Ontario Gothic

Wellington Times, Rick Conroy
Mary Shelley is said to have conceived the story of Frankenstein, a manmade monster let loose upon the countryside, while under the influence of opium in the cold summer of 1816. The gothic horror story, it turns out, was the work of a dark imagination fuelled by opioids.

It begs the question: what was Kathleen Wynne and her government smoking when they let loose their own man-made monsters across rural Ontario—in the form of industrial wind developers and speculators?

Even if you buy the sentiment that their motivations were well-intentioned, the undeniable outcome of the Green Energy Act is that Kathleen Wynne and Dalton McGuinty have spawned armies of amoral monstrous corporate creatures and have let them loose to roam unfettered across the province. To wreak havoc in rural communities. To despoil the environment. To slaughter endangered species. To make folks sick.

Worse, our government has paved the way, clearing hurdles and slashing regulations to enable these creatures to prey upon vulnerable communities, natural habitats and endangered species. Now they have lost control of their grotesque creations. Even Kathleen Wynne must know how this story ends.

Near Chatham, folks believe the wind developer working nearby has poisoned their wells—allowing toxins into their drinking supply. They have done the testing. They have spoken out. They have protested. Marched on Queen’s Park. Kathleen Wynne has ignored them.

Wynne, her government and her supporters comfort themselves believing the scourge they have unleashed—though ugly and abusive— is a necessary evil. That the greater good is being served. They ignore the folks holding up jars of black liquid, pleading with the province to test their water, drawn from wells that have become undrinkable since the wind developer began driving piles into the bedrock to secure its massive wind turbines. Even Chatham- Kent’s mayor has demanded Kathleen Wynne intervene to protect these residents. It has made no difference.

Left without the protection of the province—without the safeguards that would protect them from any other development— these folks took matters into their own hands. In August, they began blockading the construction site— neighbours joining together to form a line against the threat to their drinking water.

On Monday, in a cruel blow, the developers— a Korean conglomerate and its American partner—won a court injunction barring any further blockades of the project. The judge said he wasn’t trying to muzzle opponents, but to “prohibit unlawful acts”.

In Ontario’s perverse hunger for industrial wind turbines, it turns out Chatham-Kent residents must first prove they have been poisoned by the developer, before they may seek justice. By then, of course, the damage will have been done. Recourse will expensive and, for most, unattainable.

Four years ago, the giant American wind developer Next Era sued Esther Wrightman for defamation. On her website she had altered the company’s logo to NextError and Next Terror. They wanted the logos removed or they would litigate the mother of two young children into oblivion. All these years later, the legal action is still pending. Wrightman wakes up every morning with the weight of this action still weighing on her head. Read article

WPD Canada turns off wind turbine project

Congrats to all who fought and WON!

Bayshore Broadcasting, Kevin Bernard
A BIG WIN for opponents of Giant wind turbines in Ontario.

The appeal period has run out, and WPD Canada has decided it will NOT proceed with the Fairview Wind Project in Clearview township.

Last month, approval for the wind turbines was revoked, but the company had until September 16th to file an appeal.

The Environmental Review Tribunal revoked the previous Renewable Energy Approval, saying WPD Canada’s plans for 8 turbines just outside Stayner would pose serious harm to human health with the turbines in the flight path of two nearby airports.

When the ERT ruling came down in mid-August, Opponent Betty Schneider didn’t believe the company would go quietly into the night, so she wasn’t celebrating at that point.

Now, Schneider says she would like to fill up her old swimming pool with champagne and celebrate.

Schneider says she is numb, that the battle is finally over.

WPD Canada has been working on the plan for wind turbines in Clearview for roughly a decade.

Manager of Communications for WPD Canada, Kevin Surette tells Bayshore Broadcasting news in an email September 18th that the Board of Directors has decided not to proceed with the Fairview Project.

He declined to make any further comments.

Thirteenth complaint filed against wind turbine project for water well interference in C-K

Council of Canadians
September 27, 2017
Chatham, ON – Thirteen Chatham area well owners have now filed water well interference complaints following the start of construction on a 34 turbine wind power project near their farms. The Council of Canadians is demanding work stop on the project immediately.

The project developer, North Kent Wind One (owned by Samsung Energy and Pattern Energy), started pile driving for the first turbine foundation in late June. The vibrations caused by the pile driving can be felt hundreds of meters away. Before construction began, experts predicted that local wells could suffer siltation problems from the vibrations. Some of the 13 wells affected to date have become so silted up that water no longer flows through the household plumbing.

Chatham-Kent residents have been working to protect their well water after learning of pollution problems faced by dozens of families in neighbouring Dover Township where wells began showing high levels of black silt as soon as pile driving started for various wind turbine projects built there over the last eight years. Both counties sit atop the Kettle Point black shale bedrock formation. Read more

 

 

Meanwhile C-K Medical Officer of Health Dr. Colby just encouraged  everyone to trust his doctor status and continue filtering out the “crud”. Or… drill a new well, like he’s had to.

The Chatham Voice
“Nobody wants to drink dirty water that looks like chocolate milk; I get that. But if you filter that crud out of there, is there any evidence there is an increased solution of toxins in that water that could pose a health problem, and the answer is no,” Colby said, noting no evidence has come across his desk. “If you’re more interested in your convictions than the facts that I’m trying to give you, we’re not going to get an agreement on this issue.”

Colby said he has a well and had sediment problems, and ended up drilling a new well. When asked how many turbines are nearby, he said he could count 47. Read article


From the archives, in case you think this has gone on way too long with no action from our government:

Lawyer Alan Whiteley: Ontario’s electricity Ponzi scheme

Watch to the very end.

