Six members of Dutton/Dunwich wind turbine community engagement committee resign

no_1St. Thomas Times Journal
Weeks ahead of the submission deadline for Invenergy LLC’s Dutton Dunwich wind energy project, six members of its community engagement committee are packing it in. Six of the 13 people on the Strong Breeze Wind Project’s working group submitted their resignation Thursday evening. The half-dozen members, all of whom oppose the project, were frustrated their concerns were not being taken seriously.

“We just don’t seem to be able to reach any agreement or we don’t see that the company is really changing any of the plans for their project,” said Bonnie Rowe, a former member of the working group. “We weren’t accomplishing anything . . . We just feel as though our perspectives are demeaned and are made light of.”

The group, which includes company representatives and concerned community members, was established by Invenergy as a way to facilitate discussion and constructive debate, promote transparency and educate the public about the Strong Breeze Wind Project. Read article

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Wind Turbine Blade Breaks (Shipka, Ontario)

Facebook, Kevin Roelands

NextEra’s Goshen Wind Project11822631_10153434729099360_749101345687174178_n

Posted in OWR | 2 Comments

Watch Video: Dozens of Dead Partridges under Wind Turbine

windwah.de

From the videographer:
“In this video, a swarm (dozen) was pressed partridge on a plateau by a tailwind against the foot (base) of a wind turbine (I stood in the middle). The birds, it was impossible to avoid the wind turbine! Result were various neck fractures and other fractures. These wind turbines standing in a bird sanctuary!”

Posted in Bats and Birds | 7 Comments

Warwick mayor calls wind money ‘extortion’

extortion

Petrolia Independant, Heather Wright
Warwick Mayor Todd Case says the latest process to bid for wind energy projects amounts to extortion and his municipality won’t be part of it. Four wind energy companies are in the process of bidding for industrial projects in Warwick, Brooke-Alvinston and Enniskillen. As part of the process, the companies are approaching municipalities to talk about what is going on and hoping to gain some form of support to improve their chances of approval.

Under the new process approved in June, companies receive bonus points for some forms of municipal approval. There is a form to say they have met with the municipal government which bears no points. If a company signs an Community Commitment Agreement with a municipality, it receives points which make the project more likely to be approved. Municipalities can also endorse projects; those projects are mostly likely to be approved.

Suncor Energy and NextEra, which are both preparing bids for projects in Warwick, are pressing the community to sign Community Commitment Agreements which include compensation for having the turbines in the community.

But Mayor Case says Warwick is not about to sign anything and shouldn’t be penalized financially because of it. “The process, in my opinion, stinks,” he tells The Independent. “The province says it now gives municipalities a chance to weigh in but there are points for the companies if you sign (for compensation). That’s extortion in my point of view.” Read article

Posted in Ethics, Legal, Municipalities of Ontario | 37 Comments

Wainfleet trail use approved by Conservation Authority for wind company

NPCA LogoBy Maryanne Firth, The Tribune
Despite concerns from Wainfleet leaders, Niagara Region Wind Corp. has been given the green light to use the Gord Harry Trail. The Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority board approved an agreement with the company Wednesday night, that will allow 635 metres of the 13-kilometre trail to be used to bury wind turbine conduits.

In return, the NPCA Foundation will receive $100,000, which staff has recommended be earmarked toward capital projects in Wainfleet, as well as $20,000 annually for the next 20 years that will support trail development, maintenance and signage throughout the watershed. The agreement will also provide the wind energy company vehicle access to the trail, west of Burkett Rd., for subsequent turbine maintenance.

Given the NPCA’s conservation mandate, Wainfleet Mayor April Jeffs said she feels the decision is steeped in hypocrisy. “People look at us to be stewards of land in general, especially our own land,” said Jeffs, who represents the township on the conservation authority’s board. “We tell people they can’t do things on their property, but then with ours say, ‘Sure, come on in — and bring your trucks.’ ” Read article

Posted in Environmental, Ethics | 14 Comments

Enniskillen eyes fire suppression bylaw for wind turbines

K1 FIRE DPetrolia Independant, Heather Wright
Enniskillen Township is looking for ways to protect residents and firefighters if a wind energy project comes to the community. Two companies, Enerfin from Spain and EDF EN are considering projects in Enniskillen Township. While township council has refused to meet with the companies, Enerfin has revealed its project in Enniskillen and Brooke-Alvinston could have up to 30 turbines in the region.

Mayor Kevin Marriott recently presented three bylaws from communities in Grey and Huron Counties, which require wind energy companies to install fire suppression units in the motor of the industrial turbines. There motors, in some cases, are up to 300 feet off the ground making it impossible for local departments to fight a blaze. In Brooke-Alvinston, where there are four turbines, the municipality has made it clear to the owner that if there is a fire, the local department will not be able to help put it out.

