Category Archives: Lack of municipal power in planning

Time for Change

“ONE LETTER issued to me in response to the two letters I had written to the Ministry of environment in Ontario, required immense resources in another attempt to shut me down.

A recent (partially released) FOI showed: TWENTY-ONE (21) employees at the ministry of environment and the attorney generals office were involved to create a single response to a resident of Ontario.

The email chain began in October of 2017 and I received a response March 1, 2018.

This is a brilliant example of the duplication and redundancy required when no one is responsible for anything and everyone just passes the buck or in this case the piece of paper.

Plausible deniability and not assuming responsibility has always been their game.

Tell Premier Ford to cut duplication, redundancy and administration.”

Contact Premier Ford:   HERE

Make your voice heard … they asked! Consultation: Review of Ontario government spending

vive a la resistance 2

Fairness for the people

turbine tallOP ED: Who deserves fairness and equity?

 

By Gary Mooney|The Times|July 25, 2018

Since 2007, County groups and individuals have been fighting wind turbine projects in PEC on environmental, human health, cultural heritage and economic grounds. We are grateful that the PC government has taken decisive action to cancel wpd Canada’s White Pines wind project.
In a recent open letter to Premier Ford, Dr. Hartmut Brosamle, CEO of wpd AG, asks for reconsideration of the government’s decision to cancel White Pines, because the cancellation is causing the company “serious damage through no fault of its own”. Some comments are appropriate regarding fault.

wpd Canada and, by extension, its German parent wpd AG, have exhibited major failings or faults with regard to their pursuit of the White Pines wind project:

WRONG LOCATION
wpd originally chose a location that is the last stretch of undeveloped land on Lake Ontario, on a major bird migration route, much of it within an Important Bird Area. This area is home to multiple endangered species, including Blanding’s turtle and little brown bat. As well, the South Shore is an area of significant cultural heritage value, dating back to UEL days.

SECRET DEALS
wpd instructed its sales agents to sign up landowners to host wind turbines secretly, with no notice to the community, and required those landowners to agree to nondisclosure of contract terms.

BIASED CONSULTANTS
wpd hired consultants who provided it with incomplete and flawed reports to legitimize the project, especially with regard to environmental issues and cultural heritage concerns. Citizens’ groups and individuals had to hire their own lawyers and consultants and launch appeals costing about $700,000 to present the other side.

PLEBISCITE
wpd ignored the results of a 2012 plebiscite in South Marysburgh Ward, where the project is located. Ninety per cent of those who voted (turnout similar to that for municipal elections) rejected wind turbines in their ward.

NO ENGAGEMENT
wpd never engaged in a real two-way dialogue with the community; instead it proceeded most of the time as if the County was unpopulated.

COUNTY COUNCIL
wpd ignored the position of PEC Council, which declared itself in 2013 to be an unwilling host to wind turbines.

BREACH OF CONTRACT
wpd failed to deliver 75 per cent of the contracted capacity required by its FIT contract, and failed to meet contract deadlines.

UNDERESTIMATION
wpd underestimated the resolve of local groups to protect County residents, the natural environment and cultural heritage, and the many County residents who funded their efforts.

PROVINCIAL ELECTION
wpd ignored the fact of a coming provincial election and an anticipated change of government to one opposing the Green Energy Act and wind turbine projects.

RECKLESS DECISION
wpd made a reckless decision to proceed with construction of the downsized project without final approval by IESO. Wpd is the author of its own misfortune.

Via the Green Energy Act, the Liberal government suspended democracy as regards renewable energy development and, for nine years, completely ignored the wishes of citizens and municipalities. The PC government was elected in part because of its willingness to listen to the people.

Despite all of the failings listed above, Dr. Brosalme asks for “fairness and equity” for wpd. How many such failings are necessary to disqualify wpd from reconsideration of the government’s decision: only one? maybe three? even all ten?

