In their zeal to replace “dirty,” coal-black energy sources with “green” “renewables,” climate-change doomsayers neglect the health hazards of wind and solar, states Physicians for Civil Defense president Jane Orient, M.D.
The mining of the rare minerals needed for photovoltaic cells and the generators in wind turbines, and the production of the steel and concrete for the towers, are neither clean nor green, she stated. Much of the environmental impact and human cost is exported, as to China and Africa. The U.S. no longer mines rare-earth elements.
By 2050, the amount of solar panel waste in the world, already at 250,000 metric tons at the end of 2016, could reach 78 million metric tons, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). When panels are broken, as by hail, tornadoes, or hurricanes, pollutants such as lead or carcinogenic cadmium can be almost completely washed out of the fragments by rainwater over several months.
Wind turbines have been called the “rotors of sickness,” and the German Ministry of Environment has been accused of covering up evidence of harmful levels of infrasound, sound at too low a frequency to be heard. Effects include reducing cardiac muscle strength. Infrasound affects the inner ear and the brain and can cause sleeplessness, emotional reactions, and many other distressing symptoms. It has been investigated for use as a weapon.
Rooftop solar panels have caught fire, and nearly destroyed an apartment complex in Holland, while releasing toxic fumes. Wind turbines have been described as a “perfect incendiary device.”
“Regulators and politicians ignore the devastating environmental impact on the huge land areas needed by wind and solar farms,” Dr. Orient said, “while imposing costly requirements on other energy sources for relatively trivial effects.”
“Energy poverty due to unreliable and unaffordable energy is also a major health threat,” she added. “Carbon-based fuels supply 80 percent of the world’s energy. Why are they not considered ‘green’? The carbon dioxide they release is essential for life and is measurably greening the earth.”
My name is Ruby Mekker. I am not one of your constituents but today I read a letter written by one of your constituents, Barb Ashbee in 2009. It is attached and I encourage you to read it.
The very sad outcome is that nothing has changed since 2009.
Sylvia, the PC Party of Ontario repealed the Green Energy Act Dec 3, 2018 and the same day introduced ERO 013-4265 (as well as two others). This proposed regulation will grandfather ALL “in-process” and “existing” wind projects under the old Green Energy Act. This is NOT what the PC Party promised the people of Ontario. What is described in Barb’s letter is still occurring in YOUR riding; nothing has been done to help these people. Approving ERO 013-4265 will condemn these people to the “hell” they have been living as described in 2009. When did democracy die in Ontario? We believed the new majority PC Party would keep their promises still posted on their web site. To date any actions of the PC Party towards people living with industrial wind turbines have been nonexistent.
Yes, we acknowledge the PC party did cancel many “green” projects but chose not to cancel the pre construction Nation Rise Wind project in North Stormont (only 1 of 2 LRPI projects not cancelled even though this project had its key milestones approved by IESO hours before the writ was dropped). Presently, we the constituents are demonstrating to Ministers Rickford and Phillips how and why this project must be cancelled. If allowed to proceed the majority PC Government of Ontario will have allowed another part of Ontario to be put in jeopardy; Nation Rise Wind project is located on recognized highly vulnerable aquifers, the West Quebec Seismic Fault, vibration sensitive Leda clay; all of which the proponent did not report to the Ministry of Environment. Need I go on….
Sylvia it is time that like Tod Smith, you, Lisa Thompson, Monte, Bill Walker, Sam Oosterhoff, Rick Nicholls, Randy Hilliard, Toby Barrett do what you asked the Liberals to do in Lisa’s 2012 Private Member’s Bil, in Sam Oosterhoff’s 2017 Private Member’s Bill AND in the 2018 campaign; stand up for YOUR constituents; do your fiduciary duty; DO NOT allow ERO 013-4265, address the issues. As Monte so eloquently said in 2012,”I believe in democracy. I believe in giving a voice to rural Ontario.” Monte, too, has let his constituents down.
Ruby and Joe Mekker
Former residents of Smithville, Ontario
Open Letter – Barb Ashbee, November 2009
No one asked for this. Nobody looked to have their life and homes exposed in the news, trying to explain how the most promising form of renewable energy was causing such destruction of their family.
