Grimsby Lincoln News, By Amanda Moore
Ontarians are to trust that the government is doing what’s best them, but how can we trust the government when it fails to protect us? That is the question Anne Meinen has been asking since industrial wind turbines were erected next to lands she has farmed for four decades. Her issue isn’t with the turbines themselves, but with the fact that one was located closer to her property line than government regulations stipulate. And last week she heard the reason was that the government trusted the proponent. Because the proponent said the turbines met the regulations, no-one bothered to take a look.
“The MOE believed the turbines were 95 metres or greater from the property line,” Vic Schroeter told an environmental review tribunal last week. “First and foremost we trust the information submitted to us by the applicant.” First and foremost the government trusts the applicant? What about, first and foremost the government ensures the applicant meets the regulations to protect citizens?
The provincial government cannot deny that wind turbines are not always welcomed with open arms by host communities. Those who oppose these developments have brought their issues to Ontario’s doorstep. They have rallied and protested at Queen’s Park, they have written their MPPs and countless ministers as well as Premier Kathleen Wynne. Read article
Draft Project Description Report – August 20, 2014
Notice of Public Meeting and Proposal – August 20, 2014
Notification of First Public Meeting:
Date: September 23, 2014
Time: 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Location: Knights of Columbus Club 1303 County Road 22, Belle River
By Greg Peerenboom, Cornwall Standard Freeholder
One of the more controversial issues that faced South Dundas council over the past term is back on the agenda Tuesday. This time, however, wind farm representative Ken Little hopes the questions won’t be as grilling as past experiences.
Little is asking for South Dundas council’s acceptance of a $30,000 annual fund provided by EDP Renewables to South Dundas for hosting the 30 megawatt South Branch Wind Farm. The money would likely target the immediate Brinston area where the 10 wind turbines are located.
The draft agreement was not available to the media on Monday. Previously, Mayor Steven Byvelds had indicated that EDP would like to have some say in how the funds are allocated. The $30,000 fund was agreed upon in principle when South Dundas was notified of the South Branch project before construction took place last year. The wind farm began operations last March. Read article
by Stewart Fast; postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Geography and the Queen’s Institute for Energy and Environmental Policy, Queen’s University
The sweeping changes to Ontario’s renewable energy policy regime in the past few years have spawned a highly charged public debate. Much of the controversy focuses on the public payments offered to wind and solar developers, and there has been an accompanying backlash from dissenting neighbours and other critics against the proliferation of turbines and solar panels in rural areas. But that noisy clash obscures a deeper and more dangerous tendency in the province’s approach to new energy projects: an approval framework that sees the public as inherently selfish, prone to irrational opposition and incapable of considering the greater public interest. This policy approach reflects the bureaucracy’s mistrust of the ability of the Ontario public to make wise energy choices.
The belief that individual selfishness prevails over a sense of the common good inhibits good energy policy and is unhealthy for the province’s democracy. It springs from a conviction of the power of NIMBYism. NIMBY, of course, is the catchy acronym coined in the 1980s for the “not in my backyard” phenomenon that expresses individuals’ desire to protect their own turf from new building or development, despite broad societal agreement that the development is necessary. The concept holds that while most citizens might agree on the need for a new road, landfill, prison or wind generator, few want to live next to one. Read article
Maybe they’ll learn good faith in big corporations gets you nowhere. Neither does being a “Willing Host”, apparently.
Adelaide Metcalfe Township
Re: NextEra Kerwood Wind Inc. Damages Update
On August 12, 2014, staff met with Mr. Jeff Damen, NextEra’s construction manager. The discussion revolved on the issue that NextEra had received the estimate for the damages done to the Township’s roads due to construction of the turbines. Damen indicated that he had spoken with his supervisors and related to us that they had no problems and would pay this amount to the Municipality and that they preferred that Township look after completing the necessary repairs. Continue reading
By Paul Morden, Sarnia Observer
A date hasn’t been set yet for the start of construction on the 46-turbine Cedar Point wind project Suncor Energy has received provincial approval to build in northern Lambton County. The project has a contract to sell electricity to Ontario and just recently received provincial renewable energy approval.
