Damning report of the Polish national auditor on wind developments

Wind Power Complex installations demonstrate a common, reoccurring  and global pattern of adverse effects and harm.  The following  mirrors the range of issues being reported and documented by impacted residents in Ontario, Canada.

Massive conflict of interests, no adequate measurement of noise and deliberate misinformation of residents.
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A NATIONAL ONLINE PLATFORM
FOR SAFE WIND TURBINE SETBACKS FROM HOMES

 

13 May 2016

The president of the Polish National Audit Authority (NIK) told a parliamentary committee on 12 May 2016 that in up to one third of all the rural municipalities covered by the NIK investigation, decision makers responsible for granting permits for wind farm developments, or close family members of such local officials, were beneficiaries of land leases for these projects.

These are the findings of a multi-year study by the Polish Audit Authority, which sought to investigate if the public interest was adequately safeguarded in the planning and permitting process for publicly-subsidized wind power developments. Krzysztof Kwiatkowski, NIK president, told the parliamentary committee on infrastructure that the study included a total of 70 inspections in 51 municipalities and 19 county-level local government administrations.

In 90 per cent of inspected municipalities, local authority’s approval of wind farm developments was made contingent on the developer’s funding the preparation of planning documentation or making donations to the municipality. Yet, under Polish law such expenditures must be covered from the municipality’s own budget. According to the Polish Audit Authority, such actions may give rise to conflict of interests between the developer’s preferences and the interests of municipalities and local communities.

Mr Kwiatkowski also noted that the existing regulations on noise measurement did not guarantee “reliable [assessment] of nuisance resulting from the operation of a wind farm”. Specifically, under the existing regulations noise was measured at low speed levels, with wind speed below 5 m/s. However, the noise is most intensive at wind speeds of 10-12 m per second, which are optimal for wind turbine’s performance. Furthermore, the regulations did not require measurements of other impacts such as infrasound and shadow flicker, according to President Kwiatkowski.

The Polish National Auditor also noted that in the absence of clear laws and consistent caselaw of courts, wind farms were occasionally built in areas of outstanding landscape value.

The inspections also disclosed that in one third of the municipalities there were conflicts of interests involving “individuals who were primary beneficiaries of wind farm projects”, that is people who concluded land lease contracts for wind turbines. Such people tended to be “mayors, members of their immediate families, municipality officials, council members” who had approved changes to local zoning plans enabling the construction of wind farms in the first place.

The Polish National Auditor also questioned the manner in which local communities were being informed about the planned developments. At times, meetings were announced in a manner intended to make it difficult for interested residents to attend and then the failure to attend such meeting was considered to imply consent on the part of local population.

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Article originally posted on: friends-against-wind.org

An Inconvenient Stewardship

“Does the Minister believe it is appropriate for the Government to approve a project that puts out inaccurate and incomplete information?”

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Oak Ridges Moraine scene
painting by Oak Ridges Moraine artistHarry Stooshinoff
 

The Oak Ridges Moraine region was a model of how community stewardship of the great aquifer, which was dubbed the “rain barrel” of southern Ontario, could become a driving force for protective environmental legislation such as the ORM Protection and Conservation Act.

Development is carefully controlled to protect water resources in municipalities like City of Kawartha Lakes. So the imposition of greed energy on the communities has been seen as an insult to their established culture of stewardship.

Protecting the Oak Ridges Moraine was an important issue for the Liberals during the election campaign which saw Dalton McGuinty elected Premier in 2003. Dalton McGuinty is now an Independent Director of a renewable energy company:

Key people..

Dalton McGuinty, Independent Director
Innergex Renewable Energy, Inc.
 

Description Innergex Renewable Energy Inc.

Innergex Renewable Energy, Inc. operates as a Canadian independent renewable power producer…

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Tragic Support for Destruction of the Oak Ridges Moriane

WPD Wild Turkey Road

WpdCanada at work on Wild Turkey Rd in the Oak Ridges Moraine.

Re: Letter to the Editor: Landowner has ‘no complaints’ about work being done by wind company in Manvers Twp.

