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Posts Tagged ‘Beckwith wind project’

Here from the Norwich Gazette; evidently the Council there is realizing they need to monitor this closely.

Council hears from group, clerk about turbine issues

By TARA BOWIE NORWICH GAZETTE

Posted 1 day ago
   

NORWICH -Norwich Township appears to be a leader in protecting its residents from possible ill effects of wind turbine developments.

Michael Graves, CAO/clerk for the township, spoke openly with council and a concerned group of citizens about current bylaws in place regarding large-scale wind development.

“We have looked at cur-rent bylaws on our books and we do have things in place to cover things like drainage and to cover possible road damage. Financial aspects are also covered in our current bylaws,” he said. “However, this is all predicated by the current state of the Green Energy Act. At any time, the rules can change.”

The Green Energy Act has stripped lower-tier governments’ abilities to even weigh in on solar developments and has restricted municipal power with regards to wind development, Graves said.

The East Oxford Community Alliance came to council recently to restate the more than 70-member organization’s position that wind turbines will not be good for the area.

Although a 10-turbine project slated for Gunn’s Hill Road, being developed by ProWind, appears to be stalled, the group remains active in deterring wind development in the area.

“We know by rumour that ProWind is not moving forward with the project, but we see this as an opportunity not to just sit idly by.

“We see it as an opportunity to make sure we do this all right,” Joan Morris, a member of the East Oxford Community Alliance, said to council.

Last month, ProWind removed its tower from the test plot property for the development. The tower was built two years ago to collect data for the development for various studies required by the Ministry of the Environment.

Bart Geleynse, representative of the wind energy company, said the company had collected all the information needed and decided to remove the tower.

He added that, although the Ontario Power Authority had not yet awarded a contract for the project, the project was not being abandoned.

“This is still an active project. The tower coming down in no way means there is a change in direction for the project,” he said.

Council discussed wind turbine development thoroughly in December at the first meeting as a new council.

At that point, councillors agreed they needed more information about turbines.

Graves is currently working on scheduling a meeting between the Ministry of Environment and all Oxford County mayors and councillors, as well as Oxford MPP Ernie Hardeman and MP Dave MacKenzie. The meeting is expected to take place some time in March in Norwich. Councillors will also be meeting with a representative from the Ministry of Environment during the Ontario Good Roads convention later this month.

northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca

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In today’s Ottawa Citizen, a perfect summary of the whole drive to industrial wind power development in Ontario.

Please read!

http://www.ottawacitizen.com/technology/Denley+Those+political+winds+keep+blowing/3480665/story.html

You can reach the North Gower Wind Action Group at northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca

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Whenever you try to discuss industrial wind turbines with people who are either uninformed or who have been influenced beyond all reason by the provincial government and by the huge corporate wind developer lobby, one of the things they’ll say is, Look at Europe and the Scandinavian countries…they’ve had wind power for years, with no problems.

Not so. In fact, Denmark offered companies huge subsidies much the way Ontario is doing now, and once they stopped, the wind development slowed. But, in Denmark, communities had a say in where wind turbine projects were located, which had a more positive effect in terms of whether there were problems such as noise.

But news from Denmark this week shows a worsening of the situation there too. Concerns about noise and health effects has resulted in the state-owned company deciding NOT to build any more projects onshore. Very telling. Here is an excerpt from the article.

Mass protests mean the energy firm will look offshore

State-owned energy firm Dong Energy has given up building more wind farms on Danish land, following protests from residents complaining about the noise the turbines make.

It had been Dong and the government’s plan that 500 large turbines be built on land over the coming 10 years, as part of a large-scale national energy plan. This plan has hit a serious stumbling block, though, due to many protests, and the firm has now given up building any more wind farms on land.

Anders Eldrup, the CEO of Dong Energy, told TV2 News: ‘It is very difficult to get the public’s acceptance if the turbines are built close to residential buildings, and therefore we are now looking at maritime options.’

http://www.cphpost.dk/news/scitech/92-technology/49869-dong-gives-up-on-land-based-turbines.html

You can reach the North Gower Wind Action Group at northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca

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Perhaps the greatest compliment this wind action group has heard yet came last evening when a community member got up and said that too often, views on wind turbines can be very polarized, but that the panel discussion at the April 13th meeting was the most reasoned and informative he had heard yet.

And that was the tone of the evening. Reason. Information. Shared experiences. Truth.

To sum up:

Dr John Harrison, who has addressed international conferences on noise issues, said that there is a serious disconnect between Ontario’s regulations for wind turbine noise and what engineers and health experts know. He concluded that all things considered, i.e., low wind potential, the number of homes and families that could be exposed to the noise etc., he cannot understand the rationale for a wind turbine development in North Gower. “Why they keep putting these things on top of people in Ontario is beyond me,” he said.

Carmen Krogh documented health effects throughout the province being experienced by people living with wind turbines; she dealt with industry denial, likening their response to that of the tobacco industry which denied any ill effects from tobacco use for decades, despite medical research.

Lawyer Eric Gillespie spoke on the Ian Hanna case, the challenge to the legitimacy of the Green Energy Act in Ontario…legislation that has removed the powers of municipalities to plan and to protect their citizens.

Brampton Realtor Chris Luxemburger discussed results of his now six-year-old study of 600 properties in the Shelburne-Melancthon area which revealed the negative effects of industrial wind turbines on property value; he will soon release results of a new study, which involves 18,000 properties.

And last, retired teacher Stephana Johnston travelled for hours from her Long Point Ontario home to share experiences of living with industrial wind turbines. “The effects Dr Harrison explained to you are for ONE turbine,” she said. “When you have 18 of them around your house as I do, the effect multiplies. … I can tell you, no one in the wind industry is living with 18 turbines around their house.”

And now a correction: the CBC interviewed Prowind’s Bart Geleynse prior to the meeting and he said that the complaints of people like Stephana Johnston are “psychosomatic” and a “reaction to something new,”  “largely based on emotion.” The Prowind sales rep then claimed that the “majority” of the medical community says there are no health effects from wind turbines. This is not at all true: the biased review commissioned by the wind development lobby says that, but other studies clearly identify ill effects from the constant noise and vibration from wind turbines.

Finally, Mr. Geleynse said that Prowind has got approval for its environmental assessment and will have the turbines operating by 2013.  THIS IS NOT TRUE. In fact, according to our legal advisor,Prowind does not have environmental approval for the turbines proposed for North Gower-Richmond, and no decisions have been made by the Ministry of the Environment in Ontario. Further, Prowind has NOT been granted a Feed In Tariff contract with the Ontario Power Authority (OPA) and in fact this project is on a waiting list for transmission capacity. Mr Geleynse’s remarks were aimed at persuading citizens to believe this is a “done deal” and nothing further can be done about it.

Mr Geleynse also told the CBC that he had asked to speak at the meeting and was “turned down”. Not really: it was explained to him that we had a full panel of speakers on the issues (it was not a debate) and he was welcome to attend (but didn’t).

We would also like to correct the impression left by the story in The Ottawa Citizen that Councillor Glenn Brooks did not attend; he was in the audience though not at his reserved seat.

Two hundred plus people attended and more than 100 news signatures on the petition calling for health studies.

Onwards!

To get in touch with the North Gower Wind Action Group, email northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca

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