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Posts Tagged ‘property values and wind turbines’

Health Canada announced a study into the possible links between the noise and infrasound (the wind industry has denied that there are any links, and that infrasound even exists) and health effects, saying there is a “knowledge gap” and a lack of scientific evidence to drive policy.

And, in other news, Nepean-Carleton MP Pierre Poilievre announced an open letter to Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty, asking for a moratorium on the North Gower-Richmond wind power project, due to concerns about health and property values.

This is a good forward step, and encouraging that the federal government has recognized the existence of the complaints from people already living with turbines, recognized the role of both environmental noise and infrasound, and recognized that there is a lack of solid clinical research. (The Chief Medical Officer of Health for Ontario report was simply a literature review, and it too, said there was a need for more research, particularly related to the issue of noise.)

Comments are invited over the next 60 days at

http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/ewh-semt/consult/_2012/wind_turbine-eoliennes/index-eng.php

The study design will be key: WHERE will the studies be conducted (the turbines in Alberta are not the same as what has been shoehorned into Ontario) and WHEN (some periods of the year are windier and therefore less noisy than others. Other questions exist too, but we are not epidemiologists.
Nepean-Carleton residents may wish to send a comment to Mr Poilievre as he offers support to local residents, concerned about the potential effects on our community.

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We’ve ben saying for a while that the people who’ve signed lease agreements to have large-scale wind turbines on their land may be getting a few surprises. Last night’s show on Wind Wise Radio is a clear demonstration of that, as guests talk about animal health, the destruction of the ability to farm for the host farmers and their non-participating (and none too happy) neighbours. We’re talking about animal health, interference with the water table, disruption of tile drainage, and more.

Listen here, and take special note of Wisconsin Senator Frank Lasee, who talks honestly about the people becoming ill in his state, and about what safe setbacks should be. He also says property values in that state for neighbouring properties have dropped 30-50%.

http://www.windwiseradio.org/2012/07/real-farms-and-wind-farms-health-impacts-in-wisconsin-with-sen-frank-lasee-sun-7812-7pm-et/

 

northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca

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We just visited Prowind’s website for an update—there is none, there never is–and were delighted to see the little sidebar of facts about wind power is still there. Cute little factoids pop up like, Wind power development  increases by 30% every two years.

Here are some facts of our own.

Wind power generation efficiency declines by 2 percent a year; by the end of the 20-year contract, the turbines are producing next to nothing, unless they have undergone expensive replacement of the nacelle and the blades.

Wind power efficiency is about 24 percent; solar is about 13, and nuclear is about 80 percent for 40 years. However, wind power developers typically peg the efficiency rate much higher. Algonquin Power, for example, claims an efficiency rate of 37 percent for some of its projects, and depicts a straight line rate of efficiency throughout the 20-years of its contract for government/taxpayer subsidies. This is not illegal; it’s up to investors to do their own research and discover the pie-in-the-sky claims.

Each large-scale wind turbine contains over a ton of “rare earth,” a material that is being mined in China with disastrous environmental consequences, and which is causing people to be made ill. At the end of the life of a large-scale wind turbine, the rare earth and all the toxic hydraulic fluids in the nacelle must be disposed of as toxic waste. With Ontario heading for more than 6,000 of these machines, where are we going to put all that stuff.

Wind turbines leak oil: just Google that and see the photos of the brown-streaked turbine towers.

Wind power developers claim that farm owners can farm right up to the turbines and can treat it just like a “very big tree,” said one company. The most of Ontario’s valuable farmland that is being used is 2 acres, they say. Not so: farm owners are finding out that despite the contract terms, as many as 12 acres of land are being used up, for access roads and equipment.

North American insurance companies are starting to have to explain to people who have leased land for large-scale turbines that they are no longer insured for property insurance or third-party liability. The risk is too great and, the insurance companies say, the property owners have no control over who’s coming on their land and when, so–no insurance! Specialty insurers will probably take over, at much greater premium costs.

The taxpayer-paid subsidy for the average large-scale wind turbine in Ontario si about $500,000 per turbine, per year. In return, the people of Ontario are getting: higher electricity bills, the bill for the transmission lines being built to service the wind power, the bill for power not to be produced when we don’t need it, lowered property values, dead birds and bats, and reduced attractiveness of some of Ontario’s most beautiful landscapes.

Email us at northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca

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In the current issue of Rural Voice, publication of the National Farm Union of Canada, is a column by Ontario resident Robert Budd.