Frustrated Chatham-Kent residents stage blockade at wind turbine site

CBC News
Chatham-Kent residents frustrated with wind turbine construction they blame for tainting their drinking water staged another blockade Tuesday morning and have temporarily shut down the North Kent Wind project.

It is the second blockade in as many weeks by the group calling itself Water Wells First. It is protesting what it believes is provincial inaction on pile driving residents claim is pushing bits of sediment into their drinking water.

“The people here in the community just feel like they’re sitting like guinea pigs, waiting to be plucked out and experimented on,” said spokesperson Kevin Jakubec during the blockade held on Aug. 17.  “The tensions are boiling over here.”

“The people here in the community just feel like they’re sitting like guinea pigs, waiting to be plucked out and experimented on,” said spokesperson Kevin Jakubec during the blockade held on Aug. 17.
“The tensions are boiling over here.”

Following that blockade, Chatham-Kent Mayor Randy Hope wrote to minister of environment Chris Ballard, asking for an “immediate intervention” in the water quality issues due to “conflicting reports” on water quality that created “fear and concern among residents.”

“The ministry cannot remain silent on this very important issue,” the mayor added. “This is an extremely urgent matter which demands immediate, decisive action from your ministry and government.” Read article

Wind subsidies gone, Samsung gone

Toronto Sun, Jennifer Bieman and Megan Stacey
The loss of 340 jobs at a factory that makes blades for wind turbines could be harbinger of troubles ahead in Ontario’s green-energy industry, a leading analyst says.

Siemens Canada announced Tuesday it’s closing its Tillsonburg plant, one of four Ontario green-energy factories set up under a controversial, multi-billion-dollar deal with Korean industrial giant Samsung.

The closing of one of the town’s largest employers came after weeks of nervous speculation.

But energy analyst Tom Adams said Ontario’s green-energy industry could be in for a rough ride if it doesn’t lay its hands on orders from outside Ontario, arguing the provincial market is saturated with wind and solar electricity brought online since the Liberal government plunged headlong into green energy in 2009.

“I think it was always pretty obvious that whatever jobs were going to arise from the Green Energy Act were all temporary or almost all temporary,” Adams said, referencing the provincial law that paved the way for big wind farms in Ontario under contracts paying energy giants more than consumers pay for power.

“Samsung had no history in renewable energy before they came to Ontario. They came only for the subsidies, and when the subsidies dry up, they’ll disappear as quick as they landed,” said Adams, an independent energy and environmental advisor and researcher. Read article

The Green Job “Joke” in Ontario

“Green Jobs” have always been a bit of a joke. Although not a very funny one.

Back in 2010 McGuinty signed a deal with South Korean company Samsung, and promised Ontarians that all kinds of employment would flow from it.

The Liberal government ended months of speculation in September when it confirmed it was in talks with Samsung about a project that could create about 15,000 jobs.

Ontario’s manufacturing sector has shed hundreds of thousands of jobs in the recession. The deal with Samsung would likely be the linchpin in McGuinty’s push for renewable sources of energy and his plan to create 50,000 jobs. CBC, 2010

The numbers were highly inflated in that press release. Even Samsung’s website could only cough up minuscule (although inconsistent) numbers.

Thanks to Samsung’s Green Energy Investment Agreement with the Government of Ontario, we are creating 9,000 jobs, kick-starting a new industry in Ontario and generate 1,369 megawatts of clean energy. Samsung Renewable Energy

Samsung and Pattern Energy’s wind power projects in Ontario are creating more than 1,000 jobs Samsung Renewable Energy, 2014

Our investments will create 900 direct renewable energy manufacturing jobs and 9,000 high-skilled jobs in Ontario. Samsung Renewable Energy, 2014

Down down down the number fell! We went from a promised 15,000 Samsung jobs in 2010, to a possible 900 in 2014? So what is the real number? I suppose nobody is really counting anymore. The fact is the province blatantly lied to the people of Ontario just so this juicy deal could be pushed through without much fuss. One would think the opposition parities would do as much as they could to investigate WHY this deal had to be made… Continue reading

Ministry of Environment did not investigate over 68% of wind turbine noise complaints received

Brian Hill, Global News
Excerpt: “Over the past two years, officials from the ministry have measured violations of the province’s noise limits at the couple’s home on two occasions, first in August 2015 and again in March 2017. Despite these violations, the couple says the government has done nothing other than order more tests.

The Stachura’s complaints of government inaction are not unique. In fact, Global News has learned that Ontario’s Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change does not respond to the majority of complaints made by residents concerned about wind turbines.

Documents released through Ontario’s Freedom of Information Act and obtained by Global News reveal officials from the Ministry of Environment chose not to investigate or deferred responding to – meaning they did not make immediate plans to investigate – roughly 68 per cent of all noise and health complaints lodged against wind turbine operators in the province between 2006 and 2014. This represents nearly 2,200 individual complaints.

The documents also show limited resources sometimes prevented the ministry from responding to complaints.”  Read article


Unaddressed Wind Turbine Complaints Anger Local Group
A local group opposed to wind turbines is once again calling on the province to put a stop to the controversial wind power projects, after a new report found many noise complaints related to the turbines are being ignored.

Dutton Dunwich Opponents of Wind Turbines (DDOWT), a group made up people from the rural community southwest of London, has written to Ontario Minister of the Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) Glenn Murray demanding he stop any new wind turbine approvals.

Their demand comes in light of documents obtained by Wind Concerns Ontario under the Freedom of Information Act. The documents show the Ministry of Environment chose not to investigate or deferred responding to roughly 68% of all noise and health complaints made against green energy operators in the province between 2006 and 2014.

