Going inside the shadow flicker zone of a wind turbine

Kingston Journal

LELAND ROAD- Middle-school student Brian Reilly says he can’t play basketball on Leland Road when the strobing effect from the Kingston Wind Independence (KWI) Turbine’s shadow flicker is at full throttle. “I get a wicked bad headache so I have to go inside,” Brian told the Journal as he stood on the front steps of his neighbors house.

Dan Alves, also a resident of Leland Road, refuses to allow his epileptic son to stay in his bedroom when the KWI Turbine’s shadow flicker penetrates into his house. “That’s pretty much the rule,” Alves told the Journal on Friday afternoon. “We don’t want him in his room but we’re not always home so we can’t control it.” Read article

Plympton-Wyoming hires environmental lawyer

‘People have good reason to be cautious’ when looking at renewable energy projects, lawyer Eric Gillespie saysPaul Morden, Sarnia Observer
Plympton-Wyoming has hired a lawyer to defend its wind turbine bylaws from a court challenge by Suncor Energy Products. Mayor Lonny Napper said Toronto-based environmental lawyer Eric Gillespie is representing the town in the suit, launched recently by the company planning to build up to 46 turbines as part of its Cedar Point Wind Power project in Plympton-Wyoming, Lambton Shores and Warwick Township.

Plympton-Wyoming’s bylaws include tough rules for wind farms, including a 2-km separation from neighbouring homes. Ontario only requires a 550-metre setback.

“He came highly recommended,” Napper said of Gillespie who has experience in wind energy cases. “We had a meeting with him and we’re very pleased with the outcome.” Napper said court dates haven’t been set yet. “We’re not pulling back,” he said about the town’s resolve to defend its bylaws.

“We feel stronger about this now than we ever did before.” Read article

Time for Wynne to deal with that rural Ontario “thing”: wind turbines

Wynne_Visit_Jan_2013_2 IMG_0512London Free Press
Dear Ms. Wynne,
Now that we have gotten this “Toronto thing” out of the way; let’s get this rural Ontario “thing” – wind turbines – out of the way. We want a moratorium and answers to our questions as to why so many people are being adversely affected. We will not accept replies that are condescending and dismissive.

Dr. Michael Nissenbaum, one of the authors of “Effects Of Industrial Wind Turbine Noise On Sleep And Health,2012” – the Mars Hill epidemiological study, says it best:   “If someone came into a doctor’s office and said they have chest pain and the physician said ‘It’s all in your head,’ without investigating, that would be the height of malpractice. It’s the same thing if patients are complaining of sleep disturbances and other ill effects, and off the top of your head you claim they’re making it up and it’s about the way the turbines look, especially when there’s a known, plausible mechanism for why people could be affected. There’s nothing magical about the effect that people are sleeping poorly due to the noise. There’s nothing difficult to understand or fantastical. Nothing stretches your belief.

This whole issue has always been about ethics and what the application of the practical limits are of harm – i.e., what you can reasonably accept in the way of harm of the rural population.

I would hope that instead you will want to know why it is, despite the all the excuses of the wind industry and the MOE, that people still are being affected? Why are there increasing reports of vertigo and nausea with the latest projects?

The first step to getting those answers is a moratorium on construction of projects. That would be a real show of understanding and respect for rural Ontario.

And, instead of becoming the Minister of Agriculture, you should create and head a new Ministry, “The Ministry of Ethics” to oversee the other ministries.

We need a Minister to protect us from the Ministers.

Sincerely,
Harvey Wrightman

Sooner or later gotta cut you down

Quixotes Last Stand

NextEra takes questions during open house

durhamBy Laura MacDuff, The Post, Hanover
DURHAM – Emotions ran high in Durrham Tuesday evening during an open house organized by NextEra Energy, the largest generator of wind in solar power in North America, currently proposing a wind turbine development in West Grey. The first half of the open house was a drop-in, one-on-one conversation style meeting, typical of most open houses for previous wind turbine proposals.

The second half was different, a question and answer public forum, one and a half hours in length. Questions were written down and given to the moderator Sheila Willis, who orchestrated the meeting. The authors of the questions were not identified. NextEra hired security to be present at the meeting. A West Grey police officer was also present.

Fifteen landowners have signed contracts with NextEra in West Grey, explained Adam Rickel, project manager, however only 10 landowners will have wind turbines on their properties.

Questions, comments and outbursts erupted from the audience more than once to answers provided by NextEra. One of the first questions answered was in response to why NextEra needed security to be present at the meeting. Nicole Geneau, director of NextEra, said that employees and other people associated with the project have been threatened with physical harm and death. Therefore, to keep everyone safe, they employed security, she said.