We in the County have been seeking fairness and equity regarding wind turbine projects for more than a decade, involving many thousands of hours of volunteer time. It’s the government’s choice, and we are grateful that it has made a choice “for the people”.

Finally, it is important to acknowledge the strong support that Todd Smith has provided to our community and our cause since he became MPP in 2011. It’s been good to know that he’s had our back at Queen’s Park.

READ ARTICLE

Cancel the Green Energy Act

mean energyDear Mr. Ford,

I am writing to you and your esteemed colleagues requesting that the new PC majority government repeal the Green Energy Act with the swiftest possible speed.  I know you have railed against this misguided piece of legislation.  Indeed, your estimate of its low caliber is echoed by Pierre-Olivier Pineau, Associate Professor and Electricity Market Expert, University of Montreal HEC Business School, who opined that “Ontario is probably the worst electricity market in the world.” (https://www.forbes.com/sites/judeclemente/2016/03/30/ontarios-high-electricity-prices-crush-business/#2a8c5ab44587)

As you know, this Act has been a disaster on many fronts – its inability to effect the desired reduced CO2 emissions, its harmful effect on the environment, its negative impact on the economy and our electricity rates, its stripping of municipal planning and zoning rights, and importantly, its deleterious impacts on rural residents who only want a safe and quiet place to enjoy their homes and properties.

1. Tweaking the GEA is folly, as the very Act is based upon faulty foundations – that the wind is free, clean, and always blowing somewhere.  This myth fails to take into account that wind is unpredictable, non-dispatchable, unreliable and inherently intermittent.  When added to a power grid designed entirely around dispatchable sources, it leads to grave system instability.  As renewable energy sources are added into the mix, their impact is exacerbated by an inability to match loads (demand) with supply, as supply would be increasingly and inconveniently dictated by phenomena like the weather (and sunset).  The green mantra also fails to acknowledge the requisite concomitant use of fossilk fuels (particularly, gas) run in an open cycle, stop and go, inefficient mode like the Don Valley at rush hour. And it fails to deal with the vast stretches of weather system patterns and the transmission requirements necessary to connect with Dorothy in wind-blown Kansas.

https://www.masterresource.org/droz-john-awed/21-bad-things-wind-power-3-reasons-why/

2. Furthermore, mere enforcement of GEA regulations is an insipid approach.  The regulations fail to include infrasound, low frequencies, high frequencies, amplitude modulation, stray voltage, vibration, the trespass of shadow flicker, the destruction of prime agriculture lands, disturbances to water wells, impact on livestock and wildlife harm/harassment/ kill/displacement, among other winning features of IWTs.  Nor does it address the legality of gagging lease holders from discussing health impacts, thereby precluding public safeguards.  Moreover, the existing regulations regarding acoustic testing and monitoring, when implemented at all, are cumbersome by design, rarely feasible, and statistically dishonest.

3. 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”.  He writes:

http://business.financialpost.com/opinion/lawrence-solomon-yes-ontarios-liberals-can-cancel-their-terrible-renewable-power-contracts-and-they-should-do-it-now#comments-area

Mr. Solomon’s argument is further substantiated by the case of Trillium Power Wind Corporation v. Ontario (2012):

https://c.ymcdn.com/sites/www.tlaonline.ca/resource/resmgr/toronto_law_journal_2012/toronto_law_journal_-_novemb.pdf

Furthermore, in the Supreme Court case, Wells vs Newfoundland, 1999, the Judges’ decision states (Paragraph 48):

https://scc-csc.lexum.com/scc-csc/scc-csc/en/item/1730/index.do?site_preference=normal

Mr. Ford, many rural residents have been holding on for a June 7th PC win as their last hope in dealing with the adverse living circumstances imposed upon us by the McGuinty-Wynne dynasties.  I encourage you to repeal this disastrous Green Energy Act and return our homes and our pastoral farmlands to their idyllic pre-GEA state.

Sincerely,

A Concerned Citizen.

