Nor’Wester Mountain Escarpment Makes Top Ten Heritage List

dans-house-with-wind-turbinesNet Newsledger
Thunder Bay’s Nor’Wester Mountain Escarpment has made Heritage Canada Trust’s top ten list of endangered places in Canada. The annual list was released on July 17th.
The Top Ten Endangered Places List is released annually to bring national attention to sites at risk due to neglect, lack of funding, inappropriate development and weak legislation. From unique 19th-century landmarks to simple vernacular housing, stone railway stations to Modernist airports, heritage districts to single buildings, the list has become a powerful tool in the fight to make landmarks, not landfill.

The National Trust uses three primary criteria to determine the 10 final sites for inclusion on the list:

• Significance of the site
• Urgency of the threat/potential for a positive and creative solution
• Community support for its preservation

The group states, “The ancient Nor’Wester Mountain Range rises dramatically above Lake Superior and extends southward from the city of Thunder Bay toward the Ontario-Minnesota border. It defines the city’s setting and skyline, and is immensely important to the Anishinabe community of the Fort William First Nation (FWFN). Mount McKay (“Thunder Mountain” or Animikii-wajiw in Ojibwe) has been a landmark gathering place by the Ojibwe Anishinabeg for many generations. Read article

Liberal wind turbines invading Ontario

ManitoulinToronto Sun, by Mike Strobel
Looks like Martians landed on Manitoulin Island this spring. Liberal Martians. They hulk on McLean’s Mountain behind Little Current, Manitoulin’s metropolis, pop. 1,500. What a shocking sight it is as you approach the century-old iron swing bridge, the only land link.

When I left last October, there was nothing between that ridge and God but treetops and clouds. Now? Someone call Orson Welles.

“It’s like we’ve been invaded,” Deb Turner tells me at Turners of Little Current, a 135-year-old department store. The War of the Worlds giants also march along the Cup and Saucer trail behind M’Chigeeng, the closest Ojibwa reserve to my woodsy shack near Kagawong, “Ontario’s Prettiest Village.” “They’re a blight,” says Deb’s husband, Jib, who is running for Tim Hudak’s Tories.

Jib’s great-great-grandmother was migrating west when her boat arrived at this Paradise and she declared, “I don’t know about you, but I’m staying right here.” Who could blame her? Or the Martians? The Ojibwa call this Spirit Island with reason. Read article

$40M Buddhist temple project in jeopardy after Ontario government approves wind project next to it

buddhist-1National Post, Joseph Brean
The Cham Shan temple project on the Oak Ridges Moraine in rural eastern Ontario is a massive network of four proposed Buddhist temples linked by pilgrimage trails to symbolize the four sacred Chinese mountains, each representing a Bodhisattva, or enlightened one.

Only the first temple has started construction, but already the entire $40-million project has been cast into doubt, following the Ontario government’s approval in December of a windfarm right in the middle of the pilgrimage zone, close enough to spoil the meditative vibe.

The dispute, which pits Buddhists against Ontario Liberals, and green energy entrepreneurs against rural landowners, is to be fought in an environmental review tribunal that is to deal with motions Wednesday, in anticipation of hearing evidence next week. Read article

Wind project threatens serenity of Buddhist retreat development in Ontario

buddhist2Shambala Sun
Chinese Buddhist association in Bethany, Ontario, is expressing shock at the provincial government’s approval of a large-turbine wind farm adjacent to their property, on which construction is already under way for a $40 million meditation retreat and pilgrimage project. The local journal This Week
spoke with the Buddhist Association of Canada’s Diane Chen, who is also special projects manager for developing the Cham Shan temple: “She said the Buddhists’ concerns about wind turbines are the negative impact on people trying to meditate, along with possible health hazards.” She also claimed that while the government had assured the association of ongoing dialogue about possible relocation of the turbines, the actual decision was handed down at the end of the legislative session, when the relevant association members were out of the country. Concerned that the wind farm will dry up donations, they intend to file an appeal. Read article

MOE grants Batchewana, BluEarth approval for Bow Lake wind project

BowLakePainting-03Sault Star
Ontario’s environment ministry has given the go-ahead for a 60-megawatt wind farm 80 kilometres north of Sault Ste. Marie, the project’s proponents announced this week. Blu Earth Renewables and Batchewana First Nation are partners in the 36-turbine wind farm, which is to be built on Bow Lake, just south of Montreal River and close to the shores of Lake Superior.

