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According to the Eastern edition of Farmers Forum, the paper did a survey at the recent Farm Show in Ottawa and asked people whether they “approve” of wind turbines.

The startling result is the majority of those responding said they did NOT approve of large-scale wind turbines, and the reason for most was that wind power was expensive and inefficient. Several remarked on what having turbines would do to their community (thank you! You are the good guys!) and others said that the economics just didn’t make any sense. The Auditor General for Ontario said that to the government in 2011, but it still has not done any cost-benefit analysis.

Note that one North Gower area farm owner said he is “not allergic to money” and would still put one on his property—not where he lives, we venture.

Farmers not sold on wind turbines, survey says

By Brandy Harrison

OTTAWA — While farmers are among the few who can directly benefit financially from hosting wind turbines, Eastern Ontario farmers are more likely to oppose than support them, a Farmers Forum survey shows.

In a random survey of 100 farmers at the Ottawa Valley Farm Show from March 11 to 13, nearly half — 48 per cent — disapproved of wind turbines. Another 29 per cent approved and the remaining 23 per cent said they were neutral.

But positions on the issue weren’t always clear cut. Even when farmers threw their lot in with one side of the debate or the other, their reasoning was peppered with pros and cons.

It’s in stark contrast to a Farmers Forum survey of 50 Western Ontario farmers at the London Farm Show in early March, where 58 per cent were strongly opposed to wind turbines. Farmers opposed outnumbered those who approved by nearly three-to-one.

The number of turbines reveal the difference: Of the 67 wind projects representing more than 1,200 turbines province-wide, almost all the turbines dot the landscape of Western Ontario. Only two projects are in Eastern Ontario, an 86-turbine project on Wolfe Island, south of Kingston, and another 10 turbines near Brinston, south of Winchester, which were completed in January.

Wind power is so controversial that 13 farmers polled at the farm show wanted to remain anonymous, unwilling to come out publicly as a supporter or a critic.

Nearly three-quarters of farmers who disapproved liked green energy in theory but panned turbines — and sometimes the Green Energy Act as a whole — as a too-costly, inefficient electricity source that’s driving up their power bill.

Eric VanDenBroek doesn’t mind the look of the turbines that are only a short drive from his Winchester dairy farm but isn’t a fan of the way the program was rolled out.

“Financially, it’s already proving to be a disaster,” …

Read the full story and see the chart of responses here.

 

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