This week, that approval was the subject of appeals filed with the Ontario Environmental Review Tribunal. “We’ve not there yet in terms of establishing a start date for construction, but that’s something we’re working towards,” said Suncor Energy spokesperson Jason Vaillant. He added he couldn’t say if work will begin later this fall, “with any degree of certainty, at this point.”
The wind project is planned for Plympton-Wyoming, Lambton Shores and Warwick Township. The company has said the turbines could be up and operating by late 2015. One of the appeals of Suncor’s provincial renewable energy approval was filed by Lambton County. Read article
By Steffanie Petroni, Northern Hoot
During the1930’s the public began expressing concerns about smoking referencing a persistent smoker’s cough or smoker’s hack. When the tobacco companies caught wind of the grumblings they concocted a pre-emptive marketing campaign. Who was more trusted than doctors on the matter of health? Tobacco companies like Lucky Strike and Camels enlisted the reassuring image of doctors, though most were actors, to endorse the ‘throat soothing’ qualities and preferred smooth taste of a particular brand.
In the 1940’s and 1950’s tobacco companies applied a different spin to their advertising. While some pitched that their cigarettes weren’t harmful, other brands claimed to be less harmful. Around this time physicians were aware of the addictive quality of cigarettes but weren’t convinced that there was a direct causal factor between smoking and disease.
It was in 1964 when the United States Surgeon General issued the first report of the Surgeon General’s Advisory Committee on Smoking and Health. Their findings concluded- over thirty years after the public first began ringing alarm bells, that there was certainly a direct link between smoking and lung cancer and bronchitis. Read article
Gideon Forman has no medical background. He has a degree in Philosophy.
John Miner, London Free Press
Ontario will miss a huge opportunity to create jobs and protect the environment if it doesn’t embrace building wind farms in the Great Lakes, an environmental group is arguing. The Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment is calling for construction of “far-offshore” wind farms that will be out of sight and out of hearing distance of the mainland.
The group, which represents 6,000 doctors and members of the public, estimates offshore wind farms would generate a minimum of $10 billion of investment from the private sector. Gideon Forman, the group’s executive director, said the U.S. is looking seriously at offshore wind farms in the Great Lakes.
“It would be a shame to let that technology-driven leadership opportunity pass Ontarians by,” Forman said. Ontario put a moratorium on offshore wind farms in the run up to the 2011 provincial election. Read article
NAPAW, J A Rovensky
Vicious, grossly inaccurate and sometimes defamatory attacks on professionals and researchers are relentless from the wind industry and its vocal cheer squad. Their targets include individuals such as Dr Nina Pierpont, Professor Bob McMurtry, Dr Michael Nissenbaum, Dr Sarah Laurie, Mr Steven Cooper, Professor Colin Hansen, Mr Les Huson, Mr Rick James and numerous others, who work to uncover the truth of reported acoustic emission related adverse health impacts linked to Industrial Wind Turbines.
One of the most prolific and virulent is someone called Mike Barnard, an IBM employee. It seems he began his attacks when living in Canada, and is now physically located in Singapore. Whilst Barnard claims to be operating independently of his employer, IBM, the amount of time he spends blogging on wind power and smart grid related issues, and the business connections IBM have with the renewables industry with respect to smart grid technology and renewable energy, make his assertion that IBM are not involved and supporting his activities questionable.
When one of Barnard’s cyber bullying victims informed him what he’d written was libellous, Barnard’s comment in response was to the effect that he was laughing at them because he was untouchable by living in Singapore and utilising free blogging software in a “Cloud”? IBM has a strict policy on cyberbullying, and has been specifically made aware of Barnard’s activities. What action has IBM taken to discipline their vocal employee, who is bringing their organisation into considerable international disrepute with his behaviour?
