White Pines Wind (WPD) proposed to be located on the shores of Lake Ontario in Prince Edward County has been dealt a severe blow by the Environmental Review Tribunal. The decision from the “remedies hearing” dealt with issues surrounding the findings of the Tribunal that serious and irreversible harm to the environment to the endangered Blanding’s Turtles, Little Brown Bat and other species at risk would result from the project’s activities. WPD never the less began land clearing construction in sensitive wetland habitats and continued just days prior to the ruling being rendered.
Removal of 18 of 29 turbines leaves lingering questions if the wind project remains financially viable. The residents of Prince Edward County and world wide can only hope that this is a final and fatal blow to the White Pine Wind that will result in halting the invasion of industrial wind turbine generators.
 Under s. 145.2.1(4)(c) of the EPA, the Tribunal alters the decision of the Director by amending Renewable Energy Approval No. 2344-9R6RWR as follows:
1. Adding the following conditions to the REA:
i. Condition J7.1. The Company shall implement the Mitigation Plan for Operation of the White Pines Energy Project, dated July 21, 2016 prepared by Stantec Consulting Ltd., including:
1. Implement the monitoring and mitigation measures as
outlined in Table 2 of the Mitigation Plan;
2. Adjust cut-in speed to 5.5 m/s between sunset and sunrise
from May 1 to September 30 at all turbines for the operating
life of the Project; and
3. In the event of a mortality of a bat species that is a species
at risk, successively increase the operational mitigation as
detailed in Table 2 of the Mitigation Plan.
ii. Condition L2. Further, the Company shall implement the additional
avoidance and mitigation measures as outlined in the report
“Additional Avoidance and Mitigation Measures to Minimize
Potential Impacts to Blanding’s Turtle (Emydoidea blandingii)”,
prepared by Natural Resources Solutions Inc., dated July 22, 2016,
including implementation of the mitigation measures described in Tables 2-1 to 2-5 and 4-1 of that report.
2. Removing from the REA the turbines proposed to be accessed by upgraded municipal secondary and tertiary road segments and intersections in Blanding’s turtle habitat, as identified in Figure 2.2 of the report “Additional Avoidance and Mitigation Measures to Minimize Potential Impacts to Blanding’s Turtle (Emydoidea blandingii)”, prepared
by Natural Resources Solutions Inc., dated July 22, 2016, specifically Turbines 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28 and 29.
Renewable Energy Approval Altered
15-068 HIRSCH V. ONTARIO (MOECC)
The WPD White Pines Wind decision can be read here:
15-071 WPD WHITE PINES WIND INC. V ONTARIO (MOECC)
Turbines 12, 13, 14, 15,16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28 and 29 are removed from the project.