But Marriott says the solution would be the fire suppression units. “If they are going to catch fire they should have their own self containment unit rather than expecting the local departments to do it,” he says noting the municipality simply could not afford to have the type of equipment on hand to fight the fire. Read article

Posted in OWR | 2 Comments

An ill-wind in Ontario

2014_06010079Toronto Sun, Tom Harris
Environmentalists often talk about people whose lives are ruined by man-made global warming. But they never mention the lives that are devastated by misguided climate change policy.

There is no better example than the debilitating human health impacts of the hundreds of thousands of industrial wind turbines (IWTs) that are being erected around the world to supposedly mitigate climate change.

In “Adverse health effects of industrial wind turbines,” a 2013 paper in the magazine of the College of Family Physicians of Canada, Dr. Roy D. Jeffery, Carmen Krogh, and Brett Horner explained, “People who live or work in close proximity to IWTs have experienced symptoms that include decreased quality of life, annoyance, stress, sleep disturbance, headache, anxiety, depression, and cognitive dysfunction.”

“The problem is not just cyclical audible noise keeping people awake but also low frequency infrasound which can travel many kilometres,” notes Dufferin County-based Barb Ashbee, who says she was forced out of her Amaranth, Ontario home by the siting of IWTs too close to it. Read article

Posted in OWR | 5 Comments

Turbines should be taxed at higher rates

Corporate%20welfare%20all%20reward%20no%20riskChatham Daily News, Ellwood Shreve
A former City of Chatham alderman has concerns about the amount of taxes levied against industrial wind turbines. Henry Regts, who is also a developer, contacted The Chatham Daily News regarding a recent administrative report to Chatham-Kent council that stated a proposed 12-turbine project by Kruger Energy Chatham Optima Limited Partnership would generate an estimated $37,500 in annual taxes.

Noting he’s not opposed to wind turbines, Regts said he doesn’t believe nearly enough taxes are being charged for the large structures. He points to his office building, which is valued at just under $500,000 and costs nearly $20,000 a year in taxes. Noting the revenue each of these turbines must generate in a year, Regts said, “they ought to be assessed 10 times higher than what they are.” He acknowledged turbines don’t use services such as water and sewer, but they are large structures that take a toll on roads when transported through the municipality to where they are erected. Regts said these turbines are also tying into the local electricity grid. “I want them to pay the same taxes we’re paying for similar services,” he said.

Chatham Coun. Doug Sulman agrees with Regts’ assessment of the situation. “No, they don’t pay their fair share,” he said Monday. Sulman, who is a lawyer, cited the law office he and his partners own in Chatham is less than 5,000 square feet but their tax bill is higher than what Regts pays for his office “by a long shot.” Read article

Posted in OWR | 9 Comments

NextEra Won’t Drop Its Lawsuit against Esther Wrightman

You’d think NextEra, which operates more than 100 wind projects in 19 states and Canada, could afford to tolerate a critic
or two.

esther nexterrorNational Review, Robert Bryce
Two years ago, I wrote a piece for NRO about a SLAPP suit (strategic lawsuit against public participation) that NextEra Energy, America’s biggest wind-energy producer, had filed against Esther Wrightman, an anti-wind-project activist from the tiny village (pop.: 120) of Kerwood, Ontario. It’s now time for an update. NextEra overcame Wrightman’s opposition to the Adelaide Wind Energy Centre, a 60-megawatt project that began producing electricity last year. The 38-turbine wind project was erected right next to Wrightman’s home. In June 2014, she left not only Kerwood but Ontario and, along with her two children, her husband (who is disabled), and her parents, moved to the larger village (pop.: 1,889) of St. Andrews, New Brunswick. The Wrightmans also relocated their family business, Wrightman Alpines, a nursery that specializes in alpine plants.

Esther Wrightman couldn’t stop the wind project that turned her into an activist. But here’s the reason for this update: NextEra is still SLAPPing her. For reasons the company won’t explain, it hasn’t dropped its litigation. This is more than a story about Goliath beating up on David (or Esther). It’s also fundamentally about freedom of speech and the ability of citizens to speak out against (or, in Wrightman’s case, to make fun of) big corporations. Read article

Posted in Ethics, Human Rights, Legal | 27 Comments

It would be funny…

sign-blanding-turtleWellington Times, Rick Conroy
With school children arrayed at his feet, Ontario’s environment minister, Glenn Murray, announced last week his government was giving $1 million to an organization dedicated to educating children aged five to 11, about how to help protect animals and their habitats. His advice to the children assembled at the ROM for the press event was predictable, if somewhat ham-handed: Go home and tell your parents and grandparents to use less carbon.

Murray isn’t the first to employ children to market his wares. Cereal makers, burger sellers and dictators have all used children to influence decision-makers. The Ontario government isn’t above using an effective marketing technique to sell its message, even when the moral and ethical turf is a bit squishy. Earth Rangers formed in 2001. The funding from the province will help the organization expand its school assembly program and develop a new Grade 6 class visit program.

For Murray, this is an investment in the minds of young and impressionable children— a recruiting drive for foot soldiers in his campaign to restore his government’s credibility on environmental matters. “The most thoughtful discussions that move people to change are discussions between children and their parents, and children and each other,” noted Murray to the children before him.

