Monthly Archives: April 2014
“LEAVE” a poem by Esther Wrightman
I should have known
..that night watching
…our gracious hollow tree in the field
….burst into flames.
And firemen running about —
..frenzied ants — revealing
her charred remains.
Something should have clicked
..when the pine,
….a hundred years)
twisted to the ground.
And even last week,
..in case I didn’t get the message,
that Manitoba maple
..with all the keys to the world,
…where the early days hammock .. hung
snapped in half.
as the yellow house
dismantles — brick by
fence lines rip up
as an old roll of fabric,
ponds, bursting with every frog we know
become backfilled graves,
and cabooses and box cars
morph into black tankers and
white towers — eagles to
wild grass to
Now, put out the flames
with waves of tears, and
— Esther Wrightman (April 2014)
Free Public Lecture: Carmen Krogh – May 7th, 2014
Wind Farm Fallout: Roads Take a Pounding
April 25, 2014 – Monte Sonneberg – Simcoe Reformer
ARVIS – Wind power companies have done a lot of damage to roads in Haldimand County.
Each of the 168 wind turbines put up by NextEra, Capital Power and Samsung requires 40 truckloads of cement to anchor the base. Then there are the dump trucks filled with soil and gravel and the cranes and heavy equipment required to move parts of the giant structures around.
Most of this is happening on concession roads, culverts and bridges designed to carry the occasional heavy truck and tractor.
Fortunately for Haldimand taxpayers, the county thought about this before the wind companies went to work. Agreements require the companies to restore Haldimand’s roads to the condition they were in before construction began. Work in this direction has begun in west Haldimand now that the NextEra and Capital Power projects are in place.
“If they’re doing the damage, they know who’s paying for it,” says Jarvis-area Coun. Leroy Bartlett. “That’s the deal.”
Damage has been noted on significant sections of Walpole roads 3 and 4. However, the worst damage by far has occurred on a 14.8-kilometre section of Walpole Road 5.
Walpole Road 5 is a gravel road. It served as the staging area for NextEra and Capital Power construction equipment. There are also a fair number of turbines along this stretch as well as a couple transformer stations.
Walpole Road 5 is the first to be repaired because it was so badly beaten down. Haldimand has hired CRL Campbell Construction of Wainfleet to do the work. The firm is digging new ditches, repairing soft spots, and putting down 30 centimetres of new gravel. Once the road is restored, it will be tarred and chipped for the first time.
“Now is the time to do it,” says Kris Franklin, Haldimand’s manager of green energy infrastructure. “The road base will be in its best condition once it is restored.”
The wind companies are not paying for the paving, at least not directly. The $1.5 million required will come from Haldimand’s Vibrancy Fund, which is a reserve the wind power companies pay into as the county’s share for hosting this infrastructure.
Bartlett says council approved the paving as compensation for the inconvenience Concession 5 residents put up with the past year.
Some county residents have been taken aback by the intensity of turbine construction. Haldimand has a half-load restriction on back roads from the first of March till the end of April. However, the limit has been waived for turbine construction.
Bartlett says that’s been done to end construction as quickly as possible. Everyone knows the affected roads will have to be rebuilt so there’s no use in prolonging the disruption.
“May as well get them in and get them out,” Bartlett said. “The construction is going to happen anyway.”
The road work will last into 2015. Haldimand County is fielding reports from residents who believe turbine construction has damaged roads in their neighbourhood. As well, the 67-turbine Samsung project is underway in the central-east portion of the county.
Betty Ortt of Jarvis, spokesperson for Wind Concerns Haldimand, has heard reports of road damage related to the Samsung work.
“It’s really messing up the roads down there,” Ortt said, adding she’s concerned that all this turbine work will shorten the life of Haldimand’s old bridges. Even basic bridges on back roads can cost more than $1 million to repair.
Anyone wishing to report road, bridge and drainage damage can do so by sending an email to email@example.com.
See original article here: http://www.simcoereformer.ca/2014/04/24/jarvis-roads-take-a-pounding
MAWT Inc. Info Night – MAY 7TH – SILVERDALE HALL – 7PM-9PM
MAWT Inc. Information Night
Moving out: Anti-wind activist leaves Ontario worried for family’s health
April 25, 2014 – The Independent – Serving Petrolia & Central Lambton
Esther Wrightman feels like she is being evicted from her own home.
The woman who has been at the forefront of the anti-industrial wind turbine movement in Middlesex and Lambton County is moving to New Brunswick.
