As you know, two community groups have appeal the Ministry of the Environment’s approval of a wind power project on the South Shore of Prince Edward County at Ostrander Point. The Prince Edward County Field Naturalists (PECFN) and the Alliance to Protect Prince Edward County (APPEC) have both filed appeals, PECFN’s on the basis that the project will cause serious and irreversible harm to the natural environment, and APPEC on the basis of harm to human health. Wind Concerns Ontario was granted status as a participant and presented evidence on the potential harm to bats, and the resulting economic effects if this expensive and unnecessary power development were to be built. County Coalition for Safe Affordable Green Energy (CCSAGE) is also assisting with fund-raising and other activities.
The Environmental Review Tribunal (ERT) is continuing in the County and a great deal of evidence on the environment has already been presented.
Last week, the community groups hosted a fund-raiser Town Hall, which featured excellent speakers. Local humourist Steve Campbell was the MC for the event, a packed hall at the venerable Regent Theatre in Picton, said he regularly reads of strife for city dwellers in the form of crime, and gang wars, etc. “Here in the County,” he said, “we only have two enemies: the provincial government, and the federal government.”
For more details on the event, please read the story here (and note the new mascot Angry Bird!): http://www.freewco.blogspot.ca/2013/04/ccsages-town-hall-event-on-wind-turbine.html
One of the most stunning pieces of information presented that evening was from business owner Carlyn Moulton who noted that the arts and services sectors bring in $400 million in revenue annually to the County while the proposed wind power development will bring–get this–$1-2 million in tax revenue. “Huh?” she said. “How does that make any sense?” Tourism to the County will be drastically affected by the Ostrander Point project, and another proposed wind power project the “White Pines.” A study done recently in the U.K., Moulton said, showed that 75% of the visitors to an area where wind turbines had been installed said they would “never come back.”
Among the handouts that evening (we were there) was a flyer on why the Ostrander Point ERT is “winnable.” The environmental testimony has been damning—botanist Paul Catling said the damage to the rare alvar environment will be irreversible and he scoffed at developer Gilead Power’s claim to be able to re-create the environment elsewhere—but this ERT is the first opportunity for a Tribunal to hear actual testimony from people already living with wind turbines and the environmental noise and infrasound they produce.
“APPEC’s appeal is the first in which Ontario wind victims will present evidence demonstrating that wind turbines cause serious harm.This proof meets the test required in order to WIN and ERT appeal,” APPEC wrote in the flyer. “By invalidating 550-m setbacks the appeal will set a precedent that applies to every proposed industrial wind project. The Ministry of the Environment would have to determine a new standard to protect the health of Ontarians, and it could not continue to rubber-stamp projects in Ontario.”
Worth supporting, wouldn’t you say?
Go to www.appec.ca to donate or send a cheque to
APPEC Legal Fund
PO Box 173
Milford ON K0K 2P0
If the government actually approves this wind power project in a “globally significant” important bird area, and where the destruction of a rare environment is assured, there is no hope of using the government’s process for any project.
Ottawa Wind Concerns
(A grey-blue gnat-catcher, photographed by a Prince Edward County resident)