The Green Energy Act is Toast

“The Green Energy Act is toast,” he added. “But the act is a very large, far-reaching piece legislation. It’s not just about some wind and solar generation. It has huge impacts on the administration of the electricity system.”

Tom Adams-Energy Analyst & Researcher.

ford
Doug Ford is to be Ontario’s new Premier  

London Free Press|June 9, 2018|Randy Richmond

Post-election analysis: Five key local issues to watch

From deeply divisive wind energy projects, to school closings and transportation, five issues loomed large in the London region during the Ontario election.

GREEN ENERGY: ‘The pigs are not going to fly’

Randy Richmond

The London Free Press

Despite Doug Ford’s commitment to tear apart Ontario’s energy system, consumers shouldn’t expect to see much change in their electricity bills, says an energy analyst and researcher.

“Don’t expect your rates to go down. The overall cost of power is likely to rise over the next four years. The power system will look a lot like it does today,” Tom Adams said.

What will likely be gone: The Liberals’ $600-million conservation fund that paid homeowners for installing energy efficiency upgrades.

But even that won’t come without strong opposition, said Adams, author of several academic papers on energy and a consultant for consumer organizations.

Ford has promised to scrap the controversial Green Energy Act, the legislation that led to costly wind turbine projects across Southwestern Ontario – often over the objection of municipalities stripped of control over the location of energy projects.

The legislation became the flashpoint for anger over rising energy bills, which were caused only in part by sweetheart contracts with green energy suppliers.

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Loyalist Township halts work on Amherst Island industrial wind project

Elliot Ferguson|Kingston Whig-Standard|Friday, February 23, 2018

The company building a wind energy project on Amherst Island has been issued a stop-work order by Loyalist Township.

The order was issued last weekend and was confirmed again in a letter from the township to Windlectric Inc. on Thursday.

Heavy construction vehicles had caused significant damage to haul routes, including deep ruts on South Shore Road, Lower Forty Foot Road and sections of Front Road.

“The ruts from the previous night’s heavy traffic had in fact not been smoothed out by the Windlectric grading crew, and the road surface was a continuous series of deep ruts, which had frozen hard,” township chief administrative officer Robert Maddocks wrote in a letter to Windelectic on Thursday. “These ruts were several inches deep and would be very difficult, if not completely impossible, for a smaller car to pass without significant damage, and potentially a serious safety issue if someone hit them at normal speeds.”

The road use agreement between the company and the municipality allows the township engineer to stop work if damage to the roads leaves them unsafe for the general public to travel upon. The order can be lifted once the roadways are repaired.

“The Township has a legal and moral duty to protect the public and must act accordingly,” Maddocks wrote….

Windlectric  main concern staying on schedule: 

“As you know, we are at a critical stage of the construction progress and any delays to the project construction have a cascading effect”

Read article

White Pines ERT & The People vs IESO & WPD

A call to action!

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.

Upcoming Court and ERT dates/times/locations:

APPEC legal action against the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) and WPD White Pines Wind Inc. will be heard on January 29, 2018 at the Belleville Court House starting at 2:00 pm.

Additionally, the hearing dates for the APPEC appeal to the Environmental Review Tribunal (ERT) have been confirmed as follows:

Pre-hearing Conference
January 24, 2018 at 10:30 a.m. at the Sophiasburgh Town Hall, 2771 County Road 5, Demorestville.

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.

ERT Main Hearing
February 12, 2018 at 10:30 a.m. at the Sophiasburgh Town Hall.

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.

Source: Alliance to Protect Prince Edward County

*To confirm dates and venue locations for any changes please contact the Environmental Review Tribunal *

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Ministry of Environment & Climate Change Misleading the Public

windTurbineSyndrome1-814x400

January 17, 2018

A group of municipal officials sent a formal letter to the supervisor of the Owen Sound office of the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) following a presentation by the MOECC on the subject of wind turbine noise, noise reports, and adverse health effects.

