April 30, 2018
The Ontario government realized there were inadequacies in their protocols for wind turbine noise and the assessment procedures needed in the approval process for new wind power projects, so they changed them.
And then gave the five newest wind power projects the option not to use the new rules.
As a result, the powerful power generators in projects that received contracts in 2016 but which are not yet built — in fact four don’t have Renewable Energy Approval yet — will be out of compliance with the new regulations the minute they start operating.
Four Ontario community groups think that’s not right.
They’re heading to Queen’s Park today as three MPPs present thousands of signatures on a Petition, asking the government to follow its own rules.
Representatives of Ottawa-area Concerned Citizens of North Stormont and Save The Nation will join their colleagues from Dutton Dunwich Opponents of Wind Turbines (DDOWT) and Wallaceburg Area Wind Concerns as the Petition is presented in the Legislature.
The Petition is related to the creation of “Transition Provisions” by the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) in the Renewable Energy Approval process, which allows wind power developers to ignore new noise modelling guidelines, even for the newest unapproved power projects.
“The MOECC recognized that the previous requirements for turbine noise modelling were inadequate and they revised them,” says Bonnie Rowe, spokesperson for Dutton Dunwich Opponents of Wind Turbines (DDOWT), whose citizen group has applied for a Judicial Review of the Transition. “The noise modelling requirements are important to protect health and safety for people living near the turbines but now, the government has allowed the developers for the new projects to use the old ones — we think that’s wrong.
“If the government sets rules, especially for health, then everyone should have to follow them, no exceptions.”
Wind turbine noise has been linked to sleep disturbance, which in turn leads to other, serious health problems. According to Wind Concerns Ontario, documents received from the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change #MOECC show that thousands of reports of excessive noise remain unresolved, and not responded to in Ontario.
MPPs presenting the petitions Monday are: Jeff Yurek, from Elgin-Middlesex-London where the Strong Breeze Wind Power Project is proposed for Dutton Dunwich; Monte McNaughton, from Lambton-Kent-Middlesex where the Otter Creek Wind Farm is proposed for the Wallaceburg area; and Jim McDonell, MPP for Stormont-Dundas-South Glengarry, who will be delivering petitions on behalf of the North Stormont area where the Nation Rise Wind Farm is proposed, and also the Municipality of The Nation, where the Eastern Fields Wind Power Project is proposed.
Concerned Citizens of North Stormont: Margaret Benke firstname.lastname@example.org
Ottawa Wind Concerns: email@example.com