Wrightman, who heads up the Middlesex-Lambton Wind Concerns group and runs the Ontario Wind Resistance website, put up the for sale sign on her home Tuesday as workers from NextEra continue to put up wind turbines around her home just outside of Warwick. She says it was one of the toughest things she’s ever done. “You feel like you’ve been evicted,” says Wrightman who fears for the health of her family.
“I don’t think we had much of a choice here,” she says. “When you have people in your family with (pre-existing) health problems…you can’t risk it to stay…you have to leave.”
Wrightman has be in the forefront of the fight against a number of projects, including the Bornish and Adelaide projects by NextEra Energy which are right in her backyard. She went to the Ontario Energy Board to try to stop the company from building its transmission wires down the roads in her community, but lost. Now, crews are busy in the neighbourhood putting up one turbine after another.
“It really does make you want to throw up,” she says as she watches the turbines go up in the places which used to be dots on maps in NextEra’s plans. “I know these dots on these maps in my head now, after so many years now – where they are and who they effect …And then you see the dots ripped in the ground…yeah this is exactly what I had imagined. Somewhere in my mind there was a chance it wouldn’t happen…but now it’s holes and concrete… “This is what I thought would happen, but now its worse because it has happened.
“These companies have come in, they won’t be staying as people they’ll be staying as machines but you have to stay and suffer or you have to leave…That does make me angry.”
Wrightman says some of that anger has worn off as she plans to move her family to New Brunswick with her parents. New Brunswick isn’t pursuing wind energy so the family will take its nursery business to the province this summer and start again. The activist may have to return to Ontario. NextEra is suing Wrightman for libel after labeling the company as Next-Terror on line and on placards during some of the dozens of demonstrations she’s been part of. She’s not ready to walk away from that fight.
“They’ve taken my place, taken my home that I was so attached to, and five years of my life fighting,” she says. “I’m determined that they won’t take my right to speak out as a person. I’m determined they won’t take my happiness and they won’t take my health and the health of my family.”
But she admits they have taken away some very precious things – her sense of being rooted in a community and her faith in the political system. “I cannot put any faith in politicians at all…It’s a game and your pawns in their game,” says Wrightman who won’t stay in Ontario to see if an anticipated provincial election will change the situation.
Wrightman says she is concerned for the neighbours she leaves behind and the impression she may leave with others who are still fight projects in their neighbourhoods. “It does look somewhat that I’m pulling up stakes, leaving retreating. I don’t like how it looks. I’m sure the wind companies like it, “ she says. “Some people may say ‘you need to stay you have to stay and help,’ As much as I would like to stay and fight I can’t do that to my family.”
In the end, she says it is a personal choice to leave the province to protect the health of her family. “I’m a voice I’m a single person…this is what happens. We fought, we pushed them back,” she says adding she doesn’t know what to say to others continuing the fight. “When they ask, what could I do, I don’t even know what to tell them – fight government? Fight wind companies? I don’t know. Now, when the wind turbines are up its even harder – it’s almost impossible. They’re not coming down. “It’s a hard pill to swallow.”
See original article here: http://petrolialambtonindependent.ca/2014/04/25/moving-out-anti-wind-activist-leaves-ontario-worried-for-familys-health/
MPAC study on property values and wind turbines self-serving
WIND CONCERNS ONTARIO News release
The year-late report from the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC) on the effect of wind turbines on Ontario property values is nothing more than a self-serving exercise by bureaucrats to serve their government masters, says Wind Concerns Ontario.
President Jane Wilson, who consulted with real estate appraisers and finance professionals, commented that “the reality is, as anyone knows, no one wants to live near a wind turbine. But the government doesn’t want the voting public to know more about the negative effects of what they’ve done with their wind power program. So, the bureaucrat assessors at MPAC took their time, and came up with the answer the government wants—no impact on value.”
Instead of using comparison to actual sales as real estate appraisers do, the assessment staff at MPAC used a mathematical methodology called multiple regression analysis. “Unlike actual comparisons to sales, this type of analysis can be manipulated to get the ‘right’ answer,” Wilson explains. “They left out sales before 2008, they only studied turbines of a certain size, and they completely excluded homes that have been abandoned and purchased by the wind power developers.”
The MPAC study also does not include properties that are listed for sale but never sell. “You can’t measure what didn’t happen,” Wilson adds.
The purpose of the study was to justify MPAC’s refusal to add wind power developments as a factor in assessing property value, although the corporation does factor in other less desirable features such as quarries, garbage dumps and other industrial facilities.