While thanking manager Rick Chappell for his presentation, Stewart Halliday and Mark Davis, deputy mayors speaking on behalf of the group, said it was disappointing, and designed to mislead the public into thinking there are not problems with wind turbine noise in Ontario.

It’s time to stop denying the health effects, the Multi-Municipal group said, and get on to the business of alleviating the real suffering.

The letter follows.

M U L T I – M U N I C I P A L W I N D  T U R B I N E W O R K I N G  G R O U P

11 January, 2018

Andrew Barton, District Supervisor Andrew.Barton2@ontario.ca

Rick Chappell, District Manager Rick.Chappell@ontario.ca

Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change

101 –17th Street East

Owen Sound, Ontario N4K 0A5 Dear Mr. Barton and Mr. Chappell,

RE: Your presentation to our meeting of 14 December, 2017

Thank you for taking the time to make your presentation to the Multi-municipal Wind Turbine Working Group.

As councillors, we have had ongoing complaints from a significant number of residents living near wind turbines in our area who are suffering harm to their health. The video we presented to you documents the experience of some of those affected. It will also help you to understand the widespread anger and disillusionment with the MOECC’s failure to act on their behalf.

Much of the suffering could have been avoided had the local MOECC offices identified to their standards division that the public were adversely impacted (as confirmed by complaints and field monitoring) even when the turbines might have been compliant with the A weighted limits, since those limits were not appropriately corrected for the cyclical nature of the sound that is unmatched in nature, the tonality, the frequency spectrum, and the dominance of the sound above the local environment, and the other special characteristics of the wind turbine sound.

As recently revealed in FOI disclosure, there have been hundreds of complaints. Failure to resolve them, declining to shut down problematic arrays, and relying on proponent estimates of noise emissions only creates growing distrust of the MOECC.

Your presentation was disappointing. It appeared to be designed to mislead the public into thinking there are no health problems. You presented a rosy picture of a government that is busy working  on our behalf. But our experience shows that it is not.

You admitted at the meeting that you are aware that some people living near wind turbines are getting sick. You agree that IWTs cause annoyance and that leads to health issues. It is time to accept this and move forward— to protect the public so that they are not adversely impacted.

The urgent need for action is confirmed by the recent decision of Australia’s Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) that declared: “We accept that the evidence points to an association and a plausible pathway between WTN and adverse health effects (of a physical nature) mediated by annoyance, sleep disturbance and/or psychological distress”.

The Ministry’s commitment to the Statement of Environmental Values (SEV) under the Ontario Environmental Bill of Rights (EBR) (1994) stipulates that it will use “a precautionary, science-based approach in its decision-making to protect human health and the environment” and that “it will place priority on preventing pollution [in this case harmful noise emissions] . . . minimizing the creation of pollutants that can adversely affect the environment. . . . The Ministry will ensure that staff involved in decisions that might significantly affect the environment is aware of the Ministry’s Environmental Bill of Rights obligations”.

You can no longer justify continued inaction by falsely assuming that “components of wind turbine sound including infrasound and low-frequency sound have not been shown to present unique health risks to people living near wind turbines”.

Scientific, peer reviewed work carried out on infrasound and wind turbines by NASA under the direction of the highly respected Dr. Neil Kelley between 1981 and 1988 demonstrated the infrasound component of wind turbine emissions and its adverse effect on nearby residents. The World Health Organization has issued warnings that “the evidence on low frequency noise is sufficiently strong to warrant immediate concern”; “low-frequency noise . . . can disturb rest and sleep even at low sound pressure levels”; “other primary physiological effects can also be induced by noise during sleep, including increased blood pressure; increased heart rate; … vasoconstriction; …cardiac arrhythmia”.

