Northland Power wind project spills on formerly pristine Manitoulin Is.

Methanol Spill and Containers(15)Read the letter below these pictures for a full idea of what has been happening At Northland Power’s McLean Mt. wind development.

Picture Gallery Below:
Collector lines underground directional boring activity. Unopened road allowance east of Guida’s Sideroad. OFSC Trail C107D has blocked access on the unopened road allowance.The mound of ice is what appears to be pumped discharge area from the pit into the swamp. Picture 8 and 10 of empty liquid totes, pails and bromite are from another site. That location is just east of Perch Lake road where directional boring was done along the unopened road allowance between turbine 23 towards turbines 29 and 16. I expect the same spill activity may have occurred here also. Pics Dec 21,2013

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Picture Gallery Below:
Unopened road allowance east of Guida’s Sideroad. OFSC Trail C107D. Ground beneath the boring rig. No containment. Pics Saturday Dec 21,2013

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Picture Gallery Below:
A witness stated that the previous containers used here had green antifreeze fluid and those now present have blue fluid. Collector lines underground directional boring activity. Unopened road allowance east of Guida’s Sideroad. OFSC Trail C107D. Pics from Dec 21,2013

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Letter to MOE and MNR:

Northland Power Antifreeze, Methanol Spills Followup Summary and Comments

I would like to keep the MOE informed of the events and concerns in relation to this spills report filed. The initial call to the MOE was made Friday Dec 20,2013 by an eye witness who reported the activities from Monday  Dec 16,2013. The concern was of antifreeze spills into sensitive environment within the Northland Power Windfarm Project collector lines directional boring beneath a known wetland key habitat area.

It was relayed to the MOE that pictures will be sent. The MOE was not informed that pictures we were going to send were not available at that time of the report filed. Other members of the public may have some pictures we are not aware of.

The MOE called back requesting confirmation of a spill after he was in discussion with whoever he had called in relation to this complaint. The witness was still available and confirmed what was reported. It was our impression the company denied the activities.

Follow up info was sent to the MOE by email on Dec 23,2013 regarding the green liquid in totes as observed by the witness.

A phone discussion with an Northland Power Inc representative  on Dec,
24,2013 entailed who called my home as below after receiving an email from the NEMI CAO. He informed me about the two transport truck and fuel truck tip overs from last week. I left a phone message about  possible spills with the MOE afterwards. More on the phone discussion further below.

On Dec 24,2013  by email, the MOE replied they were aware that a spill and cleanup had occurred. The MOE asked by email when the pictures were taken that were sent in. The reply was “Just got off the phone with NEMI CAO who was not aware of the spill and he requested the pictures that were taken Saturday Dec,21,2013.”

As this “spill” or intentional dumping information came forward, the eye witness stated (as above) that at least one of the totes that hauled the antifreeze was green as the other totes contained blue fluid. Other totes also had different higher alcohol content labels.

When the witness brought his concerns of spills forward to the on site crew the witness claims their response was along the lines of the remoteness of this area and his impression of their responses was out of sight, out of mind. They were using the antifreeze to thaw out the frozen lines. One time it had taken three hours to get the boring machine running again from being frozen.

Pictures that were taken on Saturday Dec 21,2013,  we noted  that the totes had labels of maximum weight capacities of 1640 kg which would carry approximately  over 300 gallons in each full tote. There were several full totes and several were empty.

As within the pictures sent the entire area was covered with blue liquid beneath the snow and the fractured rock 6 meter circumference and depth excavated  hole contained the blue liquid antifreeze. This brings concerns of seepage that possibly can not be recovered or the damage has been done and likely still occurring.

The picture with the piles of ice mounds which appears to be spray discharge  from either boring activity or pumping of the antifreeze from the boring pit. The blue antifreeze is shown throughout this mound of ice. It appears that this dumping into the swamp was sent into the environment that they were given instruction from the MOE, MNR to actually protect.

As noted in the sent pictures, empty totes were from another site between turbines 23 and 29. Pictures 8 and 10 of methanol spill pictures sent.
Location is northeast of Perch Lake in an identified wetland and 30 meter setback zone where we strongly suspect that these toxins were released possibly directly or indirectly into Perch Lake and environment also.
This brings to question just how many hundreds of gallons of antifreeze were used at each site.