Eventually, however, Murray will be challenged to square his government’s words with its actions. Rather than educate children about nature, he risks teaching them about the nature of government. Read article

Posted in Environmental, Ethics, Ministry of the Environment Ontario, Ontario government | 5 Comments

Big wind 2.0

2014_05140222London Free Press, John Miner
Ontario has rewritten the rules for its next round of wind farms, but will that end the high-voltage backlash the projects have sparked in rural Southwestern Ontario and elsewhere? John Miner reports.
— — —

Chalk one up for small-town Ontario. Dismissed, ignored, stripped of control, defeated before tribunals, blocked in the courts — when it comes to giant wind farms built to generate power, rural Ontario has been on a long losing streak. Until now. Powerless for years to stop the wind farms, as the Liberal government plunged headlong into green energy with 2009 legislation that seized control from municipalities over where the highrise-sized turbine towers could be built, many of those same areas are finding the rules of the game have changed.

For starters, wind energy companies will have to buy peace to win new contracts, getting local communities — many of them deeply polarized by past projects — on board. Gone, too, are the sweetheart deals that paid companies far more to generate power than consumers paid, piling up more red ink in a province that hasn’t balanced its books in years. Instead, wind companies will have to bid on price.

And with Ontario’s next round of energy contracts this fall amounting to only 300 megawatts, enough to power about 90,000 homes, competition will be fierce and fought over a much smaller share of the spoils. Wind power generates only a fraction of Ontario’s juice, but its political voltage has loomed large for years, especially in wind-swept Southwestern Ontario’s farm belt where many wind farms have sprouted. Read full article

NEW PROPOSALS

Among those vying for the next round of contracts:

NextEra Energy

  • Hardy Creek Wind Energy Centre: (Middlesex and Lambton counties); up to 50 turbines, 100 megawatts (MW)
  • Northpoint 1 Wind Energy Centre: (Eastern Ontario): Township of North Frontenac, 35 to 50 turbines, 150 MW
  • Northpoint 2 Wind Energy Centre: (Eastern Ontario) Townships of Addington Highlands and North Frontenac, 35 to 100 turbines, 200 MW

Kruger Energy 

  • 30- to 40-MW project, 10 to 15 wind turbines, on existing Port Alma and Chatham wind farms.

Invenergy

  • Strong Breeze Wind Project, in Dutton-Dunwich Township in Elgin Country, 60 MW
  • Nine Mile Wind Farm, in Eastern Ontario South Dundas, 50 to 90 MW

Suncor

  • Nauvoo Wind Power Project, 75 megawatts, Townships of Warwick and Brooke-Alvinston, Lambton County

EDF-EN Canada

  • Churchill wind project, 100 to 150 MW, in Enniskillen and Plympton-Wyoming, Lambton

Capstone Infrastructure Corp.

  • Erie Shores Wind Farm 2, up to 70 MW, within Township of Malahide and Bayham, Elgin

Enerfin Canada

  • Sydenham Wind Power Project, Brooke-Alvinston and Enniskillen Townships, Lambton, up to 100 MW

WPD Canada

  • Silver Centre Wind Project, West Timiskaming District, up to 120 MW

SWEP Development LP

  • Meadowvale Wind Farm, south of Wallaceburg, Chatham-Kent, 18 to 19 MW
  • Clachan Wind Farm, north of Duart, Chatham-Kent, 9 to 15 MW
  • Duart Wind Farm, west of Duart, 8-9 MW
  • Townsend Wind Farm, north of Jarvis, Haldimand County, 6-7 MW
Posted in Municipalities of Ontario, Ontario government | 57 Comments

Alberta raptor expert warns wind turbine developments may hurt birds of prey

Mia Sosiak, Global News

eagle nestCALGARY – John Campbell has worked with falcons, eagles and hawks in the wild for decades, all over Western Canada. He has monitored nests near Pincher Creek since the 1970s, and banded thousands of baby raptors, long before the area became the birthplace of wind power in Canada.

Campbell has been finding more and more empty nests in the area. “Currently there are 10 sites that could be occupied; only five are producing young right now,” Campbell said. In Alberta, several species of raptors are considered sensitive, or at risk.

The birds aren’t dying from turbine strikes, Campbell said. They are abandoning high-quality nests because of the pressure of turbine development. Wind turbines mess up the birds’ lives, much in the same way drivers would be stressed if a busy freeway suddenly closed. The raptors move to lower quality sites, where fewer chicks survive. Read article

Posted in Bats and Birds, CanWEA, Environmental, Ethics | 49 Comments

Ontario Teachers’ Pension Expands Ownership Of BluEarth Renewables

North American Wind Power
Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan has acquired all of the outstanding shares of BluEarth Renewables. The pension plan, through its Teachers’ Private Capital group, has been a lead investor in BluEarth since the developer was established in 2010. Terms of the transaction are not being disclosed. Closing is expected by the end of July.

