Category Archives: Cost Benefit

Pickering Wind Turbine to be removed

What goes up will come down

opg pickering turbine
Ontario Power Generation Pickering wind turbine to be dismantled in 2019

End of life for the Pickering wind turbine. Ironically its demise serves as a metaphor for  illusions peddled that wind turbines are a viable means for on demand electricity generation.  Waiting for the winds to be just right (not too fast or slow, or no wind)  turbines fueled by the wind produce out of sync with demand.  It is also plagued by generation that is variable and intermittent in nature.  Introducing wind powered generation creates  increased need for fossil fuels (usually gas) for back- up generation capacity that can be there when needed.  Turbines have an eye watering, otitic throbbing 20 years or less operational life cycle.

Credit: Ontario Power Generation|News Update May 30, 2019

Later this year, Pickering residents will see a change as they stroll along the Waterfront Trail at Alex Robertson Park. Ontario Power Generation’s wind turbine has reached its end of life and will soon be dismantled.

While the turbine has produced clean, renewable energy for many years, it’s important that we make smart investment decisions that will return good value for Ontario. And because the cost to replace the turbine’s older parts is too high, and leaving the turbine in place but not operating would present a safety concern, we’ve made the decision to move forward with dismantling it.

Did you know?

The turbine has operated for almost 20 years
At full power, it could produce enough energy to power about 330 homes
While located beside the Pickering Nuclear Generating Station, it’s actually operated and maintained by our Niagara Operations team

Once work begins it will take about two weeks to dismantle the wind turbine. We’ll publish the date here once it’s been determined.

opg pickering nuclear
OPG Pickering nuclear power plant

Turbine repair in Haldimand

Just another turbine needing repair. This one is located near Kohler and Rainham Road in Halidmand County.  The turbine was constructed only a few years prior, so much for the touted 20 year life expectancy claims.  Note how big the structure is in comparison to the size of work vehicles and a person was spotted at top of the structure while crane work was underway.  Newer projects have much larger turbines being installed.

May 19, 2019  Haldimand County, Ontario

 

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Nation Rise Wind set to break ground

The Ontario government promised to repeal the Green Energy Act  which permits renewable energy projects but that promised has failed to halt  Nation Rise Wind.   The project was appealed at the Environmental Review Tribunal and remains strongly opposed by concerned citizens.   The project developers are giving a time line of June 2019 to break ground for construction even as the project remains under Ministerial appeal.

National Valley News|May 17, 2019

June groundbreaking on Nation Rise wind project turbines, developers tell council

BERWICK — The 30-megawatt Nation Rise wind project is set to break ground on turbine foundations next month in the rural countryside here — right around the same time the Doug Ford Conservatives celebrate one year since their election on a platform staunchly opposed to such initiatives under the previous Liberal regime’s Green Energy Act.

Ken Little of EDP Renewables, associate director with EDP Renewables Canada — the company that is (now) minority stakeholder and developer of the 28 to 33 turbine project — apprised North Stormont council of the ironic construction timeline in a presentation this week.

Little said that site-clearing and preparation will continue through the end of May with a possible start on an access road into a planned electrical substation by then as well. Construction on the actual turbine foundations and the substation, west of Crysler, will begin in June, he reported to a packed Council Chambers, where a large number of the public overflowed available seating into the hallway outside the room. The developer sees the turbines in place and sending power into the grid by December.

“We did have the ability to start construction in limited fashion for May 9th,” Little explained, clarifying this month’s activities have so far involved “people … more or less identifying areas for work to begin.” But with geotechnical approval received this week, “we’ll be moving into more fulsome construction in the next one to three weeks, in terms of starting access roads” and crew facilities, he added.

Though it has “a lot of approvals to go forward now from the Ministry of Environment,” Little conceded the company still awaits some local and South Nation Conservation permits before installing “individual and specific components” of the wind farm. “So while we may have some approvals, if there’s other local permits that we need to have required for that, we will seek to have those permits prior to starting construction, obviously to make sure we’re in compliance with any local regulations on that,” he pledged.