Industrialization of the natural environment is never good or beneficial, despite Mr. McKim’s protestations to the opposite.

No person truly interested in preserving our natural heritage now and for future generations would support such carnage. Mr. McKim is supporting the start of the plan to clear a one-kilometre stretch along the unopened road allowance known as Wild Turkey Road people used to use as a nature trail.

The trees being cut down are 70 to 90 years in age.

The  wind energy developer has also been granted permission to clear a six-metre wide swath of trees along an additional 1.75 km stretch of another unopened pioneer trail called Gray Road to accommodate the larger than normal requisite hydro poles. Some of those trees along this trail are more than 100 years old. The trees and ground vegetation to be razed not only provide a wildlife movement corridor but also provide habitat for wildlife that use the large pond found bordering this trail and neighbouring wetland.
In addition, the developer will also clear .4 hectares or approximately one acre of a designated significant woodland that supports another wetland.
All this for one five-wind-turbine project, that, if running at full capacity, which only happens 25 to 30 per cent of the time, might provide energy equivalent to the needs of 2,500 homes.

Mr. McKim’s assertion of having no complaints over this destruction and keen support for industrial energy projects on the unique Oak Ridges Moraine has opened the floodgates to large scale destruction of this unique landform.
What a sad legacy.

Jane Zednik

READ AT: http://www.mykawartha.com/opinion-story/6545843-tragic-that-landowner-supports-destruction-of-the-oak-ridges-moraine/

Niagara Wind Noise Annoyance

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So it begins.

The fight to protect our residents and community continues.

The Niagara Wind Power Complex is scheduled to be online by September 2016.  Support Mothers Against Wind Turbines Inc. and West Lincoln Glanbrook Wind Action group.

Please feel free to attend the May 17, 2016  Open House or contact our community groups directly.

Together we are stronger and together we will be heard.

May 12, 2016
“Well they were Testing that Turbine behind us yesterday -, Rosedene RD ,West Lincoln ON, -My older son was out side and He said he thought he kept hearing Jets and was looking up , I hadn’t hear it in the house UNTIL Supper Time ,I had my Windows Open and I heard It ,It SOUNDED LIKE A JET and when it was Stopping it Got even louder , JUST LIKE ON THE VIDEOS where you can hear them..Except this is ONE Sounding like Many. and they keep changing the way it points – ::: ( “

It Worked

vermont residents
If we don’t do it who will?

Vermont prides itself on having citizen legislators, as opposed to professional politicians, while the lobbying in Montpelier for special interests is done by well-funded professional lobbyists.

For the past eight years, our legislators and regulators have been bombarded by renewable-energy lobbyists. The message has been that Vermont must do “everything” and we must “do it now” to save the planet from climate change.

The urgency of the pitch has made it seem as if Vermont alone is responsible for the emissions that cause climate change.

This message has been delivered by the well-paid lobbyists at VPIRG (the Vermont Public Interest Group), REV (Renewable Energy Vermont), KSE Partners (the lobbyists who represent Green Mountain Power and Iberdrola Renewables), and a long list of people who view Vermont as a candy jar for collecting extravagant renewable-energy incentives.

The lobbyists’ circular strategy involves promoting an array of state energy goals that have no basis in our true energy and emissions profile. They then insist to the Legislature that there must be no barriers to erecting inappropriate projects because these same “state goals require it.”

The result is a state energy policy that has produced an avalanche of unintended consequences so appalling that the Selectboards of more than 160 towns signed the Rutland Resolution, which asks the Legislature to take another look at the lack of clear standards for siting renewable energy projects.

In recent days, the Senate and the House unanimously passed slightly different versions of S.230 — a bill “relating to improving the siting of energy projects” — in spite of furious lobbying by the renewable-energy industry.

The story of S.230 is highly instructive, because the pros weren’t the only lobbyists in the capital. For weeks, the committee rooms of the Senate and House have been filled to overflowing with unofficial “citizen lobbyists,” identifying themselves by wearing neon green safety vests.

