(Open letter to Jim Bradley, Minister of the Environment)
The Ministry of Environment’s decision not to conduct an Individual Environmental Assessment of access roads at Ostrander Point, announced in your December 19, 2012 letter, is based on numerous errors in fact and judgment.
Your letter states that between March and April 2011 you received 21 requests from members of the public. In point of fact, the Honourable John Wilkinson, then Minister of Environment (MOE), received the requests. In the last election Mr. Wilkinson was held accountable for his mishandling of the MOE portfolio.
Only 17 of the 21 requests came from members of the public. The other four requests were from organizations which collectively represent thousands of citizens. Why does your letter diminish the significance of comments by the Alliance to Protect Prince Edward County; the South Shore Conservancy; Friends of Arron Lake, Wind Concerns Ontario Grey Bruce; and the Prince Edward Field Naturalists, Ontario Nature and Nature Canada?
All the requests point out the extensive impact of the access roads:
- fragmentation of wildlife habitat by the loop design
- destruction/loss of alvar and woodland habitat
- disturbance of avian and terrestrial wildlife during wind turbine construction and during the next 25
- years of operation due to increased on-site human activities
- harm, harassment and killing of two threatened species, Whip-poor-will and Blanding’s Turtle, albeit
- authorized by a Ministry of Natural Resources permit
- disturbance to raptors, especially protected Bald and Golden Eagles. Read article