Wind farms in southern Minnesota’s wind belt are generating more electricity than transmission lines can handle, forcing some turbines offline, and causing shortfalls in municipal budgets, the Star Tribune reports. “Fundamentally, there is bottleneck,” Public Utilities Commission member Joe Sullivan, said at a public meeting. “Southern Minnesota and our region does not have enough transmission capacity.”

Eighteen counties reported a 14% drop in wind tax revenue last year and a couple reported losses as high as 34%. Rural areas are major beneficiaries of wind energy production tax revenue, but cost and NIMBY objections often stand in the way of building the transmission lines necessary to get the power generated into the grid. “It will change our budget,” Dennis Welgraven, a commissioner in Murray County where wind power is so prominent a wind turbine is featured in the county’s logo. “It won’t mean cutting services, but it could mean putting off projects.” (Star Tribune $)