By Peter Epp, Chatham Daily News
Premier Dalton McGuinty probably wasn’t thinking of this when his government introduced the Green Energy Act several years ago. Last week, on Jan. 5, workers employed by a subsidiary of an American-based energy company removed a bald eagle nest to make way for a wind turbine. And NextEra Energy had the blessing of the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources.
Chainsaw-wielding workers were spotted by horrified residents in Haldimand County, who watched as a tree limb, with a huge eagle’s nest attached to it, was removed by an overhead crane. NextEra Energy is planning to erect 56 turbines at its Summerhaven Wind Energy Centre near Fisherville. But the eagle’s nest was apparently not in NextEra or the government’s plans. The MNR approved the nest’s removal on Dec. 31 without public input, and posted notice of its removal only a day before the deed was done.
The incident didn’t provide the kind of optics usually associated with green energy. There was no ribbon-cutting ceremony, no photo of back-slapping politicians wearing hardhats. And yet photographs snapped by residents have gone viral, eliciting all kinds of opinion from Canadians and others. Most people appear to be horrified, while others are taking note of the hypocrisy of a government that says its Green Energy Act was launched to help save the environment, yet will permit the removal of the nesting home of what’s arguably the environment’s most beloved winged symbol. Read article