avian studies, including use of the area by short ear owls and bald eagles, song bird breeding, and large bird migration, by Dr. Joelle Gehring of Michigan Natural Features Inventory. Additional studies were also completed to identify the potential presence of the Indiana bat, an endangered species, or the eastern pipistrelle, a species of special concern in Michigan. The bat studies were completed by Dr. Alan Kurta of Eastern.

Map of project boundaries and wind turbine locations