A list of 3,180 complaints is included in the documents. Of those, more than 1,700 were not investigated by the ministry. In another 446 of the complaints the ministry deferred responding. Complainants reported sleep disturbances, headaches, and dizziness from the wind turbine noise emissions. Read article

Ontario gov’t ignored chance to cut $1.5B in hydro bills: documents

CTV News
Newly unearthed documents suggest Ontario’s Liberal government could have saved hydro customers $1.5 billion by terminating an agreement with Samsung, but decided against it.

The papers, uncovered by Progressive Conservative Finance Critic Vic Fedeli, relate to the 2009 Samsung green energy agreement that would take $10.5 billion from Ontario hydro bills, and pay it to a Samsung consortium over 20 years. In return, Samsung would deliver green energy and build factories in the province, employing 900 people.

Four years into the deal, however, a confidential document from staff at the Ministry of Energy advised the government it could save hydro customers $5.2 billion by terminating the agreement. This was because the Korean consortium was missing contract targets and deadlines on electricity projects that Ontario didn’t even need anymore.

But instead of calling off the deal, the Liberals renegotiated the contract to save only $3.7 billion –leaving $1.5 billion in hydro savings on the table.

“Even though we don’t need the power, and even though we can get out of this for nothing, (the Liberals) already told the public how important this deal is,” Fedeli told CTV Toronto, suggesting that the government ignored the potential savings “just to save face.” Read article

Wind developers deploy ultrasonic units to ‘jam’ bat echolocation

NextEra is sticking Ultrasonic Units on their Jericho, Goshen and Bluewater wind turbines for the purpose of deterring bats from flying near them.

Perhaps this wouldn’t piss me off so much if pre-construction they had absolutely no idea that bats were going to be killed by their machines.

But they did. And they built them anyways. Now what is their solution?

To “jam” (their word) the bat’s echolocation with ultrasonic frequencies. Then they won’t be able to communicate or know where the fuck (yeah I’m mad) they are flying, and will hopefully flee to some non-turbine infested area, if they still exist anywhere locally. I believe this is called “habitat displacement”, which Dr. Scott Petrie warned all the wind developers of over and over for the past half dozen years.

Ah, but NextEra and their ilk are “good green corporate citizens” – they wouldn’t take part in something so repulsive as this, would they? They did it to humans so maybe…

The problem for the wind company is not the laborious and tedious job of picking up all the dead bat carcasses (a bloody pain I suspect though), it’s the horrid “mitigation” that they are forced to do when they exceed the “kill threshold” of birds, bats and raptors set by the Ministry of Natural Resources – they are exceeding them all the freakin’ time!

Supposedly the MNR will sometimes make the wind companies that exceed their kill limits, “curtail” (shut down) their turbines during peak migration, night or in low winds when the bats are out and about. (Honestly I highly doubt anyone is watching or monitoring, but lets give them the benefit of the doubt here). That lost production really sucks for the wind companies ’cause they are loosing way too much $$. Every little penny counts for their greedy little hearts.

Again, the problem is not the killing of Endangered Species (which is what is happening, with impunity), that doesn’t bother the wind company at all or they would shut their turbines down most willingly.

Instead they employ these fancy new Ultrasonic blasters to scare those little buggers away. Because that’s what good neighbours do when they come to a land full of Endangered Species. They wreck their homes. You know, like eagle nests and stuff.

Here’s their sales pitch:

“Instead of curtailing to avoid take, deter bats from the turbine”
(“Take”, for those unfamiliar with the lingo, is “kill”. Sounds nicer, eh? Note also this is all about avoiding curtailment, not avoiding bat kill, and certainly not avoiding destruction of habitat!)

“Many bats rely on echolocation for orienting, foraging and communication – Echolocation “jamming” most effective defense against bats ever documented.”(So they recognize what the bats needs to survive, and then wallop them with a baseball bat. Note also they use the negative wording, “defence against bats”. That shows their true colours on this issue.)

“Deterrent units create a broad range of frequencies to deter different bat species”
(Oh well, wind developers know all about ‘broad ranges of frequencies’ to deter human beings, so I believe them!)

Here’s another thought. How is a wind developer, or anyone for that matter, permitted to disrupt an Endangered Species habitat like this? What exactly is the purpose of the supposed protection of the Act if wind developers are allowed to kill, harm, harass and maim them as much as they want?! Aren’t developers usually penalized for this kind of deliberate destruction?

~ Esther

Medical Officer of Health does not have the authority to stop noxious wind turbines

Just in case we thought the wind turbines would be ordered to be mitigated or shut down  if health problems were noticed in the Huron County Health study – nope that’s not gonna happen. Read the correspondence below and you will realize that it is all just ‘process’, with no action to ‘correct’ on the horizon. Basically more people are just being used as test subjects. That’s it. And that’s flat out unacceptable.

Thanks to Richard Mann, Associate Professor  Department of Computer Science; University of Waterloo for this.


From: Erica Clark
Sent: Friday, May 12, 2017 3:44 PM
Subject: Ability of MOH to write orders against wind turbines under section 13 of HPPA

Hello,

One of the issues the University of Waterloo ethics committee asked us to address was the hope residents had that, at some time, the Medical Officer of Health would be able to write an order curtailing or shutting down the wind turbines. We had already stated in the recruitment materials that the study would not generate sufficient evidence to prove wind turbines cause health problems (establishing causality) but the ethics committee questioned whether we were providing enough information on the limits of the Medical Officer of Health’s authority. To address that concern, we have spoken with individuals experienced in interpreting the Health Protection and Promotion Act (HPPA) specifically, sections 11 (investigating health hazards) and 13 (writing orders). They provided us with the attached documents that outline the limits on the MOH’s authority to write orders.