Calgary-based BluEarth is a private independent renewable power producer focused on the acquisition, development, construction and operation of wind, hydro and solar projects. BluEarth’s portfolio currently includes interests in 18 projects across Canada totaling 174 MW, with a pipeline of earlier-stage development projects. BluEarth will continue to focus on growth through the acquisition and development of renewable energy projects in Canada and other markets globally.

The Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan – with $154.5 billion in net assets – is the largest single-profession pension plan in Canada. It has earned a 10.2% annualized rate of return since its founding in 1990. Read article

Posted in Ethics, Investment | 16 Comments

Flight paths and stray current concerns raised at Gunn’s Hill wind project ERT

1297718857081_ORIGINALBy Bruce Chessell, Woodstock Sentinel-Review
Five witnesses for the East Oxford Community Alliance (EOCA) took the stand during the second day of the Environmental Review Tribunal regarding the proposed Gunn’s Hill wind farm, bringing forward further concerns regarding health and the airways above the proposed turbine site.

The first three witnesses to take the stand on Tuesday all brought forward the same concern regarding Prowind’s proposed wind farm: How the turbines will affect the Curries Aerodrome and the planes that fly out of there.

Keith McKay, a pilot for 32 years and member of the EOCA, said he was concerned with flight safety around wind turbines. “We are very concerned about the safety of ourselves… but also for commercial flights going overhead,” McKay said. “We don’t know if all the mitigating options that (Prowind) are proposing will work, we don’t know the time span. So any commercial flights flying over, we are concerned about their safety as well as ours.”

McKay added that Prowind is in negotiations with NAV Canada to put in mitigation standard to solve the problem, but he isn’t convinced this will work in an appropriate time. “Prowind has decided that if this goes ahead, they will put up the turbines,” he said. “We are opposed to that for safety reasons.” Read article

Posted in Aviation Safety, Electrical Pollution | 4 Comments

Wind turbine giant Duke Energy lobbies to gut Migratory Bird Treaty Act

dead eagle at base of turbineAudubon Society
In early June the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Fiscal Year 2016 Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Appropriations Bill—with a sneak attack on birds attached. The bill included an amendment prohibiting the use of Department of Justice funds to prosecute or hold liable any person or corporation for a violation of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. If it becomes law, anyone could kill birds with impunity, with no risk of jail time or even fines. It would decimate one of the most successful pieces of conservation legislation in history.

Audubon has obtained documents linking Duke Energy, the largest electric utility in the country, to the amendment, which was sponsored by Representative Jeff Duncan (R-S.C.). Duke’s renewable energy division had been the first green power company to be prosecuted under the MBTA, pleading guilty in 2013 to the deaths of more than 150 protected birds, including 14 Golden Eagles, at two wind farms in Wyoming, and forking over $1 million in fines.

In the wake of that guilty plea, Duke, which has contributed $23,000 to Duncan’s political campaigns, apparently began deploying its considerable resources and political muscle to undo the very law it had violated, paying at least $60,000 in 2014 to The Majority Group, LLC, a lobbying firm with offices on D Street in Washington, D.C. On the “lobbying report” it was required to file, Majority Group recorded one purpose of its efforts as “Amending the Migratory Birds Treaty Act and Bald and Gold Eagle Protection Act to address accidental avian deaths.” A staff member in Duncan’s office confirmed that the Congressman has discussed amending the MBTA with Duke Energy but did not confirm or deny that Majority Group lobbied Duncan on the energy company’s behalf. Read article

Posted in Bats and Birds | 52 Comments

This Blows- Ontario’s Wind Energy Fallacy

Posted in OWR | 21 Comments

Suncor admits their wind turbines have a negative impact on communities: “the precedent is there”

Petrolia Lambton Independant
[excerpt] “You are offering us $5,000 per turbine and you’re going to tell us how to spend it?” asked Councillor Frank Nemcek. “You’re going to tell us how to spend the money you’re bribing us with?

Suncor spokesperson Jocelyn Kelln says the money is not a bribe but a recognition of the impact the projects have on a community. “It directly addresses the physical impact to the community,” says Kelln. “We’re not paying to get your permission – that is not the intent; that is not the idea. We do recognize we have an impact, the precedent is there. The government has asked for an agreement and some people are not happy with the idea of a project; this is to offset that.” Read article

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Posted in OWR | 46 Comments

NexTerror strikes again – wind company threatens elderly leaseholders

NextTerror lawyerFebruary 13, 2014 we received registered mail from McCarthy Tetrault LLP stating… “our client [NextEra Energy] demands that you promptly execute and return two fully executed copies of such lease by no later than February 21, 2014.

If you fail to deliver such copies of the signed lease, you should be aware that Goshen has requested us to take immediate legal action on its behalf to enforce its rights and remedies for your breach of the Option Agreement, which action may result in you becoming liable for, amongst other things, Court costs, damages (which can extend to substantial amounts on account of delayed construction of the overall project and lost revenues arising from such delays), and interest on such damages at the rates prescribed under the Courts of Justice Act of Ontario. As well, you should be aware that such litigation against you may result in adverse implications for your credit ratings.”