Sleep deprivation, headaches, migraines, heart palpitations, tinnitus, pressure in the ears, sores that won’t heal, dangerously high blood pressure and the list goes on. This was not the plan that any of these quiet and unassuming rural families had in mind, but this is what they got. And countless months later it continues. Nobody wanted to get sick; nobody wanted to be forced to leave their home, the place they raised their children, the place they intended to live out their retirement. Not one of them asked for this. In almost all cases, these symptoms were non-existent before the start up of the wind farm.
And when it was discovered these wonderful, planet saving industrial machines were actually hurting them and their family, not one of them would anticipate there would be no help for them.
As they read in the papers how our government was running to help other citizens who found themselves in all manner of troubling circumstances through no fault of their own, there they sat, waiting, ignored and ridiculed for admitting they needed help against the giant industry that the government had hyper-promoted in their ambitious scheme to ’save the planet’.
Who are these people, the green supporters cry out? NIMBY’S! They’re trying to stop our efforts to help the world! NIMBY’S! They don’t like change! They don’t want them in their backyard! Sorry, but nothing could be further from the truth. As a matter of fact, the vast majority welcomed wind farms as much as anyone. Some even boasted how proud they would be to participate at such close hand, to be able to help make a difference, to assist in providing clean, renewable energy.
But when the troubles started, the government looked the other way. When the troubles started, the government ran the other way, fingers in ears, la la la. There was no time for anyone or anything to stop this magnificent much needed multi-million, make that billion, dollar program and so they chose to ignore and abandon those who asked for help. They simply did not respond. As a matter of fact, some of the residents were subjected to blatant derision from their MPP. The people asked their local town council for help. They asked the Ministry of the Environment for help. They asked the Public Health Unit for help. They asked the Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure for help. They even asked the Premier of Ontario directly for help. Nothing happened. No one responded. No sir, what they got from the Premier of Ontario was a loud and strong message that he was not going to let any NIMBY’s slow down his cause.
Thrown into the already brewing mess was the Green Energy Act. Sounding like a wonderful piece of legislation that would help this province and in turn, the country achieve the desired energy saving goals, it turned out to be a complete removal of rights for Ontarians; the complete dismantling of democracy in one piece of legislation. What most people didn’t know or pay attention to, was what the Premier and his two Ministers were trying to push through at lightning speed would affect everyone, not just the rural residents. And oh, how it does!
And so the letters flowed and the meetings started; ministry workshop meetings, presentations at the legislature’s standing committee hearings, public input at the local government held meetings, written submissions to the Green Energy Act Registry. Thousands of letters, documents and studies by a bevy of very astute and credible professional engineers, doctors, health professionals, lawyers, electrical engineers, professors, all manner of Ontarians with and without degrees, from all walks of life and, of course, the residents who were already being affected, already sick and getting sicker by the terribly close proximity of the wind turbines and electrical groundwork. All of these people at a grassroots level, taking no money for their time or for their obvious expense of preparing and printing papers and running around the province to government meetings and rural town hall meetings. All of these people doing the research that the government should have done before they started down this road, showing what a miserable failure simple lack of planning creates. All of these people trying to inform the government of the very serious issues with the wind farms.
Yet in the space of maybe 45 days or so, since the last submission date to the Green Energy Act Registry, designed for public input and reaping some 1300 submissions alone, this government said they had seen enough. They’d had enough time to look through all of the information submitted; the very complex engineering reports, noise studies, the reams of information on health effects, turbine failure, viability of wind as an energy source and the safe requirements for setbacks that would keep all citizens out of harms way. They repeatedly refused all requests by health professionals requesting the government slow down and conduct a proper independent health study to determine the health effects. They had also heard the victim statements, pleading with the government for help, to please listen to them, warning them to not put anymore people in the position that they found themselves in, through no fault of their own. It all fell on deaf ears.
There was no way that these Ministers were going to slow down. No matter how many people tried to warn them, they were not going to let anyone stop them in their plan to spread their wind turbines far and wide across every rural inch of the province and ringing the Great Lakes shorelines. No sir, they were going full speed ahead.
They took away the rights of all citizens of Ontario. All citizens, not just some. They overruled the professional planners who understand and know the ramifications of setbacks and public space planning so that they have no say in the municipality anymore. They overruled the town councils and Mayors who have no say in their own backyards anymore, the place they know much more intimately than any Minister, or developer.
