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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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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

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The news arrived on Monday that the appeal of the assessment on a Wolfe Island property owned by Ed and Gail Kenney had failed, and MPAC–Ontario’s assessment agency–declared there to be no effect on property value from the proximity of industrial wind turbines.

The Kenneys have several turbines within a kilometer of their waterfront property and 36 within several kilometers. They sought to have the assessment of their property reduced, which would mean a reduction in taxes.

Te reaction of a normal, sensible person would be that to claim NO effect on value is preposterous.

But there was a lot at stake here. Here are the facts of the case:

-the Kenneys represented themselves; on the other side, MPAC had a slew of expensive lawyers and the wind power developer hired similar talent for the township

-the Kenneys tried to call witnesses to attest to the environmental noise, i.e., a negative factor in the property value, but these witnesses such as Dr John Harrison, were disallowed

-if the Kenneys’ case had succeeded, it would have opened the floodgates to a torrent of assessment appeals, as hundreds of properties throughout war-torn Ontario are now seeing diminuition of property value. Therefore, it could NOT succeed.

The Kenneys say they are regrouping and considering their next steps, but at the Town Hall hosted by MPP Todd Smith in Picton recently, Mrs Kenney appealed to everyone to file an assessment appeal. At the least, such a flood of appeals would clog the system, but at best, someone, somewhere will succeed.

The truth is on our side.

Email us at northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca

 

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Here is a posting from Nature Canada’s blog on the recently reported bird and bat kills at Wolfe Island, as a result of the 86-turbine industrial wind project.

How Ontario can claim this is all for the environment and that they’re doing everything possible to protect people and wildlife is incredible.

http://naturecanadablog.blogspot.com/2011/07/wolfe-island-wind-farm-still-one-of.html

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Wolfe Island Wind Farm Still one of most Dangerous for Birds, Bats

 
*Purple Martin at Home
Tree Swallow via Marshall Segal on Flickr

TransAlta has just released its fourth Report on bird and bat monitoring from its Wolfe Island wind plant located on the west side of Wolfe Island, near Kingston Ontario.

The report affirms that TransAlta’s Wolfe Island Wind Energy plant is one of the most destructive for birds and bats in North America.

Easily visible from the Kingston waterfront, the 86 turbines continue to kill large numbers of birds and bats. Most of the casualties described in the report are the same species reported in the three previous TransAlta studies of bird and bat deaths at their Wolfe Island plant, with Tree Swallow and Purple Martin at the top of the list, and including Bobolink and Barn Swallow, both listed as Threatened by the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC).

All of the Ontario swallow species listed in the report are suffering long-term population declines, which makes the unforeseen impacts of the wind energy plant on wildlife all the more troubling. Only two raptors casualties were reported, which may be more a reflection of reduced search efforts in this period, although winter raptor surveys on the island revealed higher numbers of several species compared with the previous year, in particular, Rough-legged Hawk and Short-eared Owl. However, raptors do not appear to be using the habitat on which the wind plant in the north-west corner of the island is situated, and where the turbine density is highest. Three migratory species of bats, including Hoary, Eastern Red, and Silver-haired, comprised the balance of the bat casualties. Unlike birds, which are struck by the fast spinning tips of the turbine blades, bats are killed due to “barotrauma,” a condition caused by the sudden change of pressure around the blades that result in damage to their lungs.

The report presents the findings of monitoring programs that began in June 2009, which will produce reports approximately every 6 months over the first three years of the wind plant’s operations. The current report represents the third six-month period of monitoring. (The first Report was for a two-month period). Several aspects of the plant’s impact on birds and bats are monitored, including casualty rates of birds and bats, displacement of waterfowl and distribution and behaviour of raptors.

The results of the report reinforce the significance for birds and bats of the open scrubland habitat on the offshore islands at the eastern end of Lake Ontario, and onshore alvar habitats such as those found on Ostrander Point in Prince Edward County or Amherst Island. Wind energy plants, transmission towers, and other types of developments that put birds and bats at high risk should be excluded from these significant areas. All of Wolfe Island and a portion of its surrounding waters were recognized as a globally significant Important Bird Area (IBA) by BirdLife International’s Canadian partners, Nature Canada and Bird Studies Canada.

