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Oraclepoll Research Limited has just released the “Ontario Omnibus Survey” 2013 (well, it says 2012, but the survey was done this past January) which was commissioned by the wind power developer lobby organization, CanWEA or the Canadian Wind Energy Association. The company surveyed 1,000 people by telephone—that figure represents one out of 9,000 electors in Ontario.

Last year’s survey entertained very different questions and statements, including “Wind energy is one of the safest forms of electricity generation compared to other sources (nuclear and coal).” Agree, neither agree nor disagree, or Disagree. The response was that 78% agreed! 79% in Toronto!

This year’s statement–what the company reported on, anyway–was “Ontario should continue to strive to be a Canadian leader in wind and solar energy [sic]* production.” Agree, neither agree nor disagree or Disagree.

69% agreed!!! 76% in Toronto!!Where there will never be a wind turbine or wind power plant!

Oraclepoll also asked people to rank their preference in power generation: solar, wind, natural gas, hydro, or nuclear. Solar came out on top followed by wind. Now, we know this is no choice at all because when you choose wind as your source of power, you are actually choosing gas, because intermittent wind power needs back-up from something during peak periods of demand…and right now, that’s gas.

We are reminded of an episode of Yes Prime Minister which takes a look at how polls are crafted; the word choice in questions or statements is critical to the outcome of the polls. You may wish to take a short two-minute humour break and view the video, here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G0ZZJXw4MTA

With that in mind, here are the statements we’d like to have seen:

Are you concerned about rising power bills in Ontario?

Are you concerned about the effects on small and medium business of higher electricity bills?

Are you worried about the potential for job losses as small and medium business cope with higher power bills?

Are you concerned about higher food prices as a result of higher power costs to local farmers?

Are you concerned about the subsidies given to wind power developers which can be as much as $500,000 per wind turbine, per year?

Are you aware of the health problems being reported in Ontario due to exposure to noise and vibration from wind turbines?

Are you aware of the damage to the environment from large-scale wind turbines, including the killing of birds and other wildlife?

Do you think Ontario should approve hundreds more large-scale wind power generation facilities?

Think the poll might have come out differently with those introductory questions?

Here is a link to the latest CanWEA-sponsored poll.

http://www.canwea.ca/pdf/Canwea-Ontario-Omnibus-Report_Feb2013_Q2_and_Q3.pdf

*Energy is what is used to produce power.

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