The partners announced Monday that the wind farm has received its Renewable Energy Approval from the government and say the project represents one of the country’s largest partnerships between a First Nation and a wind developer.

“The Bow Lake Wind Project is perfectly aligned with our original expectations at Treaty time; those expectations were to benefit from our resources in sustainable ways. The BFN will continue to affirm, and benefit from the Letter of Assertions, which outlines our First Nations’ expected relationship with resource developers. This assertion was the foundation for our relationship with our partner, BluEarth Renewables, and we couldn’t be more pleased with the outcome,” said Batchewana First Nation Chief Dean Sayers in a release. Read article

Multi-million dollar Buddhist retreats could be in jeopardy in wake of wind turbine approval

buddhist2The Record
(BETHANY) The Province’s approval of a wind energy farm near Bethany has “shocked and disappointed” the Buddhist Association of Canada, and potentially derail the multi-million dollar Cham Shan Temple planned for the area. Diane Chen, property development and special projects manager for the temple, spoke with This Week on Friday (Dec. 13), a day after the Province announced it has approved the controversial Sumac Ridge wind farm, with five turbines.

“We were shocked and disappointed,” she said. “No one notified us about this.” Ms Chen said the Buddhist retreat currently under construction on Ski Hill Road near Bethany is a $40 million project. “That’s a lot of money.” She said that on Nov. 4 the Buddhists, local MPP Laurie Scott and Ward 16 Councillor Heather Stauble met with the minister of energy and officials from both the ministries of the Environment and Rural Affairs on with a positive outcome. Ms Chen said there was a promise to look into the situation.

The Cham Shan Temple includes the centre piece and three retreat centres that has been planned for 20 years, Ms Chen explained. It will be built using “ancient techniques” and is a bridge between Canada and China. The four sites will mimic the four great Buddhist temples of China. The Buddhist Association of Canada has been purchasing properties in the Pontypool and Bethany areas over the years with that goal in mind. Read article

Why preserving the view in Canada is not just tilting at windmills

CHATHAM-KENT, ONTARIO, INTERNAIONAL POWER GDF SUEZ from across Rondeau Bay from Erieau 2Globe and Mail
In Prince Edward County, I always feel like I’m in a painting come to life.
Cheesy? Sure. But whether it’s the ethereal quality of light across the fields, the rustic shops and wineries or the sunset views over Lake Ontario, something in this bucolic little region about halfway between Toronto and Ottawa makes it easy to imagine myself daubed into a familiar pastoral landscape, one remembered from a million postcards, textbooks and magazines. It’s the same feeling, I suppose, that brings a steady flow of plaid-clad urban defectors here, looking to re-imagine themselves as one of the County’s local artisans.

Lately, though, turbines have been haunting the horizon. Last December, the Ontario government approved an application by Gilead Power Corporation to develop a “Wind Energy Park” at Ostrander Point, which would put nine turbines on the County’s south shore, not far from Sandbanks Provincial Park.

Residents balked, and a showdown ensued. Gilead pointed out the economic and environmental benefits of wind energy; locals pointed to potential effects on human health, disrupted bird migration routes and habitat loss. Read article

Small island no place for giant turbines

AmherstElizabeth Barr, Toronto Star
Back when children sat too close to television screens, I used to press my small nose to the TV to watch a dreadful show called Queen for a Day. Contestants would tell their sad stories, and say what a monetary prize would do to make them happier. The audience, using a sort of misery meter, would determine who was the saddest of them all and crown her Queen for a Day. Even as a kid, I thought those contestants had hit the end of the line.

