HUTCHINSON, Kan. — The Hutchinson/Reno County Chamber of Commerce continues to push for the NextEra wind project. The Chamber conducted a study to address one of the major concerns of wind farms: property values.
In response to questions regarding the potential property value impacts from wind farms, the Chamber — along with the Greater Hutch economic development partnership — commissioned a study with the assistance of the Wichita State University Center for Economic Development and Business Research (CEDBR). The center is part of the W. Frank Barton School of Business at WSU. The study examined the effects of construction of wind power projects on the appraised rural property values in Kansas counties.
“We have heard the concerns expressed by citizens in the proposed wind farm area related to the Pretty Prairie Wind Farm CUP, and we wanted to be able to study this issue. We believe it is important to consider the facts related to property values,” Debra Teufel, President/CEO of the Hutch Chamber, said. “We share these finding to put the fears to rest related to diminished property values. There has been significant wind farm development all across Kansas in the last two decades, giving a good representative sample of counties with experience.”
For the analysis, the data used included the completion dates of 23 wind projects across Kansas from 2005 to 2015, and county-level appraised rural residential property values for Kansas from 2002 to 2018 for all Kansas counties, excluding the five metropolitan core urban counties.
According to Mike Busch, Senior Research Economist with the CEDBR, “The regression results returned an estimate that following the wind power projects, the wind project counties’ values grew 0.3 percentage points faster than the pre-construction trend, relative to the control group, but that result was not statistically significant, so there is no statistically significant evidence of rural residential home value changes following the completion of the wind power projects.” Busch continued to say, “It appears that wind project counties’ values tend to increase slightly faster than the control counties both before and after the construction, but that trend doesn’t change substantially after the completion of the wind power projects.”