Premier Kathleen Wynne inherits Dalton McGuinty’s mess

Tor Star DaltonLorrie Goldstein, Toronto Sun
TORONTO – In her inaugural Throne Speech Tuesday, Premier Kathleen Wynne said it’s important that “local populations are involved from the beginning if there is going to be a gas plant … or a wind plant … in their hometown.”

This raises an obvious question. Did Wynne ever make that point in cabinet when Dalton McGuinty was premier? Back when McGuinty was ramming industrial wind turbines down the throats of rural Ontarians, while simultaneously cancelling natural gas plants in Oakville and Mississauga, just to save a few Liberal seats in the 2011 election?

Indeed, it’s amazing Wynne would include something like that in her Throne Speech, because it highlights the sorry Liberal record of waste, recklessness, arrogance and hypocrisy on their so-called green energy file. When McGuinty took away the planning rights of local municipalities to have any say on industrial wind factories locating in their communities, he also warned people living in those communities he wouldn’t tolerate any “nimby” (not-in-my-backyard) opposition from them. Read article

33 thoughts on “Premier Kathleen Wynne inherits Dalton McGuinty’s mess

  1. One cannot “inherit” something that already “belongs to you!”…………she is as much an “owner” of this blatant attack on rural residents as McGuinty was by SIGNING the GEA Bill 150 in May of 2009!
    She can’t weasel out of this pile of corruption by claiming this spin!

  2. As the article says, they are actually replacing coal with gas, which is cleaner – if you don’t count the pollution of the water table that often results from fracking, but we don’t want to talk about that. Besides, the fracking industry assures us that they are doing everything necessary to prevent polluting the aquifers, and there is no proof that the fracking is responsible for the earthquakes. And besides, they are only mini-earthquakes and there is no proof that there will be bigger earthquakes.
    So we can all rest easy on that count.

    • Bob, have you ever taken any university courses which cover any materials/information on earthquakes?

      • It was 50 years ago, almost to the day, that I started to realize that the world was in a mess, that it wasn’t going to get better, that there was probably nothing I could do about it, and that my teachers were wasting my time.
        I’m a high school dropout. I’ve never regretted it. It was 57 years ago that the woman next door taught me to read. That was worth more than my 11 years of schooling.
        Why do you ask?

      • You write so well that I assumed that you are a university graduate. But you are one of those few people who didn’t need formal schooling to become educated. Rare birds indeed! Not everyone needs to attend school to do well in the world.
        There are some students who are way ahead of their teachers and they find it difficult to be confined to a classroom.

      • Thank you. Usually when the question is that specific – courses in earthquakes – it’s followed that I’m not allowed to comment if I don’t have the appropriate degree. Like when you question your doctor and he asks where you got your medical degree.
        So I was feeling a little defensive. lol
        Bob

      • We should try to stick to IWTs and not get sidetracked with other issues as we have so little time to delve into other side issues.
        It’s time to quit arguing with QP and developers and move into action.
        Try not to let proponents of IWTs draw us into side issues which are just delaying tactics anyway.

    • Bob:

      I for one would like to see the proof. Lord knows I have read everything put out by the anti-fracking industry — I have see the (faked) movies and some real ones that were misrepresented.

      And before you start — I was not a dropout — I was thrown out of high school — but I did return to school and University and yes I do have a degree and yes I have been a lecturer in Math and CS and other topics.

      I have worked extensively for drilling companies (companies that hire drillers actually) and am intimately familiar with drilling data (core) and mag surveys and IP survey and so on. Neither I nor any of the professional companies that analyze data that we have used — big and small — have ever seen what you claim to be true based on your internet readings.

      Now possibly, just possibly when I am at PDAC starting this weekend I will find somebody — I will ask around for somebody — that can verify the effects you state. Please do not sit up waiting — I suspect I will get horselaughs.

      There are lots of jobs open in the drilling industry for knowledgeable people — feel free to apply to some and get some insider knowledge.

