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Here is a letter to the Editor from the current edition of the Norwich Gazette. This community is the location of Prowind’s ONLY active wind power development.

Letters to the Editor

Norwich Gazette

May 5, 2014

The public should be asking questions about the Gunn’s Hill wind project, and asking about the organization called The Oxford Community Energy Co-operative.

If the “community” in the project area wanted a co-operative why wouldn’t they create their own? Why are Prowind Canada, Ontario Sustainability Services (OSS), “Friends of Wind” (presumably funded by Canadian Wind Energy Association) and IPC Energy trying to push it into the community? Doesn’t this appear more like a mechanism for the developer to apply for the “co-operative” adder from the Ontario Power Authority (to make more money for the developer) rather than a true community initiative?

What is IPC Energy’s interest in this project? Will the project be changing ownership? Why would the Oxford Community Energy Co-operative’s (OCEC) corporate office address have been registered as the IPC Energy address in Mississauga, with IPC’s president being a director of the OCEC?

While Prowind stated in its Renewable Energy application documents its plans to be a “long-term presence and neighbour”, it already tried unsuccessfully to sell the Gunn’s Hill project to Boralex in 2013. Given that Prowind Canada has still not begun operating any projects in Canada, and their staff has been dwindling in number each year, why would there be any assurance that Prowind will be involved long-term? At what point will the project ownership change?

Ask about the provider, Prowind.

Why does Prowind claim employment opportunities will be offered to Six Nations workers in one section of their REA documents, while stating preference will be given to local community residents in another?

Why did Prowind claim the Talbot Wind Farm near Ridgetown was a “well planned project” without researching the impact on residents? Why have they not admitted that residents have had significant adverse impacts in this “well planned project”, including having to vacate their homes or sleep in their basements?

Take a look at a website we’ve been observing – http://www.windontario.ca. You already know the Norwich Township council has declared themselves to be an “unwilling host”.

Do you truly believe the Gunn’s Hill project will benefit the environment? Ontario’s coal-fired generating stations have already been shut down and we are exporting surplus electricity at a loss to other jurisdictions on a regular basis, with manufacturing industries closing down in Ontario.

The public should be asking the hard questions.

Gerald and Carol Engberts. RR4 Woodstock

Prowind's Head Office in Hamilton until 2013
Prowind’s Head Office in Hamilton until 2013


Editor note: Prowind is the Germany-based company that has proposed a wind power development for North Gower-Richmond until the Feed In Tariff subsidy process was put on hold in 2013; a new procurement process is slated to begin in the summer of 2014.