The legislators learned that the Vermonters most opposed to big wind and solar sprawl include those who know the most about the subjects because they deal with the unintended consequences every day and because they have studied the issues.

The legislators heard firsthand the bitter results of a regulatory policy of “any solar, anywhere, anytime.”

They learned about the tragedies in Lowell, Sheffield, and Georgia Mountain of nearby residents driven from their homes, or to distraction, by wind-turbine noise far exceeding what the developer promised.

To prevail on S.230, we, the people lobbied on our own behalf — tirelessly and effectively.

The result is that “we” have been heard.

“We” are the people who live near already existing large wind installations.

“We” include the folks threatened by similar projects in Swanton, Irasburg, Grafton, and Windham who want justification for issuing certificates of public good for utility generation on ridgelines and near settlements.

“We” are the people from towns where solar arrays have been placed in disregard of local policies, preferences, and Town Plans.

“We” are Vermonters who have donned our green vests in solidarity and went to Montpelier and walked the halls and haunted the cafeteria of the Statehouse, just as the big-money lobbyists do.

“We” talked to the legislators.

“We” testified before committees.

And “we” learned a lot.

None of us citizen lobbyists opposes renewable energy. None of us denies the need for Vermonters to do our part in reducing emissions.

But we do oppose allowing those who profit most having total control of what gets built and where. And we oppose squandering our state’s natural resources and heritage on projects that will not help slow climate change.

The lesson is this: in a state with a citizen legislature where big money increasingly influences policy decisions, there is no substitute for well-informed, articulate, and persistent citizen lobbyists to represent our own interests.

If we don’t do it, who will?

READ AT:  http://www.commonsnews.org/site/site05/story.php?articleno=14722&page=1#.VzPnybv2bIU

Kafkaesque: Lawless loophole lets wind company endanger human lives

FAUXGREEN

Another Kafkaesque industrial wind turbine nightmare in Ontario. A regional airport (Collingwood), with an aerodrome close by (Stayner), and eight 500’ (152 metres) air-space-invading industrial wind turbines (wpd Canada’s Fairview Wind Project) to be wedged between both airfields, posing grave danger to pilots and their passengers—and the whole thing approved by the Ontario Liberal government.

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What could possibly go wrong when pilots, flying visually without instrumentation (as is the case in over 90% of the flights at these two airports), have to negotiate a safe take-off or landing through a blur of Georgian Bay fog, or lake-effects snow, and an indiscernible phalanx of gigantic 50-storey-tall white windmills?

All eight of the planned wind turbines will “penetrate” the safe arrival and departure airspace mandated by Transport Canada standards.

The Collingwood-Stayner airspace is a no-man’s-land of regulation, a lawless vacuum with respect to wind turbine installations. Ontario’s Green Energy Act deliberately 

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Health controversy continues

el pasoSheriff and NextEra to conduct infrasound study at El Paso County wind project located in United States.

By Lindsey Harrison
   Calhan residents attended the El Paso County Board of County Commissioners meeting again Nov. 3 to voice their concerns about potential health hazards related to the Golden West Wind Farm project. Joe Cobb, a resident who lives within the wind farm’s footprint, said he left the meeting as frustrated as when he went in.“I take two days off of work to come to talk, and I get three lousy minutes,” Cobb said. “I am spending a lot of money just to be heard.”

In all, Cobb said he has spent $3,700 on his animals, which includes veterinary and farrier bills and extra hay because the animals won’t go out to pasture, since the wind turbines became active in September. His animals and his family are feeling the negative effects from the turbines.

“We’ve got a blind duck, four out of seven horses that can hardly walk because their feet hurt so badly, donkeys that will not go out to graze, two guinea fowls have died; our little dog has congestive heart failure and mastitis, and four of my son’s five neon tetra (fish) have died,” he said. “The fifth is blind in one eye. These animals all acted normally for the many, many years that we have lived here, and you put these turbines up and there are dramatic changes in my animals’ health and my family’s health.”