      I can assure you that if I had insider knowledge that confirmed the truth of what you say I would confirm your statements without a second thought. However, I am aware of nothing that supports your statements. Not from dealing with oil driller, gas drillers, hard rock mining ventures — nothing. I will even ask our chief engineer and geologist directly — no holds barred — to confirm or deny what you say!

      I accept that my knowledge is far from complete. However I suspect I have more hands on knowledge, more education in the area and far more access to people that would inform me of these risks than you could find in years of work.

      Now — stick to wind turbines. As complex as they are it’s a far simpler topic and far easier to grasp — at least I find that to be true. So I am going to stick my neck out and say that unless you do have math, acoustics, or physics or engineering training that even there it is tough to comment unless you have done some serious technical upgrading. BTW I spend about 20 to 30 hours a week (plus regular work) on technical upgrading in EE, ME, Math, CS and Geology. It’s part of the job. So I respect self taught people — I are one eh?

      • Bob et al.

        I spent some time on the line with our Chief Geologist and Chief Engineer. (MaSc, P.Eng, P.Geo.) She essentially confirms what I said — She had a caution that people do actually drill to hit oil, and the do drill to heat pressurized gas and that they do drill to hit geothermal water etc and that those can cause pressure releases and perhaps a minor expected (barely detectable) shock through the rock. She points out that if one did not do their research they could hit a magma pocket — but asks why one would be drilling in a dangerous situation like that?

        She is not aware of any evidence that supports the earth quake tremors claim when talking about any noticeable or significant tremors or quakes. Like me she is not willing to say “impossible” but would request a long hard look at the evidence. She is aware that getting an unbiased study might be a “challenge”.

        She is not aware of any studies — biased or otherwise that show there is or isn’t any danger.

        She is in a position where such studies should come to her attention as responsibility for the risk management of every drilling program would be greatly affected and insurance costs would skyrocket. Every drilling program and the responsibility for the safety rest with her. I think she would be very ware of any of the issues raised as they use almost all the same techniques and compounds used by the frackers.

        Stick to worrying about wind turbines — it is much easier (as difficult as it is) to accumulate evidence of significant effects.

      • Point proven!
        There is ‘no evidence’ – that would cause concern for a company’s insurance rates to skyrocket.
        Every company has its secrets. It’s accepted – till an accident happens.

        In Ontario – we have ‘gross government negligence’
        – concerning Wind and Gas Peaker Plants (green alternative energy)
        But can it be proven in court?

      • FT:

        Well, if there are some “secrets” they are hidden even from the Geologist and drillers that do the work run the drills and are where the “incidents” would occur.

        It is kept from the societies and associations that support them in their work.

        It is kept from company owners, share holder board members and insurance companies.

        The knowledge you refer to is so secret that its very existence is questioned by those who are in a position to hold the knowledge.

        It is well kept indeed!

        Now, get back to IWTs and quite wasting time on fantastical propositions.

      • Oh Will… when it’s fracking you need proof – studies – preferably peer-reviewed? Showing a direct causal link? Why does this all sound familiar?
        Some turkey named Olsen, I think, at a Nextera open house, said he was a health consultant and he knew of no studies blah blah blah
        and that if he thought there were any REAL concerns he wouldn’t do that job, pimping for wind. Yep – he’d turn down the money and walk.
        So you think your head geologist with lots of letters is going to tell you about the downside? She lets that out and suddenly they won’t be phoning her company to get drillers, will they? I mean, think about it for a minute Will.
        Now, if you look back, I did refer to ‘MINI earthquakes.’ Actually, I think the term is ‘MICRO’ – so shoot me. It’s true that the MICRO quakes in the US midwest after fracking commenced could only be dectected by equipment. Not noticeable. And it’s true that there IS NO PROOF they were caused by the fracking. Oddly enough, nobody has shown any interest in ponying up the big bucks to study it. Therefore it’s not a problem, is it, Will. If I can’t prove it then there’s no need to worry, is there, Will?
        And those folks in Quebec who are opposed to fracking because they THINK their water tastes different… well, sorry – that’s probably my fault. I am so influential that if I just suggest something like that, hundreds of people will start imagining odd tastes in their coffee – retroactively – before I’ve said it.
        Do you get what I’m saying here, Will? I hope so, because I don’t intend to discuss it with you further.

