Articles filed under Energy Policy from Canada
I didn't ask to have wind turbine complexes placed near me and my neighbours. I've lived here for 20 years and some neighbours, for a lifetime. We do not deserve to have our families and homes exposed to this for ANY reason. The fact that these wind turbines are so ineffective is only insult to injury, literally. The government needs to decommission the turbines that are causing such problems instead of adding more to the problem.
New legislation that the Liberal government promised would create 50,000 new jobs and make more room for renewable energy passed in the Ontario legislature Thursday ...The Green Energy Act, touted as a key piece of legislation that will transform the province's struggling economy, passed third reading by a vote of 59 to 13, with opposition from the Progressive Conservatives. The Tories have long argued that some of the measures in the act amount to extra costs for already strapped consumers.
Utility-scale wind energy, critics insist, is neither as green as supporters say, nor as economical
It is important to understand why the Danish government, which appears to have commissioned Mr. Pedersen's comments, is sensitive to critiques of the Danish experience with wind power. Denmark is home to Vestas, the world's largest wind turbine manufacturer, with 20,000 employees and a market share of between 20% and 25%. As the market for its turbines in Denmark and other European countries becomes saturated, it seeks to export the Danish experience worldwide. To this end, it recently ran a multi-million dollar global ad campaign with the slogan, "Believe in the wind," claiming that Denmark has solved the problem of dirty electricity through wind power.
The first complaints were of the visual impact of wind farms on their landscapes and waterscapes. Now a new concern is emerging. People who live near wind turbines are complaining of health problems such as sleep disorders, migraines, tinnitus, equilibrium problems, depression and anxiety attacks, and in children, learning disabilities. A 2008 California study and a 2007 British study have dubbed the "wind turbine syndrome," an effect on the inner ear by low energy noise from the turbines. There may also be an effect from air pressure changes from the turning turbines.
The ripple of controversy prompted Premier Dalton McGuinty to vaguely promise to investigate: "We'll take advantage of the very best information that's out there to make sure that we're doing something that's intelligent," he said after Dr. Robert McMurtry, a former dean of medicine at the University of Western Ontario, presented the survey results. ...And after so many things - cigarettes, asbestos and pesticides - that were initially considered innocuous turned out not to be, I wouldn't dismiss concerns.
The developer of a Brinston wind farm that awaits local approval is applauding proposed new provincial legislation imposing a six-month deadline on municipalities to issue building permits for alternative energy projects. "It would take away the need for us to do an Official Plan amendment [at the United Counties] and zoning amendment [at South Dundas Township]," Luke Geleynse, executive director for Prowind Inc., said of the Green Energy Act introduced at Queen's Park late last month.
Years ago, Princeton economist Alan Blinder famously exhorted policy-makers to frame policy that was based on soft hearts and hard heads. The McGuinty government's proposed foray into investments in wind generation upends this admonition by giving us policy that is soft-hearted - and soft-headed.
Lorrie Gillis is no Don Quixote and she doesn't think her enemies are imaginary, nor does she believe her battle is a lost cause, so she continues to "tilt" at the wind power companies that want to turn the rolling farmland in her rural neighbourhood into a wind farm, and the provincial government, that through its proposed new Green Act, will take away her right to oppose the plan she says will destroy the peaceful enjoyment of her property.
Opposition to wind farms is not a 'NIMBY' issue, Oxford residents told a travelling legislative committee hearing on the Green Energy Act. Oxford Wind Action Group's Joan Morris spoke to the Standing Committee on General Government April 15 in London, telling them of her group's concerns the omnibus bill would eradicate landowner's rights, threaten agricultural lands and threaten public health in the name of making the development of 'green' energy easier. Its opposition is not drawn from a "not in my backyard" reaction to proposed developments.
A backlash from consumers and the real estate industry over a plan to require energy audits every time a home is sold has prompted Energy Minister George Smitherman to back down. ...The act, designed to bring more energy conservation efforts and renewable sources of electricity to the province, will also be amended so that residents will have an easier time objecting to wind turbine projects near their homes.
Provincial energy minister George Smitherman promoted and defended the new Green Energy Act yesterday in Guelph, including the part that will force homeowners to pay around $300 for an energy audit before they can sell their homes. "About half of that cost is being provided by the government of Ontario ...in the form of a grant," Smitherman said. ...The bill has come under considerable criticism.
Premier Dalton McGuinty says he's willing to consider setting certain standards to address health concerns around wind turbines if they prove feasible. McGuinty notes there is no definitive research into the possible health risks of living near a wind farm, but says the province must take all concerns into account as it looks to set up more turbines.
Tom Lewis, planning and environment manager with IPC Energy, said his company takes the results of a Wind Concerns Ontario survey seriously, but pointed to an earlier survey that found an overwhelming number of Ontarians are in favour of wind energy. "I think there is a small number of people susceptible to health problems and I certainly empathize with them," Lewis said.
Ontario's energy minister says he understands some people are opposed to alternative electricity projects in their areas, but that the provincial government is committed to green energy, and these projects are going to happen. ...Smitherman said when the act is passed by his government, which could happen within three months, the social and bureaucratic road- blocks are going to be removed.
Town administration is expected to provide more information to council in coming weeks about the proposed South Side Wind Farm and members of council are joining members of the Advisory Committee on the Environment (ACE) with questions of their own. Councillor Bob Pillon brought up the issue of potential health impacts ..."We need answers," said Pillon.
"The speed at which this new legislation is being introduced and the relatively short period of time provided for public consultation leaves us with concerns at the potential implications and implementation logistics of such broad changes to so many other Acts. There needs to be more time for consultation and discussion," said Kathy Suggitt, the county's policy planning manager. The county has been struggling with solar and wind project applications.
The Green Energy Act (proposed in Bill 150) will allow the Ontario Government to push through the installation of thousands of industrial wind turbines across the province without going through the time-honoured environmental assessment process. ...Premier McGuinty and his deputy seem to believe the thousands of complaints they are receiving about Bill 150 can be ignored. Doesn't it matter to them that the bill allows the World Biosphere Niagara Escarpment to be devastated by infrastructure development, or that our precious natural heritage systems will no longer be protected ...?
Michael Trebilcock, a renowned economist and friend of the environment, appeared before the Ontario legislature in April to argue against the Ontario government's proposed Green Energy Act (Bill 150). For the many good reason he outlines, this green act is anything but green. Trebilcock's submission is provided below.
It could be a long time before more wind turbines begin to occupy significant space in Nova Scotia skylines. The government's standing committee on economic development heard Tuesday that there are serious constraints to the amount of renewable energy the province's energy grid can handle - especially when it comes to wind.