NextEra Won’t Drop Its Lawsuit against Esther Wrightman

You’d think NextEra, which operates more than 100 wind projects in 19 states and Canada, could afford to tolerate a critic
or two.

esther nexterrorNational Review, Robert Bryce
Two years ago, I wrote a piece for NRO about a SLAPP suit (strategic lawsuit against public participation) that NextEra Energy, America’s biggest wind-energy producer, had filed against Esther Wrightman, an anti-wind-project activist from the tiny village (pop.: 120) of Kerwood, Ontario. It’s now time for an update. NextEra overcame Wrightman’s opposition to the Adelaide Wind Energy Centre, a 60-megawatt project that began producing electricity last year. The 38-turbine wind project was erected right next to Wrightman’s home. In June 2014, she left not only Kerwood but Ontario and, along with her two children, her husband (who is disabled), and her parents, moved to the larger village (pop.: 1,889) of St. Andrews, New Brunswick. The Wrightmans also relocated their family business, Wrightman Alpines, a nursery that specializes in alpine plants.

Esther Wrightman couldn’t stop the wind project that turned her into an activist. But here’s the reason for this update: NextEra is still SLAPPing her. For reasons the company won’t explain, it hasn’t dropped its litigation. This is more than a story about Goliath beating up on David (or Esther). It’s also fundamentally about freedom of speech and the ability of citizens to speak out against (or, in Wrightman’s case, to make fun of) big corporations. Read article

27 thoughts on “NextEra Won’t Drop Its Lawsuit against Esther Wrightman

  1. All things legality is not reality,unless you think it.
    You play there game you lose unless you have bundles of cash to play ball with these demons

  2. This company is leaving it on the table .. To intimidate any other citizen from trying to mess with them.

  3. I hear what you’re saying, farmer, but Esther plays the game her own way – and in my view she’s winning.
    The SLAPP is intended to intimidate, and by the time they did it, they should have realized that Esther doesn’t get intimidated.
    And she won’t hire a lawyer – why should she?
    So Nexterror pays for the lawyers – Esther writes her own response – and there is sits.

    Because Esther has had a lot of good publicity out of it. Nexterror was trying to do damage control – to take down that video – and all they accomplished was a lot of interest in our case against the wind.

    Media covered the SLAPP suit more than a lot of things we’ve done, and covered it more sympathetically to us. Now it’s coming up again.

    A couple of years ago I phoned the American Bird Conservancy (ABC) in Washington DC for some information and Esther’s name came up in the conversation – and the head of ABC said it was so amazing – that THEY (ABC) had never been able to get that kind of publicity about the eagles.

    You only lose if you play it THEIR way. Esther has never really played by the rules.
    That SLAPP suit might be keeping some other people quiet, but Esther wins every time it gets mentioned.

    • Well said Bob, you’re bang on. Esther has been a winner every step of the way.

      You should have seen how defensive and testy the NextEra door “greeter” got when Esther and the cut down eagle’s nest were mentioned at the Denbigh Addington Highlands dog and pony show. So much well rehearsed angst! Such indignation!

      Gotta love it when you hit the nerve of a wind weasel … love to watch ’em squirm.

    • Notice National Review is willing to publish the descriptor “NexTerror” side-by-side with “Nextera”… Guess they’re not worried about causing further damage to Nextera’s reputation by spreading the word.

      Think there is some ambiguity about when this term first arose though, and to attribute it all to Esther may not be accurate.

      Robert Bryce is well-versed in the wind energy racket, but the article implies that use of the term “NexTerror” was all about making fun–however, this is not true. Some of Nextera’s victims truly believe the company is causing terror– that they are indeed terrorists to come into our communities and disturb the peace. Actually, I thought this was a basis of Esther’s defense.

      To put things into perspective, let’s consider:
      In the communities where wind energy projects are being developed, are the residents being EXTORTED?
      They are threatened with harm?

      • Yes it is the basis of my defence – that they were and are causing terror. I didn’t leave my home because of a joke. Satire is biting – not ha ha funny. As for where the terms originated… we aren’t too sure. One person said it in the neighbourhood and it just stuck, for obvious reasons.

      • Rural Ontarians are fed-up with the “funny” business that’s taking place in Ontario!