So who is Mike Barnard, and what are his professional qualifications? Read article
London Free Press, John Miner
The Ontario government is launching two studies into putting wind farms in waterways, but maintains there are no plans to drop its moratorium on offshore wind-energy development. “Ontario will not proceed with offshore wind projects until enough scientific evidence exists to demonstrate that any future proposals can be developed in a way that is protective of both human health and the environment,” a spokesperson for the Ontario Environment Ministry said Monday.
Friday, the province invited bids on a study of the noise impact of offshore wind farms. It’s also seeking experts to study the requirements for decommissioning offshore wind farms. “These studies will help inform any future decisions on offshore wind development in Ontario,” Kate Jordan of the Ontario Environment Ministry wrote in an e-mail.
In the run-up to the 2011 Ontario election, the McGuinty government placed a moratorium on offshore wind farms, mostly planned for Lakes Huron and Ontario. Critics claimed it was a crass political move to save Liberal ridings in the face of a public backlash against unsightly wind farms in view of waterfront properties. The government maintained it made the move because there wasn’t enough scientific evidence on wind farms in fresh-water lakes. The moratorium triggered a $2.25-billion lawsuit against the government by Trillium Power Wind Corp., which had plans to build an offshore wind farm near Kingston. A lower court threw the lawsuit out, but it was reinstated in November 2013 by the Ontario Court of Appeal. Read article
By Paul Morden, Sarnia Observer
There’s something new on the horizon east of Forest. Wind turbines, 92 of them, are rising over the corn and soybean fields, and over the woodlots and farmhouses, as NextEra speeds through construction of its Jericho Wind Energy project. Construction began in the spring and 52 of the 92 turbines were up, as of this week, putting the project ahead of schedule. The project is to be wrapped up later this year.
“It’s nice to say that,” said project manager Jeff Damen. “We’re striving to get construction done before the fall hits.” Conditions can get windy then, and that’s not good for a project that relies heavily on the work being done by four large cranes, and approximately 20 smaller ones.
The more than $400-million project is creating some 200 construction jobs, and is currently at the peak of activity at the turbine sites, as well as a large temporary construction yard along Thomson Line in Lambton Shores. Crews have been working steadily, building roads, digging foundations, pouring concrete, erecting towers, raising blades and other components into place, and erecting 117 transmission poles to carry the electricity 17 km to where it will connect to the grid. Each base has 350 cubic metres of concrete, reinforced by 40 tonnes of steel, to anchor a tower that comes in three sections to be topped with the cell holding the generator, a nose cone and three blades. Read article
The SWEAR/HEAT Stay Court Proceeding with Julian Falconer and team has been scheduled for Monday, September 22nd and Tuesday, September 23rd in London. The proceeding starts at 10:00 a.m. on Monday morning. We are hoping that lots of people will come out and show their support by peacefully protesting outside the courthouse and respectfully attending inside the court room. Your attendance would be so greatly appreciated. The location for the Stay Hearing is as follows:
80 Dundas Street
London, ON N6A 6B3
The full Divisional Court Hearing will be held November 17-18-19. The location for this Hearing has not been set as of this date. We will let you know when the location has been confirmed. Please circulate to your fellow supporters. For more information on the court proceedings please contact Dave Hemingway at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you. See you on the 22nd!
The Prince Edward County Field Naturalists will be back in court in December in a final appeal to prevent Gilead Power and the Ministry of Environment from putting wind turbines on important natural habitat at Ostrander Point. The appeal of a Divisional Court Decision is to be heard Dec. 8-9 at Osgoode Hall in Toronto.
