Articles filed under Energy Policy from Canada
Maine has spent a lot of time building a relationship with neighboring New Brunswick, with energy as a major focus. The recent announcement that Hydro-Quebec plans to take over NB Power has the potential to alter that relationship. How and how much has yet to be determined, but Maine would be wise to gain a better understanding of the proposed deal and what opportunities it presents and forecloses to ensure the state's interests don't get lost in the financial and bureaucratic wrangling that is sure to ensue.
The Selinger government is considering a bailout deal to rescue the financially floundering wind farm slated to be built near St. Joseph. Following some pointed questions from Tory MLA Cliff Graydon during a committee hearing late Tuesday night, Finance Minister Rosann Wowchuk acknowledged Pattern Energy has approached the government for funding and that the province is considering it.
This is in regard to the 'Green Energy Bandwagon' and the media's comments that go something like, "It's not as if wind power is controversial." Wrong, wrong, wrong. More than 4,000 (some say as high as 7,000) of these massive, noisy, 250-foot high industrial behemoths are being erected in the backyards of people living in developed communities throughout south central Ontario, for no practical reason whatsoever. A cost-recovery-benefit calculation of Dalton's Green Energy brain cramp shows his part-time industrial wind power plan is only beneficial to, and lucrative for wind turbine promoters and builders.
Normally, I don't write about problems I encounter in getting information from government because I feel it's too "inside baseball" for readers. I'm making an exception because I think this incident illustrates the problems besieged opponents of industrial wind turbines living in communities across Ontario are encountering in getting straight answers from their own government. This, as Premier Dalton McGuinty appears hell-bent on erecting these giant steel structures, up to 40-storeys high, as fast as he can. The last time McGuinty was this juiced we got ... eHealth.
Barbara Ashbee distributed this letter to all media in Ontario Canada. Ms. Ashbee and her family abandoned their home due to wind turbine noise and other impacts which have harmed their health and quality of life.
The Ontario government's multi-billion-dollar wind turbine deal with South Korean industrial giant Samsung Group is in jeopardy after a power play in Premier Dalton McGuinty's cabinet, the Toronto Star has learned. Sources say rival ministers opposed to Deputy Premier George Smitherman's pet scheme, which they fear will mean "billions" of dollars in subsidies to Samsung, have convinced McGuinty to stall the landmark deal first reported in the Star on Sept. 27.
Local wind farm opponents vowed yesterday to keep pushing for independent studies into the effects wind turbines have on people. Ontario legislators rejected Bruce- Grey-Owen Sound MPP Bill Murdoch's call to halt industrial wind farm development until the province's top doctor can assure the government turbines don't harm people living nearby.
Too clever for his own good? That might be the case for Energy Minister George Smitherman, who aims to turn Ontario into a renewable-energy superpower and create thousands of green-collar jobs. Both are great ideas. But a deal being made on the sidelines could undo much of what Smitherman and the Liberal government are trying to accomplish.
When industries look for government subsidies for money-losing propositions, a common business model these days, one of the most important strategic elements is to make sure you have a well-oiled public relations machine to keep the facts from getting in the way. Voters don't like to back money-losers, which means keeping them steadily misinformed or at least confused. Renewable energy industries - wind, solar, biomass, human treadmills - have a particularly tough job.
It's never pretty watching people's rights getting trampled by a government caught up in the latest fad, but it's happening across Ontario. The victims are citizens living mainly in rural communities. Their concerns about the possible adverse health effects of industrial wind turbines are being rolled over by Premier Dalton McGuinty. We should all pay attention because our rights could be next.
Ontario's natural resources ministry has been so overwhelmed with applications to develop offshore wind projects in the Great Lakes that it has stopped accepting them - at least until March. Minister Donna Cansfield, speaking at a conference in Toronto, said more than 100 applications have been received representing more than 500 projects on the Ontario side of the lakes. "The window for applications has been temporarily closed," she said.
Nova Scotia's electricity consumer advocate is questioning Nova Scotia Power's proposal to spend $120 million on a wind farm. "Is it a good deal?" asks Halifax lawyer John Merrick. "Because ultimately it has to be paid for by ratepayers." The power company has applied to government regulators for permission to build and develop a 22-turbine wind farm at Nuttby Mountain, Colchester County.
Ian Hanna said his application for judicial review, being called the first of its kind, is his latest appeal to the government after petitions failed to stop plans for five turbines about 900 metres away from his property on Big Island in the Bay of Quinte. The community of about 100 homes will be overwhelmed by the turbines, he charged. "My parents taught us when we were growing up that we should stand up for what we thought is good and right and whether that's for my family or for my neighbours, I intend to do that," he said.
A Prince Edward County man is going to court over Ontario's new setback rules for industrial wind farms. Lawyer Eric Gillespie, acting on behalf of client Ian Hanna, a resident of Big Island, has launched the first legal challenge to the Ontario government's Green Energy Act which requires wind turbines be located a minimum 550 metres from homes.
Nova Scotians may face higher electricity costs in the short term as the province moves toward cleaner and renewable energy, says the man in charge of overseeing Nova Scotia's renewable energy strategy. Dalhousie University's David Wheeler said Monday it is inevitable Nova Scotia Power customers will face a jump in prices ..."If we end up with a global carbon energy tax, then producing energy from coal is going to be very expensive for Nova Scotia consumers," Mr. Wheeler told reporters.
"The Green Energy Act, 2009 and its regulations clearly do not appear to meet the requirements of law in the province of Ontario," said lawyer Eric Gillespie today in a news conference at Queen's Park. On behalf of his client Ian Hanna, Gillespie explained that a court application was filed earlier today for judicial review of the Green Energy Act, 2009 based on the Precautionary Principle as it applies to industrial wind turbine installations.
Wind farm opponents plan to gather at Queen's Park this month to pressure provincial politicians to support MPP Bill Murdoch's bid to halt further turbine projects until Ontario investigates alleged health effects. "This might be our chance to make a statement," Georgian Bluffs resident Wendy McKee told a crowd during a community meeting on wind turbines and health. She said she will try to reserve a bus to transport concerned Grey-Bruce residents to Toronto for the Oct. 29 vote.
Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound MPP Bill Murdoch is calling for a province-wide moratorium on wind turbine projects and is introducing a resolution at Queen's Park later this month. Through his resolution, which he expects to be debated on Oct. 29, Mr. Murdoch will call on the province and its chief medical doctor to state whether or not wind turbines cause health problems for people who live near them. Mr. Murdoch said the government has a responsibility as well as a mandate to investigate such claims.
Recently, Innisfil council sent a letter to the provincial government, expressing concerns over the regulations. The letter encouraged the province to accept recommendations from the town's Innisfil Alternative Energy Ad Hoc Committee, which call for changes to setbacks for renewable energy projects, clean-up requirements and other aspects of the Act. The Act also gives jurisdiction over project approvals to the province, said Jackson.
For Ontario to blow $1 billion over seven years not delivering on electronic health (eHealth) records, as Auditor General Jim McCarter documented last week, is frightening. But here's something just as scary. Everything that went wrong with eHealth can just as easily go wrong with Premier Dalton McGuinty's similarly half-baked plan to make us a "renewable" energy giant. Right down to the fact the same cabinet minister in charge when most of the damage was done at eHealth, is now in charge of renewable energy.