There is a third site west of turbine 21 that should be investigated where directional boring was done also in the Perch Lake tributary towards Perch Lake where the other two sites are below Perch Lake where all flows end up into the North Channel of Lake Huron.

A previous spill/dumping report was filed in this first directional boring location with intentional dumping of construction water onto non participants land through the fence. Running water could be heard from neighboring lots afterwards and hopefully all the waste water was collected.

The witness call of Dec 16,2013 directional boring activities was reported to the MOE on December 20,2013 and the pictures were taken on Dec 21,2013 afternoon where there was no activity observed to clean up or contain the contaminant.

On Monday afternoon Dec 23,2013 a stop was made at the NEMI office and a request made for the CAO who was not present at the time to call regarding a spill in the project area. I was advised by staff the CAO would call the following morn.

On Tuesday Dec 24,2013 the NEMI CAO  who stated he was not aware of the spill was informed and he requested the pictures that were taken Saturday Dec,21,2013. The CAO was to get in touch with Northland Power Inc representatives to request info.

Discussion also included the blocking of the road allowance by the construction equipment for the OFSC C107D snowmobile trail where snow machines could and have run right through the construction zone. This is a safety concern. There is also no room for the trail groomer to pass.

Shortly later I received a call from Stan Stret (NPI) requesting info regarding the spills, when pictures were taken and who, what, where and when. He was asked , did he not get the pics and info sent to the CAO or even the MOE? to which he confirmed. It was a long call that went from the NPI rep downplaying the severity from our perspective of this activity, who was responsible, the blocking of the main OFSC Snowdusters trail route and the other drill boring sites. It is quite possible the phone call was recorded as a beep was heard on my part during the discussion though I did not question the NPI rep what the beep was.

Due diligence was discussed where I was informed by the rep that Northland had agreements with the contractors for compliance. My response was that being owners of this project I believe that a court would not absolve them of their responsibility of ensuring due diligence. I did not inform the NPI representative of who made the initial complaint when he asked.

The NPI rep stated that the bore site northeast of Perch lake had a drill bit stuck and seismic testing was required to determine the geologic structure beneath.  Information was given by the NPI rep that boring was done at that site in November which was during freeze up and we suspect that antifreeze was used at that time as shown in the pictures of empty totes sent. It was relayed that they may be laying pipe at this location rather than the continued boring. This in my opinion is a deviation from the Renewable Energy Approval, approved plan.

The NPI stated that timelines must be met but could not inform me of milestone or project commercial operation date. I found this unusual that he claimed not to know this.

The NPI rep was asked when clean up was to occur and the reply was he could not get anyone from H.B. White to answer their phones.The discussion also included just how much was used for all boring activity as WHIMIS regulations should have bill of lading records. The NPI rep had no response.

I question how many other unknown spills there are? Are they all reported?
With the amount of contaminant involved in this case this project should be issued a stop work order for this entire project until fully investigated.

This project activity is an environmental disaster in our view where Northland Power Inc and it‘s partners in this project have the legislation and political support for full protection for themselves rather than the interests of ecosystems, wildlife, environment or greater good.

A lot of questions need answered as well as those responsible held accountable includeing project owners who should be ensuring compliance.

Raymond Beaudry

27 thoughts on “Northland Power wind project spills on formerly pristine Manitoulin Is.

  1. God help the poor animals that digest this stuff!
    If anyone has had a pet who was “attracted” by the sweetness of anti-freeze and licked it up can testify what a horrible death awaits them!
    I had a 16 year old cat who did just that and it took two horrible weeks of debilitating pain before the end came!
    What the hell is going on up there????