Mayor Hessel, Council members and CAO:
I am attaching a self-explanatory letter from Bev Teeter, a Bluewater resident and turbine lease holder in Nextera’s Goshen Project.  In addition the addressee within the attached, she has also sent it to the London Free Press as an open Letter to the Editor however it is unlikely they will print it.

This brave woman has been a thorn in Nextera’s side for a long time now.  They eventually removed Turbine #13 from being built on her property however the transmission/collection lines do go through their property.

Bev has been a staunch supporter of the anti-wind movement after she realized she was duped by the wind companies.  She is in her 80’s, has a hearing impairment and cares deeply about doing what she can to right a wrong which is what she felt she did by signing the lease.  She was bullied into doing so without a care towards her or her husband of over 50 years.  I cannot express how disgusted I am with Nextera for treating vulnerable people such as Bev and her husband, Irv, so callously.

My hope is that Council is able to see this as just one example of how useless it is to enter into any sort of agreement such as a Vibrancy Fund that would ‘recognize’ wind companies as anything other than the wind weasels they are.  Should you disregard the manner in which they have treated this senior citizen and taxpayer of this county, you do so knowing full well that you are putting all the the citizens of Bluewater at risk.

Please do the right thing and stop the ongoing data collection with the wind companies.  Your actions in continuing to engage with these companies will do nothing other than sell us all down the river.

I would request this letter along with Bev’s be attached to the agenda of a Municipal Council meeting and that they be read aloud in their entirety. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me. Thank you.
(pk)

The following is a prime example of how people are actually treated by wind developers after they get their signatures….


Open Letter
Dashwood, ON N0M1N0
June 3, 2015
Goshen Wind, LP
700 Universe Blvd.
Juno Beach, FL 33408
Att. Carlos Megias, Senior Counsel
Re: Lease with Goshen Wind Inc. with Effective Date of  December 15, 2013

Dear Sir,
Your letter dated May 28 arrived here June 1.   You object to our informing the Sumitoma Mitsui Banking Corporation of Canada that “the lease on our land assumed by Goshen Wind was obtained illegally, as our signatures were attached without our knowledge or consent”.   This in our opinion is absolutely true.

As stated in my reply to NextEra’s Goshen employee in June 2014:
“Nicole, before responding to your June 19th letter, I would like to set down my view of the overall situation and the Green Energy Act . For every monster turbine set in motion, the people of Ontario lose.  Every wind project increases our future energy payments.  People complain about their “hydro” bills but may be unaware that wind power has been given special status…  guaranteed high rates and first usage before cheaper sources already available.  They may be unaware that excess  power is dumped across the border for far less than what we have paid for it.  Along with the enormous costs of building these projects which we do not need, they destroy  habitat for birds and people alike,  cause many to suffer Wind Turbine Syndrome documented where ever such mammoth turbines spin  and ultimately facilitate a process which turns our prime agricultural land over to Corporate owners at drastically diminished values.  And as turbines go up, possibilities for truly green alternatives diminish. There is nothing beneficial to Ontario in this.  Wind Turbines do not serve to reduce CO2,  they are not pristine and green. Continue reading

Posted in Ethics, Legal, Wind Industry | 56 Comments

Wind companies buying “support”

bribesBelow are some notes on “Support” that wind companies seek from just about everyone. What is the one and only method of gaining “Support”? You guessed it, moolah.

Throughout the whole run of the wind turbine monster story there is one constant: money, and the scumbag landmen whose task it is to trap the rubes into putting ink on the paper, have handed out $100 bills at buffet dinners for “prospective leaseholders,” presented falsified maps of signed leaseholders, pressured elderly farmers with verbal threats of legal action, provided indirect payments to family members to drop ERT appeals…the list goes on and on. 

In short, money and its corruptive effects is the root of all the problems wind projects imposed on a community. Faced with an increasingly sullen and sometimes hostile rural populace who slowly have come to realize they are targets, government response has been to encourage wind companies to spread the grease money a little wider to co-opt the opposition. The Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) has come up with a form “Adjacent Landowner Agreement” to be filled out and signed by “willing” landowners – all identified by the property “PIN” – how clever, so personal.

Here’s a letter from Suncor to Adelaide-Metcalfe council outlining what they would like to see the council commit to for some cash. Some highlights:

Adjacent landowner support 
• Pool payments will be made to Landowners who are adjacent to the Project and have executed the IESO prescribed form: Adjacent Landowner Support Agreement
— Includes all assessed parcels with title, including Municipal Right-of-Way
— Annual payment based on Acreage with a minimum payment
— Should 75% of all Adjacent Landowners support the Project, payment doubles

Municipal agreement and support resolution |
• Request for municipalities to sign a binding agreement with Suncor, contingent upon successful award of a contract, with the following terms:
— Community Support Plan as described
— Agreement to work with Suncor to develop a framework for distribution of the funds in a way that respects Suncor’s funding priorities
— Intent to execute a road use agreement with Suncor allowing for use of Municipal Roads and Right-of-Ways for equipment delivery and infrastructure placement
• Request for municipalities to sign the Large Renewable Procurement Prescribed Forms: — Municipal Meeting
— Municipal Agreement
— Municipal Council Support Resolution
— Execute Adjacent Landowner Support Agreements 


Very helpful Suncor is, and take note:

  • that the municipality through its ownership of the Right-of-Way gets counted
  • so far no word as to how the payments are; thus, the promise of “payment doubles” for reaching the 75% level could be… double of nothing.