The first document (Pelletier v Northwestern Health Unit) is the proceedings from an Ontario Health Services Appeal and Review Board and the second (Court File 2006-01-04) is a judicial review of the appeal hearing by the Ontario Superior Court of Justice. Essentially, these documents state that when the Legislature places the authority to regulate with one organization, such as municipal councils or the Ministry of the Environment, the courts do not accept that there was an intention to give the same authority to the MOH under section 13 of the HPPA. The rulings were made when the Northwestern Health Unit MOH wrote orders prohibiting exposure to environmental tobacco smoke (second hand smoke) in several bars and restaurants. At the time the orders were written, exposure to environmental tobacco smoke was (and still is) deemed a health hazard.

Since the Legislature assigned the duty to regulate wind turbines to the Ministry of the Environment and not the health units, the courts will not recognize the authority of the MOH under section 13 of the HPPA to write an order curtailing or shutting down the wind turbines.

I will be putting these documents on the health unit website soon, however, I wanted you to have a chance to read them first. The documents are publicly available at

Thanks

Erica

____________________________________
Erica Clark, PhD
Epidemiologist, APHEO Secretary
Huron County Health Unit
77722B London Rd., RR #5
Clinton, ON N0M 1L0
519.482.3416 ext. 2022
Toll-free 1.877.837.6143
www.huronhealthunit.ca
eclark@huroncounty.ca

Wind still fills sails of Wynne arrogance

London Free Press
Only in Kathleen Wynne’s Ontario would we still be spending money we don’t have, to build wind farms few people want, to generate electricity we don’t need.

And yet that’s exactly what’s happening six months after the government halted its green energy policy. Planning for five new wind turbine developments continues despite admission from the Wynne government that Ontario won’t use the electricity these turbines will generate.

Indeed, if history is any indication, the excess electricity generated from turbines yet to be built will be sold at a steep discount, probably to American states that already offer electricity cheaper than Ontario’s, states that in some cases are using cheap electricity to lure away Ontario business.

The Ontario government says it’s contractually obligated to allow the last of these wind turbine developers to bring their plans to fruition. A sensible response would be to cancel the contracts and pay whatever legal penalties might follow. But no, the Wynne government will stoically follow through. Read article

Dr. Pierpont: “ISO acknowledges motion sickness from low-frequency oscillatory motion below 1 Hz”

Wind turbines a government-backed Ponzi scheme

North Bay Nugget
All you people out there complaining about your hydro prices need to realize some important facts about the Kathleen Wynne government.

  1. The global adjustment charge on your hydro bill is to pay for the giant industrial wind turbines Wynne  has placed all  over rural Ontario.
  2. Wind turbines a useless technology that destroys our rural environment, ruins people’s health and poisons our drinking water aquifers.
  3. The only reason these turbines were erected was so Liberal insiders and their friends could get filthy rich.
  4. Wynne will not cancel the turbine projects or reduce the subsidies because the turbine lobbyists know where the political bodies are buried.
  5. Wynne has taken away the democratic rights of the people for her own financial and political gain.
  6. Wynne has sacrificed the health of rural citizens just so her friends can get rich.
  7. In a few year’s time, when it inevitably collapses, this wind turbine scam will be revealed for what it is: An enormous government-backed Ponzi scheme, founded on greed, corruption and stupidity.

Leonard Vandenbosch
West Grey, Ont

NextEra freely handed permit to destroy Bald Eagle nest: FOI records

Have a good look at these recent and disturbing pictures posted on Canadian Raptor Conservancy’s Facebook.

  • Eagle Nest location: Port Ryerse
  • Wind Developer: Boralex

Flashback much?

Who does one go to when you see wind turbines installed this close to an active nest? You know it’s just a matter of time before the residents of that nest get added to this list of carcasses found in Ontario under wind turbines:

X 2009, Norfolk Wind Project – Bald Eagle

2012, Talbot Wind Project –Bald Eagle

2013, Talbot Wind Project – Bald Eagl

2014, Port Dover Wind Project – Bald Eagle

You want to help. The government makes all the rules and regulations for what any person/developer can do around important habitat like this, so they are the first you think of. Except… that they have a really bad track record on this.

Okay, lets say you go to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF), as some good citizens did in November 2012. I’ll take you back there.

Warning, this is a long one, there is no other way to write it, so grab a drink.


***Last year I filed an Freedom of Information request with the MNRF for all correspondence relating to the Haldimand eagle nest destruction by NextEra Energy. I wanted to see what the hell was happening in their heads, and head offices. You can see all the files received from the FOI on this Google Drive: Bald Eagle Nest Destruction NextEra MNRF.

Somewhere around November 19th, 2012 the MNRF had it’s first glimpse at an issue they hadn’t dealt with before. Letters from residents in rural Haldimand County had landed on their desk – they were asking that the MNRF intervene with Florida based wind turbine developer NextEra’s construction around an active Bald Eagle nest.

The MNR wasn’t quite sure what to do. The Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act said:

7.  (1)  A person shall not destroy, take or possess the nest or eggs of a bird that belongs to a species that is wild by nature.  1997, c. 41, s. 7 (1).

But there were also exemptions made for “special” people/corporations in need of favours:

(3)  Subsection (1) does not apply to a person who destroys, takes or possesses the nest or eggs of a bird described in that subsection,
(a)in accordance with the authorization of the Minister

Ah yes, and that was the dilemma the MNRF faced. This appeared to concern at least Erin in her query to her co-worker. But that’s the last “concern” you will see from this Ministry.

The public kept the pressure on, sending pictures and maps. Surely to God the MNRF would intervene and save the nest…?