      • Ooopsie – I forgot – since there’s no proof that the MICRO earthquakes are related to the fracking, we certainly don’t have to worry that increased fracking might lead to more and bigger earthquakes.
        BTW, Will, have you seen the faked videos of the birds being hit by turbine blades? lol

      • It’s ok Bob to bring this issue up but we can’t afford to spend much time on it right now.
        The “greenies” have lawyers who can go into areas and get people to sign onto lawsuits over all kinds of issues whether these issues are real or not real.
        Inorder to get IWTs installed they have to be able to compete with natural gas prices. If you get rid of fracking then natural gas will become too expensive to use. But what do they think they are going to use as backup power for IWTs?
        Cheap natural gas gets rid of IWTs.

  3. To Wynne the answer to universal rural opposition to wind development is simply communication. If residents of Kingsbridge2 and other mega projects can simply have things explained by her; the advantages of wind power, saving of the planet, green energy jobs etc. Rural residents who glance at this site, or read the local papers are far more advanced in their understanding of wind energy and its insoluble shortcomings, than she is They are not children and resent being treated as such by Liberal politicians and their green energy huckster friends. There is no community left in Ont that would welcome a wind turbine plant..

  4. Wind needs Gas Peaker’s

    ‘[excerpt] While McGuinty, and now Wynne, boast that Ontario is replacing its coal-fired electricity plants with wind power (solar power is insignificant), the real story is that the Liberals are replacing coal with natural gas.

    The reason is that wind can’t replace coal, because it can’t provide reliable, on-demand, base-load power to the electricity system.

    That’s why the Liberals are bringing 19 new natural gas plants online — including the now defunct ones in Mississauga and Oakville, which will be relocated elsewhere.

    The good news is natural gas burns more cleanly than coal when it comes to pollution and greenhouse gas emissions.

    The bad news is gas plants are no more popular than wind factories with the people forced to live near them.

    In the case of gas plants, the big worry is public safety due to the possibility of explosions. With wind turbines, it’s health concerns over low-frequency vibrations.’

    Lean forward………………………..

    Suzuki Foundation website:
    “Possibly more troubling are the emissions of fine particulates from
    gas-fired power plants. Though particulate emissions are about one-tenth
    what they are for coal power, the
    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
    estimates that 77% of particulates from natural gas plant are
    dangerously small.
    These fine particulates have the greatest impact on
    human health because they bypass
    our bodies’ natural respiratory
    filters and end up deep in the lungs.
    In fact, many studies have found no
    safe limit for exposure to these substances”.

    Coal is bad – and, gas is good?

    • If it’s Tuesday … it must be coal is good, gas is bad. Or was it gas is good, coal is bad?

      Whatever, useless wind needs back-up.

      Which way is it , Suzuki you dickmeister?

      • If you catch Dr. Suz’ in a particularly accountable mood,
        test him to see if he’s remembered exactly what day he stopped being on the board of David Suzuki Fo.

        But it’s like my grampa used to say, “life hands you lemons.”

        So do what I’d do:

        Hedge! your hatred for wind turbines with natural gas!
        “It’s the way of the future!”

        Then, when the next government permits wind turbines to keep spinning,
        you’ll already be locked up and ready to sieze opportunities!

        Invest in natural gas!

        “You’d be crazy not to!”

        [excerpt]: “…the secret, sweetheart deals they’ve been signing with the operators of these natural gas plants, which guarantee them a fixed revenue stream no matter how much power they produce, meaning they’re often being paid while their plants are idle.

        The Liberals’ mad rush into wind power, by contrast, has locked us into 20-year contracts paying grossly inflated prices for unreliable energy to an industry which can only exist with massive and continuing government subsidy.”

    • Every time I see “Gas Peaker” — or equivalent I get a flaming desire to box some ears. (Or worse!)

      Ontario has no Gas Peakers.

