Effects of giant industrial wind turbine zones on our land must be carefully considered

By MICHAEL DEN TANDT  Owen Sound Sun Times

Here’s the question: Is it proper for a landowner, in a pristine agricultural setting, to put up a huge industrial project that dramatically devalues his neighbour’s land?

There are many problems associated with industrial wind power in Ontario, with more seemingly arising all the time. These include health concerns, which haven’t been properly examined; the unreliability of turbines as a source of energy; the false economy of the Green Energy Act, paid for with our tax dollars; and the anti-democratic, arbitrary nature of the Act itself, which strips municipalities of planning authority.

But the heart of this issue is this very simple question: Why should your neighbour have the right to build a 300-foot concrete tower within hailing distance of your home, thereby causing your property to lose up to 40% of its value?

A British-owned company, International Power Corporation of Canada, has been planning for three years to build an industrial wind project, with 26 large towers, in the former Sydenham Township between Leith and Annan. The company chose not to advertise that fact, other than to the landowners from whom it purchased wind rights, until a few weeks ago.

This is, without a doubt, one of the most beautiful, untouched stretches of agricultural land anywhere in Ontario. It is also a place that many people call home. Earth to Premier Dalton McGuinty: People live here.

Some of the folks now raising their voices, hoping to delay or derail the Silcote Corners project, plan to attend a public meeting tonight, hosted by the company, at the Meaford St. Vincent Community Centre. The meeting runs from 5 to 8 p.m.

Is this to be another gathering where the company tells people how it is and educates them, in perfect legalese, about what’s good for them? Opponents of Silcote Corners are determined that won’t happen this time. But the deck is stacked against them. And the province holds the cards.

McGuinty got himself elected, twice, as a Liberal. In speeches he rarely misses an opportunity to play up his homespun, big-family, average-guy roots. He tells an engaging tale about his grandmother.

When it comes to industrial wind though, McGuinty is no average guy. Indeed he appears to be footsoldier for large, foreign-controlled corporations — whose job is to serve their shareholders, not the people of Ontario.

Do the people of Ontario require that our beautiful countryside be festooned with massive turbines, as has happened in Shelburne and along stretches of the Lake Huron coastline? Is this the only way to meet our energy needs?

Well, no. We have nuclear technology, which already produces two thirds of this province’s electricity. We have gas-fired technology, which isn’t being employed at anything near capacity. And we have small-scale non-conventional sources of power — solar, geo-thermal and yes, wind.

11 thoughts on “Effects of giant industrial wind turbine zones on our land must be carefully considered

  1. Only a large number of lawsuits will begin to slow down this process…Goverment, greedy wind energy companies and greedy landowners have no legal right to ruin our freedoms and out lives….

  2. There should be a clause in every industrial wind factorie’s contract to compensate or buy out neighbouring properties that they the promoters have devalued.
    These promoters are the robber barons of the 21st Century.
    I read somewhere that 40,000 square miles of turbines are required to equal the input of 1 clean, non-poluting Candu.
    Isn’t it interesting the media is covering the Port Hope situation so soon after the Picton symposium?
    This whole province is beautiful with the exception of the arm-pit of the world–Shelburne, Melancton and Amarath and unfortunately their disease is spreading.

  3. Johana:

    Fear not…

    I’m quite certain that Mr. Gillespie is updated every time there is a post on this blog.

    If I had a million dollars or even a paltry spare cent, I would give it to them!

    Unfortunately, I live on the grid in Ontario!


  4. Johana is right- people need to get out, donate and fundraise, not just talk about it. Even us broke folk can afford to print off 50 flyers and get them to people who want to contribute. Get involved and help- every bit is needed. We can’t assume that somebody else is going to take care of it. Chances are, if you have a new idea that you would like to see get developed, YOU will have to be the person who gets the ball rolling.

  5. Contribute by taking a few minutes and writing a “Letter to the Editor” of your local paper.

    Your “Letter to the Editor” can help to educate other readers as to the issues with industrial wind turbines.

    By all working together in numerous ways towards our common goal our united “voice” will be heard!

  6. Thank you for using the proper terminology. They are not wind mills, they are Industrial Wind Turbines.

  7. Thank you, thank you, thank you, Sick Turbines for helping with the language imagery that this struggle needs.

    Could we also work on changing the usage from “farms” amd “parks” to Industrial Wind Turbine [IWT] “ZONES”. WE are almost in a war ZONE when surrounded within a 3 km radius by 18 Vestas 1.65 MW IWT’s don’t you think?

  8. Johana: I believe it’s been called an IWT ‘Dead Zone’…

  9. Unfortuntely, if the developer buys out the folks who must move, they can then erect more turbines on that land.

    I tend to think that this has been all thought through – that it is actually a desireable outcome for the developer to have people leaving their once peaceful homes.

    I never thought I would see the day that such a horrendously destrctive scam would get this far.

  10. The landowners that sell/lease their property were the key to this nonsense.
    Anything for the almighty short term dollar.
    The problem and of some comfort is their kids will have to live with the environmntal impact these large scale developments have too. Short sighted to be sure.
    These wind and solar energy sources are great small scale.
    I want my tax dollars going to subsidies..real affordable subsidies to help us adopt them in our homes etc..
    It costs $500+ in energy audit fees just to apply for rebates to upgrade your home..give me a break!
    That money could be used to put into the home, not fuel a business.
    The GEA is undemocratic and in my view illegal.

  11. mcGuinty is in stratford today….tickets are sold out

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