Joan Osborne, a citizen concerned with the way NextEra handles wildlife near its turbine operations, handed out pamphlets regarding NextEra removing a Bald Eagle’s nest from a tree during construction of a road intended for use to construct a turbine. A question was posed asking whether the employees of NextEra had told their children about the bald eagle’s removal. Read article

Video: SpeakOut Ontario – Lisa

Lisa and her family have developed many negative health effects since 8 IWTs were built near their home. She has been offered no solutions from the Ministry of Environment, her family doctors, the corporation behind the wind farm, or anyone else.

Tell the MNR they have gone too far!

Picture 003Pictures: Eagle Nest Destruction, before, during and after
Videos: Nest & Tree cut downNextera in Damage Control
On the morning of January 5th, 2013 Nextera Energy removed a bald eagle nest (species of special concern in Ontario), and the tree it was in, in order to accommodate an access road and a wind turbine for their company in the Summerhaven project in Haldimand Cty. The MNR gave a permit for the company to do so the night before.
send a message redSend a message to the key decision makers!
[Jan 14th: 1,175 responses so far! Way to go, Ontario! Spread the word]

Continue reading

Six Nations shocked NextEra takes eagles nest cuts down tree

turtleby Lynda Powless, Editor Turtle Island News
Six Nations residents are shocked NextEra Energy Canada has removed an eagles nest and cut down the tree that held it over the weekend. NextEra cut down the tree to construct a road access for their Summerhaven wind turbine project. Ministry of Natural Resources gave the company approval to remove the nest Dec., 31 but neither the MNR or NextEra informed Six Nations of the move.

The MNR permit held a proviso that the tree had to be removed by Sunday. The MNR decision wasn’t posted on the internet until after 5 p.m. Friday leaving no one time to object. Haudenosaunee Development Institute (HDI) interim director Hazel Hill said she is “outraged” NextEra would “commit such an act.” She said HDI had been trying to work in “good faith” with NextEra on their project. “Our environmental montiors had raised it as an issue that the nest was there and we had asked for a report on what type of risk the turbines would present.” She said preliminary results indicated the nest was to stay. “Our preliminary reports showed they move the turbine or go one less and leave the nest alone.” Read article

Contact Nextera about eagle nest removal, or anything else that they are up to

“People have a lot of questions, and so do I” : Bird Studies Canada, Jody Allair

Bald-Eagle-on-Lakeshore-Rd.-Nov-22-12-1024x768Simcoe Reformer
[Excerpt] “Bald eagles have been known to have alternative nests within their territory,” Jolanta Kowalski, a spokesperson for the MNR, said Monday in an email. “Authorizing the removal of this nest will encourage these bald eagles to relocate farther away from these turbines while allowing the project to proceed as planned.”

This is not NextEra’s first experience with eagle-nest removal. Spokesperson Josie Hernandez says the company has removed eagle nests in Maine and Florida as well. Wildlife biologists have told NextEra that breeding pairs will rebuild without disruption to their breeding cycle if the nest is removed soon enough before spring.

“We understand some may be concerned about the removal of the nest and we share that concern,” Hernandez said. “However, after discussions with experts, we believe the action taken was absolutely in the best interests of the eagles and would significantly reduce the risk of harm coming to them.”

Jody Allair is a biologist with Bird Studies Canada in Port Rowan. He is the chief monitor of the bald eagle nesting program in southern Ontario. The MNR sought his opinion before issuing the removal permit.

Allair became aware of the nest last November. It is a new nest belonging to a young mating pair. Allair told the MNR that the nest should be left alone and the turbines relocated elsewhere. Allair only learned of the nest’s removal on Monday.

Allair said no one can predict with certainty whether this mating pair will skip a year due to habitat disruption. That, he says, remains to be seen. Allair’s email and voice mail is overflowing with outrage over the incident.

“I was very surprised and disappointed by the MNR’s unprecedented decision to remove this nest,” he said. “The bald eagle is no longer listed as endangered. But we have always afforded their nests some measure of protection. There are a lot of people really unhappy with this. People have a lot of questions, and so do I.” Read article

Is the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources undermining our environmental legislation?

