By Jon Radojkovic, The Sun Times, www.markdalestandard.com
Chatsworth council has passed a bylaw intended to control wind turbine construction.
“This will be an option to have some jurisdiction over these things and help with health concerns in the future,” said Mayor Howard Greig.
Council’s bylaw mirrors one recently passed by Arran-Elderslie, which calls for municipal control of wind turbine development under Section 7 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, which deals with protection of health. Health concerns are among things wind farm opponents cite in their fight with the industry.
Municipalities lost control of wind turbine development when the province passed the Green Energy Act.
There are no wind turbine construction applications in Chatsworth, but an area in the northwest part of the municipality has been identified as having potential.
Deputy-mayor Bob Pringle said he would not support taking on the province in a court fight.
“We’ve done this before and lost and it has cost us a bundle,” Pringle said.
Greig acknowledged council’s reluctance to spend money contesting the provincial law, but reassured members that this may be just the beginning of municipalities who are opposed to wind turbine development and for council to wait and see what happens.
“If many other municipalities join in the fight and each one of us contributes just a little we may have enough money that way,” Greig said.
He was hopeful Grey County could take the lead in opposing wind turbine development on behalf of its municipalities.