Ambrose and Rand (2011, 2012), Basner et al. (2014), Cooper (2014), James (2013), and Nissenbaum (2012) all related measurements of wind turbine emissions (including infrasound) directly to diarized symptoms reported by those living nearby. Thorne’s study (2013), which took place over seven years, collected acoustic data at a number of homes so that cumulative exposures could be estimated. It concluded that health is “seriously and adversely affected”. Swinbanks paper presented in Glasgow in 2015 did not support your position. The MOECC failed to refer to  published peer reviewed documentation by Tachibana and Kuwano in the Noise Control Engineering Journal 62(6) 503-520 (2015): “Wind Turbine Noise (WTN) generally has dominant low frequencies and is easily transmitted into buildings, causing residents psycho-acoustical annoyance and sleep disturbance”.

We would be happy to provide you with these documents.

How did it get to this state of affairs that local residents have a greater understanding of the problems than the people whose salaries are paid by the taxpayers to protect us? We await some timely, responsible, diligent enforcement action from your office to alleviate the suffering of our residents.

Yours truly,

Stewart Halliday, Deputy Mayor Municipality of Grey Highlands, Chair

Mark Davis, Deputy Mayor Municipality of Arran-Elderslie, Vice-chair

Reposted from Wind Concerns Ontario

A Holiday season spent reading ‘worthless pile’ of turbine documents

blade_railway_20171221_073210FB_letter
Wind turbine blades are shown being transported by rail through Dundas County.

National Valley News| December 31st, 2017| Letter to Editor

Good morning, Ms. Wynne.

First off, thanks for taking the time to read my last letter to you and getting back to me.

That said, I still have not heard back from Mr. Ballard nor Mr. Thibeault, nor did you answer my two questions.

I acknowledge that my last letter was a tad long and that you may not have had the time to read the whole thing, and as such I am re-asking my two questions and await your response.

1. Given that the timing of the Notice of Posting to the Environmental Registry is completely inappropriate, will you repost the 45-day period to start January 1, 2018?

2. Who is ultimately accountable to the citizens of North Stormont when problems arise during the construction and 20-40 year operational period of the Nation Rise Wind Farm Project? Do we send our bills to the Premier of Ontario, the project developer/owner or to the participating land owners who invited the foreign owned wind developer into the township in the first place?

While waiting for you to answer my two questions, I spent numerous hours between field and office work reading the thousands of pages of EDPR prepared documentation in the off chance that you will not move the end of Christmas Day deadline to submit comments into the MOECC Registry.

What are my conclusions to date, you may ask?

Well, the EDPR-prepared documents are generously sprinkled with hundreds if not thousands of promises to the people, birds and bats and the environment of North Stormont.

For example, EDPR is promising that each turbine will not kill more than 10 bats and 14 birds per year, they will keep turbine noise within the old (not new) MOECC noise guidelines (we’ll hardly hear them like a soft whisper at most) and they will “lightly grade“ the areas where the access roads and lay down areas will go in.

There are two problems with this.

1. EDPR seems to have problems “keeping promises” at least to my wife and me. Perhaps others on my distribution list have had better experiences. EDPR made one promise to me and another to my wife during the so called “consultation meetings” with citizens of North Stormont, and sadly they are zero for two in keeping their promises with us;

2. Your Ministry of Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) does not appear to have the tools, resources, and/or interest to strictly enforce wind turbine companies’ promises. The most recent example of this came to light this past week in the Kincardine area where citizens have lodged numerous complaints about noise emanating from the Enbridge Underwood Wind Project. The turbines have been in place since 2007 and given the number of complaints received since the project start up the MOECC and Enbridge decided to perform a noise audit in 2011. Here comes the head scratcher, we are on the verge of the end of 2017 and the noise audit is still not completed. The MOECC confirmed that the MOECC and the wind project developer have been going back and forth with each other for over six years and they still can’t figure out whether there is a problem or not with noise levels emanating from the turbines. In the meantime citizens within the project area continue to have their lives disrupted because of the turbines.

This is unconscionable in 2018 Ontario.