      Windpower is ignored (correctly) in scheduling performed by IESO. Ontario books in enough reliable power to meet their needs and sells the surplus. That surplus is usually close to the amount of power/energy supplied by wind and solar! That does not mean that wind and solar could not supply the base load — it’s just that taking that gamble could mean “lights out!” for a lot of people. It’s one of the reasons we lose money selling power to the USA — we simply must book in enough generation to completely cover wind and solar and any other flaky candy-a$$ power produced by “renewables” so that they can keep the lights on in Queens Park (the reset of the province be dam…d!)

      All of our reliable plants produce base load. They do not produce “fill-in” or “peaking” power/energy.

      The evidence is in the IESO data which I have analyzed enough times to make your head spin. Others here can confirm that the data supports this conclusion.

      Quite promoting the false narrative that we have “peakers” and “fill-ins” we don’t! Thank the powers that be for small mercies!

      You are helping to promote renewables by even using these useless terms! Clean up your language!

  5. It’s already been said, but I’ll repeat it!
    The headline to this story is quite ridiculous!
    Wynne didn’t ‘inherit’ anything, she not only fought to take on McGuinty’s ‘legacy’ but promised to continue it.
    Whilst I often agree with Lorrie’s opinion pieces he is still, for some reason, attempting to give this unelected Liberal leader credibility she has done nothing to deserve!
    What is it with our media today? Are they all scared?
    Andrew Watts

    • I would be interested in seeing Lorrie Goldstein’s survey results showing that gas plants are “no more popular” than wind factories to the people who are forced to live inside them.

      • Hey suspicious and dismayed,

        We need a survey?
        Should the survey be country folk, or city folk?
        How many people – should the survey include?
        100 people? 500 people? ……….maybe the whole population?

        How about – just some -‘common sense’!!!!!!!!

      • Can you be any more specific?
        How do you define “common sense?”

        How would you account for country bumpkin bias–
        ie–those of us with no cents, and no feelings?

      • Apology accepted.

        The point is, it is difficult to compare people’s perceptions of neighbouring gas plants to people’s perception of intruding wind turbines.

        For the life of me, I don’t understand how the OPA was prepared to allow these gas plants to go forward, but all of a sudden, politicians, PCs and NDPs included, decided these decisions lacked due diligence.

        Meanwhile, rural Ontarians report ACTUAL harm being experienced (**not just “EXPECTED” to happen) and the PC party isn’t saying “We shouldn’t be building wind turbines within 2 km of homes…???

        Goldstein’s contention that gas plants are “no more popular” feeds the misinformed perception that the wind turbine-concerned are all NIMBYs.

  6. The Telegraph, Feb.22,2013
    “Landowners L 1 billion wind farm boom”
    Scotland’s richest landowners about to cash in on IWTs
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/scotland/9887574/Landowners-1-billion-wind-farm-boom.html
    The same thing is going on in Europe as is happening here. This is a transfer of wealth form ordinary people to the rich. Fat-cats here are getting the money.

    Daily Express, Feb.24,2013
    “Blackout Britain: EU environmental directive puts millions at risk of power cuts”
    “One million homes in Britian narrowly avoided power cuts last month”
    http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/379845/Blackout-Britain-EU-environmental-directives-puts-millions-at-risk-of-power-cuts
    Those promoting IWTs are supplying mis-information to Ontarians that everything with European IWTs is just fine and dandy. Nothing to be concerned about.
    Every time these European IWT issues come up they need to be countered with the truth.

  7. When Wynne says that local populations should be
    involved from the beginning if there is to be a wind
    factory/gas plant, I interpret that as her saying you
    may have input but you don’t have a choice. Business
    as usual.

    • You can only pedal a bicycle in one direction at a time. Wynne’s policies of giving communities a say, while proceeding full ahead with wind development are mutually exclusive. If she really believes this, she wouldn’t have voted in the GEA in the first place.
      As I said above, no community in Ont would accept wind turbines in an honest plebiscite.
      McGuinty was actually being more honest when he said local opposition would not derail his green energy plans; he just meant not in rural Ont.
      Wynne and to a certain extent Horwath cannot have it both ways, wind development with local planning authority and community support.

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