Never say never. I wrote in support of an application for my beloved Amherst Island to be named one of Heritage Canada’s 10 most endangered places, hoping that my letter help would push the needle on Heritage Canada’s misery meter and bring the island’s plight to public attention. Amazingly, it did. Amherst Island made the 2013 list, released Wednesday. Amherst Island is a relatively small farming island in eastern Lake Ontario.

There is archeological evidence of the presence of First Nations people on Amherst Island between 4,500 and 3,800 years ago. Champlain first mapped the island in 1615, and European settlers arrived in the late 18th century. Immigrants from England, Scotland and Ireland arrived throughout that century and the population supported two villages, five churches and a truly impressive number of taverns. Read article

Heritage Canada 2013 Top 10 Endangered Places & Worst Losses: Amherst Island due to Turbines

Amherst Is3Heritage Canada Foundation
OTTAWA, ON – June 26, 2013 – The Heritage Canada Foundation (HCF) has released its Top Ten Endangered Places and Worst Losses Lists drawing attention to architectural and heritage sites in Canada either threatened with demolition or already lost as part of its mission to raise awareness of the value that historic places bring to quality of life, local identity and cultural vitality.

The Endangered Places List, compiled from nominations received as well as from news items that HCF has been following and reporting on throughout the year includes (from west to east):

  • Main Post Office, Vancouver, BC—sold to an investment firm without heritage protection, this mid-century Modern landmark faces demolition for new development
  • Rossdale Power Plant, Edmonton, AB—plug may be pulled on downtown Edmonton’s designated industrial heritage landmark
  • Fort Qu’Appelle Sanatorium, Fort Qu’Appelle, SK—desparate need for solution as private owners struggle with redevelopment plans
  • 24 & 28 King St. E., Gore Park, Hamilton, ON—key components of historic Gore Park streetscape threatened due to city deal with developer
  • Amherst Island, (just west of Kingston) Lake Ontario, Loyalist Township, ON—proposed site of industrial wind turbine power installation would overwhelm unique cultural and natural heritage landscape. Read article

Also Read Why Amherst Island Matters (page 5)

Canadians Asked To Weigh In On Juno Beach Wind Turbine Proposal

junoHuffington Post
TORONTO – For decades visitors to the D-Day beaches on the northwest coast of France have looked out at the English Channel, taking in the journey made by Allied troops that marked a turning point in the Second World War. The view from some of those sites — including Juno Beach where 359 Canadians died — could soon change if a plan succeeds to build an army of wind turbines some 10 kilometres offshore.

Canadians now have a chance to voice their opinions on that plan as a French commission holds public consultations on the project. The body has made it a point to invite people from Canada, the U.S. and Britain to weigh in and notes that even if the project goes ahead, the company building the 75 turbines will work to deal with the issues raised.

The entire turbine proposal rankles at least one Canadian who fought at Juno Beach. “I personally am very much against it,” Roy E. Eddy told The Canadian Press. “I know a number of people have said they don’t agree with me, and I’m not disputing that, but I still say it’s going to be very disrespectful.” The 88-year-old, who last visited Juno Beach three years ago, vividly recalls the bloody battle. Read article

Rosemary Wakegijig First Nations – Wind Energy/FiT Protest 2013

Energy Board flooded with objections to NextEra’s transmission project

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Sarnia Lambton Independent
NextEra Energy is facing stiff opposition to its transmission plan. Dozens of people, organizations, and businesses have filed to be interveners at an Ontario Energy Board Hearing on the transmission line project to serve three of NextEra’s projects including the Jericho Wind Energy project in Lambton Shores.

The company plans to erect 100 foot poles over 30 km along roads in Middlesex County to carry the power generated by the wind projects near Strathroy and Lambton Shores. But some neighbours are not pleased. The OEB allowed 10 days for people to register to take part in the hearing to approve the plan, at least 15 landowners and nine other organizations want a say in the hearing.