      Canadian Press

      ‘[excerpt] NextEra’s statement of claim, which directly alleges defamation, specifically places Wrightman’s logo alterations at the heart of its complaint.

      “The offending material is deliberately used to adversely affect NextEra’s reputation and goodwill in the community, to generate opposition to NextEra’s projects and to other clean energy projects in Ontario and to increase the amounts of donations obtained through the websites,” the statement reads.’

      “clean energy projects” — LIARS!

      ‘[excerpt]….it is expected that a non-trivial percentage of persons will be highly annoyed at typical receptor distances……’

      • Website donations! Then name the websites unless it’s the rural websites trying to raise funds for ERTs and court actions.

  4. Current Events
    12 Jul 2015

    Australia has slammed the door shut on any new government-funded investment in renewable energy schemes as Prime Minister Tony Abbott extends his “war on wind power”.

    In doing so Mr Abbott has sent a clear message to the mendicant green renewable energy sector that there will be no more cheap state-supplied financing for its projects.

    Fairfax Media reports Mr Abbott’s conservative coalition government has ordered the taxpayer-funded $10 billion Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) to immediately cease any new investments in wind power projects. Treasurer Joe Hockey and Finance Minister Mathias Cormann issued the so-called green bank with a directive to change its investment strategy.

    The funding ban is just the latest salvo in the government’s attacks on the renewable energy sector which also includes small-scale solar projects.

    Mr Hockey started the Abbott government’s campaign against wind farms in 2014 when he told Sydney radio host Alan Jones he found the massive turbines “utterly offensive”. Prime Minister Abbott reignited the debate last month, telling Jones he finds turbines “visually awful”. He said he wanted to reduce the growth rate of the sector as much as possible.

    The decision will please anti-wind government members but wind industry insiders, who declined to comment on the record, told Fairfax Media the decision is a “big blow”. One said that while it will not sink the industry altogether, it will make things harder.

    Head of Australia at Bloomberg New Energy Finance Kobad Bhavnagri​ said the decision would have a “significant” impact on the industry.

    As Breitbart London reported last month, the UK-born Mr Abbott (his family moved to Australia from London when he was aged three), who once famously dismissed the argument behind anthropogenic climate change as “absolute crap”, has never carried his disdain for wind farms lightly.

    In June he told a radio interviewer a cycling trip to an island off the Western Australia state capital Perth had rammed home his personal dislike for wind generators. He added that he wants “fewer” wind farms in Australia and is keen for an inquiry into their health impacts.

    “When I’ve been up close to these things, not only are they visually awful, but they make a lot of noise,” Mr Abbott told Sydney broadcaster Alan Jones. “Up close, they’re ugly, they’re noisy and they may have all sorts of other impacts.

    “It’s right and proper that we’re having an inquiry into the health impacts of these things.”

  5. Election Year Canada
    October 19, 2015
    Vote conservative!

    Go Stephen Harper!

    Canadian Senators Overrule Speaker to Pass Union Disclosure Law

    Conservative senators took the rare step Friday of overruling the chamber’s speaker in a bid to break a logjam and pass a law critics say would hit thousands of pension and mutual funds with “staggering” compliance costs.

    The proposed law — Bill C-377 — is supported by Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Conservatives and is aimed at boosting labor-union transparency. It would require disclosure to government of a wide range of union spending.

    Finance groups, labor leaders, seven provincial governments and even National Hockey League players oppose the bill, partly because many warn its language is too broad and may force disclosure of personal information and financial data with little link to a union.


    Unions Suffer Latest Defeat in Midwest With Signing of Wisconsin Measure

    MADISON, Wis. — For decades, states across the South, Great Plains and Rocky Mountains enacted policies that prevented organized labor from forcing all workers to pay union dues or fees. But the industrial Midwest resisted.

    Those days are gone. After a wave of Republican victories across the region in 2010, Indiana and then Michigan enacted so-called right-to-work laws that supporters said strengthened those states economically, but that labor leaders asserted left behind a trail of weakened unions.

    Now it is Wisconsin’s turn. On Monday, Gov. Scott Walker — who in 2011 succeeded in slashing collective bargaining rights for most public sector workers — signed a bill that makes his state the 25th to adopt the policy and has given new momentum to the business-led movement, its supporters say.

