Ontario’s off-shore wind turbine moratorium unresolved two years later

Development%20offshore%20wind%20park%20in%20the%20North%20Sea%20(Moniek%20Dotinga)John Spears, Toronto Star
Two years ago this month, with the 2011 election looming, the Ontario government imposed a moratorium on off-shore wind farms in the province to do “further scientific research.” Which raises the question: The moratorium is still in effect; where’s the research? And did it give off-shore wind farms a thumbs-up or a thumbs-down?

The answers are murky and far from settled. The moratorium has triggered a $2.25 billion lawsuit from one wind power developer, and the issue remains a live one for the new Liberal government under Premier Kathleen Wynne. Off-shore wind farms in the Great Lakes could be a prized asset, since winds over the lakes are often stronger and steadier than on land. But they bring fierce resistance — as a proposal to plant a string of turbines off the Scarborough Bluffs in 2008 showed.

Ontario’s Ministry of Natural Resources has published three reports on the impact of off-shore wind farms since the moratorium began. One looked at the impact of turbines on coastlines, lakebeds, waves and other physical features. Two others looked at the impact on fish and impact on fish. But the reports aren’t conclusive. The report on physical features, for example, outlines further research that might be needed. Read article

2 thoughts on “Ontario’s off-shore wind turbine moratorium unresolved two years later

  1. It’s interesting that (exerpt) “Owing to the lack of experience with offshore wind facilities in freshwater environments, the magnitude and significance of many of these potential effects to Great Lakes fish remain uncertain,” could somehow maintain the moratorium on Great Lakes wind development. However, it’s okay to experiment with abandon on humans, animals, birds and the environment in rural Ontario.

    Oh stupid me I forgot that those onshore urban folks close to these proposed offshore IWTs are mostly Liberal voters……………

  2. The difference between getting a moratorium on a wind farm out in Lake Ontario and getting one on proposed wind farms on farmland is quite obvious. The residents living on the Scarborough Bluffs overlooking the lake are wealthy, influential people. They have a lot more clout than folks living out in the sticks when a neighbour decides to sell out to a wind company.

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