Middlesex County, Adelaide Township and North Middlesex want to be involved in the hearing. So does Hydro One, the Independent Electric System Operator, and Entegrus Transmission Lines. The Middlesex Lambton Wind Action Group – a citizens group which has been objecting to the industrial wind projects in the area – also wants a say. Read article

Notice to Trespassers (Grand Renewable Wind LP – Samsung)

keep-out no trespassingNOTICE TO TRESPASSERS
D.I.A. X15173D-October 25,1784
Trespasser Name: Grand Renewable Wind LP/Grand Renewable Wind GP
Trespasser Address: 55 Standish Court, Mississauga, ON
RE: Trespass Warning
This is to inform you that under the Trespass to Property Act, that you are, not under any circumstances, permitted access to, or be on the premises of:
The Haldimand Proclamation, 1701 Nanfan Treaty Area.
In the event that the above is violated, for any reason, if you set foot on the aforementioned property, the Ontario Provincial Police will be contacted, who will be instructed to charge you under the Trespass to Property Act.
No further warning will be given and you are advised to conduct yourself accordingly.
Sincerely: KARIHWANORON ( William Monture) (Mohawk Turtle)
R.R. 6, Hagersville, 724 Chiefswood Rd., Six Nations of Indians

Nexterror circus comes to Haldimand

NextEra with their white tents heating and drying the ground for archaeological digs at the Summerhaven project’s site in Haldimand County. Maybe the bald eagle nest is ‘preserved’ and on ‘display’ inside….

What’s good often bad for rural Ontario

The Green Energy Act is allowing for the provision of more and more power from renewable sources and that’s good. No, that’s bad because the province is overproducing power and selling it at a huge loss. In addition, rural Ontario is saddled with those wind turbine behemoths that are destroying communities, families and health.

visit-beautiful-rural-ontario-1Jim Merriam, London Free Press
Christmas 2012 in rural Ontario is a little like one of those “that’s good, no that’s bad” comedy routines.

Limited snowfall in December has made for trouble-free travelling and the endless rains have helped moisture penetrate deep into the soil and that’s good.

No, that’s bad because snow and cold weather provide a cover for winter crops and fallow fields — a rest period if you will.

We don’t want so much mild weather that flowers sprout again and the sap starts rising. We also don’t want to get our lawnmowers back out.

Last winter was a mild one, with a major thaw in March that gave everyone a break without having to spend gobs of money to travel south and that’s good.

No, that’s bad because apple and other fruit-bearing trees were fooled into thinking it was spring.

The buds were frozen off by the ensuing cold snap and long winter that followed the thaw, leaving the apple harvest a non-event throughout much of Ontario.

Dalton McGuinty has resigned as premier and will no longer make a career out of crapping all over rural Ontario and the people who live there and that’s good.

Well, yes that is good, but it’s also bad in that not a single candidate to replace him seems to have any better grasp of rural Ontario. They know all there is to know about Toronto and the Golden Horseshoe, but are clueless about the rest of the province. Read article

Proposed changes to Cultural Heritage Assessment process

Public input is requested by the Ontario Government and is only open until December 6th, regarding proposed changes to Cultural Heritage Assessment process involving Renewable Energy projects.  The proposal will streamline the process in favour of the proponent.

Earlier this year the Ministry of the Environment made regulatory amendments to Ontario Regulation 359/09 Renewable Energy Approvals. These amendments, which came into force on July 1, 2012, responded to public and proponent concerns that were raised as part of the Feed-In Tariff Two-Year Review and the government’s review of current practice since the implementation of the REA regulation.  The revised regulation can be accessed online at:   These amendments included changes to sections 19 through 23, which outline the cultural heritage requirements of the REA.

Changes include: Proponents are no longer required to prepare separate written summaries related to protected properties. These summaries will now be included in the design and operations report Archaeological and heritage assessment reports are required, unless a proponent can demonstrate that there is low likelihood that archaeological and heritage resources are present at the project location using ministry checklists (available on the MTCS website: ) Continue reading