PECFN started opposing this plan when it was first announced in 2007,” notes Cheryl Anderson, of the PECFN. “The opposition is based on a strong belief that the South Shore of Prince Edward County is the wrong place for wind turbines. The area is important to migrating birds, bats and butterflies, it contains Areas of Natural and Scientific Interest, provincially significant wetlands, globally imperilled Alvar habitat and is the home and breeding ground of several avian, reptilian and amphibian species at risk. ”
In spring 2013, PECFN participated in an Environmental Review Tribunal appealing the government’s decision to allow Gilead’s development. The ERT panellists agreed that the development should not proceed. The Government and Gilead appealed that decision to the Divisional Court of Ontario. Read article
Bayshore Broadcasting, by Kevin Bernard
(West Grey) – NextEra has won the latest court battle for its plan to build fourteen, 80 metre tall wind turbines east of Durham. The Ontario Divisional Court has handed down a ruling in the dispute over entrance permits for the 23 megawatt development.
The Court basically tells West Grey to get on with negotiating agreements that will allow the company to proceed. It ruled although the municipality can issue oversize permits and entrance permits but they can’t be used to hold up provincially approved projects like wind turbines. Read article
The Globe and Mail, Dylan Jones
[excerpt] The path to plentiful, well-paid jobs is innovating to produce things people want at prices they can afford. It is not the slow death of protecting unproductive firms. It is also not currency devaluation, which is just a stealthy way of giving all Canadians a pay cut.
Ontario’s experience with building wind turbines is an illustrative example. The province chose to encourage the development of Ontario’s wind turbine production industry through strong protectionist elements, not sourcing quality inexpensive components made in other parts of Canada.
As a result, the cost of purchasing, erecting, financing and connecting a turbine runs about $2,500 per kilowatt of capacity, according to the Canadian Wind Energy Association. That means a two kilowatt turbine costs $4- to $5-million to install. In Europe, the cost is $2,000 – $2,250 per kilowatt, and in China and India the cost is $1,400 – $1,570, according to the International Renewal Energy Association. Read article
by Gord Whitehead, Middlesex Banner
NORTH MIDDLESEX – Council has authorized its municipal planner to assist in negotiating permanent neighbourhood protection from the massive hydro transformer and switching station immediately southwest of the hamlet of Nairn.
Calling commercial wind farm developer NextEra Energy’s Parkhill and Evergreen substations a ‘monster rising out of the ground” and a ‘100-acre spaceport’, adjacent property owner Clyde Walton is aiming for a site plan agreement to be registered on title. The beleaguered neighbour says NextEra’s Ben Greenhouse has been open to discussion but Walton is concerned that Greenhouse will be leaving to supervise other projects, those left behind will be unaware of promised safeguards and that NextEra could eventually find another owner for the operation.
North Middlesex Planner Barb Rosser, Mayor Don Shipway and Chief Building Official (CBO) Vic Stellingwerff have joined Nairn area neighbours in a series of discussions with Greenhouse about the substations’ construction explosions, powerful lighting that shines outward and the need for buffering, fencing and control of runoff drainage. Read article
Exeter area wind turbines
The radar site locations are marked with a black dot. A green circle shows a 50 kilometre radius around the radar. Inside this 50 kilometre ring, potential interference with the radar may exist and direct consultation is strongly suggested. Major roads and cities are indicated in dark blue.
The colour display surrounding the radar(s) represents whether wind turbine blades could be seen by the respective radar (in yellow) and if the wind turbine towers can be seen (in red). The visibility maps have been created for turbine models with turbine tower heights of 100 meters and blade lengths of 50 meters (for a total blade height of 150 meters). If any part of a turbine is visible to a weather radar, interference is expected, but if the turbine tower is visible (in red) more severe impacts may occur. Any region not covered by the colour display indicates that a wind turbine with a total height of 150 meters should not be visible to the radar. However, a turbine with a blade height greater than 150 meters may be seen and further analysis is necessary. View Map
London Free Press, John Miner
Starting construction of the final two wind farms it has on the books for Ontario, Florida-based NextEra Energy says it has an eye out for more opportunities in the province. Ben Greenhouse of NextEra said the company is closely watching Ontario’s new procurement process for green energy projects and would consider building and operating more wind farms. “This is our business,” Greenhouse said Tuesday.
