KINGSVILLE, Ont. — Packing a public meeting at the Lakeside Park Pavilion, about 300 Kingsville residents opened fire on a multibillion-dollar offshore wind project aiming at Lake Erie and Lake St. Clair.
“That is the jewel of the south shore, Leamington and Kingsville,” area resident Gerry Graham told representatives of SouthPoint Wind, drawing loud cheers. “We have no problem with wind turbines. It’s where you put them.”
Critics of the proposal, which would see 715 turbines raised in the lakes in 13 clusters, bombarded SouthPoint spokesman Daniel Cherrin with questions and citations from independent studies warning of environmental damage.
SouthPoint consultant Tom Athens said the Ontario government has set out very few guidelines for offshore wind.
“The difficult part of this meeting was, this was not to provide a broad project overview,” Athens told The Star. “The people obviously want more answers.
“It’s always a challenge when folks are upset. People don’t want to see this out their window.”
Kingsville mayoral candidate Jim Shean called the turbine plan an example of democracy hijacked.
“People didn’t want this four years ago and we were told this issue was closed,” he said. “This stuff is monstrous, what they want to do here.”