May 1, 2018 @ 10 am
Meet at Royal Road & Lighthall Road, South Marysburgh.
May 1, 2018 @ 10 am
Meet at Royal Road & Lighthall Road, South Marysburgh.
It pains me to find that my faith in Ontario’s judicial system has turned into cynicism.
In the matter of appealing the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change approval for WPD Corporation to erect eight 475-ft high wind turbines bordering County Rd. 91, west of the 4th line, (Fairview Wind Farm) a long, thorough and expensive Environmental Review Tribunal (ERT) Hearing was held in the summer of 2016
Two issues were addressed:
• Endangerment to human health, citing their proximity to the Collingwood Regional Airport and Kevin Elwood’s aerodrome.
• Irreparable harm to an endangered species, citing the impact on the habitat of little brown myotis bats.
The ERT found in favour of the appellants on both issues! That should have been the end of it, with the MOE approval revoked.
Notwithstanding WPD having every opportunity to present remedial arguments during the hearing, the MOE, being unhappy with the results of the hearing, provided WPD an additional month to provide a remedial argument. WPD failed to do so. The MOE then allowed WPD another week, with WPD failing again.
However, WPD did concede the ‘Danger to human health’ issue. Again, that should have been the end of it, with the MOE approval revoked.
In complete disregard of the Tribunal’s ruling and WPD’s conceding the health issue, the MOE invoked the necessity of a remedial hearing. In other words, give us the ruling we want. Since the MOE appoints the ERT and pays their salaries (a conflict of interest) they applied unusual pressure on the Tribunal.
In spite of MOE’s meddling, the ERT rose to the occasion and again found in favour of the appellants. The MOE’s approval was revoked. There will be no Fairview Wind Farm… YEA!
If this is a sample of what we can expect of government manipulating the wheels of justice to further their agendas, we can only become more cynical.
It’s a slippery slope!
“As the community proved at the ERT hearing, this project should not have been approved in the first place,” he said. “It’s outrageous the government could be so negligent, making it necessary for the citizens to protect the public, then hide behind flawed legislation that robs the tribunal appointed by them in overlooking their bad decisions to award costs to the citizens who successfully proved the government compromised people’s safety.”
By Ian Adams|Wasaga Sun | Feb 27, 2018
Local taxpayers will be on the hook for the successful challenge to a plan to erect eight turbines in Clearview Township.
The same goes for Kevin and Gail Elwood, John Wiggins, and the residents’ group Preserve Clearview, after the Environmental Review Tribunal dismissed an application for costs related to their appeal of a decision to grant WPD a renewable energy application for the Fairview Wind Project.
The tribunal ultimately ruled last August to revoke that approval on the basis the planned 500-foot-tall turbines presented a serious risk to human health because of the proximity of the project to the Collingwood Regional Airport and the Clearview Aerodrome owned by the Elwoods.
Your presence is requested in the seats at the upcoming Environmental Review Tribunal hearing against White Pines Wind and circumstances surrounding the IESO contract for the renewable energy approval.
Additionally, the hearing dates for the APPEC appeal to the Environmental Review Tribunal (ERT) have been confirmed as follows:
The purpose of the Pre-hearing Conference is for interested persons who would like speak at the hearing to apply for status either as a Party, a Participant or a Presenter. Please click here if you are interested in finding out more about seeking status at the hearing and click here to view the ERT Notice of Pre-Hearing Conference.
The most effective way of showing the Superior Court and the Tribunal of the level of community concern with the White Pines wind project is with your presence.
*To confirm dates and venue locations for any changes please contact the Environmental Review Tribunal *
Planes and wind turbines don’t mix.
In August, the Environmental Review Tribunal upended the renewable energy approvals for a proposed eight-tower wind turbine project in Clearview after nearly a decade of protests by neighbours, and the objections of both township council and Collingwood because of the turbines’ proximity to the regional airport.