    “This freedom-to-work legislation will give workers the freedom to choose whether or not they want to join a union, and employers another compelling reason to consider expanding or moving their business to Wisconsin,” Mr. Walker said.

    Go Stephen Harper!

    • The Algoma News, July 13, 2015

      ‘Chrysler CEO tells Kathleen Wynne hydro costs making Ontario too expensive for businesses’

      Algoma News has a link to this news article.

      Story appears to have disappeared rather quickly from other websites?

      Remarks said last Friday at the Toronto Global Forum.

      Google search for this information works too.

    • ….and all this stuff….

      Concerns expressed by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne over Ontario’s hydro costs have been echoed by Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens.

      On Friday at the Toronto Global Forum, Marchionne said the province needs to change the playing field for business.

      “I think you need to create the conditions to be competitive,” Marchionne said after sitting beside Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne during the conference luncheon.

      “We’re fully aware of the fact that this proposal on pensions and cap and trade and all this stuff … these are all things that add cost to the running of operations, they don’t come for free.”

      Marchionne made some good points, Dilkens said Sunday.

      “The comments made by Sergio Marchionne are consistent with what we’re hearing,” Dilkens said.

      “It’s concerning. Because everything that puts us at a disadvantage, it’s concerning.”

      Windsor and Essex County recently lost two bids for multibillion-dollar auto investments and thousands of new jobs after Volvo Cars and Jaguar Land Rover Ltd. opted to build assembly plants in lower-cost jurisdictions in the U.S.

      “We need to be as a community, as a province, we need to be in a position of strength,” Dilkens said.

      “All of these things really need to be thought through in our ability to attract investment.”

      Marchionne said the situation needs to be rectified and Ontario needs to “benchmark these calculations of what you’re doing against what’s otherwise available outside Ontario.

      “I think we had confirmation of the fact that the argument is not falling on deaf ears. If you had to ask me today, I would expect that sense would prevail,” Marchionne said.

      Marchionne, who brought Fiat and Chrysler together at the height of the financial crisis, has been pushing for major auto mergers to help rein in the escalating cost of building vehicles.

      He characterized his meeting with Wynne as cordial.

      “The premier was incredibly responsive and willing to accept feedback from the industry,” Marchionne said.

      • It may already be too late and remember Detroit is a ghost-town.

        Businesses that can’t move will hang on as long as they can and then close down.

        And don’t let GTA residents find out about anything that is taking place.

      • Note:
        This is not a story about how – Ontario mayors
        ruined Ontario – or a story about – ‘the power of a mayor’
        – but some thought should be given to government
        @ the local level –
        and its mayors!


        Detroit, now synonymous with failure and decline, was once the emblem of American progress and prosperity. As the late biographer and scholar Matthew Josephson observed in the 1920s: “Nowhere in the world may the trend of the new industrial cycle be perceived more clearly than in Detroit. In this sense it is the most modern city in the world, the city of tomorrow.” University of Michigan historian Jeffrey Mirel puts it this way: “Throughout the 1920s, Detroit was the shining star of the new era, the very center of the American economic universe, where capitalism and technology combined to produce the greatest goods for the greatest numbers.”

        To most Americans, Detroit is best known as the home of the “Big Three” auto makers—General Motors, Ford, and Chrysler—who made the U.S. and the rest of the world mobile. During the decades of the early to mid twentieth century, the auto industry’s need for massive quantities of steel, glass, copper, and (later) plastic gave rise to numerous enterprises related to car manufacture that employed hundreds of thousands of additional blue-collar workers in and around the city. The assembly line was perfected here, and brought with it the idea that a middle-class lifestyle could be enjoyed by industrial workers.

        Last Friday, Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder, a Republican, announced that the state will proceed with a takeover of Detroit’s Democratic city government. “The current system has not been working. We have not stopped the decline,” said Snyder. “This is time for us not to argue or to blame, but to come together as Detroit, Mich., not Detroit vs. Michigan, and bring all of our resources to bear.” Snyder may not want to point the finger, but it is obvious that decades of Democratic rule and economic policies have brought this once great city to its knees.