Taken together, the reports show that TransAlta’s Wolfe Island Wind Energy plant has one of the highest annual rates of casualties, reporting 16.5 birds per turbine and 43.7 bats per turbine, based on the 6 month study period from July 1 to December 31, 2010. Over a year, this would amount to approximately 1,500 birds and about 3,800 bats. Only one wind plant of the 45 reported on in a landmark 2010 study cited in the TransAlta Report by the US National Wind Coordinating Committee killed more birds per turbine. That plant, the Buffalo Mountain Wind Farm in Tennessee, which is consisted of only three .66 MW turbines at the time of the study, and so makes for a poor comparison. Most wind energy projects have much lower casualty rates for birds and bats.

It is also becoming clear that the July to September period (when the Swallows congregate and the bats migrate) is the most devastating for birds and bats. In my view, it is time that TransAlta implement serious mitigation, and turn off the turbines during this high risk period. This would save the lives of hundreds, if not thousands of birds and bats.

 

E-mail us at northgowerwindactiongroup@yahoo.ca

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This is from Eagle Watch. (Warning: strongly held opinions!)

From the Eagle Watch #157
June 24, 2011

Assimilation Agenda 2011:
AFN Hosts the IISEM International Indigenous Summit on Energy and Mining
Commentary

Bryan Hendry is Senior Policy Advisor, Economic Partnerships at the AFN (Assembly of First Nations). 

The AFN is Canada’s #1 NPO Native Puppet Organization.  The AFN which claims to be the voice of Status Indians or Indigenous in “Canada”, is actually one big dancing puppet for the colonial entities.  Few Indigenous people recognize the AFN as their spokesperson.

Hendry sent us a brochure for the International Indigenous Summit on Energy & Mining IISEM to be held June 27-29, 2011 at the Sheraton on the Falls Hotel in Niagara Falls, Ontario.  We wondered why. 

We at the Eagle Watch are acutely aware that the mineral wealth and energy potential in northern Ontario and all across Turtle Island are phenomenal.  We hope that most of it will be left where it is unless absolutely necessary.  The free-for-all of pillage and plunder to acquire and hoard all of the Earth’s riches must be identified and cease. 

Did Hendry want us to critique the event?  We don’t have to attend to do that.  The brochure gives plenty of hints as to what it’s all about.

The AFN will host the IISEM spectacle with AFN National Chief Shawn Atleo as Special Guest and Speaker.  Shawn’s US counterpart, President Jefferson Keel, National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) will be right beside him.  We asked one of our friends on the other side of the invisible line, ie the border about Jefferson.  Here’s what he said,  “Succinctly put, Jefferson Keel is what Malcolm X often called a “House Negro”. That infers a “slave that is conditioned to jump at every bark of the ‘master’ and whose sole reason for existence is to serve””.

Ouch!

Keel is Lt. Governor of the Chickasaw Nation of Oklahoma.  He was in the US military for over 20 years.

In what we term blatant deception, arrogant mendacity and slick double speak, the IISEM promoters say, “Indigenous peoples and government representatives from around the world will gather for a major summit on resource development in the spirit of a shared commitment to produce and provide long-term sustainable energy for future generations”. Representatives will be coming from China, Brazil and Germany as well as all the biggest of the big  :-$globalist corporations:-$.   

Master of BS and fantasy, Shawn Atleo is on a roll, “In Canada alone, it is estimated that there will be $400 billion worth of mineral resource development projects in the coming years that affect First Nations territories.  It will be critical to these projects, and to the Canadian economy, that First Nation people and concerns be addressed.  There is also the potential for our Peoples to be the long term providers of energy and environmental security – ensuring that North Americans can rely upon domestic energy production that has little or no impact upon our air and water qualities.”

Shawn, are you really serious about this?  You’re just joking, right?  Looks more like you’ve been well briefed in what to say.  Are you paying any attention to what dams have and are doing to our beautiful rivers?  Are you noticing the problems caused by the oil sands development, which by the way is totally for export??

