Call for Gerretsen’s Resignation

The following ad appeared in the Kingston Whig Standard July 4th, 2009:

Which Community Will Be Next, Courtesy of John Gerretsen?

Protect AIMarysville, Wolfe Island Photo courtesy Brian Little

Ontarians are suffering serious health problems because industrial wind turbines are placed too close to homes.

You are responsible for this disgraceful state of affairs as Minister of the Environment.  How could this have happened Mr. Gerretsen?

Dr.Robert McMurtry, M.D., F.R.C.S.(C), F.A.C.S., presented interim results of a health survey of people living near industrial wind turbines in Ontario to a Committee of the Ontario Legislature last April. At that time, 53 residents (but now tragically at 78 and growing) reported an average of 5 health complaints, which they clearly associated with wind turbine noise, including: depression, palpitations, migraines and sleep deprivation.

They are classic symptoms of wind-turbine syndrome that has been documented around the world. These Ontario victims live within 400 m to 1.6 km (780 m average) of these massive machines. [Health survey available at the top of this page]

Your ministry approved the siting of these wind turbines using its own industry-biased noise guidelines that systematically understate wind-turbine noise and place 140 m high turbines as close as 400 m to homes.

People’s lives have been ruined in this utterly avoidable tragedy. These victims suffer chronic sleep deprivation due to both hearing and “feeling” low frequency noise that can’t be shut out of their bedrooms. Do you sleep well at night,Mr. Gerretsen?

Your ministry was made well aware of the woeful inadequacy of your noise guidelines and yet it still approved the siting of 86 industrial wind turbines on Wolfe Island knowing that 266 dwellings would be at or within 1 km of them (739 m average), according to the developer’s noise impact assessment.

How does your Ministry answer the charge, Mr. Gerretsen, that Ontarians have been irresponsibly put in harm’s way?

With a chilling indifference to the harm it has caused, your Ministry now proposes to incorporate the noise guidelines in the Green Energy Act regulations and use them to allow a minimum setback of 550 m for even the largest wind-turbine plant. And we know already, Mr. Gerretsen, that a setback of 550 m does not come close to protecting the public health of Ontarians. The French Academy of Medicine recommends a minimum 1.5 km setback from homes for large wind turbines. Numerous medical experts concur. Dr. McMurtry calls for a moratorium on further construction while full independent medical and noise studies are conducted.

  • So how many more Ontarians will be put in harm’s way, Mr. Gerretsen?
  • What information do you have that these medical experts don’t, Mr. Gerretsen?
  • Have you consulted one competent independent medical authority on this subject? If you have, please produce the report.
  • Have you even spoken to any of the victims?
  • Ontarians are entitled to a “healthful environment” under the Environmental Bill of Rights – Do you care?

Mr. Gerretsen, hasn’t the time come for your resignation?

Coalition for the Protection of Amherst Island
General Delivery, Stella, On, K0H 2S0

2 thoughts on “Call for Gerretsen’s Resignation

  1. Along with Smitherman this man has shown absolute disdane and arrogance towards all Ontario Citizens with an agenda that has nothing to do with his portfolio of Environment. He has made this Ministry a “shell” for Wind Industry “greed merchants” and should not only step down but be investigated in a Public Inquiry for what has become a destruction of Rural homes and landscapes all in the quest for power and money!

  2. Not only in the Ministry of Environment. Look at the Ministry of Natural Resources and their Renewable Energy Section. That section is leading and involved in a lot of MNR policy and direction including the GEA. The Renewable Energy Section is made to support policies that are in the best interest of the Wind Industry “greed merchants” (Note to Quixote: I like that name). Check MNR’s Renewable Energy web site. It uses a lot of CanWEA promotional text. A lot of the text cannot be substantiated and some of it is wrong or at best misleading. The government should do a reality check and clean house. They should make sure the best interest is in sustaining the Province’s environment, natural resources and Crown land. Deregulating portions of Provincial Parks for industrial energy development is not something the public realizes as a reality. Smitherman and Gerretsen should not be in a position that gives them influence and power to destroy Ontario’s environment and pubic health.

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