No mention was made of the project opponents’ last-ditch appeal to Ontario’s Minister of Energy to quash the project, whose ruling had yet to be received on the evening of the May 14 council meeting. The Ford government to date has killed more than 750 pending Green Energy Act projects signed by the previous Wynne Liberals.

Little was accompanied at the podium by EDPR’s Tom LoTurco, director of development for the Eastern US and Canada. A couple more of their company colleagues also watched from the sidelines.

See their presentation on the construction schedule, followed by council questions below

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Fury in rural Ontario over Wind Contract

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“You gave us hope; we gave you a majority government.  Then the change came; the promises were forgotten.”

 

 

May 8, 2019|National Valley News
Letter to The Editor:

This is an open letter to Rod Phillips, Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks, and to Greg Rickford, Minister of the Environment.

Rod, we the citizens of North Stormont and all those already impacted by industrial wind turbines, know that you and Greg were informed of the facts, as were all other Ontario MPP’s.  We know this because every MPP was given a DVD done by Dave Hemingway, of Goderich, a follow up to the TVO documentary Big Wind.

Your DVD, if you chose to watch it showed honest, hard-working, tax-paying people explain — as they drove through their area on a school bus — how their health, water, sight, mental health, income were all negatively impacted by industrial wind turbines.

Under the McGuinty and Wynne governments thousands of documented reports were filed, with file numbers, describing negative experience and all were ignored.

In 2014 EDP Renewables of Portugal, Spain came into North Stormont, southeast of Ottawa.  Landowners were offered thousands of dollars a year to sign land leases.  Like so many others the landowners that chose to sign contracts only saw dollar signs.  They did not consider the impact on their family members, their children, their neighbours, the animals, the water; simply dollar signs.

Since the beginning the municipal council and residents have repeatedly said the project was not wanted.  The people learned about infrasound, low frequency vibration, shadow flicker and flashing lights.  They petitioned, voted twice to be non-willing hosts, talked/wrote/faxed multiple MPP’s of all political stripes.  All to no avail under the previous government’s Green Energy Act.

During this time the number of industrial wind turbine health-related reports throughout Ontario continued to increase.  Fresh well-water sources were contaminated and destroyed; you both know of this as I personally handed you the proof.  Wind Concerns Ontario filed legal charges against the minister responsible for so much suffering.  You both know, nothing was done.

The people of North Stormont saw the rushed, irresponsible approval of the Nation Rise Wind project (I will not call it a “farm”) pushed through during the caretaker period of parliament.  It was done, like the others, without a cost analysis or proof that the power was required.

The approval came with 60 pages of conditions. The proponent had not included any potential environmental impact information as required; no mention of highly vulnerable aquifers, West Quebec Seismic Fault, leda clay, bird migratory path but it did include gas wells that North Stormont does not have.  Why wasn’t the project cancelled on this alone?

An appeal was immediately filed with all residents involved knowing there was no chance of winning. Under the Green Energy Act, as you know, the residents must provide irrefutable proof that damage will occur and, we all know too, that is an impossible task.

The people of North Stormont did this to postpone the project start until after the June, 2018 election.  We were thrilled to hear Doug Ford repeat over and over, “Help is on the way.”  He said to me personally, “Turbines are done.”

We knew the Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario (PCPO) had opposed industrial wind turbines since 2012 when Lisa Thompson introduced her private member’s bill asking for a moratorium on all industrial wind projects until the root cause of the health and water concerns was determined.

The PCPO’s strong opposition continued throughout the Wynne years and finalized in the loss of Liberal party status in the June 2018 election.

The people of North Stormont believed Doug and his party as well as so many others in rural Ontario.  You gave us hope; we gave you a majority government.  Then the change came; the promises were forgotten.