Right off, he puts the boots to the notion that we must bring in wind power because people are dying from coal. In Ontario right now, less than 3 % of our power is produced from coal-fired power generation … and we’re only using coal because we need to keep the plants on in case of a high peak of demand. Mr Budd notes that Denmark uses far more coal to create power, and comments, “If people are dying in Ontario from 4 percent coal use, it’s a wonder the Danes aren’t extinct…”

Indeed.

If only these arguments were just silly, and not a horrendous excuse for industrializing communites, wrecking scenic vistas in a thoroughly beautiful province, crushing property values and actually making people ill.

Read Mr Budd’s column here … and be inspired to write something yourself!

http://freewco.blogspot.ca/2012/06/why-green-energy-doesnt-always-make.html?showComment=1339189964480

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

 

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New South Wales in Australia is being blanketed by industrial wind turbines, in spite of health concerns, rising electricity costs and even a full Senate inquiry into wind power generation.

The effects have been devastating. Here is an interview with sheep farmer Anne Gardner, whose home is a shocking 90 meters from a wind turbine and whose farms is near a wind power generation project, on what has happened to her. She farms sheep for wool and had produced a quality of wool among the best in the world.

The disgust and anger is apparent in the interviewer’s voice as he concludes, we hope that the people will win out eventually.

Our view: legal action is the only resort left to us, when we are fighting the combination of big business and our own government.

Take a few moments to listen to the radio broadcast here: http://www.2gb.com/index2.php?option=com_newsmanager&task=view&id=12922#.T8Q_ITCNCMQ.facebook

If you have a few more minutes, check out this TV news interview, also from Australia: every single point to be made about wind power generation and its effects is in this interview. http://www.todaytonightadelaide.com.au/?page=Story&StoryID=1394

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

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Excellent article by Justin Sadler in yesterday’s Ottawa Sun. Mr Sadler quite rightly reviews comments by the Auditor General on the issue of Ontario’s renewable energy policy–there was never a business case made for the policy, no estimates of whether wind power would ever accomplish what was promised for it, and that claims of job creation are just not true.

Read the article here, and then vote in the poll if it remains open.

http://www.ottawasun.com/2012/05/26/turbine-tussle-whips-up

Email us at northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca

Donations toward our work and information packages for government at all levels, gratefully accepted

PO Box 3, North Gower ON   K0A 2T0

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Please check the maps in our documents and links page to see what the Marlborough wind project in North Gower-Richmond looks like, in terms of impact on the community.

One map shows the 2-km impact; this is based on the recent announcement by the Society for Wind Vigilance–a group of international scientists and health care professionals–that a 2-km setback is the MINIMUM for health and safety.

The other map shows the impact out to 3.2 km on property values.  This is based on the 40% AVERAGE property value loss determined by U.S. real estate appraiser Michael McCann.

If you live in North Gower-Richmond, be sure to be sitting down before you look at the maps.

And then remember that then-president of Prowind Cathy Weston wrote to a news paper last year that “wind farms” have the effect of protecting agricultural land from further housing development. No kidding.

Email us at northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca

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Here from a recent edition of Ontario Farmer:

Dear Editor:

It was good to see Sylvia and John Wiggins suing the landowner over wind turbines. [The Wiggins are suing for over a million dollars in lost property value for their home and equestrian operation in the Clearview area, which will be next to three wind turbines.] My wife and I intend on doing the same if they are successful. These greedy landowners, with multiple land parcels, sign up for turbines but never near their own residences. These people are not really neighbours, nor friends.

Our property and residence will be devalued and our health and wellbeing may be plagued with endless ill effects. We were here first and should not have to be subject to this folly. If the Wiggins’ lawsuit succeeds, it will open the floodgates to a huge number of lawsuits.

These inefficient and not-needed turbines are an example of Toronto politicians running roughshod over rural Ontario. McGuinty has put us deeper in debt and has done more damage to rural Ontario than any other premier.

…Europe is currently stopping and/or cutting back on all wind and solar projects as they have proven to be uneconomical, unreliable, inefficient and too expensive, not at all what they were originally supposed to do.

Ray and Louise Brown, Mitchell’s Bay

Email us at northgowerwindactionactiongroup@yahoo.ca

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Important Protest against wind power subsidy by Ontario Citizens

April 3

The Ontario Feed In Tariff or FIT program has been responsible for unbridled industrial wind power development throughout Ontario. The results? Huge profits for wind power developers. And unreliable, inefficient and expensive wind power that Ontario doesn’t need, despoiled rural communities, dropping property values, diminished tourism potential and worst of all, serious health effects for some people in Ontario.

 

Now, the Wind Industry Barons are blowing into Toronto for the Ontario Feed In Tariff Forum April 3 & 4th  at the Metro Convention Centre, 255 Front Street West.