According to an article published online in the Bulletin of Science, Technology & Society Sept. 20, 2011, “The electromagnetic waves are generated by the conversion of wind energy to electricity. This conversion produces high-frequency transients and harmonics that result in poor power quality … . High-frequency transient spikes that contribute to poor power quality, also known as dirty electricity, can flow along wires, damage sensitive electronic equipment, and adversely affect human and animal health.”

Cobb said his other concern is the infrasound emitted by the turbines. Infrasound is acoustic energy or sound pressure felt as separate pressure pulsations, according to an article written by acoustic engineer Richard James, published on wiseenergy.org Feb. 20.

Dr. Nina Pierpont published a book in 2009 called “Wind Turbine Syndrome: A Report on a Natural Experiment.” In it, she lists adverse effects of living near a wind farm, which include “sleep disturbance and deprivation, headache, tinnitus (ringing in ears), ear pressure, dizziness, vertigo (spinning dizziness), nausea, visual blurring, tachycardia (fast heart rate), irritability, problems with concentration and memory, and panic episodes associated with sensations of movement or quivering inside the body that arise while awake or asleep.”

People can find information to support claims for either side of the issue, said Dan Martindale, director of El Paso County Public Health. “In terms of infrasound, that is something that is very difficult to measure,” Martindale said. “It depends on who is studying it, the length of the study and so on. There is just no conclusive evidence of what the residents are claiming of the noise and infrasound projected by the turbines.”

Laura Wilson, another resident living within the wind farm’s footprint, said she pleaded with the BOCC to hold off approving the project in 2013 (when it first went to the board), until the county had a chance to further review all the available information about turbines.

“These very issues were brought to the commissioners’ attention before they approved the project on Dec. 19, 2013,” Wilson said. “There is no excuse for anyone to try to plead ignorance about any of this.”

Amy Lathen, BOCC member, said she has read literature that states wind turbine syndrome is a legitimate concern, and she has read other literature that states it is a placebo effect. Because of the conflicted literature, the BOCC has directed the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office to work with NextEra Energy Resources, the company that owns the wind farm, to study the existence of infrasound on the wind farm, she said.

“Because it can be considered a noise ordinance issue, the sheriff’s office is responsible for investigating that,” Lathen said. “The sheriff’s office has already been out there testing prior to the Nov. 3 meeting because we had complaints about audible noise.”

Lathen said the county does not have the equipment to study inaudible noise or infrasound, so they are in discussions with NextEra to supply the equipment to conduct the study. The county will ensure that someone qualified to study inaudible or infrasound will help with the process and calibrate the equipment readings, she said. “We want to make sure we are doing this right.”

Lathen said she voted against the project in 2013 because she thinks the turbines have an impact on people, and some turbines have been built too close to some of the residences. “I do not like the federal mandates or the subsidies,” she said. “I have a problem with the whole wind power program and the mandates that exist there. I am just not a fan; I never have been. I am just trying to do my best dealing with these issues, but I lost the vote about whether or not to approve the wind farm.”

The BOCC only has authority when it comes to land use issues, Lathen said. Any health issues would need to be addressed through the board of health, she said.

Wilson said she has no faith that the board of health will take the issue seriously. “I feel that they have intentionally ignored all of the information we have given them,” she said.

EPC Public Health could easily do what the health department in Brown County did, but they have chosen not to do anything, Wilson said. “I truly believe that each and every one of them has the attitude that they are too big to be accountable to anybody, and that is a problem.”

According to the September issue of The New Falcon Herald, the Brown County Wisconsin Board of Health declared the Shirley Wind Farm Project a human health hazard.

Cobb said that with all the evidence the BOCC and EPC Public Health have received on the health hazards of the turbines, a similar declaration by the EPC Public Health board should be made.

Commissioner Dennis Hisey, who also sits on the EPC Public Health board, said he was not aware that the declaration handed down in Brown County was made by their board of health. “I did not read all of the information (presented to me),” he said.

Martindale said the situation in Brown County is different from the one in El Paso County. “The board of health here does not have the authority to determine what happens with the wind farm here,” he said. “The board of health and myself are very sympathetic to these individuals that have come to us with their requests and information regarding the wind farm. I truly believe that they are having these symptoms.”