Nonetheless, this puts pressure on Nextera whose landmen, according to sources, have been playing hard-ball with the locals, telling them if they don’t sign they’ll get nothing, and the lease payments are less because the FIT price is less.

What the wind companies don’t produce is their spreadsheet with all the numbers for costs and revenue. Since we’re talking money now, I’ll do the simple math for them, taking the approximate operating expenses and revenues for the Adelaide wind project.

  • We’ll  estimate the operating efficiency at 27%
  • Yearly gross output 60MW/h x 24 x 365 x 27% = 141,912 MWh
  • Gross revenue is  141,912 x $135/MWh = $19,158,120 for a year’s production.
  • Payment to the leaseholders is 2% of the gross or $19,158,120 x .02 = $383,162
  • The other optioned properties get another half percent=  $95,790
  • NextEra is conditionally offering the township $1750/MWh x 60 =  $105,000
  • Property tax $40,000 x 60 x .0269259 = $64,622
  • Yearly payment on capital expense and interest: $8,000,000
  • Grand total: $8,648,574

After all the expenses NextEra takes home over $10million/year from the Adelaide Wind Project. They pay the township and leaseholders a measly $648,000  which is less than 3% of the gross revenue. Some of the Samsung projects were handing out 5%-6% to leaseholders. Wind companies are cheap. Think about that when they call on you.


Then have a look at the question/comments that were posed by energy developers to the IESO:

Trying to get away with as little “support” as possible…
17. With respect to adjacent/abutting landowners to proposed connection lines, should the proponent be responsible for the adjacent landowner support for a connection line that already follows existing municipal infrastructure – including roadways and electrical corridors – or does the proponent only need to contact those adjacent landowners that have the line passing through their personal, private property. For further clarity, is our understanding correct that the abutters for the connection line on municipal road are the municipality? (Abutting) Continue reading

Posted in OWR | 7 Comments

Four more wind projects for Chatham Kent and Haldimand counties

event_icon

Meadowvale Wind Farm – Public Community Meeting
22 Jun 2015 7:00 PM
• Knights of Columbus, 800 Murray St, Wallaceburg
Meadovale Wind Project 
6-9 wind turbines

Townsend Wind Farm – Public Community Meeting
23 Jun 2015 7:00 PM
• Jarvis Lions Club, 18 James St.,  Jarvis
Townsend Wind Project
2-3 wind turbines

Clachan & Duart Wind Farms – Public Community Meeting
25 Jun 2015 7:00 PM
• Mary Webb Centre, 87 Gosnell Line, Highgate
Duart Wind Project
3-4 wind turbines
Clachan Wind Project
3
-7 wind turbines

Posted in OWR | 21 Comments

Plympton-Wyoming council says Suncor road use agreement ‘too cheap’

gravel 008The Independent, Heather Wright
Plympton-Wyoming council has kicked a proposed road-use agreement with Suncor Energy for its Cedar Point Wind Project back to staff for further negotiations. The 46-turbine project is a 50/50 partnership between Suncor and NextEra in Plympton-Wyoming, Warwick and Lambton Shores.

Plympton-Wyoming’s Chief Executive Officer, Kyle Pratt, says earlier this year council had directed staff to discuss a road-use agreement with Suncor. “We looked at a number of road use agreements from other municipalities, namely those of Lambton, Huron and Middlesex counties,” he told council May 27.

“Their lawyers had already looked at certain things so we thought we could use them as a template and come up with something better for Plympton-Wyoming.” While Pratt noted the 30-year agreement was a lengthy document and clearly states Plympton-Wyoming remains an unwilling host and any approval of the agreement is intended solely for the protection of its taxpayers. Read article

Posted in Legal, Municipalities of Ontario | 3 Comments

Wind developer hosts English-only meeting in francophone village

WespeakfrenchsignCarolyn Thompson Goddard, AgriNews
CRYSLER — A day after Finch & District Lions Club hosted a Wind Power Information Night in Finch, EDP Renewables Canada provided North Stormont residents with a community information evening in the Crysler Community Centre on May 7.  But the English-only documentation and presentations by the American developer in francophone Crysler came off as a cultural faux pas by some observers at the event.

Director of Development for EDP Canada Tom LoTurco explained that the evening was planned “to get the information on the project we are proposing out to the general public” and Ken Little, EDP Renewables Project Manager, commented that it was a coincidence that the Crysler meeting was held the day after the Finch event as the Crysler Community Centre had been reserved in early to mid-April for this meeting by his company.