 

ONTARIO CITIZENS WILL BE ON THE STREET TO TELL THEM FIT IS A “BAD FIT”
FOR ONTARIO!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

Protest Date Tuesday, April 3rd

Time – gather at 11:30

Speakers – 12:00

Protest March 12:30

Place – Simcoe Park on Front Street, beside CBC building and opposite Metro Toronto Convention Centre

 

It is time to stand up for Ontario!

 People are coming from all parts of the province. Bring signs to identify where you are from. 

 

Arrange a bus or use public transit, subways, GO trains to Union Station.  See you there.

Directions: From the main lobby of Union Station (look for signs to railway and GOTrain station to get to main lobby), exit at Front Street, go west (left) on Front St. past York St. and Lower Simcoe St.  Simcoe Park is about 300 meters further west right next to the CBC building on the north side of Front St. 

For more details, check the Wind Concerns Ontario website at http://www.windconcernsontario.ca

Email us at northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca

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Paul Mahon, editor of Ontario Farmer, has covered the issues in the current edition of the paper.

“There are many flaws in logical thinking in the ongoing discussions about wind energy,” he writes. [Editor: he means wind power; wind energy is the actual wind, which can be used to create power. But we digress.] “Without logical thinking we cannot come out with the best outcome.

“There is too much dependence on the all or nothing argument that wind is either all good or all bad, presumably because it is a singular issue. It is not a singular issue, it is at least three separate issues.

“The first issue is, is it a health risk? Are people in proximity to turbines suffering direct health problems? If it is found that turbines do cause health problems, then adequate safeguards need to be built in so that turbines do not have the chance to affect health. If existing turbines are affecting health, remedial measures need to be taken.”

First of all, it’s already been proven that the environmental noise and vibration (infrasound) produced by industrial-scale wind turbines do cause harm to human health (Decision of the Environmental Review Tribunal, July 2011). The health effects from environmental noise have been documented for other types of noise (traffic, airports, etc.) and the effects of infrasound too have been studied. For some reason, when it comes to wind turbines–and we’re talking big ones, not the little toys that exist in some places, and certainly not the iconic but useless turbine at Toronto’s Exhibition Place–these threats to health go away, courtesy the lobbying efforts of the global wind industry.

Editor Mahon uses the word “direct” and we’re not sure whether he understands what he has done. A “direct” health effect from a wind turbine would be if one of them fell on you, or if ice thrown from one of the rotor blades hits you (and that can happen). Rather it is an indirect pathway that has the effect. In other words, the noise causes you to lose sleep and in turn sleep deprivation causes health effects such as headache, raised blood pressure, and more. Similarly, the infrasound or vibration causes changes in the air pressure which in turn cause problems in the inner ear and affect people’s balance.

Thamesville resident Lisa Michaud, a Cornwall native who recently travelled back from Thamesville to speak to an audience in Brinston (Prowind’s South branch 30 MW project), told us that her otherwise healthy 20-year-old son can no longer work as a roofer as the vibration has severly affected his balance. Lisa posted in Facebook today about her drive home from a public meeting: “The drive home from Essex was excruciating! Sudden severe head and ear pain and pressure from the moment I hit highway 8… Had to stop at the Comber Timmy’s for a moment as I felt like vomiting & passing out… So weird it subsided somewhere between Chatham & Ridgetown but kicked me the moment I entered my house!”

Next issue, Paul Mahon says is property values. Unfortunately, he has fallen for the wind developer lobby group propaganda which is that it’s not that there is a serious problem with the turbines, it’s whether people like seeing them or not. Which is part of the problem, with the flashing red lights and all, but certainly not the whole problem. “It affects the ambience,” he writes. Well, yes. Having your formerly quiet rural community suddenly changed to an industrial wind power generation facility certainly affects the ambience just a tad. There are by now dozens of studies that show property values in the proximity of industrial wind turbine projects decline, by as much as 50% … with some properties losing all value.

Mr. Mahon makes the point that just because something worked well elsewhere doesn’t mean it will work here, and he refers to Germany. Now, it must be said that in Germany they have not dumped turbines right on top of people as Ontario has, and to say that there is no opposition to wind turbines in Germany would be completely inaccurate. In fact, the worldwide march against turbines in 2010 began in Berlin.

He concludes with this excellent advice: “Some of these logical questions might have been better researched BEFORE the turbines were built. Because, the truth is, we are years into it already and we still do not know.”

Indeed.

……….

Marlborough 1 project status: awaiting ECT.

FIT program review announcement possibly next week from the Ontario government.

Join our email list at northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca and follow us on Twitter at northgowerwind.

News through the day at Wind Concerns Ontario http://www.windconcernsontario.ca

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