Report by Keith Stelling

Full text posted below, or download here: Is the Ontario MNR undermining our environmental legislation? Continue reading

Removal of eagles nest smacks of big money corruption: MPP Barrett

Toby%20BarrettFor Immediate Release January 7, 2013
Last minute approval of habitat destruction for wind towers, “Unconscionable”

Selkirk – Haldimand-Norfolk MPP Toby Barrett says approval to remove an eagles’ nest east of Selkirk smacks of big money corrupting Ontario government procedure. The tree hosting the nest was cut down Saturday, January 5, 2013, to make way for an access road for a Next Era wind turbine. The Ministry of Natural Resources published permission for the removal at 5pm Friday, January 4.

“Frankly, I feel betrayed – I was in communication with the Minister’s office through December, and we were never alerted to this unconscionable decision until it was too late,” asserted Barrett. “I got to the site on Saturday just after the nest had been removed.”

Ontario’s Environmental Review Tribunal green-lighted the Next Era project last fall following a month-long hearing in Hagersville.  “Clearly the Ontario government and its Green Energy Act have corrupted the system – with so much money to be made by government’s wind proponent friends, concerns for wildlife and rural values are steamrolled while opponents are kept in the dark,” Barrett intoned. “We’ve been told that the nest was removed to reduce eagle mortality – a clear admission that wind turbines kill eagles.” Continue reading

Energy company removes bald eagle nest to make way for wind turbine in Haldimand County

Picture 017By Jonathan Sher, The London Free Press
A subsidiary of an American energy company has chainsawed a bald eagle nest to make way for a wind turbine with the blessing of Ontario bureaucrats, The Free Press has learned. NextEra Energy Canada took down the nest Saturday in Haldimand County as horrified onlookers snapped photographs — the incident already has drawn outrage from environmentalists in Ontario and even in the United States.

Onlookers claim that no one with Ontario’s natural resources ministry, which approved the nest removal, even bothered to show up to insure it was done properly. “This issue has people infuriated, and rightly so,” said Esther Wrightman, a wind farm opponent.

Also weighing in was Tom Wasilewski, co-ordinator of an eagle conservation association in the Northwestern Pennsylvania: “The Ontario government continues to blindly accept inaccurate information from wind companies as the truth without providing an investment in truly independent, scientific studies of bird, bat, butterfly migration before and after these projects are built.” His comments and photographs of the nest removal appear on the website http://ontario-wind-resistance.org/.

The Ministry of Natural Resources approved the nest removal Dec. 31 without input from the public and posted notice of the removal Friday —just one day before the next was removed. Read article

Breathing down rural Ontario’s back

Chatham Kent: IPC GDF Suez Wind project (from Fargo Line) – photo by David LibbyCHATHAM KENT INTERNATIONAL POWER GDF SUEZ FROM FARGO LINE

Justifying deaths of birds and bats from wind projects – sends chills down spine

Bald-Eagle-on-Lakeshore-Rd.-Nov-22-12-1024x768

Bald Eagle on Lakeshore Rd, Haldimand County

December 10th 2012;  somewhere in Haldimand Norfolk.
Ok so I like reading weird and depressing articles; it is  something to do while under construction siege from a wind developer.  Recently read an article titled ``Views vary on environmental effects; by  Dave Sutor December 9th 2012 ; published in the Tribune-Democrat“  in the article I  noted the statistics for bird and bat kills.
“Operators of Pennsylvania’s wind farms voluntarily collect the data and submit it to the state game commission for review. In a March 2011 report, the commission determined an average of 24.6 bats and 3.9 birds were found dead next to every turbine per year between 2007 and 2009 “  
(my emphasis)

And  further in this paragraph….
“It’s no surprise that wind power is good for our environment; we’ve known that for years,” said PennEnvironment clean water advocate Erika Staaf. “But our report, for the first time, quantifies the full environmental impact and other environmental and health benefits that Pennsylvanians get from wind power.”

So  I went and looked up the report referenced.. sigh.    Nice graphics (always have been taught to find something nice to say) …. Ok  now that I have been  re-educated; I will move onto the trolling of finding  new articles and reports to read.  Everyone avert their eyes to the mounds of dead bats and birds being collected. They are an acceptable consequence and an infinite resource. Let us celebrate their demise and loss of natural habitats.  They came to a glorious end for the greater good.

Please be sure to explain this to the bats and especially include the Eagles located next to the turbines in the Summerhaven NextEra project  in Haldimand Norfolk;   http://haldimandwindconcerns.com/?p=1850

Their sacrifice will not be in vain.   Oh such great comfort to the people being surrounded by an industrial installation.  It sends chills down my spine.

Linda J Rogers
Somewhere in Haldimand-Norfolk ON Canada
(200+ industrial wind turbines and counting)

Nah, this little windmill won’t affect your property value…

photo by Bonny McKeough Industrial Wind Action Group
This photo shows wind turbine at the Erieau-Blenheim project which is located on the north shore of Lake Erie around Blenheim.

The Rest of My Life

by Harvey Wrightman
“Streamlining” – it is repeated over and over that the Environmental Review Tribunal (ERT) appeal of Renewable Energy Approvals (REA) is “streamlined” to efficiently render solutions. The characters driving in from Toronto who dispense practical justice for the residents affected, all want to quicken the tempo of hymn we are all to sing – you know, “Whose Bread I Eat, His Song I Sing” – shouldn’t be too hard to find it in their song book – it’s the only one in it.

So, after a full Friday that went on and on to 5PM, one witness, Dr. Jim Salmon gave expert opinion evidence on the topic(s) of the models for the Noise Impact Assessment (NIA) – don’t you just love these acronyms(?!) – and the shadow flicker pattern (noted to NOT be required by the MOE). We learned the witness is both a founding and charter member of CanWEA (Canadian Wind Energy Association) with a background in physics and meteorology – NOT an acoustician, therefore please reserve those questions for the next “expert(s)”. So the man can basically tell us he understands the models used, but as to whether he cares about the practical application of his work – like any other apparatchik, he never questions the effects of the noise/flicker he is modelling for – not his problem.

Dave Hyslop, one of the appellants, developed a lengthy set of questions for this witness; and, though the details of both noise and shadow flicker are technically challenging, he got across several points that were to catch the attention of the panel members who followed with some rather good questions of their own. To whit, some of the questions:

Q – My office is in the cab of my tractor or combine. When I am in the field I will experience shadow flicker. Will it affect my ability to operate?
A – I can’t answer that.

Q – The cab is like a cubicle that has glass all around. Will the effects be similar to what happens in a house?
A – I don’t have a definition for that kind of receptor. I wouldn’t consider that space to be problematic for shadow flicker. The light will pass through and not be perceived in the same way.

OK, now to clean up the BS. There is a video shot inside a greenhouse in Holland. The flicker effect can only be described as “bewildering.” A nephew of mine operates a custom service to spread liquid manure. I remember him saying that the flicker effect is quite distracting and disorienting. There is a dearth of scientific investigation on the subject. It was obvious from the shadow flicker analysis that Samsung was seeking to present as low a numerical estimate (for hours affected) as possible. In addition, they were using a model that basically was geared for the dwelling only. The effect outside is expanded immensely and the shadow does not have to actually pass though the subject. Seeing it in near distance is also distracting. It is a huge property “disamenity” and it drives people wild. Continue reading

ILL Wind Reporting website launched

A small group of Ontario residents launched a new website today (www.illwind.org) for our province, and for the world. For too long reports from those who live among turbines have been submitted to government agencies (ie Ministry of Environment) or wind companies, and are never heard from again. Filed and forgotten or lost. We hope to expose the proliferation of incidents locally, and perhaps even worldwide, with this self-reporting site.

What can be reported? Health reports, noise, bird kill, unsold homes, flicker, power surges, turbine failure, and even unethical behaviour (there’s lots of that, don’t we know!). See more categories here. Using the Ushahidi platform, each report is pinpointed on a Google map, and it grows as more reports from an area increases — showing ‘hot spots’ of wind turbine destruction. Continue reading

Plea for help from New Brunswick

by Dean Dean Fitzsimmons, Campobello Island, NB
I am a retired Chief Warrant Officer (30 yrs – RCAF) who made my career in demolition/ bombs/ safety etc. and taught safety practices to the RCMP as well as military personnel. I was born on Campobello  Island, NB, and now have retired here.

Last year without the knowledge of residents in the peaceful hamlet of Welshpool, Campobello island, a project was approved by our newly formed and inexperienced Rural Community of Campobello Council, and who also sent a letter of support for the project initiated by an American resident who owns land here who started the project through a little known American wind turbine company. Continue reading

Bill 55 will limit environmental input

by Susan Dick, Hamilton Spectator
I want to point out that Bill 55, which is included as part of the proposed provincial budget, will amend the Endangered Species Act. That doesn’t seem like much, but with the bill as part of the budget, or what they refer to as a budget bill, the government avoids the normal transparency and public input.

Should this bill pass, the minister would be able to excuse from prosecution under the Ontario Endangered Species Act corporations engaged in infrastructure projects including renewable energy (wind turbines), communication systems, electric power systems, oil or gas pipelines, transportation corridors or facilities, waste management systems or water works. These infrastructure projects would be allowed, without our knowledge, to kill, harm or harass any endangered species, to destroy or remove their habitat. Continue reading

Green energy woes discussed at Lambton National Farmers Union annual meeting

By John Phair, Today’s Farmer
There’s not a whole lot good about wind turbines, or for that matter, Ontario’s Green Energy Act. At least that seemed to be the general opinion expressed at the annual meeting of Local 328 (Lambton County) National ­Farmers Union, held recently at the Forest Agricultural Society Hall. Read article

BILL 55 as a serious threat to the integrity of Provincial Parks, Crown Forests and all Public Lands

by Barry Bridgeford
Ontario’s Environmental commissioner has given us warning that the province’s Bill 55 is far more than it first appears. I’ve dug into it, beyond the initial public outrage concerning Endangered Species. I consider BILL 55 as a serious threat to the integrity of Provincial Parks, Crown Forests and all Public Lands. I believe the governments support of Industrial Wind Turbines is leading them to use Bill 55 to try and secure industrial access to our Provincial Parks, Crown Forests and Public Lands. Continue reading

Huron East expresses concern with ice throw, transmission line route

 By Susan Hundertmark, Mitchell Advocate
Concerns about industrial wind turbine setbacks, ice throw and the proposed route for the transmission line will be included in a letter from Huron East council to St. Columban Energy LP, council decided at its April 3 meeting.  Clerk-Administrator Brad Knight told councillors that a staff review of St. Columban Energy’s Construction Report and Design/Operations Report brought up concerns about turbines 9 and 10, whose road allowance setbacks were both less than 100 metres.  Read article

Score the impacts of wind projects on your community

[written by Gary Mooney, a member of the Steering Committee of CCSAGE.]
Here’s an opportunity for you to evaluate for yourself the impacts of large-scale wind energy development on the long-term sustainability of your community, comparing the positives with the negatives. I have developed a one-page scoring system, presented here. Click on the image and then print it. After completing the scoring, please add a comment to this post, indicating your total positive and negative scores and your thoughts. Continue reading

CAW Wind Turbine Protest Parade

Suncor threat: “There are avenues for Toronto to step in”

By Heather Wright, Sarnia This Week
LAMBTON SHORES – When push comes to shove, Suncor Energy officials say they may turn to the province to push through their wind farm project in Lambton Shores. Chris Scott, Suncor’s project developer, was appearing before Lambton Shores Council recently to talk about the company’s Cedar Point Wind Project. Up to 62 wind turbines will be installed in Lambton Shores and Plympton-Wyoming to generate about 100 megawatts of power.   Read article

Ontario government forcing wind turbines

Guelph Mercury
If the governments of Canada and its provinces decline the use of medicines until fully being tested for health safety, then should the construction of further wind turbines be halted too. When permits are required to ignite a fire, construct a shed, or add on to farm buildings, then a permit should be required for these turbines.  Yet this provincial government sees fit to bully and push its agenda through, with total disregard for processes the community must abide by. Canadians must have the right to decline such projects where it directly affects their freedoms and land stewardship. Continue reading

The Town that the CAW Forgot

McGuinty proposing new energy points system

by Jason Miller, Sun News
BELLEVILLE, ON – Ontario’s premier is introducing a points system to identify rural communities who welcome renewable energy installations like wind turbines.The new program will be key to circumventing the angst of factions in areas like Prince Edward County, where the municipal government has vehemently opposed the implementation of wind turbines in their community, Premier Dalton McGuinty said during an interview Friday.  Communities who express a favourable demand for renewable energy will be awarded the bulk of contracts under the new points system, that would place communities without majority support like the county at the “back of the line.”

“I’ve got all kinds of communities that want them,” he said. “I don’t need the headaches that are associated with them going into communities that don’t want them.”  Read article

Blast from the past: “NIMBYs” will be not be tolerated

Toronto Star, February 2009
LONDON, Ont. – Taking a swipe at those who oppose wind turbines off the Scarborough Bluffs, Premier Dalton McGuinty is signalling he won’t hesitate to foist “green” energy projects on communities across Ontario.
…..”But don’t say, ‘I don’t want it around here.’ … NIMBYism will no longer prevail,” he added, using the acronym for “not in my backyard.”
….McGuinty wouldn’t say exactly how concerns will be overridden, but his office noted the bill [Green Energy Act] will “address” local bylaws and regulations that are used to delay or stop proposed renewable energy projects.”