ERCA’s eight-kilometre setback for proposed offshore wind turbines in Lake St. Clair and the Great Lakes, as opposed to the provincial government’s position of a five-kilometre setback, is short-sighted.
ERCA should be leading opposition against the province’s plan to allow installation of any wind turbines in Lake St. Clair and/or the Great Lakes.
It is inconceivable that, in the second largest province of the second largest country in the world, we are unable to find sufficient wind pathways on land, especially in flat Essex County, to obviate the need to even flirt with degradation of the world’s largest source of fresh water.
The potential impacts to the shipping, recreational and fishing industries and risks to fresh water quality, fish habitat and the ecosystem generally must outweigh the marginal value of this “green” energy.
Alas, the public cannot even weigh these factors because to date these entrepreneurs masquerading as environmental advocates have repeatedly refused to provide basic balance sheet information about any single turbine, much less about the numerous “farms” they propose.
That makes it impossible for concerned citizens to determine whether or not, individually or collectively, wind turbines make enough economic sense to justify the significant BTU deficit with which each turbine is born (the coal-fired fuel costs of manufacturing and forging the steel and concrete for, and the transportation and installation energy consumption “footprint” of each turbine requires that its first 10 years of productive life be spent repaying its energy debt before it can even begin to generate “green” energy).
In addition, none of the industry’s optimistic projections include the almost incalculable financial and energy costs of mothballing these white elephants when they become obsolete.
In a word, the proposition of installing a single wind turbine in any of Ontario’s fresh water lakes, is simply asinine.
STEVEN BEZAIRE, candidate for council, Ward 4, Lakeshore