People cried at Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound MPP Bill Walker’s constituency meeting.  Even after Doug’s written promise of a Health Hazard Study into the Chatham-Kent contaminated water issue during the election, nothing was done. It gets worse; local word is that the municipal, provincial and federal governments are going to pay — with taxpayer dollars — to install piped water from Lake Erie under the guise of increased infra structure, totally ignoring the destruction done to fresh well water source.

Jim McDonell, MPP for Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry with Steve Clark, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, introduced ERO 013-4265 — as you know — which grandfathered “existing and in process renewable energy projects” under the old Green Energy Act just two days before a small group of Jim’s constituents met with you and your assistants.

Then came the first PCPO budget where you embedded Section 17 in Bill 100 which, depending on whose interpretation, reads that no one can challenge the actions of the government retroactively.

What has happened?  Where are all those MPP’s who promised to stand up for the people: Monte McNaughton, Sam Oosterhoff, Sylvia Jones, Toby Barrett,  Rick Nicholls, Lisa Thompson, Jim McDonell,  Bill Walker etc.?

Christine Elliott sat in Shawn and Trish Drennan’s house for hours and learned firsthand of their horrific experience with the K2 project and the formation of Lake K2 (also given to you).  The Drennans are now sleeping in their basement trying to avoid infrasound.

Christine Elliott, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Health has now put forth “mental health” legislation.  How would this legislation help the Drennans and the thousands of others; walking away from one’s home is not easily done?

Amherst Island wind project was pushed through ignoring most, if not all, of the contract guidelines.  Complaints by residents are being filed but …

Rod, before any final decision is made on the Nation Rise Wind project, I would like to remind you, again, in Ontario peoples’ lives young and old, physically and mentally have been destroyed, agricultural animals impacted, fresh groundwater sources contaminated/destroyed and for what? intermittent, unreliable, costly wind power that only increased Ontario’s debt exponentially.

Remember too the people of Ontario already impacted by industrial wind turbines support the people of North Stormont in their hope of the cancellation of Nation Rise.  People from around the province signed our last petition.  Calls and monetary donations have been given.

We are supported by so many except, it appears, the decision makers.  I will quote what Monte McNaughton said during Lisa Thompson’s Private Member’s Bill of  2012:

Monte McNaughton,  (at 1510)

I oppose the heavy-handed approach that the Dalton McGuinty government is taking by forcing these wind turbines on rural Ontario.  This approach is not democratic and it’s not productive. I’ve said it before, but truly, the greatest injustice facing rural Ontario today is that Dalton McGuinty and his Liberal government sit here, in Toronto, at Queen’s Park, and dictate to rural communities where and when they must install industrial wind turbines.

Has anything changed?

It appears as if the only “group” that does recognize the inherent damage of a wind project but is choosing to not act politically is the present government, the same government that campaigned on “Help is on the way.” “Reviewing all existing contracts line-by-line and cancelling all those in non-compliance.” Addressing the thousands of documented reports, ensuring Ontario’s ground water will be protected.

Rod, your Ministry wrote and published Preserving and Protecting our Environment for Future Generations: A Made-In-Ontario Plan.  I quoted from it when we met Dec. 5, 2018.

Is your Ministry along with the PCPO MPP’s willing to agree to the highly probable destruction of another Ontario well water source supplying fresh water to the majority of Eastern Ontario, knowing that three wells turned cloudy after simple bore hole sampling was done by EDP?  What will it cost the government to bring “piped” water to the majority of Eastern Ontario?   Is the present government “playing the odds” on the lives and water of Eastern Ontario?

The residents and Municipal Council of North Stormont, those already forced to live with industrial wind turbines and so many others as well as myself and my family ask you to please put the people you promised to help and the fresh well water sources FIRST.  “Promise made. Promise kept.”

You have been informed by myself, family, friends and other citizens of Ontario. As such this letter is “on notice” that the continued development of the Nation Rise Wind project is considered negligent, harmful and in bad faith.

