‘Noisy activists’ target green subsidies

Tories allege plan to ‘dupe’ public

by Gary Rennie, Windor Star

The “noisy activists” being targeted by a campaign aimed at keeping Ontario government subsidies flowing to renewable energy projects are ticked off, but not surprised, by the tactics leading into the next provincial election.

They say the public should be alarmed that the big increases in hydro bills from the Liberal government’s green energy policies are still to come.

“People are going to open their hydro bills and they’re going to be shocked,” says Mick MacCorquodale. “The only thing green about wind turbines is the money. This is big business.”

MacCorquodale is suing the Town of Amherstburg for issuing building permits for the $25 million, five-turbine wind power project now under construction near his home. The case comes up in court next month.

A document leaked to Ontario Conservation Party Leader Tim Hudak outlines the campaign being organized among industry, labour and environment groups to support continued subsidies for green energy projects and defuse the growing concern about the rising cost of electricity.

The campaign outline put together by the Sussex Strategy Group says: “In this, it will be critical to ‘confuse’ the issue in the political/public/media away from just price to include key value attributes such as jobs, clean air, farm income, etc.”

The document adds: “In order to talk past the ‘noisy activists,’ and editorial positions, there needs to be a co-ordinated, paid, earned and social media campaign.”

Hudak immediately labelled the campaign an effort to “dupe” the public when he released the “privileged and confidential” document earlier this week.

Hudak has been pressing the Liberal government to clearly calculate the cost of its green energy policies, and found predictions in the leaked document that hydro rates could go up by 36 per cent in 2012, although for a broad range of reason.

“I guess I’ve been called worse (than a noisy activist),” jokes Colette McLean, a farmer and housewife who’s been vocal about her opposition to the $110-million International Power wind turbine project near Harrow.

“What really alarmed me about the document was that it had such a diabolical tone,” said McLean. “I’m just a regular person, a taxpayer.”

McLean says those who live closest to wind turbines have a right to protection of their health and quality of life, and every taxpayer has a right to know how much green energy is costing.

“I guess we’re the target,” says Maureen Anderson.  She also lives near the wind turbine project MacCorquodale is contesting in court.

So many wind and solar projects are under construction right now — in Essex County and across the province -that the full impact of the 20-year, heavily subsidized contracts isn’t going to hit for a year or two, Anderson said.

While not totally opposed to renewable energy, Hudak says his party will cut back on the subsidies and get the cost of electricity under control.

Hudak’s position was mentioned in the leaked document as part of the problem the campaign would address.

Sussex was soliciting $300,000 to mount a pro green power campaign into early 2011. More money would be needed to continue the effort right up to the Oct. 6 provincial election, the document says.

The company has offices in Toronto and Ottawa. According to its website, many of its principals are former advisers and staff of prominent Liberal and PC politicians in the federal and provincial governments. A company spokesman couldn’t be reached Wednesday.

7 thoughts on “‘Noisy activists’ target green subsidies

  1. “Hudak says his party will cut back on the subsidies…”

    How about ELIMINATE the subsidies for Big Wind. May Tim Hudak enjoy accolades on earth and rewards in heaven for stopping forever the rape of Ontario in the name of Green.

  2. If wind turbines are so great,how come they don’t have them all around Queens Park and Ottawa?

  3. And there was an article in The Globe and Mail yesterday outling the sale of AECL There are two buyers that aren’t meeting the PM’s price.

  4. I’m not convinced Mr. Hudak will do ANYTHING about the Big Green Fraud!
    The PC party also receives contributions from green energy companies.

    These organizations globally have received hundreds of billions perhaps exceeding a trillion in subsidies since they first began to green wash politicians over twenty years ago. Most of the wind turbine companies operating turbines in Ontario and the rest of Canada are multi-national organizations well experienced in greasing the palms of politicians worldwide. They are not likely to give up such lucrative profits easily. Dalton didn’t enter into an untendered, 7 billion dollar deal with a Canadian wind turbine manufacturer!

    I have read and re-read the Green Energy Act and its associated regulations. At no time could I glean from it ANYTHING that would indicate it will protect the environment, improve air or water quality and stimulate the economy. It is such a badly researched and drafted document; there can be no misunderstanding as to its purpose: To make disingenuous, greedy people rich at the expense of both environment and economy. It has no redeeming qualities of any kind and should not exist in any form.

    If Tim Hudak is so blinded by his own hunger for power he cannot see this obviousness, then he is no better then the individuals who forced the GEA upon us.

    Elected office is a privilege. If one seeks it, they must prove their worth. Although there is no question
    Dalton McGuinty has proven his worthlessness; Tim Hudak has yet to prove himself better. The fact that
    I have not mentioned any other likely indicates they are not worth mentioning.

    Sean Holt.

  5. Let’s face facts folks..we are in the hands of complete immoral an unhonourable idiots and no matter how the Government changes we get the same “sold out” political hacks!

  6. For many years green activists have been in the faces of our elected officials 24/7 pushing their green agenda.

    We have only just started to push back and RIGHT THE SHIP OF STATE again.

    However, it’s too late for those who have lost their jobs to this insanity.

    The government is going to work with labour? They mean they are going to take them in again.

    As fast as the green movement got their agends employed the loss of manufacturing jobs accelerated.

  7. Does Essex County have any industrial brownfield bylaws? Perhaps done by Towns?

    Hate to see Essex Co. turned into an industrial brownfield because of wind turbines.

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