Niagara Falls, Ontario, January 25 2014, by Linda Rogers
Some Quick Facts about Niagara Regional Wind Project
Winter weather had a fierce and Arctic- tight grip while delivering blowing snow, white outs and high winds across the Niagara region on January 25th. Weather conditions severe enough to make the most seasoned winter experienced Canadian driver stop and pause, while considering if the all- wheel drive and snow tires were up to the job of travelling the back country roads safely. Never the less the howling winds and intimidating weather were proven not to be a deterrent for the declared candidates preparations for the upcoming Provincial by- elections in Niagara Falls.
Kim Craitor the former Liberal MPP had resigned last summer creating a vacate seat at Queens Park that is now being contested in the Niagara region. The three main party candidates are Bart Maves for the Conservatives, Wayne Gates NDP, and Joyce Morocco representing the Liberal party.
Liberal candidate, Joyce Morocco was busy holding an open house for the media at her campaign office located on Morrison Street. The by-elections traditionally are a good indicator of the issues of the day and a powerful predictor for the upcoming outcome of the full provincial elections. This one will be no different. The weather was frightful outside as members of the Liberal party, party followers, public and media mixed and mingled inside in the warm glow of the political posturing of election time. Outside, signs of a different political implication and dynamic were being held in the freezing winter cold on the threshold of the Liberal political meet and greet.
Renewable energy projects powered by wind have created growing discord and meet with persistent opposition in communities as the Ontario government continues to ram full speed ahead with its Green Energy policy for electricity generation. Niagara Region Wind Corporation has recently filed its renewable energy application for its proposed industrial wind electrical generation plant of 77, 3MV wind turbines. These will be the tallest turbines of all the projects and would be reaching up to a soaring height of 184 metres if the project is approved. Comments are being received on the Environmental Registry(EBR Registry Number: 012-0613) until February 1st 2014 about this project here ;
Shellie Correira, Co- Chair of a grass roots community group called Mothers Against Wind Turbines (MAWT) was present and flanked by several other Wind Warriors who managed to get through the snow filled roads from the surrounding rural areas. They were bringing a human face to the contentious issues now increasingly swirling around the implementation of wind power. The protesters presence was a physical reminder of the impacted residents who have not granted consent to being forced host communities for the sprawling electrical generation plant installations.
The Wind Warriors then travelled on a short distance away taking the message to display for Wayne Gates NDP office at his store front headquarters. All political parties, Conservatives, Liberals and NDP will have their feet held to the fire as rural voters of Ontario flex their political muscles in regards to the imposed siting and resulting adverse impacts from the renewable energy projects.
Health and environmental impacts are headliners for the growing list of harmful effects experienced by those who are continuing to battle the invasion of Industrial wind turbines across Ontario. It is the soaring electricity rates of 47% , due in part to the Liberal government’s policy for renewable energy that are really starting to sting all rate payers. Rising electricity rates, building of power generation plants, and the insatiable demands for building even more supporting infrastructures will be on the minds of voters as they contemplate who will be their choice. Candidates and party platforms will be held up to measure and inspection. The casting of these votes will decide who will be Niagara’s next MPP. Rural Ontario residents living with wind turbines sent a very strong and clear message with the last provincial election in 2011. The position remains steadfast and unwavering. Stop the turbines.