The only recourse citizens have is the study, Lathen said. NextEra has to supply the equipment and coordinate with the sheriff’s office to conduct a study of the infrasound within the wind farm’s footprint.

“It is a very difficult balance, but it is the reality now, and we want to work within that reality,” she said. No date for the study has been set.

READ ARTICLE:  http://www.newfalconherald.com/DisplayPrintArticle.php?ArticleID=10921

Gridmonsters attack!

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In his April 26 Letter to the Editor, Energy Minister Bob Chiarelli wrote that “for the first time the cost of producing electricity from wind is below the average cost of producing electricity in Ontario.”

Using this Orwellian “doublespeak”, Chiarelli failed to mention that under his 20-year “Feed-in Tariff” (FIT) contracts, we pay wind energy corporations much more, not less, than the rates we pay for each kilowatt of the hydro, nuclear or gas-generated electricity that wind energy replaces.

In addition, in Ontario, most wind and solar energy is generated when not needed.

In fact, wind and solar “farms” have become troublesome “gridmonsters”.

They are uncontrollable, cruel and unreasonably costly.

Gridmonsters have a licence not only to kill, but also to bill.

Enabled by Ontario’s Green Energy Act , they drive up electricity prices while ravaging rural neighbourhoods and wildlife.

They are malignant tumours attached to our electricity grid.

They will continue to force electricity rates to rise unless we act now to bring them under rigorous control.

When gridmonsters were in their infant stage, we were able to store their fluctuating output in rechargeable batteries for later use in electric cars or household power.

But they have grown much too big for batteries, and they keep growing because governments keep feeding them subsidies.

Gridmonsters were created by huge wind and solar corporations that lobbied governments for subsidies that guaranteed ongoing profits.

That was the beginning of the scam, to which governments and citizens succumbed because of our fear of climate change.

But unlike other energy sources, the sun and the wind cannot be turned on and off when demand fluctuates.

On dark and still nights, gridmonsters lurk in rural fields.DSCN3152

Then, when the sun shines or the wind blows, they invade power transmission lines.

With government permission, they replace cheaper electricity from hydroelectric power, nuclear, or gas plants. Electricity rates then rise.

When the wind dies or when the sun is obscured, the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) routinely fires up recently-added backup natural gas power plants.

Rates routinely rise again.

Whenever we can’t find consumers for this unneeded electricity, we pay solar and wind energy producers to not produce power. Rates rise more!

Gridmonsters keep metastasizing. Ontario is exporting more and more excess green energy to Quebec or Michigan, at a loss of millions more dollars every month.

Rates keep rising.

Amazingly, the Ontario government recently invited proposals for even more subsidized, unneeded and unreliable wind factories and solar farms.

In his April 26 letter to the editor, Chiarelli tries to make us believe that subsidized “renewable energy is now a level playing field with other forms of generation!”

To what end?

We now know gridmonsters cannot fight climate change. Ontario’s professional engineers report wind and solar factories are actually causing an increase in carbon dioxide emissions.

The federal government is an accomplice.

It budgets our tax money to support the proliferation of provincial green energy fantasies.

It ignores its responsibility to protect endangered and migrating wildlife from habitat destruction and migration hazards, and to protect humans from unhealthy turbine noise.

It ignores its duty to safeguard Charter rights of rural citizens seeking quiet enjoyment of their homes.

Rural municipal governments know that wind and solar factories damage local economies and tourism.

They realize gridmonsters are hazardous to humans and wildlife, drive up electricity prices, devastate neighbourhoods, depress property values and erode municipal tax bases.

Provincial and federal governments do not care about local constituents, endangered and migrating wildlife and electricity prices.

Rural municipal governments do care.

They need to regain their authority to manage energy-related industrial developments in their own back yards.

If we can’t consume the energy generated by gridmonsters at the moment it’s produced, we need to store it, or get rid of it affordably.

It would probably be better to get rid of the politicians and the legislation that caused this problem.

One way or another, we must put a stop to the gridmonster scam.