They overruled everyone and everything. No one has ever seen the likes or speed of a piece of legislation like this before.
They ignore all of the facts brought before them, ignore and abandon the over 100 known victims, some of whom spend their days in restaurants trying to escape the conditions, who sleep in their cars with winter coming, who are billeted in a single room in a motel with children and more on the way, paid for by the wind developer. People with children, the children not knowing or caring about politics or landscape sightlines, but who bang on their ears with their fists asking Mommy to stop the noise, and young children who now complain of headaches. People with a new need for prescription sleeping pills and people who have lost everything. They’ve lost their livestock, their horses, their income, their way of life and the right to live in their own house. Children have had to move away. They live with relatives; they live by the goodness and grace of understanding strangers who offer them a place to stay. But in even larger numbers than these, are the ones trying desperately to stay in their own home, where everything they have is in and around them. Over 100 and growing. And so, at the end of the day what does the government do? They announce the same inadequate setbacks that they had previously spouted way back at the beginning of the year. Nothing had changed. It appears their minds were made up a long time ago. What a waste of taxpayers money.
The whole industry is contaminated with non-disclosure contracts right from the start. When the landowners agree to host, after being assured of all the good things they are doing, they sign contracts. These are variously worded contracts that do not allow them to speak out about anything negative to do with the wind turbines and will entitle the developer to make any amount of noise, vibration or do what they need to on their land and the landowner may not complain. Some are embarrassed at being taken in by the salesmen. They had no idea it would be such an intrusion, but the money sounded sweet. I wonder how many other businesses there are that match the need for non-disclosure clauses being made with ordinary, everday citizens while receiving full government support. Why such secrecy if this is such a noble exercise?
Many landowners with multiple turbines don’t live on their property. These are some of the ones who will say there are no problems and argue strongly to push ahead. Some have rented out their farmhouses cheap. The renters sleep with oscillating fans going all night long by their heads to try to cut out the thumping sound of the wind turbines clearly heard in their bedrooms. Many wear earplugs but they don’t always work.
People ask, why aren’t more people speaking up, why don’t we hear more? Would you speak up knowing that if and when you needed to get out you wouldn’t be able to sell your house? Who would buy it? It’s not an easy position for any of them to be put in, nor do they want to jeopardize the hopes that the developer will help them, or the possible lashback by fervent green supporters in their community who are so careless with their words and judgment. Many are under contract and cannot speak. Some don’t have the courage or the life skills to know who to even contact. This is all new to them; it’s all new to everyone, even our leaders.
So what about Europe people ask? Aren’t they all happy with their wind farms over there? No, they’re not. In fact there are over 360 grass roots coalitions in 19 European countries in exactly the same position as our residents, pleading to be listened to. They are trying to work with their governments on greater setbacks to protect the residents. As industrial wind turbines get bigger and bigger (40 storeys), some countries leaders have listened and have changed their setbacks to 1.5 kms and further. They acknowledge the problems,and they obviously care about the consequences. These symptoms and problems are mirrored all over the world. Next door in the U.S, Australia, Japan…..
No one can believe our government would completely ignore residents like this, especially the residents themselves. Surely there must be something wrong with these people if the government isn’t listening or taking action. Nope, in fact there is nothing wrong with these residents. These are all good people; honest people, the backbone of this country. Something wrong you ask? Perhaps you should be looking to the provincial government and their brazen, no questions asked backing and protection of the wind industry.
$omething i$ very wrong indeed. ~B. Ashbee
Too good to be true? The newly elected Ontario Government lead by Premier Ford has announced it is repealing the Green Energy Act (GEA). At first flush this should be a good thing and cause for tremendous celebration for wind warriors opposed to the harmful impacts of wind powered complexes especially for those families and individuals who have been raising alarms about adverse health impacts. The GEA is the statute that has enabled renewable energy projects in Ontario to be built, operated and home for regulatory capture under prescribed regulations. But…. Is the announced Bill 34 an elaborate switch and bait hiding the powers of the disastrous Green Energy Act in another statute?