That day, December 4th, the MNRF Manager asked Jim Beal and Joad Durst, “…how quickly we can we pull this (a response to the public) together”. They knew an eagle nest was protected under the Renewable Energy Act (REA) – if the nest was noticed during the Natural Heritage Assessment (NHA). But the company missed this nest in their NHA – was that as good as saying the nest “wasn’t there”? Should NextEra have to move their road and turbine plans now, they would have to go through the Ministry of Environment’s (MOE) amendment process all over again – and that would cost wind company time and money. NextEra wanted to build now, and they were going to get their way.  Continue reading

Lower electricity rates? Don’t fall for Premier Wynne’s power move

The Globe and Mail
The rise in the cost of electricity in Ontario over the Liberal Party’s time in office has been staggering, and painful. Here’s just one example of how it has gone up:

In November, 2007, the highest rate for households, during peak hours, was 8.7 cents per kilowatt/hour. Less than a decade later, it’s the lowestrate – the one you get for using your dryer at midnight. The highest rate, for use during peak hours, is 18 cents per kWh.

That 107-per-cent increase in the peak rate is roughly six times the rate of inflation over the same period. The province’s manufacturing sector, meanwhile, has been walloped by the highest industrial rates in Canada, and among the highest in North America, according to the Association of Major Power Consumers in Ontario.

The blame for this falls squarely on the consecutive Liberal governments of former premier Dalton McGuinty and his successor, Premier Kathleen Wynne, in power since 2003. Their mismanagement of Ontario’s power system has led to today. Read article

Bats stand in the way of wind turbines

The Enterprise Bulletin
COLLINGWOOD – Citizen scientists have proven beyond a doubt there is a population of endangered little brown bats in the area where wpd Canada Inc. plans to erect eight 500-foot wind turbines. Evidence from three bat biologists was presented at the Feb. 28 appeal hearing of the Environmental Review Tribunal chaired by Dirk Vander Bent with panel member Hugh Wilkins in the Collingwood council chamber Feb. 28.

Witness and bat ecologist Sarah Mainguy said building turbines on the Clearview Township property would cause “serious and irreversible harm” to the endangered species. She was a witness for Preserve Clearview, a citizen group fighting the turbines. Mainguy provided the panel with a map showing the prevalence of habitat of the little brown bat (Myotis lucifugus) and other species in the wind turbine area in Clearview Township.

She said citizen scientists Betty Schneider and Susan Richardson collected 2,000 bat call recordings obtained over 43 nights from different houses. “I went through the recordings to identify myotis. I screened all the calls and came up with the conclusion that 152 calls were identified as myotis and 146 were confident of myotis, all of which are endangered,” she said. Mainguy said the women were not allowed on Beattie family land where the turbines would be built but were allowed on other properties in the near vicinity.

“We knew there were myotis but there are more than was earlier suggested. They are reasonably spread out in the area in red brick houses, which is their favourite.”

wpd has not provided information on where the bats are located, she added. “We feel there is a large gap in the information provided in the pre-construction studies on where the bats are located. I feel this is a considerable gap especially in light of us finding quite a large number of bats,” she said. Read article

Defunct Wind Turbines to be dismantled on Sable Island

Sable Island – such a ridiculous place to even think of putting wind turbines, but the Feds went ahead and did it. Canadian Press describes how the turbines never really did anything… they were dead from the get go.

“The harsh conditions and extreme isolation of Sable Island have forced Ottawa to abandon a wind project on the iconic crescent-shaped sandbar — more than 15 years after it launched the initiative. Parks Canada said wind turbines don’t meet the needs of the wind-swept Nova Scotia island, famous for the wild horses that have roamed there since the 18th century.”

“When asked for the total cost of the project to date, Environment Canada said just under $1 million had been spent on the project as of 2006. It will cost another $150,000 to decommission the turbines, it said. The original budget for the wind project was $669,000.”

“Parks Canada said it hopes to develop “a reduced facility footprint, more efficient operations, reduced electricity demand, and renewable power generation” on Sable. The decommissioning will happen in two phases: The battery and switch gear were removed in 2015, and the towers and turbines are scheduled to be dismantled and removed this fall, Parks Canada said.”


It’s news that they are taking the turbines down, but it isn’t news that the damn things never worked. Here’s a CBC story from 2011. Remember – components started arriving at the island to be assembled way back in 2002. By 2011 they still weren’t producing power for the island!

“Officials estimate it will cost another $660,000 to refurbish or replace what is now aging or obsolete equipment. It took years to assemble, secure and properly connect the five towers that now hold the wind turbines. In the summer of 2005, just after the turbines were hooked up and generating power, a piece of equipment called the inverter malfunctioned.”

“Environment Canada said in an email to CBC News that “during commissioning, it was discovered that a manufacturing defect —improper software — resulted in improper currents, and some transistors were damaged.” Even though the damaged equipment was replaced and the proper software installed not long after the test, the system remains offline.

“Although the wind turbines are generating electricity … other improvements are needed to create a system that effectively uses the electrical power generated by the turbines,” said Environment Canada spokesperson Mark Johnson. Environment Canada said it has completed an assessment of the entire system to determine whether any of it needs replacement.”
———

It was broken. They tried to fix it and it still didn’t work. So they just let it all rot away, because – thank God! – they had diesel generators going the whole time!

Wind turbine leaseholder: “They’re louder than I expected”

By Monte Sonnenberg, Simcoe Reformer
The company that brought a four-turbine wind farm to Port Ryerse last year got an earful about noise levels at a community meeting this week. Boralex officials were on the hot seat Wednesday as 40 people from the Port Ryerse area had at them in a committee room at the Simcoe Recreation Centre. The occasion was a bi-annual meeting Boralex has agreed to have with its neighbours. Also attending were members of the Port Ryerse Community Liaison Committee.

“It’s very loud and it’s very upsetting,” Port Ryerse resident Shana Greatrex told the gathering. “Our whole village has been affected. This is something we warned about a long time ago and no one did anything about it.”