Oblivious to our questions, Shawn continues, “Our peoples can be full partners in development from pipelines to power lines, from potash to precious metals.  With partnership comes full participation from revenue sharing to ownership, from employment to environmental stewardship. We must engage early and engage often on these projects, and this Summit is an example of this principle in action.”

Now we know for sure he’s dreaming.  Does he not pay any attention to history?  It’s mainly about how we’ve been robbed and cheated for centuries.

Never one to run out of words, Atleo says, “We look forward to continuing our work with President Keel and the Tribal Chiefs of NCAI on energy and the environment, justice and border issues and I look forward to new discussions among the global Indigenous community on how our work together can transcend borders.”

Is he referring to the “Indigenous” of China, the Chinese who want to buy up Turtle Island’s resources??  Does Atleo see himself as a transnational corporate elitist??

Guest speakers at the IISEM include: Anthony Hodge, President of the International Council on Mining and Metals; Ernesto Sirolli, advocate for Indigenous sustainable communities; Nunavut Deputy Premier Peter Taptuna; Ian Anderson, CEO of Kinder Morgan Pipelines; [as yet unnamed] Indigenous Leaders from across North America presenting best practices from successful community energy and mining sector projects; Margo Gray-Proctor, Chairwoman, National Centre for American Indian Enterprise Development (NCAIED), Anthony Hodge, President, International Mining Council on Mining and Metals; Dave Porter, British Columbia First Nations Energy and Mining Council; Tracey LeBeau, United States Department of Energy, Robert Reid, McKenzie-Valley Aboriginal Pipeline Group and 80 other speakers from around the world.

What a cozy bunch!

According to the brochure, the focus of the event will be “Sustainable and responsible resource development”.  Give me a break!

This is an oxymoron with the scent of Maurice Strong and NWO all over it.  There is nothing sustainable about mining.  Similarly, all current sources of energy including the so-called green or alternative energy suppliers are harmful to Life in some way.  Somebody is making a lot of money and it sure ain’t us Indigenous.

The smirking Shawn Atleo says, “Now more than ever, with the push for green energy, and the growing global need for natural and mineral resources, First Nations have the opportunity to build our economies and empower our citizens for the benefit of our communities and future generations.”

This is complete hooey.  Since when have Indigenous communities ever benefited from the destructive pillage of our land??  Nothing substantive has changed.  Only the style and fashion of the piracy.  Everyone’s wearing green this year.

First of all, there is no need to continue digging up all the minerals in Mother Earth.  Most minerals such as uranium, titanium, iron, tin, copper etc. go to the military for the purpose of killing and controlling people.  For consumer uses, we could be recycling more and using less.  You don’t need gold or diamond jewellery.  You don’t need those cellphones, etc. that require rare earth metals for their manufacture.  We don’t really even need these damned computers.

“First Nations” people will not benefit anymore than the average person who struggles to make a living in a world where the wealth becomes more and more concentrated into the hands of a tiny elite.  Pollution from mining, nuclear reactors, deforestation, etc. are killing people and destroying Life everywhere on the planet.

This summit is being held at a posh hotel in Niagara Falls Ontario.  Most of us could not afford to go. A room at the hotel costs $159 per night.  Here are the fees for the conference:
$300 First Nation/Indigenous Delegate Registration Fee ($400 AFTER MAY 16, 2011)
$500 Corporate/Government Official Delegate Registration Fee ($600 AFTER MAY 16, 2011)
$30 Students with valid student identification ($30 AFTER MAY 16, 2011)
Complimentary – Elders . Complimentary – Veterans . Complimentary – Media

A lot of booze will likely be flying around to disarm and discredit Indigenous participants.  A trade fair will sell all kinds of mining and energy products.  The rental fee for a booth is $1,000.