Careful reading of the bill is generating the realization that moving the meat and potatoes of the GEA into another law doesn’t remedy all what is wrong with renewable energy projects powered by wind.
It is enough to have a mother take to drink. Anyone got a buck for a beer?
“Ontario’s Green Energy Act was a horror for business, a gross invasion of municipal authority, and sent successive auditors general to whatever is the chartered accountants version of a hospice centre”
“…deprived Ontarians of natural justice, turning neighbour against neighbour as developers quietly signed deals to lease privately-owned lands in rural communities for massive wind turbines and solar farms, with the projects then sprung on those communities as a fait accompli, in which they had no meaningful say.”
“Although the full effect of the legislation will be evident only when regulations become available, Bill 34 is another initiative in the government’s campaign to restrict further renewable energy development in Ontario”
“All the partisans for and against the Green Energy Act (GEA) screaming about the act’s demise are missing the forest for the trees. Premier Ford’s new legislation claiming to repeal McGuinty’s signature legislative legacy preserves the core of the original GEA.”
“BILL 34 REPEAL GREEN ENERGY ACT OR IS IT??? Please share – people need to know…And let’s be honest and non-partisan about this…if the PCs are repealing the Green Energy Act why is there residue of the Green Energy Act being put into other legislation?”
The decisions you make will affect my life and the lives of my children and grandchildren, so I feel compelled to bring several things to your attention.
Many people are aware that the Ontario provincial debt is $332 billion dollars. Nearly 90% of Ontario’s net public debt has been accumulated in the last 25 years – a level of increase that is unsustainable. (1) Never in the history of Canada has one generation down loaded so much debt on the next generation!
Our children may be too young to vote, or not as well organized as lobby groups such as seniors, the wealthy or various business interests but they are our future decision makers.
Interest payments on the provincial debt are $12 billion dollars per year leaving less money available for infrastructure, health care, education, tax relief and other social needs.
We are living beyond our means and mandatory balanced budgets should be required by all levels of government. As the Ontario government you can increase taxes, increase borrowing or sell off public assets. If you do not want to reduce services or increase taxes you are going to have to eliminate any spending that is “not fit for purpose”.
Let me provide you with an example from the energy portfolio:
The biggest waste of taxpayer’s money occurs when government initiatives are not based on any cost benefit analysis. For example – no cost benefit analysis was ever conducted regarding the cost of the Ontario renewable energy initiative.
Ofﬁce of the Auditor General of Ontario To the Honourable Speaker of the Legislative Assembly
“Solar and wind energy are by their nature intermittent…
The auditor general’s office analyzed the performance of all wind farms in Ontario in 2010 based on IESO data… the average capacity factor of wind was 28%…solar generators operate at just 13% to 14% capacity factor.”
So the Ontario government has been aware of the poor performance of wind and solar electricity generators since 2010, but has continued to add wind and solar to the energy mix.
Everyone wants clean, green, cheap energy, but that is not what we are getting. We are getting an unreliable, intermittent, expensive energy system that actually increases CO2 emissions because we have to use gas plants to back up industrial wind turbines and solar panels. Blades and solar panels are non-recyclable so will have to be disposed of as toxic waste!
The four major forms of renewable energy considered in 2011 were hydro, wind, solar, and bioenergy. When you consider the output by generator type in 2017 the production from wind for Jan – Dec 31, 2017 was 765 MW/hr from a name plate capacity of 4,213 MW. A dismal performance with 18% production from the installed nameplate capacity. The difference is explained as an “allowance for capability levels below rated installed capacity.” Considerable distortion exists in the presentation of material when a product has an 80% drop in production over the stated manufacturer nameplate capacity. This is like telling me that my new car is capable of 1000 km on a tank of gasoline and instead it goes 200 km!
Hydro – a baseload renewable energy source – produced 3143 MW of power per hour from Jan – Dec 2017 from a potential of 5786 MW. So, we are only using 54% of the potential production from our cleanest, greenest, cheapest energy source.
Only ten percent of our power is produced from wind, solar and natural gas – made possible by underutilizing our hydro power generation. The total cost for wind energy in 2017 was upwards of $1.5 billion dollars plus solar at $1.5 billion dollars plus natural gas at $2 billion dollars for a total of $5 billion dollars! The transfer of wealth from the ratepayers of Ontario to the private for-profit multi-nationals for unreliable, intermittent energy cannot continue.
