Wind turbine blade manufacturer to release toxins

EthylbenzeneDear Concerned Citizens,
The Environmental Registry for Ontario (ERB) has posted the following proposal for public comments until Oct. 5, 2013. According to the  ERB Registry # 011-9860 this proposal is for a new Environmental Compliance Approval (Air and Noise) for a wind turbine rotor blades facility located in Welland, Ontario.

The facility will have eighteen (18) exhaust fans and two (2) dust extraction systems serving the processing area, as well heating and stand-by power systems. Emissions to the atmosphere will include ammonia, petroleum distillates, ethylbenzene and suspended particulate matter.

Powerblades Industries Inc is applying to have a release of  toxins allowed in the approval so there will be no legal way to shut them down for this unless it can be proven that they are over the limit stated in the approval and they are unsuccessful at mitigating this over the limit amount within about 2 years.

Comments can be made here until Oct. 5, 2013.

For those of you that would like additional information the following fact sheets have been made available:

My particular concern is what is in the Suspended Particulate Matter?  Since the blades are made from a carbon fibre – a non-recyclable material – is one of the particulate fibres Carbon Nanotubes (CNTs)‏?

Carbon nanotubes (CNTs), are valuable industrial products with multiple applications in the field of nanotechnologies. Yet legitimate concerns about their potential adverse effects on human health need to be addressed because they present similarities to asbestos fibres in terms of their shape and size. It is legitimate to raise the question of their safety for human health. CNTs are elongated and ultrafine, and the fact is that human beings may be exposed to CNTs through inhalation. While not yet definitive, data are now available providing information on the pulmonary and cellular effects of CNTs, which may be compared to those of asbestos fibres.

We do not need another asbestos like fiasco because we jumped into something without due diligence. Ignorance will not protect anyone. Plausible deniability as in “I didn’t know” will not protect us from the scientific effects of ammonia, petroleum distillates, ethylbenzene, and suspended particulate matter.

A Senior Official with the MOE has confirmed that as of Dec 2012 there were no medical experts on their staff. Dr. Arlene King, the Chief Medical Officer of Health for Ontario, does not want any involvement with the effects of IWT’s on human health. According to the MOE health complaints are to be given to the local Medical Officer of Health. The local Medical Officer of Health for the Niagara Region is Dr. Valerie Jaeger.

Please send letters of concern to the EBR using the internet or post to

Application Assessment Officer
Ministry of the Environment
Operations Division
Environmental Approvals Access and Service Integration Branch
Application Verification Unit
2 St. Clair Avenue West 
Floor 12A
Toronto Ontario
M4V 1L5 
Phone: (416) 314-8001 
Fax: (416) 314-8452 
Toll Free Phone: (800) 461-6290,

Letters should also be sent to Welland Mayor and council members and the Regional Medical Officer of Health – Dr. Valerie Jaeger.

Email addresses of Welland Mayor and council members and Regional Medical Officer  Dr Valerie Jaeger:

mayor@welland.ca, mark.carl@welland.ca, maryann.grimaldi@welland.ca, frank.campion@welland.ca, david.mcleod@welland.ca, michael.belcastro@welland.ca, 2, pat.chiocchio@welland.ca, tony.dimarco@welland.ca, rocky.letourneau@welland.ca, michael.petrachenko@welland.ca, jim.larouche@welland.ca, bob.wright@welland.ca, Dr. Valerie Jaeger valerie.jaeger@niagararegion.ca

Government ministers, ministries, agencies and municipalities have an ethical duty and legal obligation to protect the health, safety, quality of life and well being of citizens and their properties. Please just do your job so I can get back to enjoying mine.

Respectfully submitted

Catherine Mitchell

9 thoughts on “Wind turbine blade manufacturer to release toxins

  1. Had not one of the members of the anti wind group spotted this on the EBR registry the deadline to submit comments would have past. Do the residents living near the plant know about the emissions and comment period?
    The Particular Matter was of particular interest to me. Why were not the components of the SPM listed? How far does the particulate matter travel? If Powerblades Industry gets approval ( and you can bet on it ) who will monitor that the emissions are in compliance? What is the protocol if they are not? Many questions need to be answered.
    Regulations do not apply to the carpetbaggers.
    The IPC /HAF( now in the construction phase) project is not in compliance with the regs on a transmission line that should not be closer than 75 meters to a gas well and the line is within 5 meters. Why was it approved? The list goes on and on.

    • So we submit our comments. Then what?
      It doesnt matter, the corruption continues.

      “The beatings will continue until the morale improves”.

  2. A thorough investigation into the corruption and collusion between the wind industry and government is necessary, and we must fight to make sure it happens! The Liberal government has created laws to force a useless product on us, because they are heavily invested in it…..Too Damn Bad. We don’t want it, don’t need it, and refuse to pay for your bad investments!

  3. My first reaction to this story was — eh? So what? but then I read this:

    This proposal is for a new Environmental Compliance Approval (Air and Noise) for wind turbine rotor blades facility located in Welland, Ontario.

    The facility will have eighteen (18) exhaust fans and two (2) dust extraction systems serving the processing area, as well heating and stand-by power systems. Emissions to the atmosphere will include ammonia, petroleum distillates, ethylbenzene and suspended particulate matter.

    Ummm like are we talking PPB, PPM or FPF (Furlongs per fortnight)?????

    There is absolutely nothing to comment on! Usually you would expect to see some intelligent discussion of how much particulate will be emitted and what chemicals/VOCs and then some discussion of how it is likely to appear in the surrounding area — what concentration in the atmosphere.

    All you can do is say “We don’t want any!” — then they will argue that car paint shops are worse — without discussing numbers.

    What a waste of time.

    Why bother with a hearing?

    This whole deal with wind turbines gets stupider every day.

  4. Hmmm….Wonder which is worse. Burning coal or making IWT fan blades. I was rendered the impression by the “Wind Gods” that the premise was to harnessing energy from wind in order to reduce hazardous emissions, not make new emitters.

    As you’ve noted WillR “This whole deal with wind turbines gets stupider every day.”

    “ammonia, petroleum distillates, ethylbenzene and suspended particulate matter”
    Reads like a recipe for a disaster. A round of carcinogens for everyone thanks to MOE.

    ON-Terrible Yours to Recover

  5. The MOE was contacted and the VP of Powerblades Industries gave additional products that are used in the production of turbine blades which are :
    ammonia
    petroleum distillates
    ethylbenzene
    naphtha
    xylene
    suspended particulate matter less than 44 um
    methyl methacrylate monomer
    polythaxi -nonphenoxi phosphate
    Why were these additional toxic components not listed on the EBR site?
    Googling xylene and the information on the toxicity of it alone makes me wonder why anyone would want to work in an environment that has so many possible negative health impacts. The necessity of 18 exhaust fans indicates a red flag of caution to working in this environment.
    The VP also stated that fiberglass, balsa wood and resins are used in the construction of the blades.

  6. Pingback: 10 Toxins Compared Blogs

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