        The move, one step short of declaring municipal bankruptcy, means Snyder will be appointing an emergency manager with sweeping powers similar to that of a bankruptcy judge. Such powers include the ability to toss out unaffordable contracts with public employee unions and vendors, put city assets up for sale, consolidate or eliminate government departments, make further service cuts, or recommend municipal bankruptcy–all of which can be implemented with little to no input from local elected officials.

        Democratic Mayor Dave Bing has a 10-day window to request a hearing on the decision. If he does the hearing will take place on March 12 in Lansing. If the appeal is denied, Snyder will appoint the manager. As of now that person hasn’t been identified, but the Governor says he has someone in mind. After 18 months, the emergency manager would be subject to review by local officials, at which time he could be removed or replaced.

        Mayor Bing sounded like he was leaning towards appeal. “The Governor has made his decision, and it was his decision alone to make,” said Bing. “While I respect it, I have said all along that I do not favor an Emergency Manager for the City of Detroit. I will look at the impact of the Governor’s decision as well as other options, to determine my next course of action.”

        Democratic politicians and civil rights organizations in a city where the population is 82.7 percent black were far less sanguine. “For one individual to be able to wipe out the duties of our duly-elected officials, that’s more or less a dictatorship, and it’s against everything that America is supposed to be about,” said the Rev. Wendell Anthony, president of the local NAACP.

        Election Year Canada
        October 19, 2015
        Vote Conservative!

    • Go Stephen Harper???
      The Harper government announced yesterday that it is giving $3 million to support Henvey Inlet’s proposed 300 megawatt wind farm project.
      The title of the government news release was “Harper Government Supports Wind Farm Project at Henvey Inlet First Nation”
      You still fell warm and fuzzy about the Harper government?

      • The Harper government hasn’t yet figured out that First Nations will never vote Conservative no matter how much money they throw at them.

        This is a prime example of throwing bad money after bad.

        The self-proclaimed environmentally friendly Henvey Inlet hypocrites will be the first to despoil the 30,000 Islands area of Georgian Bay with phony “green” energy projects.

        Stick that in your piece pipe and smoke it.

      • Good point, Gord. Maybe spoiling the 30,000 Islands region will provoke Bill Davis to do something about the great wind power fraud. Or maybe his view is safe enough over at Honey Harbour, and his wallet sufficiently greased that he still doesn’t care. Remember when he endorsed Dalton McGuinty for re-election. So foolish!

  6. Now there would have to be cap-and-trade agreements broken by any newly elected Ontario government.

  7. IMO, the lawsuit threat against Esther has had a chilling effect on websites such as OWR.

    Information can be shared as long as it is in the public domain, factual and from reliable sources.

    • Hey Barbara,

      Oh I think – I get it!

      1. The truth needs to be kept from the public.

      2. And we should all walk – on pins and needles;
      ‘get involved’.

      I love drama!
      Oh yeah – and shopping!

      • How many people have already been threatened or are afraid of being threatened?

      • It looks like Dalton McGuinty set the rules in motion;
        ‘pay to play’.

        The local municipalities could do nothing – [so they say]
        except participate;
        turning lemons into lemonade.

        Then McGuinty quit!

        Pay to play – has its perks;
        but Kathleen Wynne [loves lemonade] won’t admit it;
        local municipalities embrace it [it’s a liberal thing]
        – community organizers urge citizens –
        to ‘get involved’;
        volunteer, for the liberal cause – if not
        David Suzuki thinks politicians [conservatives] –
        – should go to jail.

        What’s even more alarming – citizens turn to environmental
        groups – to be saved;
        or @ least – save a turtle.

        At the end of the day – local municipalities pass by-laws
        … are laws;
        and then some are hidden,
        and you have to ask – to see the unknown.

        For the record:
        Just ask that all by-laws be listed… a simple person such
        as myself can read the law;
        citizens have 1 year to oppose a by-law.

        Why are some municipalities hiding by-laws?
        Do they all support the liberal agenda?
        Oh probably!

        It’s all very suspicious – and crazy people
        should stop asking questions
        because God Forbid –
        you might get sued!

        All politics – are Local politics!

  8. OH Yeah? Nexterror can go straight to hell! They are nothing but trough suckers, exploiting Ontario at the expense of families and wildlife. Go back to Florida Next Terror!

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