NextEra Energy announced this week that it has started supplying electricity to the grid from its two recently completed wind farms in Middlesex County — the Bornish and Adelaide wind farms. Earlier this year, NextEra announced it had commercial production from its Bluewater wind farm in Huron County. Read article
A group fighting a controversial wind farm development south of Picton, Ont., says its final appeal will be heard in December. The Prince Edward County Field Naturalists says it has been told that the Court of Appeal for Ontario will hear the case in Toronto on Dec. 8 and 9.
The group will explain why it is opposed to Gilead Power’s plans for a nine-turbine facility at Ostrander along the north shore of Lake Ontario. The activists believe it is the wrong place for a wind farm for a number of reasons, including the area’s importance to migrating birds, bats and butterflies. The group was granted permission earlier this summer to appeal an Ontario Divisional Court ruling. Read article
By Brent Boles, Sarnia Observer
A Suncor plan to build 46 wind turbines in and around the Town of Plympton-Wyoming has been given the green light by provincial officials. A decision posted on the Ontario environmental registry Friday shows that the Cedar Point Wind project has been given renewable energy approval.
“We were expecting it. It’s highly disappointing,” said Ingrid Willemsen of the group We’re Against Industrial Turbines Plympton-Wyoming (WAIT-PW). “All the wind turbine projects seem to get a rubber stamp no matter how many arguments are in place against them.” Other turbines are slated to go up in Lambton Shores and Warwick Township.
While it wasn’t immediately clear when work on the turbines will break ground, Willemsen said she believes the decision means crews could begin building as early as this fall. One of the conditions of approval says that the project must be finished being built within the next three years. When the province reached out for public consultation at the end of 2013, they received more than 1600 comments in return. Read article
Tom Mills, Sault Star
Every time I travel to southern Ontario I stumble across more great potential wind farm sites that have yet to be exploited. With a government that continues to stack the procedural and legal deck against those who oppose the intrusion of wind farms on their neighbourhoods, you might expect to see turbines almost everywhere.
But it would take a sharp eye to spot one anywhere near the GTA. Wind-energy-watching is much easier in Algoma, Bruce and Chatham-Kent, which house about a third of Ontario’s turbines. In a past column I mentioned the Toronto waterfront, where offshore wind turbines were seriously proposed. Then a Liberal government moratorium in 2011 put an end to the foolish notion of locating green energy generation where it might be consumed.
I’ve also suggested turbines be put in shopping malls, industrial parks and other places of large-scale ugliness within the bounds of the Greater Toronto Area. One reader came up with the very feasible idea of lining Highway 400 with turbines from Barrie to Canada’s Wonderland. Read article
A Renewable Energy Approval (REA) has been issued to Suncor Energy Products Inc. to engage in a renewable energy project in respect of a Class 4 wind facility consisting of the construction, installation, operation, use and retiring of 46 turbines with a total nameplate capacity of approximately 100 megawatts (MW). The wind facility will be connected to Hydro One’s distribution system.
This Class 4 wind facility, known as the Suncor Energy Cedar Point Wind Power Project, will be located in the Town of Plympton-Wyoming, Municipality of Lambton Shores, and Warwick Township, all within Lambton County, Ontario.
