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Dozens of people turned out Wednesday at the Kinburn CC to view the Official Plan map, sign a petition for better setbacks from wind turbines, and help butter tarts vanish! [Photo: Ottawa Wind Concerns]

April 28, 2023

Dozens of people from West Carleton-March and beyond turned out to an drop-in information event held in Kinburn by Ottawa Wind Concerns. The goal of the event was to help people understand the new Ottawa Official Plan and its designated areas for renewable energy projects, as the city is now working on zoning bylaws.

Ottawa Wind Concerns is promoting safe setback distances between industrial-scale wind turbines and homes, and has a petition requesting a 2-km setback, minimum, to property lines.

Information kits were available, plus large copies of the Official Plan maps for viewing.

The new Official Plan allows renewable energy projects on “Rural Countryside,” “Greenbelt,” and “environmental lands.”

Both West Carleton and Rideau-Jock wards have significant land areas branded “rural countryside” as well as prime agricultural land.

People attending were concerned about the environmental impacts should wind power projects be built and many recalled a proposal made 14 years ago that was extremely unpopular. It did not proceed but a large solar power project was built near Galetta. Questions were asked about the success and usefulness of that power project today.

“People are very well informed on the issue of environmental impacts of large-scale wind and solar power projects,” says Ottawa Wind Concerns president Jane Wilson, “and they’re asking questions about battery storage systems, too. It’s great to see people come out like this to get more information, and to participate the City’s engagement process on the new zoning bylaws.”

The trend is for greater setback distances now between wind turbines and homes, Wilson says. “Former energy minister Glenn Thibeault in the Wynne government admitted that mistakes were made in siting wind turbines years ago. We’re saying, we know a lot more about wind turbines now—let’s not make those mistakes again.”

Wind turbines are an industrial use of the land, Wilson adds.

Residents attending also spoke of concerns about wind turbines and effectiveness as a power source. “Ontario is just not a windy place,” said one. “Why are we doing this?”

Councillor Clarke Kelly dropped in and spoke with residents, and West Carleton Online editor/publisher Jake Davies spoke with people as they viewed the maps.

Other organizations with a pro-wind power view sent representatives to the event, including CAFES and the Ottawa Renewable Energy Cooperative (OREC), a group that invests in wind and solar power projects.

Free butter tarts were on offer from Sweet & Sassy Bakery in nearby Arnprior.

The petition is available petition-1

Signed copies may be mailed to Wind Concerns PO BOX 91047  RPO SIGNATURE CTR KANATA ON  K2T 0A3