Around 70 local residents listened as representatives of EDP Renewables explained the process whereby their company will submit a proposal to the Independent Electrical System Operator in Ontario regarding the planned construction of 20-40 turbine wind farm in this predominately agricultural township. Read article

Posted in Ethics | 18 Comments

Ontario Liberals pull veil of secrecy over Hydro One sell-off

WYNNE NEGLECTGlobe and Mail, Adrian Morrow
Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne has pulled an iron curtain over Hydro One, ensuring one of the largest privatizations in the province’s history will unfold in secret.

The Liberals’ omnibus budget bill passed a final vote in the legislature Wednesday. The legislation, which will allow the government to start selling off the Crown corporation on the stock market later this year, contains a raft of clauses that remove public oversight of the company.

The bill strips the provincial auditor-general, financial accountability officer, ombudsman and several other independent watchdogs of their right to investigate Hydro One and resolve customer complaints. It also bars freedom-of-information requests and shields Hydro One employees’ salaries from the Sunshine List of provincial workers earning more than $100,000.

These provisions all take effect as soon as the bill is signed into law – even though none of the shares may be sold for months and the government could remain the company’s majority shareholder for years as it slowly sells down its stock. Read article

Posted in Ethics, Ontario government | 32 Comments

Trillium accuses Liberals of destroying wind project lawsuit documents

977054_10151435763616463_1203818282_oGlobe and Mail, Richard Blackwell
An offshore wind farm developer that is in the midst of a lawsuit against the province of Ontario is now accusing the Liberal government of destroying documents related to its case.

In a notice of motion filed with the Ontario Superior Court, Trillium Power Wind Corp. says: “It has become apparent … that documents have been destroyed and records of communications have been wiped clean or deleted from computers, or assigned a code name to render their retrieval impossible.”

Trillium spent years and millions of dollars developing plans for an offshore wind farm in Lake Ontario near Kingston, but it had the rug pulled out from under it in February, 2011, when the province said it would not consider any offshore development until more scientific studies were done. The decision came the same day Trillium was to sign a large financing deal.

Trillium sued the government – initially for $2.25-billion in damages – but most of the grounds for the suit were thrown out of court.

However, in 2013 the Ontario Court of Appeal said the company could go ahead with one specific allegation, that the government’s decision amounted to “malfeasance in public office.” Read article

Posted in Ethics, Legal, Wind Industry | 5 Comments

Statement on Divisional Court ruling on Ontario’s Endangered Species Act

eagle nestOntario Nature
TORONTO — Ontario’s Divisional Court has upheld a provincial regulation that exempts major industries from the Endangered Species Act and allows them to kill species at risk and destroy their habitat.

“This is a disappointing decision for Ontario’s endangered and threatened wildlife,” said Ecojustice lawyer Lara Tessaro. “The Endangered Species Act is intended to put species first — not to let their survival be balanced against competing industrial interests. That would tip the scale towards extinction.”

When it was introduced in 2007, the Endangered Species Act was considered the gold standard law for species protection in North America. Unfortunately, recent years have seen Ontario shirk its duties to protect at-risk wildlife.

In 2013, the province introduced a regulation that exempts major industries from strict protection standards under the Endangered Species Act — in many cases giving them a free pass to kill endangered or threatened species and destroy their habitat, as long as this harm is “minimized.” To challenge this regulation, Ontario Nature and Wildlands League, represented by Ecojustice lawyers, brought a lawsuit that culminated in a hearing earlier this year.

“There are too many plants and animals that are teetering on the edge in this province,” said Anna Baggio of Wildlands League. “We will continue to speak up for them until their habitat is protected and until they are no longer at risk of extinction.” Read article

Posted in Bats and Birds, Environmental, Ethics, Fish and Wildlife | 35 Comments

Highest court in Ontario declines to hear wind appeal, farm families disappointed

SHAWN DRENNANFor Immediate Release
HIGHEST COURT IN ONTARIO DECLINES TO HEAR WIND APPEAL FARM FAMILIES DISAPPOINTED
May 29, 2015

On May 28, 2015, the Court of Appeal for Ontario denied leave to appeal to the Drennans, Dixons, Ryans, and the Kroeplins, in respect of their Charter Challenge to the current legislation for the approval of wind turbine projects.

These farm families had been seeking the opportunity to argue that the Environmental Protection Act provisions approving renewable energy projects exposes them to a reasonable prospect of serious harm to their health and therefore does not comply with the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

The Health Canada Study Summary Results released on November 6, 2014, showed an association between wind turbine noise and annoyance, and an association between wind turbine noise annoyance and sleep disturbances, migraines, tinnitus, dizziness, and measured blood pressure and hair cortisol.

