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County council narrowly approves additional $10,000 for wind power studies;

County council will be spending approximately $10,000 more on its wind power study but not all members were pleased with that stance. The extra $10,000 will assist in predominantly helping to further study the migration patterns of birds and bats to ensure they aren't impacted by proposed wind energy projects, an issue which arose during public meetings ...Amherstburg Mayor Wayne Hurst believed the money would be well spent. He believed that the county has to ensure they are doing as much as they can to make sure that due diligence is being met. Essex Deputy Mayor Richard Meloche believed "our research is too important not to spend the additional money." ..."These turbines will be here for years to come and site planning is extremely important. ..."We strongly believe buffer zones must be determined for the sensitive wildlife areas such as Point Pelee, Hillman Marsh and Holiday Beach. There are important long-term environmental and tourism impacts to consider for Essex County."

Some county councillors question why the necessary information wasn't part of original study

ESSEX -- County council will be spending approximately $10,000 more on its wind power study but not all members were pleased with that stance.
The extra $10,000 will assist in predominantly helping to further study the migration patterns of birds and bats to ensure they aren't impacted by proposed wind energy projects, an issue which arose during public meetings on the draft plan prepared by the Jones Group out of Oakville. Obtaining those studies and additional information will set the process back roughly one month, something that some councillors thought was time well spent while others questioned why such information wasn't part of the original planning process.

"I'm very disappointed in the whole process," said Leamington Mayor and Deputy Warden John Adams. "I was always of the understanding that birds and bats were one of the main issues."

Lakeshore Mayor Tom Bain also expressed his disappointment that an additional $10,000 had to be spent, believing that "one study leads to another." He believed the original study should have been all inclusive. LaSalle Mayor Gary Baxter also voiced opposition with the plan to give the... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

Some county councillors question why the necessary information wasn't part of original study

ESSEX -- County council will be spending approximately $10,000 more on its wind power study but not all members were pleased with that stance.
The extra $10,000 will assist in predominantly helping to further study the migration patterns of birds and bats to ensure they aren't impacted by proposed wind energy projects, an issue which arose during public meetings on the draft plan prepared by the Jones Group out of Oakville. Obtaining those studies and additional information will set the process back roughly one month, something that some councillors thought was time well spent while others questioned why such information wasn't part of the original planning process.

"I'm very disappointed in the whole process," said Leamington Mayor and Deputy Warden John Adams. "I was always of the understanding that birds and bats were one of the main issues."

Lakeshore Mayor Tom Bain also expressed his disappointment that an additional $10,000 had to be spent, believing that "one study leads to another." He believed the original study should have been all inclusive. LaSalle Mayor Gary Baxter also voiced opposition with the plan to give the planning firm an additional $10,000 noting that the county chose them due to their expertise in this matter.

"For this amount to be thrown on us now is something I do not think should have happened," he said.

Amherstburg Mayor Wayne Hurst believed the money would be well spent. He believed that the county has to ensure they are doing as much as they can to make sure that due diligence is being met. Essex Deputy Mayor Richard Meloche believed "our research is too important not to spend the additional money."

Warden Nelson Santos compared the process to an Environmental Assessment adding that they have to cover all their bases and make the study conclusive.

"You can't dismiss the dynamics we have here in Windsor-Essex County," said Santos, also the Mayor of Kingsville. "That doesn't exist in other areas."
"The reality is they knew this going in," countered Tecumseh Mayor Gary McNamara. "The reality is going in if they didn't know it was a unique county, they ought not have been bidding on (doing the study)."

The Essex County Wind Action Group (ECWAG), headed by Amherstburg residents Bill and Maureen Anderson, commended the county for having the "forethought" in approving the additional studies.

"These turbines will be here for years to come and site planning is extremely important. We realize the Jones Study is in its preliminary stages and hopefully better guidelines will emerge as the study progresses," stated an ECWAG news release. "We strongly believe buffer zones must be determined for the sensitive wildlife areas such as Point Pelee, Hillman Marsh and Holiday Beach. There are important long-term environmental and tourism impacts to consider for Essex County."

They added, "while realizing that setbacks must be viable according to
scientific studies specific to each situation, we believe a minimum distance from homes and schools should be set for planning purposes. We are also requesting a dispute protocol be in put in place. A liaison might be assigned to handle potential complaints regarding noise, flicker or other problems that Essex County residents may have to address with the non-local wind corporations."


Source: http://www.amherstburgecho....

OCT 23 2007
https://www.windaction.org/posts/11615-county-council-narrowly-approves-additional-10-000-for-wind-power-studies
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