Who Pays the Piper Calls the Tune

There’s a lot of money behind this intensive psychological warfare.  If they speak loud enough and say it often enough, somebody is going to believe them.  Why do we keep falling for their con jobs on us?? Take a careful look at this list of Event Sponsors:  INAC Indian and Northern Affairs Canada, 3M, UnionGas, PDAC Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada, GRE, Hydro One, the Mining Association of Canada, Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation and First Air.

3M is in there like a dirty designer $shirt$ with their tapes and films holding it all together.  In 2009, 3M set up 3M Renewable Energy Division to sell “solar energy, wind energy, geothermal and biofuel product solutions such as films, tapes, coatings, encapsulants, sealants and adhesives…” 3M has special “polyurethane wind tapes” for wind turbine blades and films for solar panels, “with added properties for ultraviolet stability, low flammability and self cleaning”.

We googled the name of the IISEM event and got over 5,000 hits, some 300 with Maurice Strong’s name.  This includes the Canadian Energy Council, part of the World Energy Council which hosts events like the World Energy Congress held in Montreal in September 2010. The Energy Council chooses a Canadian Energy Person of the Year.  For 2010, it was Stephen G. Snyder, President and CEO of TransAlta Corporation.  TransAlta is grabbing funding for big “green” projects like the wind turbines at Melancthon, Ontario north of 6Nations Grand River Territory and Wolfe Island where the biggest industrial wind installation in Canada is killing untold numbers of Bald Eagles and other endangered species of birds.

The IISEM next week will host tours of the region to places like the Seneca Casino where you can blow a few more bucks and get drunk all over again.  Rumour has it that everyone will think they’re at the G20 Summit where they’ll be inducted into the Global Elite for World Governance.

This “summit” is yet another expeditionary campaign in psychological warfare.  The elitists know we are onto them.  They think they can beguile and seduce us into their ways by making shining poster children out of a handful of our people.  They know many of our communities in dire straits are desperately impoverished and willing to try the colonial way one more time.  Flogging a dead horse will never produce any horse power.

Some people say we have to work with the big players.  There’s a big difference between working “with” someone and working “for” them.  It is an Indigenous custom to turn our backs on things we know are wrong. 

If for some reason, you plan to attend the IISEM, please let us know how it went.  We can be quite sure now that they won’t be letting us in on a complimentary media pass!

Kittoh
<kittoh@storm.ca>

We welcome your feedback!  Forward, post and consider printing for your cyberphobic friends and relatives.

The Eagle Watch Newsletter is sent to interested individuals, both Indigenous and nonNative, politicians especially the Canadian ones and an assortment of English language medi

Notes, Sources and Contact Info

Mark Twain said, “How easy it is to make people believe a
lie, and how hard it is to undo that work again!”

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Prowind president Cathy Weston has a letter published in today’s Woodstock Sentinel-Review, the newspaper for people living near Prowind’s two southern Ontario proposed projects. Here it is:

Dear Editor,

Mr. Desmond’s grandstand statements about the effects of wind turbines on surrounding property values are anecdotal in nature and certainly do not hold true to scientifi c rigor. A recent study completed within Chatham-Kent concluded there is no statistical evidence to demonstrate that wind farms negatively affect rural residential market values. ( http://www.canwea.ca/pdf/talkwind/Proper tyValuesConsultingReportFebruary42010.pdf)

His comments about the lack of opportunity for taxation because “senior management” are shied away from areas with wind farms is unsubstantiated. He further neglects to remind readers that wind turbines themselves generate tax revenue for the community. Municipalities receive annual tax dollars for the duration of the wind farm based on the output potential of each turbine. Local governments also benefit indirectly from the improvements to roads and other infrastructure that wind developers must upgrade in order to complete development.

Further, development, construction and operation of wind farms bring additional income to the community in the form of jobs and income to the landowners. The development of wind farms on agricultural properties ensures that farming activities can continue for years to come by providing supplementary income to farmers, and protecting against urbanization of rural areas.

The Green Energy Act aimed to streamline the approvals process, to reduce duplication of time and effort in proposal review, and to offer a consistent approach to renewable energy development throughout the Province. That said, the uniqueness of each community in Ontario must continue to be respected. Prowind Canada considers local governments to be an important stakeholder in all projects, providing strong representation for the area. Township and county officials are consulted on all major elements of project development to ensure that their feedback and requirements specific to the community are incorporated into project design.