Shawn Drennan commented on the Court of Appeal’s decision: “We are disappointed with the Court’s decision not to hear our case. No one has been able to tell us that the turbines are safe.  We are being told that we have to wait to be harmed before we can do anything to stop them. The Court has given us two choices: leave the land my family has farmed for three generations, or be a guinea pig for the government and the wind companies.” Continue reading

Posted in Legal | 12 Comments

‘We’re not done yet’ say wind turbine opponents

2012 keiths birthday protest dalton 047Grimsby Lincoln News, Amanda Moore
A group of mothers is not done fighting the onslaught of 77 wind turbines in their community despite a ruling against them by the Environmental Review Tribunal. The ERT dismissed the case against the Niagara Region Wind Corp. project brought forward by Mothers Against Turbines Inc. in a decision issued in May.

“The Tribunal finds that the Appellant has not established that engaging in the Project in accordance with the REA will cause serious harm to human health,” ERT vice-chair Dirk VanderBent wrote in his decision. “The Tribunal further finds that the Appellant has not established that engaging in the Project in accordance with the REA will cause serious and irreversible harm to plant life, animal life or the natural environment.

“The Tribunal finds that the Appellant has not established that s. 142.1 of the EPA (Environmental Protection Act) violates the right to security of the person under s. 7 of the Charter.”

The decision came after a series of hearings held earlier this year in Wellandport and Wainfleet.  “We’re not done yet,” said Linda Rogers, MAWT director. “That’s the take home message from this. We are looking at other options carefully.” Read article

Posted in Health, Legal | 6 Comments

Wind Companies lining up in Lambton-Middlesex – another 430MW (~280 turbines)

2013 MLWAG mapOn top of the 360+ turbines installed, these are also being proposed:

  • Suncor Nauvoo Project             60MW
  • NextEra Hardy Creek Project 120MW
  • EDF-EN Churchill Project       150MW
  • Enerfin Sydeham Project         100MW

Sarnia Observer, Paul Morden
Another energy company is proposing a wind turbine project in Lambton County. Mayor Don McGugan said representatives of Enerfin attended a council meeting this week to speak with Brooke-Alvinston Township officials. McGugan said the proposed site for the wind project is on the east side of Brooke-Alvinston, and west side of neighbouring Enniskillen Township.

“They have some landowners signed up, so they say,” McGugan said Friday. Sebastien Verzeni, director of Enerfin Canada, said the company has been active in Lambton for a little more than two months, after acquiring the Sydenham wind power project proposal from Mainstream Renewable Power.

Verzeni said the company has been talking with landowners and looking at locations for the project infrastructure, as well as beginning consultations with the community. Public open houses are expected to be held at the end of July, he said. Read article

Posted in OWR | 2 Comments

Suncor Energy recently filed a court application to quash Plympton-Wyoming’s legislation

Suncor BullySarnia Observer, Tyler Kula
PLYMPTON-WYOMING – 
A legal challenge from Suncor Energy has prompted town council to back away from a noise bylaw the municipality enacted last year to limit local wind farm development.

Suncor, a developer behind the 46-turbine Cedar Point wind project under construction in Lambton Shores, Plympton-Wyoming and Warwick Township, recently filed a court application to quash Plympton-Wyoming’s bylaw, said town clerk Brianna Coughlin.

The municipal legislation sought, among other things, to limit wind turbine-produced noise lower than 20 hertz — infrasound: the normal limit of human hearing. Wind turbine opponents argue exposure can negatively impact people’s health. Complying with the bylaw would have made it impossible to operate the 100-MW wind farm, expected to be operational by late 2015, Suncor spokesperson Jason Vaillant said Thursday.

“We are committed to complying with and operating within the limits that are set out for us by the province,” he said, noting noise limits for wind farms are provincial territory. “And we felt that the municipality just didn’t have jurisdiction on this particular matter.” Read article

 

Posted in Legal, Municipalities of Ontario | 1 Comment

Vulnerable grassland birds abandon mating sites near wind turbines

chickenPhys.org
Shifting to renewable energy sources has been widely touted as one of the best ways to fight climate change, but even renewable energy can have a downside, as in the case of wind turbines’ effects on bird populations. In a new paper in The Condor: Ornithological Applications, a group of researchers demonstrate the impact that one wind energy development in Kansas has had on Greater Prairie-Chickens (Tympanuchus cupido) breeding in the area. Virginia Winder of Benedictine College, Andrew Gregory of Bowling Green State University, Lance McNew of Montana State University, and Brett Sandercock of Kansas State University monitored prairie-chicken leks, or mating sites,
before and after turbine construction and found that leks within eight kilometers of turbines were more likely to be abandoned.

Leks are sites at which male prairie-chickens gather each spring to perform mating displays and attract females. The researchers visited 23 leks during the five-year study to observe how many male birds were present and to record the body mass of trapped males. After wind turbine construction, they found an increased rate of lek abandonment at sites within eight kilometers of the turbines as well as a slight decrease in male body mass. Lek
abandonment was also more likely at sites where there were seven or fewer males and at sites located in agricultural fields instead of natural grasslands. Read article

Posted in Bats and Birds | 19 Comments