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People attending a community meeting in North Gower last evening expressed continuing concern about the wind power project that was proposed in 2008 for North Gower-Richmond. The project application has been suspended pending a new application under the Request for Proposal process, which will open in a few weeks.

According to documents obtained by Ottawa Wind Concerns via the Freedom of Information process (thanks to donations from the community) the wind power developer Prowind, was informed of the application suspension in June, 2013, but advised to keep in touch with their contact at the Ontario Power Authority (OPA) about the new opportunity to apply. Prowind maintains a listing for the project on its website.

At that time, Prowind’s documents were “deemed complete” by the OPA, and the company was waiting for a connection to the grid, before the approval process could continue.

Prowind advised The Ottawa Citizen in August 2013, that the company would review the terms of the new process, and re-apply, if appropriate.

In October of 2013, a legal petition bearing more than 1,200 signatures from area residents was presented to the City of Ottawa; council passed a motion that recognized the petition and further, asked the province for a return of local land-use planning powers.

Statements to the effect that the project is now dead are not correct; the OPA has not yet defined its “community engagement” requirement under the new process.

Meanwhile, the OPA has designated Eastern Ontario as a “green light” area for wind power development.

It is expected that the wind power project will be an issue in the upcoming municipal election; incumbent councillor Scott Moffatt wrote a report on the project in last week’s Manotick Messenger, and candidate Dan Scharf has stated he is opposed to it.

The South Branch project, also developed by Prowind and sold to US-based EDP Renewables, has been operating south of Ottawa since March; the turbines are the first 3-megawatt power generators in Ontario.

Email us at ottawawindconcerns@gmail.com