The wind energy industry is committed to responsible and sustainable development in Ontario and across the country. Setbacks in Ontario for wind turbines are among the most stringent in the world and are designed to protect health and safety of the public. In March 2011, the Ontario Divisional Court decision upheld the current regulations for wind turbine setbacks of 550 metres, stating that these distances were established through extensive public consultation, considering the views of a wide range of stakeholders.

Cathy Weston, President, Prowind Canada Inc.

You can make up your own mind but we have a couple of points for discussion:

-the Chatham-Kent property value study (also known as the Simmons-Canning report, paid for by the Canadian Wind Energy Association/CanWEA) was rife with errors; the authors couldn’t get the results they wanted so they ran analysis after analysis to come to their conclusion. It must be noted that the authors relied only on VIEW of the turbines as a potential factor affecting value; they note that noise and other effects could affect value but they did not study that. There are other studies that DO show a loss in property value such as Appraisal One Group, Chris Luxemburger (who has been a guest in North Gower), Michael McCann and more. For an interview with an Ontario Realtor discussing property values and industrial wind turbines, go to: http://www.bayshorebroadcasting.ca/news_item.php?NewsID=35521 His opinion? 25-40% drop in value. Note also that the Ontario Real Estate Association now lists power projects such as wind turbine installations along with garbage dumps and gravel quarries on its Sellers’ Property Information Sheet or SPIS.

-While it is true that the landowners leasing land for industrial wind turbines are paid for their leases, there are very few jobs associated with industrial wind power projects. Most of the jobs are in the very short-term for construction, and then afterward, there is only one job per 10 turbines at most, if you follow the example of other projects. At Wolfe Island, for example, three local jobs have been created, for 86 turbines.

-“Protecting against urbanization of rural areas”???????????? We fail to see how industrializing a village and its surroundings by installing an industrial wind power generation project is protecting anything.

Let’s have another quote from Prowind, shall we? Bart Geleynse, speaking to Mark Sutcliffe on Rogers TV, April 2010. Sutcliffe: Do the turbines make noise? Geleynse: “Of course they do; they’re power plants.”

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John Laforet addressed the Empire Club in Toronto yesterday and served notice to the corporate industrial wind business that the people of Ontario are onto their game and we are NOT standing down. In a masterful, at times whimsical, amusing and then downright forceful speech, Laforet debunked all notions that industrial-scale wind power generation is “green” and painted a horrifying picture of the costs to the people of Ontario in terms of health effects, lost property values, scarred landscapes, and horrendous taxpayer subsidy to a here-today, gone-tomorrow business sector.

He told the audience about what is planned for Thunder Bay: the blasting of the entire top of the escarpment there, including a 150-year-old significant sugar maple bush, to accommodate industrial wind turbines. “Does that sound green to you?” And Wolfe Island, where bird kills are now SIX TIMES what the developer estimated, and the problem is so bad that TransAlta has hired two people to collect dead birds: “Is that an example of Dalton McGuinty’s plan for green jobs in Ontario?”

His assertion that the industrial wind business is really all about natural gas (“Suncor, Enbridge, TransAlta—any of these names familiar to you??”) took many in the audience by surprise, as did his estimate of the billions the corporate wind industry would cost Ontario.

He told the wind business “you better be prepared to tell it to a judge” because the next step for communities and property owners in Ontario is the courts.

The result was a standing ovation.

What followed was a Q & A period with some questions being posed by the wind business, which Laforet parried back with whip-smart answers. Example: What is the basis for your claim that power rates are going to increase by 46% in Ontario? Laforet: Dwight Duncan said that: he’s the Finance Minister, I’ve got to think he’s got the reference behind him. Wind power has been in Europe without problem for 20 years, what do you say to that? Laforet: I say there are more than 400 community organizations against wind in 21 countries in Europe, what does that tell you?

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

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