Village residents were surprised when one of the property owners who agreed to host a turbine said his neighbours aren’t imagining things. “I’m surprised I can hear them as loud as I do, and I wear an earpiece,” said Wally Faulkner. “They’re louder than I expected.”

Comments at this week’s meeting are consistent with complaints across the province that wind turbines are noisy, disruptive and interfere with the peaceful enjoyment of property. In telling her story, Gail Lyons started off calm enough. However, the bitterness she feels came through loud and clear in her words. Lyons told the gathering she lives across the road from “one of these pieces of crap that I hate” and that she is often awakened in the middle of the night because her bed is shaking. Read article

What’s 64 stories tall? 4.2MW wind turbines planned for Wallaceburg!!

David Gough, Chatham Daily News
The 12 wind turbines that are proposed for the Otter Creek Wind Farm, will be significantly taller than wind turbines already erected in Chatham-Kent. The wind farm, which is scheduled to be built north of Wallaceburg, will have Enercon E-141 turbines.

From the ground to the top of the wind blades, the proposed wind turbines at the Otter Creek Wind Farm will measure 195 metres (642 feet). By comparison, the world’s tallest wind turbine in Germany is just under 230 metres (754 feet). Initially 17-20 wind turbines were proposed for the wind farm project. It was scaled back to 12, which Otter Creek officials said was due to public concerns. Most wind turbines in Chatham-Kent are approximately 155 metres (510 feet) from ground to the top of a blade’s tip.

“The reason why these turbines are a little bit higher and a little bit wider in diameter, is to effectively reduce the use of the number of turbines,” said Adam Rosso, who is Otter Creek Wind Farm’s director of development. Rosso said by using fewer turbines it will reduce the visual impact, as well as other impacts. Read article

Dear NextEra, Destroy the eagle nest, just do it by Sunday. ~ Love, Ministry of Natural Resources

I’m still going through the NextEra eagle nest destruction FOI documents and will post them all as soon as I can. But so far I’d say this e-mail from the MNR to NextEra, on New Years Day (when we know everyone is at work, right?), delivering the permit to destroy the nest, says it all.

Oh, and how long do you think it took them to get this permit? Well, NextEra submitted a request on December 28th (Saturday afternoon…), and four days later they had it in their hot little hands. Now that’s service!!

Application to rezone Amherst Island park “a necessary step” to keep the wind turbine project going

Elliot Ferguson, Kingston Whig-Standard
A popular lakeside park in Loyalist Township will need to be converted to industrial land for a wind energy project to go ahead, according to a rezoning application to the provincial government. Invista’s property along Bath Road is to be used by Algonquin Power subsidiary Windlectric Inc. as a marshalling yard for its Amherst Island wind energy project.

The Invista property on the south side of Bath Road, however, is zoned for parkland, but the company applied to the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change to have the Certificate of Property Use (CPU) changed to temporarily allow industrial use of the park. The public has until March 2 to provide comment.

The land is to be used for the laying of underground cable to transmit electricity to a switch station and the use of an existing access road to transport materials to and from a temporary mainland dock. According to a notice published Tuesday on the Ontario government’s Environmental Registry website, the rezoning is “a necessary step” to keep the wind energy project going.

“Put another way, the project cannot proceed without the proposed amendment to the CPU,” the notice stated.

“If they don’t have this, they can’t build the project? Now they are basing the whole project on the mainland dock?” asked Michele Le Lay, president of the Association to Protect Amherst Island (APAI), the group opposing the project. “It seems that they started too early, they don’t have a good plan, they don’t have good measures, they still are lacking permits,” Le Lay said. “Right now this land is used by people in Loyalist Township, to walk their dogs, it’s a park and there is a boat launch. We’ve been saying all along that they don’t have the permits.” Le Lay said she is concerned that excavation on the land may disturb contaminents in the soil left over from previous industrial use. Read article

 

Four Bald Eagles Killed by Wind Turbines in Ontario

Bald eagles (yes that’s plural) have been killed in Ontario by wind turbines, and more will continue to meet this fate for the 20 year lifespan of these projects.  We knew of only one up until a few days ago. Not that we didn’t suspect there were others, but when the proof is in the hands of the government and the wind developers, you can be sure the public will be the last to find out.

Wind companies have quietly admitted in their reports to killing four bald eagles in Ontario. That’s just the bodies found (tripped over), not factoring in carcasses that have been scavenged and the months upon months that turbine bases just don’t get checked anymore.

X 2009, Norfolk Wind Project – Bald Eagle

X 2012, Talbot Wind Project – Bald Eagle

X 2013, Talbot Wind Project – Bald Eagle

X 2014, Port Dover Wind Project – Bald Eagle

Did the government fine the wind companies for any of these deaths? Of course not. Wind companies get “permission” to kill bald eagles. And bobolinks. And little brown bats. Anything you can imagine they can kill with impunity.

Last week we received these bird and bat mortality reports through an FOI. Something that we noticed going through them is that rules change – where to collect, when to collect, how long to collect. None of this is consistent. Wind companies go bankrupt, sell out, change names. So it’s no wonder that the Ministry of Natural Resources loses track of the ‘big picture’. Jim told me that he was absolutely certain there were NO cumulative impact studies on the bird and bat kills by wind turbines. He also hadn’t heard of many of the wind developments I had on the list… and he was the MNRF’s Renewable Energy coordinator. Continue reading

Wind Turbine Bird & Bat Mortality Reports, with Summary – Ontario, Canada

Below is a summary Maureen kindly assembled from all of the reports retrieved through the FOI. Have a good hard look at the numbers per project. Individually, these projects have got off scot free – they have never been challenged, never been questioned, never been charged, or even slapped on the wrist for these astounding kills. Dan tallied the actual raptor deaths on the right hand side, as many raptor deaths were ignored as “incidental” – not killed at the right time/place…more on that later. There is much more to glean from these reports – please share what you gather. This is a draft that will be added to and amended as we go.

