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Monday, October 27, 2014

Neighbors Can Bring Private Nuisance Action Against Wind Farm

From our friends at the Law of the Land blog comes a case out of Vermont:  Brouha v Vermont Wind, LLC, 2014 WL 4748221 (DC Vt. 9/23/2014)

A neighboring property owner next to the Sheffield Wind Project filed a lawsuit against the defendants claiming that their wind facilities created an unreasonable noise impact that prevented the plaintiff from gardening, eating outside, walking and other outdoor activities, resulting in stress, pain and suffering and loss of the use of the neighboring owner's property.  The defendants argued that the private nuisance claim was barred because the property owner had previously sued and lost a challenge to the issuance of the permit to allow the wind farm.  

The district court disagreed with the defendants, finding that the property owner's private nuisance claim could continue because it was not the same type of claim as the general public nuisance claim that was previously dismissed.  Specifically, the court determined that the standard that applies to a private nuisance action (i.e., interference with the use and enjoyment of another's property that is unreasonable and understanding) is not the same as the standard applied in the previous case that focused more on the impact on the community.

Post Authored by Julie Tappendorf


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