McPherson is a retired professional engineer, now living in Tweed, where there are no industrial wind turbines

READ AT: http://www.torontosun.com/2016/05/07/gridmonsters-attack

Unifor’s Hypocrisy On Noise Hazards

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By: Karen Hunter

The National Day of Mourning sends “a strong message to all governments of their obligation and responsibility to strongly enforce health and safety laws and regulations,” says Unifor, Canada’s largest private-sector union, formerly the CAW.

There’s a “serious lack of commitment,” Unifor says of the provincial government, “to enforce the health and safety protections that we have fought for,” so “unfortunately, the suffering continues.” One of the hazardous dangers flagged by the union on its website notice is noise.

Meanwhile, a new online petition targets Unifor for its failure to comply with provincial health and safety protections, specifically noise regulations.

Unifor owns and operates the controversial CAW Wind Turbine, located on its property in Port Elgin, Ontario on the shore of Lake Huron. The turbine began operation in 2013 to generate money for the union. At the time, the Ministry of the Environment (MOE) approved the turbine on the condition that the Union would conduct noise audits within the first two years of operation and provide MOE with the results.

Now, as the turbine begins its fourth year of operation, the tests and results are, at a minimum, two years late.

140 noise complaints prompted town council to pass a motion asking the CAW to honour President Ken Lewenza’s commitment to shut down the turbine if it harmed residents.

MOE knew — as did everyone else — how important noise monitoring would be. Unifor’s turbine is located just 210 metres from the nearest home, less than half of the 550-metre distance required by provincial noise regulations. MOE approved Unifor’s turbine after the union had the community’s zoning changed from a rural tourist/recreational classification to city semi-urban to allow for increased noise.

To further address noise levels, the union stated that its powerful 800kw turbine would operate at just 500kw (despite reduced revenue generation) and that it would self-monitor its operation. Since its startup, Unifor and MOE have received hundreds of noise complaints, day and night, from the nearly 200 families who live within the turbine’s 550-metre radius. Still, the noise testing has not been done.

Back in 2013, during the turbine’s first six months of operation, 140 noise complaints prompted town council to pass a motion asking the CAW to honour President Ken Lewenza’s commitment to shut down the turbine if it harmed residents. The union dismissed the request.

In the turbine’s second year of operation, the district MOE office asked the union to hire an independent acoustic consultant, conduct tests to determine if the turbine is exceeding ministry standards, and provide the results to the ministry. The test results have still not been received.

In the turbine’s third year of operation, town council asked Unifor and MOE to meet and discuss the community’s ongoing noise problems plus documents (obtained through a Freedom of Information request) that reveal incidents where the turbine’s noise exceeded government standards. Unifor declined to attend.

Unifor’s turbine is now in its fourth year of operation without the required tests showing proof of compliance. Nearby residents have even tried to conduct their own professional tests. But their efforts have been thwarted by MOE guidelines that require Unifor’s participation. So, the families continue to suffer from the turbine’s noise. And both Unifor and MOE are well aware.

The families hope their petition will generate enough public pressure to force Glen Murray, Minister of the Environment and Climate Change, to enforce the noise tests and result in Unifor doing them. So far, nothing else has worked.

Will the union-promoted National Day of Mourning convince the provincial government to enforce legislation that protects health and safety? If so, what will it take to convince Unifor to comply?

READ ARTICLE: http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/karen-hunter/unifor-wind-tubrine_b_9781936.html

Please sign the petition.

Living With Wind Turbines

Community Information Open Househouse surrounded by wind turbines

May 17th,  2016    3-7pm 

Abingdon Community Hall, 9184 Regional Road (Silver Street):   https://www.google.com/maps/d/viewer?hl=en&mid=1ToLNLuNTtV1jlj25jc1BN6lu1W4

This will be a small drop- in style open house which will provide a private opportunity to compare experiences, share resources and learn from others living within Industrial Wind Turbine areas. It will give us the opportunity as a community to better understand how IWTs are affecting us and learn what to do about it.  We hope to empower you as we discuss the issues.  Please invite your neighbours.