Click here to download and view in full screen

Bird-and-Bat-Mortality-v012417-Sheet2

 

Full list of Bird and Bat Mortality Reports

Say NO to Double Standard on Species at Risk Penalties!

In the last few days these three stories came out. Please read them, and then respond to those who are failing to protect these Species at Risk below. 

1. Penalty for Canaport songbird deaths

…The deaths of thousands of songbirds at the Canaport LNG terminal more than three years ago resulted in a $750,000 penalty against the company… In September 2013, thousands of birds were drawn to a 10-to-15-metre gas flare during a period of fog and low cloud. Twenty-six species of migratory birds died, including four Canada warblers, a threatened species…

2. Former Liberal Pres. Crawley built worst ‘bat killing wind farm’ in Canada: 85 bats killed/turbine/yr

…This was an AIM PowerGen/International Power Corporation project – whose president is none other than the past Federal and Ontario Federal Liberal Party President Mike Crawley. It was approved  in 2009, and pretty much nothing more was said about it since. Which is so wrong. Let me explain. The “five” reports stuck out because usually (if the project is not killing over the ‘limits’ set by the government) there are only three reports. That means some ‘mitigation reporting’ was happening, for some reason. Well that reason became pretty obvious within seconds of looking at the 2011 report. How does 85.42 bats killed per wind turbine strike you? Or how about 53.1% of them being the Endangered Little Brown Bat?…

3. Minister says thanks but no thanks, to wind energy review pleas

…McKenna wrote that current research shows wind turbines kill relatively few birds when compared to cats, windows on buildings, vehicles and transmission lines.”Monitoring studies of existing wind farms in Ontario have shown that while some birds are incidentally killed, mortality rates as well as cumulative mortality of species that have been found incidentally killed to date are not likely to have a biologically significant impact on provincial population levels of those species,” McKenna wrote. “However, it is possible that turbine sites in areas with important populations of some species at risk could have impacts on those populations.”…


***Send a message to the key decision makers by filling out the form below with your own comments or copy and paste the following message into the comment section below:

The other day I read that LNG was fined $750,000 for killing 4 Species at Risk (SAR) in New Brunswick. Fair enough.

But I also read the 2011 Bird and Bat Mortality Report for the Mohawk Point Wind project in Haldimand County. It appears that this wind company killed around 270 SAR, in just one season. To be more specific – it was the Endangered Little Brown Bat that was all but wiped out by this project’s 6 wind turbines.

And I’m left wondering why this wind company wasn’t fined. In fact, I’m wondering why they were allowed to continue to operate year after year ever since. Even with mitigation measures, they were only able to bring the kill rate of the bats down to 24.27 bats/turbine/year by 2013 – over double the allowed limit in Ontario. Several years later now, it appears no government agency is even counting the deaths there anymore – they are just happening, and those who know, turn a blind eye.

This project continues to operate, and kill SAR, with impunity. Please explain to me the reason for the double standard. Or if it isn’t a double standard, and somehow the government just missed this violation, I might as will give you this link (below) to all the other wind turbine Bird/Bat mortality reports in Ontario, because there are hundreds of SAR that have been killed in these reports, and none of the operators have ever been penalized at all. So of course they continue their operations as usual.

Canadian Wind Turbine Bird and Bat Mortality Reports https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B24A4SH_cewXV0VhTENxTGp3LVk

I’m frankly sick and tired of watching wind developers get off scot free for this kind of slaughter that’s happening before our very eyes. If it’s wrong for LNG to kill endangered species, it’s wrong for all the wind companies in Canada to kill them as well. Apply the law consistently!

Awaiting your reply,

Subject: No Double Standard on Species at Risk Penalties! 


Form will be sent to:

  • Fed. Min. of Environment: Catherine McKenna
  • Fed. Min. of Natural Resources: Jim Carr
  • Fed. Conservative Environment critic: Ed Fast
  • Fed. Conservative Natural Resources critic: Candice Bergen
  • Ontario Min. Natural Resources: Kathryn McGarry
  • Ontario Min. of Environment: Glenn Murray
  • Ontario PC Natural Resources critic: Todd Smith
  • Ontario PC Environment critic: Lisa Thompson
  • Ontario PC Leader: Patrick Brown
  • Ontario PC Energy critic: John Yakabuski, Energy Critic,
  • Ontario NDP Natural Resources critic: Gilles Bisson

Here they are: Wind Turbine Bird/Bat Mortality Reports in Ontario to date

We did it! It’s hard to believe that most of these documents were kept from public view until now.  I think there are reports for 57 different wind project listed here in Canada.

170+ documents arrived two days ago. I’ve posted the bird and bat mortality reports up on the public google drive anyone can see and download them.

The Freedom of Information office was helpful and diligent and even reversed an earlier decision that had redacted Species at Risk Information.

In the coming days I’ll also post documents and correspondence that I have yet to assemble on how and why the active bald eagle nest in Haldimand County was destroyed by NextEra. I can only take so much government crap at once, and that was one big manure load…

Thank you all so much for helping make this happen.

Think about it – the last report like this that was voluntarily released by a wind company was 3 years ago! Then the wind developers and government must have decided that wasn’t good PR, or good for the tribunal hearings against them, so they kept the rest of them hidden.

YOU helped make these public so that journalists, researches and the residents that lives amongst these monster machines can see what it going on and, most importantly, hold them accountable! These are no longer “trade secrets” for the industry.

Read them over, get on then phone and read the whole damn thing to your MPP, or the Minister of Natural Resources, or good ‘ol Glenn Murray (if he hasn’t blocked you yet), or how about Dianne Saxe (LOL! I know, but she is the supposed Environment Commissioner). Use them in appeals, in letters to the editor, in educating your neighbours and the nature societies (hm, could Suzuki ever be interested?), and don’t forget to slap them on the table in front of your municipal representatives and ask them if THIS is what the township is accepting blood money in exchange for.

