Wainfleet trail use approved by Conservation Authority for wind company

NPCA LogoBy Maryanne Firth, The Tribune
Despite concerns from Wainfleet leaders, Niagara Region Wind Corp. has been given the green light to use the Gord Harry Trail. The Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority board approved an agreement with the company Wednesday night, that will allow 635 metres of the 13-kilometre trail to be used to bury wind turbine conduits.

In return, the NPCA Foundation will receive $100,000, which staff has recommended be earmarked toward capital projects in Wainfleet, as well as $20,000 annually for the next 20 years that will support trail development, maintenance and signage throughout the watershed. The agreement will also provide the wind energy company vehicle access to the trail, west of Burkett Rd., for subsequent turbine maintenance.

Given the NPCA’s conservation mandate, Wainfleet Mayor April Jeffs said she feels the decision is steeped in hypocrisy. “People look at us to be stewards of land in general, especially our own land,” said Jeffs, who represents the township on the conservation authority’s board. “We tell people they can’t do things on their property, but then with ours say, ‘Sure, come on in — and bring your trucks.’ ” Read article

14 thoughts on “Wainfleet trail use approved by Conservation Authority for wind company

  1. How do you spell disgusting? …. A: Kathleen Wynne and all this dictatorial regime will tout as achievements next time the leming public are led to polls to pick and choose from the blind siding of choice!

  2. they obviously never heard about the troubles Dufferin County, specifically the town of Shelburne, had when the proponents used the old rail line, now a trail for transmission lines

  3. Reality check!

    They are allowing the building of a road – to service 2 wind turbines
    – and this is now called ‘enhancement’.

    So how stupid is the conservation authority?

    • If you’re looking for idiots!

      Agreement with Niagara Region Wind Corporation Means and Improved Gord Harry Trail and Wainfleet Conservation Areas
      July 16th, 2015

      An improved Gord Harry Trail, funding to greatly enhance conservation areas in Wainfleet and cleaner, greener energy for Niagara is what ultimately convinced the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority’s Board of Directors (NPCA) to enter into an agreement with Niagara Region Wind Corporation (NRWC). The agreement will allow temporary access to a relatively small portion (equivalent to 5%) of the Gord Harry Trail for maintenance access and routing of underground collector and fibre optic lines to connect two wind turbines.

      “We have thoughtfully discussed and debated this issue now at several meetings,” said NPCA Chair Bruce Timms. “We’ve welcomed delegations to our meetings who were both for and against this project and discussed the points both sides made in great detail. “We decided that allowing temporary access to 635 meters of the former abandoned railroad gives us in return, the ability to enhance the naturalization of that area as well as our other conservation sites in Wainfleet,” Chair Timms explained. “Overall, abandoned railways lines make the perfect site for a balance of recreational use in association with access as utility corridors”.

      Mickey DiFruscio, the longest serving member of the NPCA Board of Directors, says, “I eventually supported the project because abandoned railway tracks are already used for this sort of thing, and this project will vastly improve the land for the benefit of plants, animals and the environment as a whole. It is the best alternative when compared to utilizing prime agricultural lands to connect wind turbines.” Mr. DiFruscio did provide one caution to the Board, “I was however very clear that giving access to a railway line-turned-trail is one thing but we shouldn’t allow access for this purpose on one of our conservation areas.”

      He was – however – very clear
      hard to imagine – the clarity!

      You got it – right?

  4. First time around the amount ‘on the table’ from the Niagara Wind Corporation was $40,000 and the NPCA senior staff, in their greed, tried to force this deal on Wainfleet.
    It was rejected unanimously by Wainfleet Township Council and then again, rejected by the NPCA Board itself.
    In the meantime, as happens in this corrupt wind energy industry, moves were afoot do some ‘flipping’! The NRWC chose to bring on board a couple of the bigger foreign owned wind energy companies and ‘Voila’!
    The NPCA senior management weasel exactly the same scheme back on the table, but this time with enough to buy the integrity of the NPCA Board. Their price, around $400.000!
    So those elected members of the NPCA Board suddenly saw $ signs and couldn’t wait to jump ship on their original vote to reject, and instead approved the same ‘deal’.
    These guys are beginning to make Wynne and her government look almost ethical and honest!
    It’s an insult to all the residents within Niagara, not just Wainfleet, for the Chair of the Board, Regional Councillor Timms to claim he and his Board were acting in anyone’s interest but their own.
    Just a brief note on the siting of this ‘necessary’ service road.
    The host landowner is alleged to have stated he does not want this particular service road on his property.
    The same property that will already have access(service)roads built across his field for the turbines themselves. Why can’t these same existing roads be used to run these conduits?
    One has to wonder where the suggestion first came from for the host landowner to take this rather ridiculous stance?
    The NPCA can only profit from land they are supposedly responsible for………….
    Under the Provincial Conservation Act, Conservation Authorities have a mandate to protect the watershed within their areas of responsibility.
    On the grounds of conservation and environmental protection they do have the authority to object to planning applications they believe could be harmful to the environment. As far as I am aware they have no mandate as a planning authority to initiate and approve development projects?
    They have senior staff management from their CAO down who have no conservation or environmental experience or qualifications and have embarked on running the NPCA as a land acquisition body that rarely, if ever, objects to any development and are always seeking ways to claim even more and more tax funded ‘funding’. And of course, under the GEA, this $400,000 is all guaranteed by money taken from the individual energy consumer and underwritten by the taxpayer. This is not money being ‘invested’ by the wind energy companies!
    Its a long time since this NPCA showed any interest in conservation in any way shape or form.
    The Niagara Region Council, of whom the Chair of the NPCA Board, Timms, and other members belong, refuse to interfere with the way the NPCA operate and leaves them free to rule on all development matters in the region. They have no such mandate.
    ‘Bribrancy’ lives and flourishes in Niagara Region, under the ‘rule’ of possibly one of the most corrupt authorities in Ontario.
    Andrew Watts

    • ‘[excerpt] Given the NPCA’s conservation mandate, Wainfleet Mayor April Jeffs said she feels the decision is steeped in hypocrisy. “People look at us to be stewards of land in general, especially our own land,” said Jeffs, who represents the township on the conservation authority’s board. “We tell people they can’t do things on their property, but then with ours say, ‘Sure, come on in — and bring your trucks.’’

      A pretty good look @ reality!

      Welcome to the conservation authority – in Ontario!
      – right across Ontario!

      • There happens to be a certain Canadian billionaire, European Climate Foundation, who has spread a lot of money around the Falls area?

  5. Only o e hundred thousand measly dollars to ruin a trail. They’ll be digging it up for years making repairs. Did you know the cable will be direct burial, it won’t even be safely placed in conduit. Plus your little trail will now be about 30 or 40 feet wide and will take years to restore itself. Bad, bad deal…

  6. Great so now the trail will be gross and flooded In spots with dead vegetation and look like crap. Just like they leave all projects.

    Don’t any of these idiots that ok it ever actually visit previous sights ?

    just because they promise it will all be restored to the same if not better can we that live it call BS were not blind and stupid like our misery of the environment is.

    Water shed please they don’t give a crap if renewable energy wrecks it, by golly they would if it was a tax paying local though! Charges would be harsh then!

  7. Pingback: Wainfleet Trail | WAINFLEET WIND ACTION GROUP

  8. I can only say two words at this continuation of human greed over any concern for saving the natural inhabitants of our precious environment…………….STRAY VOLTAGE

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *