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Archive for the ‘moratorium wind turbines’ Category

At the meeting in South Branch last evening, Prowind’s new president made his first appearance, at least in Eastern Ontario, and for Prowind. Jeffrey Segal was formerly vice-president of development and construction with Gengrowth. He is a resident of downtown Toronto, and lives within a kilometer of the iconic (and useless) wind turbine at Exhibition Place. (750kW compared to 2 MW or more; 299 feet, compared to 626 for the proposed South Branch and North Gower turbines)

Although the community in South Branch had requested an open Question and Answer format for this, the second-last public meeting for the 30-MW project, the day before, Prowind demanded that all questions be submitted in writing (e-mail accepted) by noon the day of the meeting. As it happened, questions were accepted from the floor, but no discussion or rebuttal of Prowind’s answers was permitted. A limited form of “community engagement” to be sure.

Some of Prowind’s answers to the questions.

-Health effects: there won’t be any because Ontario’s regulations are safe. (Environmental Review Tribunal found otherwise and recommended more research, and examination of Ontario’s regulations.)

-Property values: no effect. (Incorrect.)

-“annoyance” is personal. (Incorrect. The medical definition of “annoyance” is stress that can range to the severe, causing indirect health problems.)

-setbacks in other jurisdictions “political” (Incorrect. Australia moved to 2 km after a Senate inquiry into health effects)

The new president has had experience with wind power generation projects in the Chatham-Kent and Essex areas of Ontario, and claimed that people there “love them.” Interesting then that the Environmental Review Tribunal took place in Chatham-Kent, that another legal action is taking place by a family who say they have been made ill by Suncor’s Kent Breeze project there. And that there is a citizens’ group protesting wind power projects http://maynardrehab.com/ckwag.org/

The real problem in all this is that our provincial government is allowing this to continue apace. At the same time as it is crowing about the safety afforded by its new regulations under the Green Energy Act, a project in Grand Valley was allowed to proceed under the old rules, in 2011!

Email us at northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca and check out http://www.windconcernsontario.net for ongoing news stories and authoritative papers and presentations.

Donations to our efforts welcome.

 

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From today’s Enterprise Bulletin, a column by Queen’s Park reporter Christina Blizzard on the McGuinty government’s spending. See the article, here:

http://www.theenterprisebulletin.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?e=3428102

The Auditor-General of Ontario made quite a few points about this in his report, released late last year including these very serious facts:

1.the Ontario government rushed into renewable energy without ever doing any “comprehensive business-case evaluation” of the impacts of a billion dollar commitment

2.the government said the Green Energy Act would lead to “modest incremental increases in electricity bills”–the fact is, there will be an increase of more than 56% (actually, when this is done, it will be more like 140%)

3.the Ontario Power Authority’s long-term plan has not been approved by the Ontario Energy Board, and in fact development of the plan was suspended

4.other jurisdictions have much lower feed-in tariff rates than Ontario

5. job creation from renewable energy has been verstated and the jobs will be 75% short-term construction jobs. In fact, job LOSSES have been documented in Germany, Spain and the U.K., as many as FOUR per “green” job, due to higher energy costs

6.renewable energy sources such as wind and solar are intermittent and will require back-up from fossil-fuel power generation. This will require natural gas-fired generation plants.

The A-G’s report is available here:http://www.theenterprisebulletin.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?e=3428102

Every person in Ontario should be furious about this, and especially those communities that are being threatened by wind power projects which will alter our quality of life forever.

Wind: you’re paying for it. Demand a say. Write to

Chris Bentley, Minister of Energy at cbentley.mpp@liberal.ola.org

Other MPP addresses can be found at http://www.windconcernsontario.net under Addresses. PC energy critic is Vic Fedeli.

Email us at northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca and follow us on Twitter at northgowerwind

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Speaking at the first public meeting of the South Branch Wind Opposition Group this week, at a packed meeting in Dixon’s Corners, were two people from the Thamesvillarea area of Ontario, Lisa Michaud and her 20-year-old son, Josh.

The Michauds live 1.2 km away from the Kent Breeze project by Suncor, which was also the subject of an environmental review tribunal earlier this year.

Once the project began operation in April (construction proceeded even though there was an appeal) the family of four became ill. Their symptoms included nausea, vertigo, headaches and sleep disturbance.

It is interesting that these same symptoms are reported by people exposed to the environmental noise and the vibration /infrasound/amplitude modulation around the world.

As a parent, it was very affecting to hear young Josh talk about what the turbine project has done to his life: once a runner, he can’t exercise that way anymore, due to lack of balance. He works in construction in the family business, but now his balance is so unreliable, he can no longer work on a roof. “I used to do roofing, I’d walk on beams and that type of work—I can’t now,” he told the audience of more than 100 residents.

This is frankly appalling when a young person’s health and livelihood are affected. The Government of Ontario KNOWS there are problems with industrial wind turbine noise and vibration. They are choosing to ignore the health and safety of our citizens. They are supporting the industrialization of country communities, and they are looking the other way as properties become less valuable…in some cases, no longer inhabitable.

This must stop.

Wherever you are, join your local group, and make as much noise about this issue as possible–we must be heard.

E-mail us at northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca  and join Wind Concerns Ontario at http://windconcernsontario.wordpress.com

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From the Waubra Foundation.

LOCAL RESIDENT’S APPEAL UPHELD IN South Australian SUPREME COURT, 

AGL’s “HALLETT 2” WIND TURBINES noncompliant with EPA noise guidelines

16 out of 34 turbines currently turned off overnight by AGL

SOLUTION:  Don’t site them close to homes, & do the research to find out what is ‘safe’



The appeal by Mt Bryan resident Bill Quinn has been upheld in the South Australian Supreme Court, against the ERD (Environment, Resources & Development) Court decision last year to approve AGL’s Hallett Stage 3 Wind Development.  However there was no determination of the merits of any of the grounds of appeal.

Amongst these grounds of appeal was a challenge to the EPA SA Wind Farm Noise Guidelines, and specifically whether their limits take proper account of the impact on residents from the wind turbine noise.  In other words, the appeal is questioning the ability of the guidelines, as they are currently, to adequately protect human health.   

Barrister Peter Quinn, has stated “These questions are of general significance for ALL AUSTRALIAN STATES currently applying SA EPA wind policies and guidelines which are in similar terms to the SA EPA’s 2009 guidelines for wind developments.  This is extremely relevant for any matter in ANY planning jurisdiction which is seeking to apply the SA EPA wind farm noise guidelines (eg NSW, WA and SA).  The court or planning authority should be advised that the adequacy of these guidelines is currently before the court in South Australia for determination,  and that those matters should therefore be held over in abeyance until this particular matter is determined.”

The appeal in this case was allowed, because evidence came to light that Wind Turbines owned by AGL, and operating at Hallett 2 Wind Development, are currently incapable of satisfying the current SA EPA Guidelines.  This evidence of “tonality” in the S88 turbines had been known to the manufacturers Suzlon, who found “tonality” in the same type of turbines in March 2007 at Hallett 1.  Despite prior knowledge of tonality, this information did not come to light in the initial court case in the ERD court in 2010.  The determination of that question has been remitted back to the ERD Court.   

Relevant to this is the fact that in the last week, AGL have shut down 16 of its 34 turbines at Hallett Stage 2, between 7pm and 7am.  

Predictably, the residents of the surrounding area including the township of Mt Bryan have reported some excellent sleeps in the last week, since these turbines have been shut off.  They have previously been publicly vilified and labelled as serial complainers and worse.

The inevitable consequence of placing large industrial scale wind turbines too close to rural residents in areas with quiet background noise is going to be disturbed sleep from the audible noise emissions alone.   The presence of “tonality” to the noise, as in this case, is going to increase the annoyance factor of that noise, and therefore result in more frequent episodes of disturbed sleep amongst the neighbours. 

It is well established by an extensive body of peer reviewed published medical research that chronically severely disturbed sleep, regardless of the cause, results in multiple serious adverse health consequences.  This is regardless of any other possible causative mechanisms responsible for the range of additional symptoms, some extremely serious, described as “wind turbine syndrome”, which have been reported by medical practitioners globally over the last 8 years.  These symptoms have been reported in some residents, workers and visitors in conjunction with  operating wind turbines, out to a distance of at least 10km under certain weather and wind conditions.

Over 20 families in Australia have already left their homes & farms because of ill health.  Some, like Trish Godfrey, were bought out and gagged by the wind developers, so they cannot talk about their health problems publicly, unless they are subpoenaed to give evidence in court.  

Others have just walked away from their homes.  

Landowners hosting turbines also get symptoms, their families become unwell too.

When are state planning authorities in Australia going adopt a precautionary approach, as the National Health and Medical Research Council’s CEO Professor Warwick Anderson has suggested, both in the NHMRC’s public statement and in his oral evidence to the Senate Inquiry into Rural Wind Farms?   The Waubra Foundation currently recommends a 10km precautionary setback distance, until the proper research is completed, as this is the limit where highly specific symptoms correlating unmistakably with turbine operation are being reported.  

When are the relevant authorities (EPA, Planning, Health, Local Council) going to properly investigate the frequent complaints of serious illness and intolerable noise and vibration made by residents across Australia in the vicinity of large operating wind turbines?

When are the 7 recommendations of the Federal Senate Inquiry into Rural Wind Farms going to be implemented?

Fraudulent ongoing denial of the adverse health problems occurring by ALL those responsible for SITING decisions is indefensible, given the mounting evidence internationally, and the recent finding in a court in Ontario, as follows:.

This case has successfully shown that the debate should not be simplified to one about whether wind turbines can cause harm to humans. The evidence presented to the Tribunal demonstrates that they can, if facilities are placed too close to residents. The debate has now evolved to one of degree.” (p. 207) (Emphasis added)


[i] Environmental Review Tribunal, Case Nos.: 10-121/10-122 Erickson v. Director, Ministry of the Environment, Dated this 18th day of July, 2011 by Jerry V. DeMarco, Panel Chair and Paul Muldoon, Vice-Chair, http://www.ert.gov.on.ca/english/decisions/index.htm

 

Dr Sarah Laurie BMBS Flinders
Medical Director
 
Waubra Foundation
PO Box 1136 South Melbourne VIC Australia 3205
Ph        0439 865 914
Office  08 8636 2051
 
Researching the Health Effects of Wind Turbines close to Human Habitation.

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From the last edition of Ontario Farmer, Tom van Dusen’s Eastern Limits column, excerpted here.

Powerful people

Power of the People seems to have played a crucial role in the minority Liberal government outcome of the provincial election. Power of the anti-wind people, that is.

An advocacy group called Wind Concerns Ontario (WCO) says it targeted 10 ridings where existing or planned wind farms have become controversial, with an eye to defeating sitting Liberal members who supported the projects, or to getting opposition candidates elected where vacancies existed due to retirement.

It’s hard to know if WCO should get all the credit…but, in fact, Grits were shut out of those ridings.

Some prominent rural Liberals who backed wind and solar energy bit the dust on election day, including two former OMAFRA ministers, Carol Mitchell, who held the post in the last government, and Leona Dombrowsky, the province’s most recent education minister. Both went down to spectacular defeat. Also blown out of his riding was the pre-election environment minister, John Wilkinson, also an outspoken supporter of his government’s green energy policy which offered some subsidies and high energy generation payments to wind and solar power entrepreneurs.

…At the east end of the province, it looks like turbine opponents helped elect Tory Jim McDonell in Stormont-Dundas-South Glegarry which had been vacated by Liberal MPP Jim Brownell. McDonell’s stock seemed to go up after he called upon Dalton McGuinty to stop the proposed South Branch Wind Farm at Brinston before it got to the construction phase. A collection of 14 turbines, South Branch has been promoted by Prowind Canada dating back to 2008. Over the intervening years, there have been scores of meetings and studies about the impact of the project.

For WCO, Prowind is similar to all industrial turbine installations: the advocacy group claims they all threaten human and animal health, habitat, and property values as well as cause noise and aesthetic concerns.

WCO says it set its sights on toppling Liberal candidates because the government “denied science” indicating turbines could be harmful, and refused to accept “local democracy” by pushing forward with turbine projects against the will of residents.

The anti-wind turbine lobby appears to have registered a big blow to the McGuinty Grits. Retaining only a few of the lost 10 seats would have made a difference between majority and the premier’s so-called “major minority”. … the WCO campaign proves resoundingly that taxpayers can have an impact on voting day even if it’s not the ultimate outcome of defeating a government.

“The Liberals have an opportunity to change their course during this minority parliament, act on our concerns and put the interests of people ahead of special interests behind the industrial wind lobby which cost them their majority,” WCO gloated in a news release.

… There’s nothing wrong with modestly encouraging development of new energy sources. However, the last Liberal government seemed to want to make it happen right now at whatever cost, and damn any side effects such as the potential health hazard.

E-mail us at northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca

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We have been in touch with a group in Lichfield, England about a project Prowind is proposing there, which has met with steady opposition from residents. Including, it seems, opposition in the form of Sister Anne Marie Eden, whose convent is a place of rest for those in need, such as soldiers returning from Afghanistan.

Here is a recent report on citizen reaction, protest meetings, Prowind’s stance about the project in an idyllic English countryside and–bonus!–a photo of Johannes Busmann, head of Prowind. (Mr Busmann is the head of Prowind Canada, too.)

Here is the story from The Village Market Newspaper.

The implacable face of opposition

Posted by TheVM on 10/03/11 • Categorized as The Village Market Micronewspaper

 Huge applause erupted when Sister Anne Marie Eden countered unfeeling corporate ambition with simple humanity. Mease Valley residents have again been outraged by German attempts to blight a corner of rural Staffordshire thousands of people visit each year for its tranquil beauty. And it was the softly spoken nun who inspired their renewed fight back.

An Osnabruk-based company wants to site giant wind turbines near Haunton to get at taxpayers’ cash.

Softly spoken: powerful words from Haunton nun, Sister Anne Marie Eden.

But Sister Anne Marie Eden wants to preserve the Mease Valley’s quiet stillness for the souls who seek respite at her convent.

A packed protest meeting wearily rehearsed again the arguments that beat off Prowind at their first attempt to build in the valley.

But campaign champion County Councillor Matthew Ellis told them the prospects now looked grim.

He also quoted a dark warning from the Germans, who still seemed to be stinging from their earlier costly defeat: “We did not spend this amount of money just to walk away from it.”

The UK government is now subsidising foreign turbine firms to the tune of £500 million at year.

And yet serious doubts about their equipment’s efficiency on inland sites go unanswered.

Wind farms rejected

The county council refuses to allow large wind farms on its land for environmental reasons.

Rural bodies warn of turbines desecrating the countryside

Anti-windfarm protesters claim Prowind MD Johannes Busmann’s only thought is to help himself to generous taxpayer handouts.

Anyone who has met Sister Anne knows her one and only thought is to serve others.

She sees first hand the precious gift of healing and calm those who come to her for help gain from staying at the convent.

And few people could ever understand their mental turmoil as she does.

For 12 years she was an army chaplain, sometimes comforting soldiers heading for the front line – sometimes the bereaved families of those who did not return.

It is work she wants to continue at Haunton. She and her five fellow sisters stand ready if called on to receive soldiers traumatised by the horrors of Afghanistan.

Councillor Matthew Ellis: raised the alarm over Prowind’s new attempt to build near Haunton. Residents are looking to him for leadership.

But she fears that Prowind’s colossal turbine blades, chopping the wind like Chinook helicopter rotars, would forever mar the peace desperately sought by those in need.

Her simple message to Prowind was: “People come to us for quiet tranquility.

“What is going to happen if we do not fight for our countryside?

Angry: people in Harlaston, Haunton and Clifton Campville had hoped never to hear of Prowind again.

“We need beautiful natural things to look at.”

The packed hall at Harlaston erupted into loud applause.

Johannes Busmann and his team pulled out at the very last moment from their previous bid to build in the Mease Valley before their plans could be officially thrown out.

In doing so they left taxpayers to foot an estimated £90,000 bill in wasted administration fees.

Busmann had also broken promises to consult residents about his plans.

He totally ignored letters from the local MP – Christopher Pincher was even unaware that the businessman had advanced plans for another bid to locate turbines near Haunton.

Busmann has also refused to respond to journalists’ inquiries.

But at the Harlaston meeting last month residents heard how increased taxpayer subsidies for smaller scale wind farms made siting one near Haunton a more lucrative proposition than ever.

Vast profits to be had

Tory plans to ease planning laws also look set to bring a windfall for foreign companies such as ProWind.

Organisations including the National Trust are voicing fears for the future of the countryside.

Tory plans to adopt, “a presumption in favour of sustainable development” could see the number of wind turbines in the UK more than trebling from 2,000 to 6,500.

And Britain is not alone. In September ‘VM’ received a message of support from Canada for the Mease Valley campaigners.

Jane Wilson, Chair of the North Gower Wind Action Group, Ottawa, said: “We stand with you in your fight to preserve your community from industrialisation for taxpayer subsidised, inefficient and unreliable wind power generation.” She added that Busmann aimed to build up to ten, 190-metre-tall turbines near her neighbours’ homes.

He is now also determined to install two, 100-metre-tall, 500mw turbines in the heart of the unspoiled Mease Valley.

Laid back: Herr Busmann.

E-mail us at northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca and follow us on Twitter at northgowerwind.

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Well, we knew that. You can’t keep paying people exorbitant amounts of money for wind and solar, then sell it for a quarter of what you paid—oh, and give away what you don’t need when you have too much on the grid–without prices of energy to consumers going up.

But by how much? Turns out the Ontario government hasn’t been very forthcoming with that information, particularly before the recent provincial election.

Now, a research study details just how bad energy prices could get in Ontario. The forecast is grim: higher electricity costs will result in “energy poverty” which is a killer for small and medium businesses.

A report on the story is here: http://www.thestar.com/business/article/1071332–power-prices-will-rise-steeply-study-says

The North Gower Wind Action Group is a community organization dedicated to providing information about industrial-scale wind power generation, and opposed to inappropriately sited power projects that will be too close to homes and communities.

E-mail us at northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca

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Well, we said you should have listened to your constituents, Von Bommel, Wilkinson, Dombrowsky and the rest. Here is the story:

Anti-wind turbine coalition may have cost McGuinty a majority

 
 
 
By Don Butler, The Ottawa Citizen October 8, 2011
 
 
The Liberals lost 10 seats — almost all in rural Ontario — targeted by the anti-wind coalition Wind Concerns Ontario. Had they retained even one of those seats, they’d have won a majority government.
 

The Liberals lost 10 seats — almost all in rural Ontario — targeted by the anti-wind coalition Wind Concerns Ontario. Had they retained even one of those seats, they’d have won a majority government.

Photograph by: Peter J. Thompson/National Post,

OTTAWA — Did wind turbines cost the Ontario Liberals their majority in Thursday’s provincial election? A close look at the election results suggests it’s more than possible.

The Liberals lost 10 seats — almost all in rural Ontario — targeted by the anti-wind coalition Wind Concerns Ontario. Had they retained even one of those seats, they’d have won a majority government.

Progressive Conservative or New Democrat candidates defeated seven incumbent Liberals, and won three Liberal seats where the incumbent wasn’t running for re-election. All the ridings are home to industrial turbine projects or have active proposals for some.

Three Liberal cabinet ministers from rural Ontario were among the casualties, including Environment Minister John Wilkinson, an outspoken defender of the government’s green energy policy, who went down to narrow defeat in Perth-Wellington. He won the seat by 6,000 votes in 2007.

Leona Dombrowsky, education minister in Dalton McGuinty’s cabinet, lost by 3,000 votes after winning by 6,000 votes in the last election. And Agriculture Minister Carol Mitchell, whose margin of victory in 2007 was 7,000 votes, fell to Tory Lisa Thompson by 4,500 votes in Huron Bruce.

Liberal incumbents also lost in Haliburton-Kawartha Lakes-Brock, Lambton-Kent-Middlesex, Northumberland-Quinte West and Algoma-Manitoulin. Conservative candidates won in two open Liberal seats — Chatham-Kent-Essex and Elgin-Middlesex-London, and the NDP picked up Essex.

All 10 seats were targeted by Wind Concerns Ontario, a coalition of wind opponents that claims to have mobilized thousands of volunteers angry at the Liberal government’s embrace of wind power.

“The Ontario Liberals have spent the last two years denying science, refusing to accept local democracy, and tonight they paid a price,” John Laforet, president of Wind Concerns Ontario, said in a news release.

“The Liberals have an opportunity to change their course during this minority parliament, act on our concerns and put the interests of people ahead of the special interests behind the industrial wind lobby that cost them their majority,” Laforet said.

Jane Wilson, chair of the North Gower Wind Action Group, which is fighting a proposed eight-to-10 turbine development near their community, said the election results show “the tide has turned.

“If the Liberal government wants to have good government for all Ontario, they’re going to have to look at the concerns of rural communities,” Wilson said.

She credited Wind Concerns Ontario with connecting concerned residents with other communities already living with wind turbines. “It gave them a kind of cohesion and more information than they would have had just acting on their own.”

The proposed turbine development near North Gower came up repeatedly during the campaign, according to Conservative MPP Lisa MacLeod, who represents the area and opposes the project.

Wilson said the project is still awaiting a contract under the province’s Feed-In Tariff program. “I gather that’s connected to whether there’s transmission capacity,” she said, adding: “We don’t believe there is.”

dbutler@ottawacitizen.com

© Copyright (c) The Ottawa Citizen

Read more: http://www.ottawacitizen.com/technology/Anti+wind+turbine+coalition+have+cost+McGuinty+majority/5524109/story.html#ixzz1aJDBNC4T

E-mail us at northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca

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TVO tonight and 3 subsequent episodes.

Tag Archives: controversial documentary

BBC industrial wind turbine documentary on TVO

The North American premiere of a four-part documentary series Blown Apart:Windfarm Wars begins Sunday October 9, 2011 at 8 pm ET on TVO. 

Directed by Jeremy Gibson and produced by Sevenstones Media for BBC, this timely four-part documentary series examines what happens when a wind farm of nine 120-metre high turbines is planned to be built on a sensitive English landscape. Filmed over four turbulent years, the series reveals a deeply divided community and explores in candid and intimate detail a story that goes to the very heart of the question of renewable energy, our attitudes towards it and the future for on-shore wind power.

Of special interest to naturalists will be the focus on the impact to bird populations and the destruction of scenery.  Don’t miss this new and controversial documentary.

E-mail us at northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca

 

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Welcome if you’re just joining us.

Today, we offer an article from The Huffington Post by John Laforet.

The inconvenient truth about green energy jobs

Supporters of wind energy subsidies have historically done a fantastic job of tying the merits of wind energy to the contemporary problems of the day. During the latest worldwide economic crisis, wind energy proponents have heavily touted the number of jobs created by wind energy production as a reason to push these projects forward.

At a time of punishingly high unemployment in North America and Europe that is further compounding the impact increased global competition is having on traditional manufacturing sectors, wind energy backers are heavily trading on the claim that ‘green collar’ manufacturing is the future.

In 2009, Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty decided to take Ontario boldly where no North American government had gone before. He introduced a wide ranging piece of legislation called the ‘Green Energy and Green Economy Act‘ and promised at the first press conference to create 50,000 jobs in three years.

While no independent verification for these job figures have been offered, the premier of Ontario continues making new announcements of jobs, and promotes fear mongering that his political opponents would kill those jobs if elected. The reality is no matter who wins Ontario’s Oct. 6 general election, those jobs won’t be there to kill, because in most cases they aren’t real.

In December 2010, the Government of Ontario issued a press release titled “New Wind Tower Plant Creates 700 Jobs in Windsor.” Yet when McGuinty went to tour the facility in September 2011, CS Wind reports just 50 people are employed at the plant.

Fort Erie is home to Ontario’s first wind turbine tower plant owned by DMI Industries. The day before McGuinty’s visit to Windsor, word broke that DMI Industries was laying off “in excess of 50 workers.” Local MPP Kim Craitor has said DMI Industries had sought his help in getting assistance through a federal work-sharing program “until orders pick up again.” With insufficient demand to maintain employment at one wind turbine tower manufacturing plant, it is hard to imagine how Windsor’s fate will be any better or why their order book as a start-up would be more robust than an established international producer.

A lack of demand for products made by ‘green collar’ workers created another embarrassing situation for Dalton McGuinty, who was accused last week of staging a campaign photo opportunity at a solar panel manufacturer Eclipsall Energy that has idled its plant due to a shortage of orders as well, confirmed by plant management.

In Tillsonburg where a wind turbine blade manufacturing plant was credited with creating 900 jobs in a December 2010 government press release, nearly 20 months later, the plant owners report a staff closer to 30 employees.

During an election where spiking energy bills, smart meters, and the government’s handling of opposition to industrial wind turbine development are all playing major roles, two things are becoming clear. Maybe it is a good thing McGuinty’s green energy jobs plan is in shambles. It means plans to give Ontario families and businesses a break by ending the feed-in-tariff program and controversial Samsung deal can help real, private sector employers stay cost competitive through reasonable electricity prices. Cancelling these deals won’t result in thousands of layoffs because they haven’t resulted in anywhere near the employment the government claims.

Jan Carr, the former President of the Ontario Power Authority completed a study of the economic impacts of Ontario’s Green Energy Act and found that each so-called ‘green job’ would result in a taxpayer subsidy of $179,000 per job, per year. Employees at Eclipsall Energy, who recalled their workforce for McGuinty’s photo op, are paid a poverty rate just 20 per cent higher than minimum wage. That subsidy is seven times their pre-tax take home pay. To provide those subsidies, all Ontarians will need to pay an additional $310 per year in electricity costs by 2015 according to Carr.

Spain’s expensive green energy failure can serve as a lesson to Ontario. A recent study shows for every ‘green job’ created 2.2 real jobs were lost elsewhere in the economy due to the impacts on electricity pricing.

During this election, Ontario voters will need decide whether to consider our energy policy as an economic policy. Voters have the opportunity to determine whether our government puts more economic stress on the automotive, natural resources and manufacturing sectors which employ hundreds of thousands of Ontarians to chase a green dream that has so far proven fruitless.

E-mail us at northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca and follow us on Twitter at northgowerwind.

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