In February 2016, the director of the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change approved the REA for WPD Canada’s Fairview Wind project. Resident John Wiggins was first to file an objection, and was followed by Kevin and Gail Elwood, whose aerodrome off County Road 91 would also be adversely affected by the proposed locations of the towers.
Both Collingwood and Clearview — along with the County of Simcoe — would follow suit in appealing the decision on the basis the location of the towers near the regional airport represented a threat to human health.
“It was worth it, but the worth was in making a change to a government policy that didn’t respect a huge sector of the community … the aviation community,” said Elwood, a Clearview councillor and pilot who also has a hangar at the Collingwood Regional Airport.
Elwood said the tribunal’s decision was one that could have been arrived at 10 years earlier by the provincial government when they implemented the Green Energy Act.
At that time, Elwood said, the Canadian Owners and Pilots Association testified at the committee level there could be conflict between turbines, aerodromes and flight procedures, and “the province ignored it at that stage.”
“It took them 10 years to recognize there were safety risks and that irreversible harm to human health existed,” he said. “The government made a decision that green energy was … above everything, above all other interests.”
Wallaceburg and area have formed a wind action group and are actively fundraising to appeal at the Environmental Review Tribunal if the anticipated approval for the Otter Creek wind project being developed by Boralex and Walpole Island First Nation is issued. Water well contamination is a hot issue as they learn from reports of dirty well water in other areas such as Chatham Kent and the North Kent wind project.
By David Gough
Tuesday, October 31, 2017
The Wallaceburg and Area Wind Concerns group is prepared for a fight.
The group held their first public meeting last week at the UAW Hall where they outlined their concerns, as well presenting their plan on fighting the proposed Otter Creek wind project.
The group is currently raising money so they can try and stop the wind turbine project. The group has set up an account at Wallaceburg’s TD bank, and estimates that a legal fight will cost at least $10,000 and possibly much more, depending on a number of variables.
By Tim Miller, The Intelligencer
Sunday, October 15, 2017
PRINCE EDWARD COUNTY — On Sunday opponents of wind turbine development in the County took to the streets to show that their concerns over a proposed wind energy project are about more than just a lot of air.
Hundreds of sign-waving and chanting residents marched down Main Street Picton shortly after the noon hour to kick off an anti-wind rally.
Upon reaching The Regent Theatre, marchers doffed their signs and settled in for the nearly three-hour town hall meeting to begin.
While people took their seats a video montage of anti-wind messages written by County residents in black marker on a stark white scroll of paper played on the big screen, followed by aerial drone footage of levelled and torn up fields. Over the montage played the melodic version of Dee Snider’s We’re Not Going to Take It.
Sunday’s town hall was in regards to the ongoing wpd Canada’s White Pines Wind Project which initially called for the erection of 29 wind turbines in the County.
The County has declared itself an unwilling host to industrial wind turbine projects that disrupt the lives and livelihoods of County residents and destroy the County’s historic landscapes while causing irreparable harm to the County’s wildlife and natural environment.
Because of challenges by local government and groups the initial plan of 29 turbines has been scaled back to nine — to be built near the south shore of Milford.
On stage activists sat beside entrepreneurs, doctors and local politicians. Their reasons for opposing the project was as varied as their backgrounds.
Dr Robert McMurtry, former Dean of Medicine at Western University and a member of the Order of Canada, spoke about the health impact turbines can have when placed too close to residential homes.
JIM MCPHERSON, SPECIAL TO THE TORONTO SUN
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 28, 2017
Ontario’s Ministry of Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) has approved numerous wind energy projects across the province.
But what if many of these approvals were improperly done, as determined by a court?
Rural residents have appealed several wind projects to provincial tribunals, but most are denied because Ontario’s Green Energy Act permits these appeals only on very narrow grounds of irreparable harm to the environment or human health.
For that reason, a citizen’s group in Prince Edward County recently filed for a judicial review of Ontario’s wind turbine approval process, in Superior Court in Ottawa.