    • Yes, and that is what lies in wait for the Blanding’s Turtle and the entire IBA at Ostrander’s Point if Gilead power, the MOE and MNR have their way. If they succeed at having the Appeal result overturned. Having sat through and followed the entire ERT hearing last spring into this Appeal, it became very clear listening to the witnesses who argued that this would be the result at Ostrander Point if the project went ahead, that this government, it’s Premier, Ministry of Environment and Ministry of Natural Resources were all bought and paid for by the wind industry and the multi-nationals. It was absolutely disgusting to watch the MOE lawyers for “The Director” and McCarthy Tetrault lawyers for Gilead, as they tried to tear apart the Expert Witnesses presented by PECFN, while their own witnesses mostly had community college degrees and summer job experience in these matters. How the wind proponents tried to discredit world experts made them look incredibly small and “provincial”. That’s “What the Hell is going on up there in Manitoulin”.

  2. Environmental agencies seem to care less about this — if it’s to do with the expansion of wind turbines along the countryside it’s ok, no matter what. It’s a whole different set of rules!

  3. The head honcho at Northland needs to make money so he can donate to his charity.
    Toronto business interests really believe that rural Ontarians have to put up with their arrogance and greed.

  4. Gilead is not a multi-national corporation but is Toronto business.
    tTey along with an Ontario pension fund are the principals involved at O.P.

  5. Yes, Barbara, but behind “Toronto Business” and the Ontario Pension Fund are the forces of Samsung(Korean) and the deals made by Smitherman and McGuinty, and certainly the Gilead/wpd plans for Athol and South Marysburgh in Prince Edward County have German multinational backing.

  6. Thanks for documenting this. Barbara and others have reminded us of this. *IF* you ever encounter anything like this, use your smart phone, notebook, etc and write it all down. I know it is frustrating to have to do this — where is the MOE — but it is worth it in the end!

  7. Yes, Robin, and most people don’t know who is who and wich is which. Foreign companies use Canadian connections.
    You are dealing with the INSIDERS of renewable energy companies, banks, insurance companies, pension funds, investment companies, etc.
    And these people operate most likely through financial support to the political parties.
    This situation is very difficult for rural Ontarians to deal with and so rural people might just as well opt for separation.

    • Barbara, I am a rural Ontarian and have been actively involved in fighting both the Ostrander Point project and the White Pines project for the last 6 years!!! I live in South Marysburgh, and the proposed IWT’s of Gilead/wpd would surround my property directly. I stand to lose my total retirement investment in house and land due to this project, like all the others who moved here and built only to have the “done deal” of the GEA and the multinationals foisted on us by this Liberal bunch along with all their buddies and supporters who bought into the plans to cover rural Ontario with these useless eyesores. Call it what you will, “Toronto biz” or otherwise it really is nauseating for all of us. Of course all those insiders are involved. So, I am all for separation!

  8. If MOE allows fracking which is in line with this pollution and should be criminal activity. We have poisoned mother earth to a degree that someone is going to teach us a very valuable lesson.
    She cannot take much more of this. It is beyond repair if you look at Fukushima and all the other things we allow to happen. Or should I say our expert authorities

  9. IEA/Infrastructure & Energy Alternatives LLC, Chicago
    Owns H.B.White Canada
    IEA is a holding company established to aquire businesses in the energy, water and environmental infrastructure services market.
    Paul M. Daily, CEO
    and if you follow some of his connections this leads to big boys in the U.S. renewable energy business.

  10. Thanks Ray…

    like when the Vestas wind turbines were being constructed at Cultus-Clear Creek-Frogmore in Norfolk County in 2007-2008, and in order to keep the big plastic tank of lubricating oil warm, the construction companies, Black & McDonald and engineering firm AMEC thought it wise to wrap an electrical heat blanket around the big plastic tank (approx. 1 cubic metre) overnight.

    Then one night the heat blanket caught fire, the plastic tank melted and the oil leaked out all over the ground.

    Had I not been there to see it myself, I wouldn’t know about it. A third party clean up company was hired, but everyone was very… ahem… “uncomfortable” about it. So the MOE knows these kinds of ‘accidents’ happen.

    The project manager for the AMEC/Black & McDonald “Joint Venture” went by the name “Paul Lennox” and he said he was from the States.

    The AMEC consultant was Michael (sp?) Hall.

  11. Why is the NEMI CAO – not doing his job?
    There should be regular site visits; and,
    every detail – of what is happening on this construction site – should be noted.
    This is pathetic!

    This is wrong!