Please put an immediate moratorium on the Nation Rise Wind project until the health and water issues across Ontario can be addressed.

Ruby Mekker
Finch

Not all Power Generation Created Equal

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Transmission lines from now decommissioned Nanticoke Power Generation Plant, Haldimand County

Recent article published in the Hamilton Spectator about Ontario’s electricity generation sources has generated lively feed back and thought provoking comments.

Published Hamilton Spectator|May 3, 2019

Afterthoughts pulls together reaction to specific Hamilton Spectator stories. These opinion submissions follow the April 30, 2019 feature Who’s powering Hamilton?

Afterthoughts: Not all power generation created equal

Wind turbines and solar are intermittent energy sources that only produce power when the wind blows or the sun shines

From Catherine Mitchell:

Your article failed to mention that not all energy generation is created equal. Because the industrial wind turbines and solar are intermittent energy sources that only produce power when the wind blows or the sun shines, they only produce a portion of the name plate capacity.

Industrial wind turbines produce 28 per cent of the name plate capacity. (It’s a bit like putting a one-titted cow on the dairy production line or buying seed with a 28 per cent germination rate.) Solar is worse with 13 per cent production of name plate capacity.

The downside of renewable energy is that “non-polluting” wind energy is culpable for air pollution (gas plants on standby and smelting), ground water contamination (toxic effluent and ground disturbance), electromagnetic pollution, noise pollution (infrasound), radioactive waste (rare earth mining), and toxic waste” (Each blade made of fiberglass produces 6 tons of toxic waste). In addition to the loss of habitat created by the huge footprint required for installation of industrial wind turbines and solar fields.

We are currently under utilizing our hydro energy production to accommodate wind and solar. So the question becomes if we under utilize hydro to accommodate wind and solar — is any of the flooding being caused because water is being held back? The dam is a man-made restriction so blaming ‘climate change’ may not be the correct answer.

For example — the Ottawa River is one of the most highly regulated rivers in Canada, with over 50 major dams and hydroelectric generating stations scattered throughout its tributaries and mainstem. If you count all the smaller water control dams in the river system, there are hundreds of dams throughout the watershed.

The Ottawa River and its tributaries flow right into the St. Lawrence and the spring run-off often causes flooding with a particular affect on Quebec towns and cities. The amount of water is all controlled by the Saunders dam and is the responsibility of the St. Lawrence Seaway Authority. Because water is held back it also causes flooding in many parts of Ontario.

I am not sure the people experiencing the recent flooding care if it is a result of mismanagement by the St. Lawrence Seaway Authorities or underutilizing hydro energy, either way this could be a man-made disaster.

Read article that is creating reactions:

Who’s powering Hamilton? New kids on the grid power high-voltage crossroads

Irish Wind Energy Apologies to Adversley Impacted Communities

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Agriland|Aisling Kiernan|

IWEA apologises to wind farm communities across Ireland

The Irish Wind Energy Association (IWEA) has apologised to communities across Ireland who have been negatively impacted by the development of wind farms – via its members – in their localities.

The association’s head of communications and public affairs Justin Moran also confirmed that a new focus on community and public engagement would ensure that relations between residents and developers will improve “going forward” as wind energy gets set to step up a gear in this country.

Moran’s comments come in the aftermath of the publication of a series of articles by AgriLand in which community groups from Donegal to Kerry laid bare the difficulties both they and the local environment now face as a direct result of wind farm developments in their area.

He also pointed out that the latest phase of the Renewable Electricity Support Scheme (RESS) – which the organisation anticipates will be up and running early next year – will place an obligation on all wind farm developers to offer an investment opportunity to people in the community.

IWEA, meanwhile, is a trade association that represents companies involved in the planning and development of wind farms in Ireland. It represents all the big players in the industry including Brookfield, Coillte, Bord na Móna, ESB and SSE.

