OFA Betrays Farm Communities

ofa logoTom Melady, London Free Press
One of the biggest violations against Ontario agriculture and its rural communities has prompted our farm business to ask for a refund of our membership fees from Ontario Federation of Agriculture. Industrial wind turbines are wreaking havoc on Rural Ontario and OFA fiddles as the countryside burns. The social, financial and agronomical impacts of these 500 ft. monstrosities demand great analysis.

In January 2012, I, along with a group of 3 farmers including a 19 year old female farming enthusiast, presented our detailed concerns and impacts of industrial wind turbines to the OFA Board of Directors in Guelph. When OFA heard of the 6000 wind turbines intended for rural Ontario, the dysfunction of the communities in which they are placed, and the sacrifice of 20,000 acres of prime agricultural land, one would think that OFA would seriously investigate these negative repercussions against agriculture. To not research the topic is irresponsible. However, the Board issued some whimsical doublespeak statement and forgot about the issue, the issue that will have the greatest negative impact on agriculture, ever!

I recently attended the presentation of a Health Study on Wind Turbines carried out by Dr. Hazel Lynn, the Medical Officer for Grey and Bruce Counties, during which she disclosed her finding to those counties’ Public Health Board. In the study, the researcher found that in all 18 of the observed studies of people living around industrial wind turbines, health issues of varying levels occurred in every situation. In 3 of the studies, they noted a dose response i.e. the closer to a turbine the greater the negative health occurrence.

After talking with several people that day whose health remains seriously affected and knowing that some 20,000 acres of good farmland is going to waste, as well as experiencing the sacrifice of our immediate farming community to 15 wind turbines, our farm business withdraws its financial funding to OFA. Other like-minded farmers may do the same by sending a written request for refund along with your Registration Number by May 31 to: Ontario Federation of Agriculture, Ontario Agri-centre, 100 Stone Road West, Suite 206, Guelph, On., N1G 5L3.

I believe our health, our farm communities and our farm land deserves greater consideration. For the largest farm organization in Ontario, to not be more concerned, is irresponsible.

22 thoughts on “OFA Betrays Farm Communities

  1. Thanks Tom for your outline of Dr Hazel Lynn and Dr Ian Arra’s report to the Grey Bruce Health Board. An analogy of who is in bed together. It is sure easy to see the Wind Industry & McGuinty Liberals and now Wynne has joined them. The bed must be getting crowded with the OFA provincial board aligning with the Green Energy Scam.

      • The real problem is that the IWT scam was allowed into Ontario by MPPs who didn’t know what they were doing to begin with.
        Pushed and backed by those who found out they could make huge sums of money form this scam.

  2. No offense to Lynn or Arra but what we actually have is another literature review. It is not a health study. It calls for more “study” and ther is nothing to resolve the problem.
    What we need is a government entity who is willing to take a stand and shut these projects off then they can conduct ethical research, not using innocent non-consenting families as lab rats.
    Harper should not be allowing this to happen. It contravenes all the protection our government claims is in place.
    Dr. McMurtry called for a full study many years ago. Our goverment ignored a wise and informed man advocating for the health of the people.

    • Snowball’
      Harper didn’t object to the Federal Wind Power Production Incentive [WPPI] when he had the chance in 1998!

      • 1998!
        I doubt that anybody, including yourself, had any objection to or knew anything about the evils of industrial wind turbines back in 1998.

        In fact, I don’t believe Ontario had any IWTs until 2003, or so.

        The federal government, from what I understand, cannot just come out and rule against decisions made by the provinces. If they did that about any issue OTHER than IWTs, you’d be all over the mean Mr. Harper for being a bully.

        We are going to have IWTs no matter who is in power. Trying to keep the damage to a minimum by electing the best party of a bad lot is probably the only answer.

      • When it comes to health protection and human rights, the federal government has authority. Where do you get the idea that they don’t?

      • I agree with SkepticalGord –
        he say’s,
        ‘The federal government, from what I understand, cannot just come out and rule against decisions made by the provinces. If they did that about any issue OTHER than IWTs, you’d be all over the mean Mr. Harper for being a bully.’

    • If you believe that Dr. Lynn is not doing her job write to her and ask her to step down.

      Write her boss(es) and ask for someone more politically acceptable to be appointed.

      • Dr. Lynn is one of the few who see the problem and taken some action. Don’t alienate your friends. It is Dr. Arlene King who needs to be booted from office.

      • I have decided to support the consensus view here. I have given up on common sense.

  3. Thank you Tom for your letter to the OFA. As a farmer and rural resident I am fed up with the apathy over the effects of wind turbines are having on my community. People are fearful from coming forward, believing that there is simply no way out or they jeopardize the value of their properties if they speak out. They also fear the vilification, from lease holding neighbours and local gov’t officials who simply do not understand the effects the turbines are having or are complicit because of the revenues they stand to receive. I would say OFA’s ignoring of the issue is more than irresponsible, it’s criminal.

  4. Like SkepticalGord refers to, I too had no objection to many things “green” in the past. The OFA saw an opportunity for farmers to grow food for energy in bio-mass production, ethanol etc. Wind energy is just one aspect of the GEA, but it must be stopped. I, along with the Bruce County Fed. of Agriculture have continued to ask for a pause, moratorium, end…(call it what you want), to the current wind energy procurement strategy in Ontario, AND have recently updated our policy to reflect new information as it has become available. I would suggest attending your local OFA monthly meetings AND, BY ALL MEANS, CALL YOUR LOCAL OFA Member Services Representative!!! I can’t stress that enough. This action works. It IS effective. Your voice will be heard and acted upon.
    Patrick Jilesen

  5. It has been said that the roots of the OFA are pretty Red.Seems Mr Wales does not want to buck the Liberal Machine, just like a lot of municipal officials they just play along with the Liberal playbook. We will have to remember them come election time.

  6. This is 2013!!!!!!

    Until the Farmers of Ontario – organize, and form a
    ‘Coalition of Farmers against Bill 151 –
    The Green Energy and Green Economy Act
    they can all just ‘Shut Up’.

    I will believe it when I see ‘farm tractors’ coming down the 400,
    and across the 401 –
    till then ‘Farmers’ – can all ‘Shut Up’.

    Wake Up!!!!!!
    Forget the OFA.

    • My apologies:
      Bill 150 – The Green Energy and Green Economy Act
      Bill 51 – No right to appeal

      Ontario – a has been province – and, may never recover –
      if we keep going down this road.

    • I was told – by a farmer…………..
      ……….farmers don’t read – they are too busy.
      Maybe that’s the problem.

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