Ontario is blessed to have an Auditor General that is absolutely committed to rooting out waste and mismanagement in Ontario. An example of this happened again this past week where Ms. Lysyk dropped another bombshell on the Energy File where she reported out that private electricity generators fleeced the rate and taxpayers of Ontario to the tune of some $260 million over the past few years.

The Energy File seems to be in complete and utter disarray.

Again Ms. Wynne I urge you to cancel the Nation Rise Wind Project to avoid further embarrassment to your government and if that is not possible just yet, please allow us to enjoy our Christmas season without the need to continue reading the worthless pile of turbine documents.

I look forward to hearing your answers to my two questions soonest.

Thanks for your time and attention.

Raymond Grady,
Crysler

Fighting Words in Milford

vive a la resistance 2Credit:  The Intelligencer | December 20, 2017 | ~~

Experience is something you get right after you need it. On the heels of a potent, jam-packed rally in Milford to implore the government to pack up its turbines and go home, the bitter aftertaste and lingering sting of feeling deceived and betrayed remains ours to mourn and avenge.

When you think about it, the optics of investing in wind turbines can be construed as a patriotic opportunity to demonstrate support for green energy when better options may exist, but this turbine project is lead contender for first place as a blue ribbon colossal failure.

Clearly, Premier Wynne doesn’t want to be confused with facts, she has already made up her mind. Wynne is at the helm of The Ontario Green Energy Act – the largest transfer of wealth in Canadian history, and as it crosses the performance finish line, it’s lagging behind, Wynne thinks it came in first. As recited in quote after quote: The net result is this is the most over- priced, inefficient, redundant, useless subsidized wind power electricity in North America, never mind Ontario. All supply with no demand. Ontarians have an abundant supply of apologies and Mea Culpa’s from the Ontario Energy Minister for “sub- optimal outcomes”.

The notion of erecting seven 480’ turbines in Milford is just plain ludicrous, although the reality is easily heard by the heavy, gravel- laden trucks barreling down County Road 13 providing thunderous, early morning wake- up calls. The ugly esthetics beginning to sprout will impose a fire sale price tag for potential business investors in Milford and has struck fear in seniors inflicted with depressed residential land values while huddled beneath the looming white elephants. This is the Canadian government that has shoved its citizens to the sidelines to put up and shut up while they impose incompetent, environmental destruction upon a gentle community.

The knights of South Marysburgh tilting at wind turbines are growing in numbers scattered across the belly of South Bay in a mission to quash the project. Appointing Milford for monolithic wind turbines flies in the face of all that is naturally beautiful, peaceful and harmonious in the County. The 800- miles of shoreline tucked into warm, white sand dunes, tropically- hued waters, wine, food, farming, olive oil, maple syrup and bursting with artistic bounty is sacrilegious.

While defending both professional and personal scrutiny, perhaps Mayor Quaiff has the right idea, attacking the issue from within? After all, one of the most successful strategies every employed is “the enemy of my enemy is my friend”.

Milford owns the mouth’s that roar “we are mad as hell and won’t take it anymore” and it has fallen on the selected hearing of Wynne. Steve Ferguson closed his speech at the APEC annual general meeting last Sunday, quoting McGuinty “they (the public) can’t stay mad at us forever”. In Milford, Ontario, those are fighting words.

Mary Malone
Milford

Source:  The Intelligencer | December 20, 2017 |
Reposted from:  National Wind Watch

9 Years of ongoing Noise Complaints for Enbridge Wind

chatham-kent-ontario-enbridge-wind-from-hwy3-talbot-trail15 (1)
CHATHAM KENT ONTARIO ENBRIDGE WIND FROM HWY3 TALBOT TRAIL15

Kincardine Council asked the MOECC(Ministry of the Environment & Climate Change)  on December 6, 2017 what is being done about continued noise reports at the  Enbridge wind power project for the past NINE YEARS!  MOECC District Manager documents the history of incomplete reports, and reported health effects.