Note that since the REA application was deemed complete on December 5, 2013, Suncor Energy Products Inc. made changes to the project. The changes included the following:
- Addition of an underground collector line along Douglas Line and Uttoxeter Road entirely within the road right-of-way, from Turbine 71 to Townsend Line,
- Addition of an underground collector line along Aberarder Line between Old Heritage Road and Hillsboro Road, entirely within the road right-of-way,
- Minor change in the location of the overhead transmission line (located at the northwest corner of Proof Line and Rawlings Road) by 2 metres – off the road right-of-way and onto the adjacent private property,
- Addition of a new temporary staging area,
- Reduction of the number of transformers at the substation from 2 to 1,
- Minor change in the location of three turbine access roads and underground collector lines, and
- Minor changes to the proposed routing of the transmission line. Read more
Monte Sonnenberg, Simcoe Reformer
Apparently the Wynne government didn’t hear Norfolk council last year when it declared itself “an unwilling host” for future wind farm development. Wednesday, the Ministry of the Environment gave the green light for a 10-megawatt turbine development in Port Ryerse. The project was initiated several years ago by UDI Renewables of Nanticoke and later sold to green energy giant Boralex.
The approval comes as a surprise to residents of Port Ryerse who oppose the project and members of Norfolk council who declared the county an unwilling host. Soon after she took over from disgraced premier Dalton McGuinty, Kathleen Wynne promised modifications to the Green Energy Act that would give municipalities a greater say in the placement of renewable power projects. Responding to the concerns of their taxpayers, dozens of Ontario municipalities declared themselves unwilling hosts for green energy development.
Some municipal politicians at the time – Norfolk Mayor Dennis Travale among them – expressed skepticism about the weight of this new-found input. It would seem this skepticism has been borne out. Read article
London Free Press, John Miner
After warning a wind farm developer that its turbines would interfere with airport radar systems in London and Hamilton and reduce flight safety, NAV Canada says it’s no big deal. In a letter dated Aug. 14 to the developer of the Gunn’s Hill wind farm near Woodstock, Canada’s civil air navigation service provider states all 10 of the planned turbines are visible to the London radar and four are visible to the Hamilton radar.
The impact, NAV Canada says in the letter, includes “a decrease in flight safety for aircraft operating in the area, especially in adverse weather conditions.” The letter also states the Gunn’s Hill wind turbines will increase the workload of air traffic controllers and reduce NAV Canada’s ability to identify and track surveillance targets in the area.
“The final assessment is that the risk increase presented by this proposal may require mitigating actions. Therefore NAV Canada will require an agreement for cost recovery should mitigation measures be needed,” the letter to Juan Anderson of Gunn’s Hill Windfarm Inc. states. Read article
Pat Bolen, Times-Advocate
A motion put forward by Hay West Coun. John Gillespie that the Bluewater administration look at the idea of creating a reserve fund in the amount of taxes received from wind turbines was passed following a discussion.
Gillespie said the tax received is $600 per turbine per year and acting Bluewater chief administrative officer Bruce Grant said the Municipal Act says reserve funds can be set up at any time. Gillespie said the fund could be used to pay for appeals against wind turbine projects and the motion was passed to have the report looked at by staff and bring it back to council. Read article
By Scott Nixon, Times-Advocate
SOUTH HURON — Citing a desire not to waste taxpayers’ money, South Huron council has decided not to support the Municipality of Bluewater’s appeal of Northland Power’s Grand Bend Wind Farm project. South Huron held a committee of the whole meeting in the afternoon of Aug. 11 to deal with six requests it had recently received from James Corcoran of the local Trees Not Turbines group.
As previously reported, Bluewater has decided to appeal both the Northland Grand Bend turbine project and the NextEra Goshen project. Corcoran’s first request to South Huron was that it support the appeal of the Grand Bend project.
Coun. Dennis Hockey said after South Huron has consulted with its lawyer, it has determined such appeals “are not winnable” because the province has taken away municipalities’ power. Read article
Opponents have appealed NextEra Energy Canada’s 102MW Goshen wind project in Ontario to the Environmental Review Tribunal. Provincial regulators granted a renewable energy approval in July.
The municipality of Bluewater, one of the host communities, and resident John Gillespie allege the project will cause serious harm to human health. Gillespie also claims the approval process violates his rights under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Goshen, part of NextEra’s eight-project portfolio in the province, has a 20-year feed-in tariff contract with the Ontario Power Authority. Read article