~Esther

Summary of Reports so far (click here to download and view in full screen)

(This list scrolls down – go all the way until you reach Wolfe Island)

 

Construction starts on wind energy project on Amherst Island despite incomplete approvals, residents say

National Post, Elliot Ferguson
The opening stages of construction of the Amherst Island wind energy project are underway, much to the dismay of the residents who opposed the development. Workers are building footings for a new dock and a marshalling area on the island west of Kingston, Ontario.

Michele Le Lay, president of the Association to Protect Amherst Island, said the start of construction has come before all of the required permits have been secured and before efforts to stop the project have finished. “It’s worrisome because they don’t have all their permits and they are starting,” Le Lay said. “You have to have all your permits before you start.”

The initial work on Algonquin Power-owned Windlectric’s 26-turbine, 75-megawatt project was to include construction of the mainland dock and access road, island dock and access road, island staging area access road, transmission line work and a portion of the island staging area for aggregate storage and positioning of the batch cement factory.

The start of work is made even worse, Le Lay said, because there is little information coming from the company about its plans. “If this company is going to be a neighbour for 20 years, the way they are acting in the first part of construction, if it’s an indication of the relationship with the community, it’s sort of scary,” she said. “We don’t know what is happening.” Read article

Former Liberal Pres. Crawley built worst ‘bat killing wind farm’ in Canada: 85 bats killed /turbine/yr

Yesterday the CD arrived with loads of Bird and Bat Mortality Reports that I had filed an FOI from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry for last year, and you good people had funded. I’m slowly organizing and will get them all posted shortly.

But for starters I came across five reports for Mohawk Point Wind Project, a 6 turbine project in Haldimand County. I didn’t know much about this one – it was never in the news… sort of flew under the radar. It came on around the time of the Clear Creek turbines in Norfolk County.

This was an AIM PowerGen/International Power Corporation project – whose president is none other than the past Federal and Ontario Federal Liberal Party President Mike Crawley. It was approved  in 2009, and pretty much nothing more was said about it since.

Which is so wrong. Let me explain. The “five” reports stuck out because usually (if the project is not killing over the ‘limits’ set by the government) there are only three reports. That means some ‘mitigation reporting’ was happening, for some reason.

Well that reason became pretty obvious within seconds of looking at the 2011 report.

How does 85.42 bats killed per wind turbine strike you?

Or how about 53.1% of them being the Endangered Little Brown Bat?

Perhaps I’m too soft, but my thinking is 25 bats per turbine is atrocious (I mean, 10 is the MNRF’s limit). And as for Little Browns, they usually only make up a percent or two – not HALF of the kill! It’s an endangered species for crying out loud!

Okay, based on these insane numbers, why didn’t they SHUT DOWN the project? Oh they mitigated instead, and they believe they brought it down to a more reasonably atrocious number of 24.27 bats killed per wind turbine/year by 2013. That puts you all at ease, doesn’t it? I mean shouldn’t we be happy for the success of this ‘mitigation’ even though it is still double the legal limit?

Not so fast. Think about this – female Little Browns have just one offspring a year. After 5 years of 6 turbines decimating 85 bats each (give or take), how many do you really think are left in those local colonies? Pretty damn sure that number is dropping rapidly by the oh-so-natural process of “wind turbine selection”.

And as for you, dear Crawely, at least you have the current claim of creating the biggest bat killing “farm” in the country. Now that should make the green Liberals proud.

Esther Wrightman

[With only an initial look at some reports I hope this is as bad as it gets for bat kills in this country. As the bird and bat mortality reports are slowly uncovered, the numbers just seem to get worse and worse. I never imagined it could get this low, but then again nobody was releasing this info to the public, so how were we to know? Maybe some company will outdo Crawley on this one yet…heck, maybe even some of Crawley’s other projects could claim this title too…]

Kathleen Wynne: How do you sleep at night?

Wind Developer Veresen buys Municipality of Huron East for $2 million

Seaforth Expositor Usually when a motion is passed or rejected, the municipality of Huron East simply moves forward according to the number of hands put up, but not this time as the topic at hand involved one of the most controversial topics to date-wind turbines. Three years ago council was offered a Vibrancy Fund Agreement from the St. Columban Wind Farm, which operates 15 wind turbines.

In the contract, it specified that they were prepared to give Huron East $115,000 annually for 20 years, but this significant contribution of funds would come with a catch, council must agree that they are a “willing host.” Council turned down the offer.

However, these past qualms would never be thrown under the rug permanently. CAO of Huron East, Brad Knight admitted that numerous councillors have asked if the option could possibly be brought back to the table, since that initial decision.

During the traditional bi-weekly December 6 meeting, the Mayor of Huron East, Bernie MacLellan presented council with a motion concerning the previously declined proposal. Two weeks later he requested it to be reviewed in the council chambers during their last meeting before the holidays. Huron East Against Turbines (HEAT) was on hand in anticipation and hoped that the political assemblage would once again turn down the more than $2 million agreement.

Knight propelled the recorded vote. Tuckersmith Councillor Larry McGrath voted no, Seaforth Coun. Nathan Marshall said yes, the Mayor voted in favour, both Brussels Councillors John Lowe and David Blaney were in favour of being a willing host, Seaforth’s ward rep, Bob Fisher voted no, Dianne Diehl and Alvin McLellan from Grey Ward approved the motion, McKillop’s Brenda Dalton voted no and her fellow ward rep Kevin Wilbee voted yes and Deputy Mayor Joe Steffler also voted yes. Read article