The sad reality for the ratepayers of Ontario is that the hydro plants could easily have been ramped up an additional 850 MW per hour to cover the contribution of wind, solar and biofuels. Instead we ran the water over the dam. We also negotiated a $1 billion-dollar deal to purchase hydro electricity from Quebec while we run our water over Niagara Falls!
The waste of our renewable resources, duplication of energy generation and payment to generators to sit idle is costing ratepayers $5 billion dollars per year.
In addition to the economic insanity in the energy file we have the additional incompatibility of the location of many of the industrial wind turbine towers. Industrial Wind Turbines produce infrasound, low frequencies sound, high frequencies sound, amplitude modulation, stray voltage, vibration, and shadow flicker. None of which are addressed in the regulations. They encroach on prime agriculture lands and disturbances to water wells have been reported. During construction and for the lifetime of the operation of all wind facilities wildlife can be harmed, harassed, killed and displaced.
The existing regulations regarding acoustic testing and monitoring, when implemented at all, are cumbersome by design, rarely feasible, and statistically dishonest.
Not one PC member of parliament voted in favour of the Green Energy Act 2009. You did not perpetuate this disaster upon us. The only honourable approach to addressing the Green Energy Act is to cancel it. In a Financial Post article entitled “Yes, Ontario’s Liberals can cancel their terrible renewable power contracts—and they should do it now”, (Lawrence Solomon, September 2016) argues for “cancelling Ontario’s odious renewables contracts”.
Please bring some financial sanity back to the energy portfolio.
A concerned citizen,
Mr Di Matteo on ‘Ontario’s Large Debt Grew in a Hurry’ Ontario’s net provincial debt in 1965 was $1.6 billion dollars.
PS: When Dalton McGuinty was elected in Oct 2003 the provincial debt was $138.8 billion dollars. Before he handed us over to Kathleen Wynne in 2013 the provincial debt was $252.8 billion dollars so McGuinty added $114 billion dollars to the provincial debt in his ten-year tenure. By the time Wynne was removed from office this year with a resounding defeat the provincial debt had grown to $315 to $332 billion dollars. So, Wynne added $62 to $79 billion dollars to our provincial debt in her five-year tenure. The liberals added $172 to $193 billion dollars to our provincial debt. A downloading of debt onto the next generation that is unprecedented in Canadian history.
As bad as that financial mismanagement is, it does not tell the whole story because you also must add in the total revenue that was spent in the fifteen years that the Liberals were in power. Using the historical budget documents that are available on the Ontario Ministry of Finance website in the 2003-4 budget total revenue was $68.4 billion dollars and total expenses were $73.9 billion dollars so McGuinty ran a $5.5 billion-dollar deficit in his first year in office. Over the next fifteen years revenue doubled to $142 billion dollars in 2017-18, but revenue was never enough to cover the expenses and the provincial debt just kept piling up.
The total revenue that was spent from 2003 to 2018 is $1,558.37 billion dollars or $1.558 trillion dollars! Plus, you need to add in the provincial debt accumulated over this time, so the Liberal government of Ontario spent $1.751 trillion dollars while in office. These are mighty big numbers but somehow, I do not feel richer for it as our infrastructure crumbles, and we get hallway health care.
Next Era has taken the money not once but thrice. It used your money to help build the wind projects in Ontario, it took your money for electricity generated and curtailed. It sold the projects to the Federal Government and continues to generate income with service contracts for some of the projects. You paid, are played and continue to pay.
About Cordelio Power
Headquartered in Toronto, Cordelio Power owns and manages a 396MW power generation portfolio, including four operating wind projects and two operating solar projects in Ontario. The company was launched in June 2018 to complete the purchase of this portfolio from NextEra Energy Partners. It is focused on working with all stakeholders to operate its projects in an efficient, safe and environmentally-responsible manner. Cordelio Power is owned by the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board.
Projects now owned by your pension plan:
Bluewater Wind Energy Centre | Conestogo Wind Energy Centre | Jericho Wind Energy Centre | Summerhaven Wind Energy Centre
Moore Solar Energy Centre | Sombra Solar Energy Centre