  12. Last I know of there are no inspections required for these projects but there might be one exception if the county or town issues a cement pad permit then the pad might be inspected. And not all the counties or towns are required to issue the pad permits.

    • For the project to move forward – the municipality must deem
      the proponents’ application – ‘complete’…………..

      The application is never complete –
      until the municipality is satisfied (no issues),
      – then the municipality issues the building permit (foundation),
      – then the proponent submits the ‘complete application’ along with the permit
      to the MOE.

      And of course – all that community engagement produces – no issues………..
      ………but, just in case there is an issue –
      the proponent is given an opportunity to remedy……[there’s always a remedy]
      ………..[you know drill]

      Again – the proponents’ application is never complete –
      until the municipality says it is.

      It’s like Africa – HOT ISSUE!

      Did I make a mistake?

  13. Island Folks ……. inspectors for building within district , city sites, town lots! Inspectors for health well fare, education.Inspectors for you name it criminal affairs, banking audits, weather networks, communication, defense! Is the Northland -Power-Wind-Project Ltd. within our resources not to have more responsibilities to letting the public aware of WHAT IS HAPPENING on our PRECIOUS LANDSCAPE above the Niagara Escarpment properties! We the people of Manitoulin Island love our Island for what it is worth! We do not need corruption to our land, nature. Views should not be hindered anymore within that which have already happened! Right or Wrong FIXING IT is DUE! You know who is to blame…………not us Island Folks………..?

    • not us Island Folks………..?

      What a crock.

      The blame for this whole sordid affair starts with the landowners on Manitoulin Island who welcomed the Wind Weasels and their greenbacks with open arms. This project would not have gone forward without their enthusiastic support.

      Don’t try to hang this disaster on “Whitey”.

      BTW, where’s the outrage from the local First Nation, you know, the supposed keepers of “Mother Earth” and all?. Whoops, I forgot, they are the proponents of this greed energy fiasco. Maybe they’re away from the scene of destruction, visiting up Lake Superior way, congratulating their partners in crime for what they’re about to do to the Bow Lake area. Same story, same players, same “Idle” hypocrisy.

      In ten or twenty years from now, when the bloom is off the rose and the wind turbine debacle comes back to bite all the complicit on the ass, the Sharon Savages of the world will be there to assure us that everyone else is to blame, but

      not us Island Folks………..?

  14. Robin, when you look at the overall picture Ontario is a location where there are local business and foreign businesses operating.
    Since this is a “small” focal point it is easy to track the foreign companies back to their origin. It’s not like tracking a company all over the U.S. Then watch events going back and forth across the border.

    Lot’s of business is done by networking and so networks can be followed.
    This situation has developed into a real “hold” on Ontario.

  15. It’s something like filling up the bird feeder and the local birds will feed and “migratory” feed as well. It’s easy to track where the “migratory” birds come from.

  16. This is absolutely shocking! Raymond, what is happening now. Has the spill centre sent people to investigate or clean this up? Has Northland Power been told to clean it up? Are they being charged? What an outrage! It just shows you how little the wind industry care once they get approval and can suck at the public trough.

  17. Within a very short period of time rural Ontarians will be overwhelmed by what’s taking place.
    People are going to become ill, property values will be lost and the people burdened with debt they can’t pay.
    Rural Ontarians must act or be lost.
    There are already grassroots organizations formed that can begin to act on this situation.
    It’s doubtful that there will be enough support/votes from those who live in the golden horseshoe to turn things around.

  18. This spill is an example of what happens when companies/wind industry becomes more powerful than the government.
    The same situation applies to complaints made about IWT “noise”.

  19. A call to action. We must SECEDE. I sure beats sitting around crying ” woe is me” . Rural Ontario must let the world know that we have had enough. Ontario SAVE yourself…Secede.

  20. I am a property owner of Land adjacent to and downstream from this industrial pollution and I am appalled that MOE, MNR, Local NEMI officials do not seem to be monitoring this project and ensuring that ALL federal, provincial and municipal regulations are being adhered to. If this were an individual pulling a few weeds in front of their waterfront property all hell would break loose and the fines and court actions could bankrupt them. Not So it seems for the “Not So Green Energy” projects.

    David Marshall

    Sheguiandah, Ontario

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