‘Bridging the great divide’

Speaking about the fallout between developers and communities Moran said there was “an acceptance” in the industry that the way in which member companies engaged with communities in the past “was not the way”.

There would be an acceptance in the industry that the way in which we engaged with communities in the past – and the way we have engaged with communities – is not the way to be doing it.

He continued: “Wind farm developers need to realise that the people who live in these areas have been there long before they arrived.”

Moran went on to say that it was public knowledge now that situations have arisen in rural Ireland where, when locals tried to explain to developers why they simply could not place a wind turbine in a particular area or on a specific piece of land, communication subsequently broke down.

“We need to listen to what local people are saying to us. We all know there are cases where developers came in and locals were able to tell them that they would not be able to put a wind turbine in such and such a location for whatever civic or environmental reason it was,” he added.

Developers very often don’t know these things and the feedback from the community is very, very important in all of this.

“Engaging with the community and sharing knowledge will result in a more effective project for everybody concerned.

“Information that is given in an open, transparent, accessible and a factually correct way is the way forward and results in a better experience for everyone.

“We need to be more conscious of doing that.”

No wind turbines on Great Lakes

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Wolfe Island Wind Turbines

Boating Industry|April 9, 2019

MBIA urges boaters to voice their opposition to wind turbines in the Great Lakes

The Michigan Boating Industries Association, along with environmental groups, boating associations, and property owners are urging boaters to raise their voice in opposition of the proposed Icebreaker wind power turbines in Lake Erie.

Nicki Polan, executive director of MBIA says: “MBIA is not opposed to alternative sources of energy. But, regarding wind farms in our Great Lakes, we find far too many unanswered questions and documented risks to the health and aesthetics of these unique and often times fragile bodies of water. We stand opposed to plans such as the one being considered in Ohio now and we encourage all boaters and boating businesses to join us in communicating this to Ohio.”

Michigan borders on four of the five Great Lakes including a large portion of Lake Erie. Many Michigan residents’ boat on Lake Erie, and many Michigan businesses and citizens live and work along its shores.

Only 2.5% of the world’s water is fresh water, and 20% of that is coming from the Great Lakes.

“Building wind turbines in Lake Erie will threaten clean water, boating access, one of the world’s best perch and walleye fisheries, bird migration, the safety and health of coastal residents, and so much more,” said Polan.

The initial goal of the Icebreaker plan is to place 6 wind turbines, with a final goal of 1,200 wind turbines in Lake Erie, costing an estimated $24 billion.

“Wind power has proved to be very high cost with low return,” said MBIA Board Member Jim Coburn of Coburn & Associated in Macomb, Mich. “Many wind turbine projects in the U.S. and overseas have been abandoned because of this. Why this is even being considered in our Great Lakes is beyond me.”

The case against turbines is extensive, including the fact that exploding and burning turbines can be commonplace. Each turbine contains over 400 gallons of industrial lubricants in their gearboxes.Gearbox seals are known to fail and will leak oil into the waters below. But when they burn there is no way to reach and extinguish them. As the 300-foot turbine blades burn, they create toxic emissions polluting the air and waters below.

Source: Boating Industry

Wind Turbine Application Denied

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69 News|By: Will Lewis| December 18, 2018

Wind Turbine Application Denied by Penn Forrest Township

ENN FOREST TWP., Pa. – The winds of change won’t be blowing through Penn Forest Township, Carbon County as the zoning board denies an application of a company for the second time.

The issue has been debated for the last two years and one resident says the decision means it will be a good Christmas.

The company, Atlantic Wind, wanted to build 27 to 28 wind turbines on the land owned by the Bethlehem Water Authority.

“There was not maybe one thing, but there was noise, there was runoff, there was the wind farm syndrome,” said Paul Fogal, a member of the Penn Forest township zoning board. “There’s all sorts of different things that made us come to a collective decision.”

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