“Taxpayers paid for this study which will now doubtless be used by their own government against them, as they seek re-assessment of their properties, or even go to court for lost property value,” Wilson said.
Read more from WCO.
Turtles vs. turbines
A Blanding’s turtle roadside at Ostrander Point. Photo from Prince Edward County Field Naturalists.
The Ontario Divisional Court has ruled in favor of a wind turbine project that put groups with environmental interests at odds with each other.
On one side is an alternative energy project. On the other is protection of a threatened turtle species and fragile soil.
Prince Edward County Field Naturalists (PECFN) took Ostrander Point Gilead Power Inc. to court to challenge the Ontario Ministry of the Environment’s “renewable energy approval” to build nine wind turbines near Lake Ontario in Prince Edward County.
The court decision – now on hold pending a further appeal — would allow Ostrander to start construction after the Environmental Review Tribunal revoked the Ministry’s approval.
PECFN relied on the Endangered Species Act to halt the project. The act requires proof of harm to human health, or serious and irreversible harm to plant…
View original post 670 more words
Health authorities admit ‘wind turbine syndrome’ is real
March 6, 2014 – Natural News – J.D Heyes
(NaturalNews) An Irish health official has warned that people who live near massive wind turbines of the sort used to generate electricity run the risk of having their physical and psychological health compromised.
According to a report in the Irish Examiner newspaper, the official — Dr. Colette Bonner — says further that people who are at risk of the controversial wind turbine syndrome need to be treated “appropriately and sensitively as these symptoms can be debilitating.”
As the paper reported:
Following a review of international research on the health effects of wind turbine noise, the Department of Health’s deputy chief medical officer concluded that wind turbines are not a threat to public health, but “there is a consistent cluster of symptoms related to wind turbine syndrome which occurs in a number of people in the vicinity of industrial wind turbines”.
What is wind turbine syndrome?
It is supposedly a condition suffered by people living within earshot of the noise made by wind turbine blades as they spin round. The blades are known to make infrasounds, vibrations that we cannot consciously “hear” but still have an effect on the inner ear, Breitbart News reported. Symptoms include fatigue, dizziness, headache, difficulty concentrating and insomnia.
Irish official first ranking expert to give ‘syndrome’ legitimacy
A letter that reporters and editors of the paper claim to have seen tells how, in a review sent by Bonner to the country’s Department of Environment in November, “there are specific risk factors for this syndrome and people with these risk factors experience symptoms.”
“These people must be treated appropriately and sensitively as these symptoms can be very debilitating,” she added, according to the Irish daily.
Experts have disagreed on whether wind turbine syndrome is real or if it is merely a psychological concoction in response to anguish over not wanting to live near a turbine wind farm.
Bonner “has been quoted in a variety of policy proposals related to noise and set back distance, advising Minister Jan O’Sullivan regarding revisions to 2006 standards that ‘there is a consistent cluster of symptoms related to wind turbine syndrome which occurs in a number of people in the vicinity of industrial wind turbines,'” writes Hank Campbell at Science 2.0. “Well, that’s epidemiology right there. You can find almost anything if you try. We have had similar claims in the US, about self-reported mental health issues after wind turbines went up, especially among people who were against the turbines in the first place.”
Following her review, the Irish Department of Health’s Food and Environmental Health Unit wrote a letter to the Department of the Environment asking officials there to consider hiring more experts to further study the health effects of wind turbine syndrome.
The Department of the Environment, however, has dismissed Bonner’s literature review as “preliminary,” adding that it was “not a recommendation of the Department of Health.”
Not everyone is signing on just yet
The Department of Environment is currently conducting a review of the 2006 Wind Energy Development Guidelines, the Irish Examiner reported.
Meanwhile, the Department of Health has said that the deputy CMO’s comments “did not constitute expert advice” but rather were “a general overview of the literature in this area.”
The department went on to confirm that a “range of symptoms have been described by people living close to wind turbines mainly related to general environmental noise exposure.”
“These symptoms include headache, irritability, difficulty concentrating, fatigue, dizziness, anxiety and sleep disturbance, and are often described in relation to annoyance,” a spokesman, who was note named, told the paper.
“Anyone who experiences such symptoms should seek medical advice from their family doctor, who may be able to prescribe suitable medication,” the spokesman continued.
Campbell added sardonically: “They may not be great for people but they sure are terrible for bats and birds. But they can’t hire paid lobbyists, so I bet wind turbines are here to stay.”
See original. Article here: http://www.naturalnews.com/044196_wind_turbine_syndrome_health_authorities_mysterious_illness.html##ixzz2ziHykukD