The appellant is a not-for-profit corporation composed of hundreds of Prince Edward County residents, who claim their Charter rights have been violated by Ontario’s Green Energy Act (GEA).
They contend their rights have been violated by the “institutional bias” of the MOECC, and by its failure to properly consider matters of direct relevance to the wind energy project approval process.
The filing also alleges “an egregious instance of regulatory capture”, of MOECC and its affiliated provincial agencies.
None of the allegations have been tested in court.
In the view of the appellants, rural Ontario citizens receive only minimal procedural fairness under the GEA.
During the project approval processes, they are not entitled to present direct evidence but are restricted to submitting comments to a website.
In many cases, the information on which they are asked to comment is incomplete, as yet undisclosed, or subject to later amendment.
Appeals to Ontario’s Environmental Review Tribunal (ERT) are possible, but again, only on very narrow grounds of proven, irreparable harm to the environment or human health.
Property owners living close to wind turbines have complained about the pollution of wells, restriction of land use, fires, flying debris, health impacts, killing of wild life, property value diminution and inhabitability of homes.
During and after construction, many municipalities are concerned about potential road damage, water pollution and financial damage to local economies.
Many residents complain that once wind projects are completed, the province fails to meaningfully enforce regulations connected with their operation.
Provincially regulated setbacks of turbines, while inadequate in the view of many rural citizens, nonetheless effectively mandate that wind energy projects are built only in rural neighbourhoods, as opposed to cities like Toronto.
Unlike cities, vote-poor rural communities are unable to successfully pressure the government to relocate wind projects they say are inappropriate.
By contrast, in vote-rich Oakville and Mississauga, urban residents convinced the Liberal government, leading up to the 2011 provincial election, to relocate two proposed natural gas-fired electricity plants at an eventual public cost exceeding $1 billion.
The Liberal government also suspended a proposed offshore wind project impacting urban ridings in Scarborough after protests by local residents.
Under the GEA, municipalities can no longer use official plans or land use bylaws to protect citizens from inappropriate land use.
Many believe this is a reprehensible failure by Ontario’s government, but it cannot be attributed solely to the provincial regulating agencies.
In many cases, skilled, professional staff working for these agencies have basically been rendered inoperative by provincial legislation that makes them ineffective.
Comparing rural citizens fighting industrial wind turbines to the Liberal government pulling the strings, one is reminded of what was said about Allied troops in the First World War: “We have lions led by donkeys”.
Perhaps the judicial review requested by Prince Edward County residents will help restore fairness to the battlefield.
Alan Whiteley presentation to the committee on Ontario’s Fair Hydro Plan links the government’s response to escalating electricity rates and harsh decisions people are forced to make in the face of energy poverty. Ontario is taken to task over to its failure to assess costs ,benefits and adverse consequences of its renewable energy policies.
Alan Whiteley is the legal lead for the Judicial Review before the Courts of Ontario’s Green Energy Act (GEA). The challenge is predicted to be successful and would result in making all erected Industrial Wind Turbines in Ontario illegal resulting in a very expensive bill to be paid as remedy.
For more information about CCSAGE Naturally Green’s Judicial Review of the GEA.
The following media report has an edited written version of Mr.Whiteley’s presentation to the Ontario Fair Hydro Act 2017 committee in June 2017:
 As described in greater detail below, the Approval Holder has proposed an amendment to the REA to include additional curtailment measures designed to reduce little brown myotis mortalities. The Tribunal finds that these additional measures, provided they are amended to require that they be implemented from sunset to sunrise, is likely to significantly reduce little brown myotis mortality over the life of the Project. However, as neither the Approval Holder nor the Director has proposed effective means to mitigate the serious harm to human health, as found by the Tribunal in its October 2016 Order, the Tribunal concludes that the decision of the Director should be revoked. As such, an amendment to the REA to address harm to little brown myotis via an amended mitigation plan is rendered unnecessary.
READ FULL DECISION & ORDERS HERE : 16-036 WIGGINS V. ONTARIO (MOECC)