By Doug Schmidt Windsor Star
Windsor has joined the ranks of local municipalities voicing concerns over private-sector proposals for hundreds of power-generating windmills built off local shorelines.
Coun. Percy Hatfield said construction of offshore commercial windmills in Lake St. Clair could release contaminants stored in sediment which could enter the city’s downstream drinking water intake pipes.
Hatfield also said the yachting or sailing communities could be forced to play “dodge ball or bumper cars” with those offshore structures.
“Communities should be concerned,” said Coun. Jo-Anne Gignac.
City council voted Monday night to endorse a March 8 motion by Amherstburg council that calls on provincial and federal politicians and ministries to look into “the potential impact that offshore wind turbines might have on water quality, human health, along with animal and plant life.”
Amherstburg’s resolution was endorsed by county council earlier this month.
Hatfield said the possibility of “hundreds” of windmills sprouting up in Lake St. Clair and Lake Erie is a hot topic in the county and that city residents should also be concerned.
Proponents of multibillion-dollar proposals have hosted recent public meetings in the county which have been packed with concerned residents.
Gignac said she took comfort from comments last week by Essex MPP Bruce Crozier warning county municipalities and the Essex Region Conservation Authority not to spend a proposed $250,000 or more on consultants to study a proposal that hasn’t yet gone beyond the idea stage.