Articles filed under Impact on People from Canada
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.
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.
Tory MPP Bill Murdoch's resolution calling for a moratorium on new wind turbines in Ontario pending confirmation that there are no adverse health effects on humans stalled in the legislature. Murdoch said his resolution was drafted in response to concerns about wind power raised by hundreds of people in his riding and across the province. "I'm disappointed and where the people go from here I don't know," Murdoch said yesterday. "The government of the day has decided that they don't count by turning down my resolution."
Ontario Medical Officer of Health Arlene King told a legislative committee Tuesday she wants more information about health effects of wind turbines. That's different than what a Ministry of Health spokesman told The Sun Times was King's position Tuesday, that there's no link between the noise turbines make and adverse health effects. David Jensen also said government rules covering placement of turbines and reviews of scientific literature are enough to determine a moratorium on new wind farms is not needed.
Three months after the Ripley Wind Farm went online in December, 2007, Dave Colling's phone started ringing. Three of his neighbours were seeing doctors about recurring ear aches. They knew Colling, a former dairy farmer who lives within two kilometres of the turbines near the southern Bruce County community, had an interest in and could test for what he calls "electrical pollution." "It's like living inside a microwave. It radiates," Colling told more than 100 people Tuesday night in Keady.
Ontario's Medical Officer of Health Arlene King doesn't see any scientific evidence that links wind turbines with adverse health effects. When contacted yesterday, Ministry of Health and Long- Term Care spokesperson David Jensen said it is King's position that there is no link between the noise turbines make and adverse health effects people claim to be experiencing, such as severe headaches and joint and muscle aches.
A Big Island resident who hopes to take the Ontario government to court to quash legislation governing wind farms says the basis of his case boils down to common sense. Ian Hanna filed an application for judicial review earlier this week in the hopes he can get the provincial government to look into certain sections of its Green Energy Act. Hanna said plans by Skypower to erect at least nine energy-producing wind turbines on Big Island - as well as in other parts of Prince Edward County - need to be properly examined before any development occurs.
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.
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 farmer in Prince Edward County is taking the Ontario government to court over its plans to boost wind farm development across the province. The Ontario government has proposed building a wind farm containing five turbines within 900 metres of Ian Hanna's home on Big Island in the Bay of Quinte, just south of Belleville. His community of about 100 homes will be overwhelmed by the turbines, he said.
"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.
Green energy is the only option for ending Ontario's reliance on coal plants, a spokeswoman for Energy and Infrastructure Minister George Smitherman said yesterday. While there may be unanswered health questions related to industrial wind turbines, there's no doubt about health risks associated with coal burning power plants, Smitherman's press secretary Amy Tang said. "We have to remember why we entered into renewable energy in the first place, which was our commitment to get off coal," she said.
Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound MPP Bill Murdoch announced yesterday he will call for a provincewide moratorium on wind turbine projects later this month. Murdoch said in a news release yesterday he will introduce a resolution, which he expects to be debated on Oct. 29, that calls on the province and its chief medical doctor to state whether or not wind turbines cause health problems for people who live near them. Murdoch said the government has a responsibility as well as a mandate to investigate such claims.
Potential health affects of the alternative-energy wind turbine farm were front and centre at an independent public meeting held Sept. 30 at the Uniondale Fire Hall. The hall was filled to capacity, and some residents had to be turned away due to lack of standing room. The meeting was organized by Stew Slater, who said that he "wanted to get the community together, to ask questions -- as a community." He explained that a meeting organized by Energy Farming Ontario (EFO) in July in St. Marys was too isolating, as conversations between residents and EFO representatives were one-on-one, rather than a group discussion.
It is often said there are always two sides to any story. And generally I believe this to be true. But after five years in this chair I continue to strain to hear or comprehend the argument for wind energy-I have failed to hear a persuasive argument that explains why we had to ruin Wolfe Island and why we must do the same to Prince Edward County. I am still waiting.
It's too late to stop the surge of wind-farm development in Ontario, even by arguing the turbines cause illness, says Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound MPP Bill Murdoch. "As far as what they can do about it, there really isn't a heck of a lot," he said yesterday. ...Emotions ran high at Thursday's public meeting, which the health unit organized to provide wind turbine information to residents.
With the very audible rapid whirring of two ceiling fans overhead a constant reminder of the issue, about 500 people jammed into the centre to learn more about proposed industrial wind turbines in the area. Ward 16 Coun. David Marsh told the audience he was holding the town hall meeting as a means to get clarification from the private company Energy Farming Ontario about its intention to build up to 30 of the turbines. He also raised concern that the provincial government's new Green Energy Act ...removes residents' and the city's right to appeal the towers going in to their neighbourhoods.
Medical officer of health Dr. Hazel Lynn told a crowd of angry citizens opposed to wind farms last night that she also has concerns about health effects of the giant turbines, but lacks the power to alter green-energy legislation. "I certainly appreciate the fact that people are suffering and I want to know why and what to do about it," she said during an information meeting at the Grey Bruce Health Unit. However Lynn told the crowd of about 120 that their anger and frustration is aimed at the wrong people.
Just like the July public information session held by Energy Farm Ontario Inc. about its study to develop a wind turbine farm near Grafton, the public meeting held Thursday night by those in opposition, drew a huge gathering of concerned people. It was far beyond standing room only for those squeezed around the edges of the seated audience packed into the Centreton Community Centre. Some were unable to get into the building, forced to stand on the steps and sidewalks outside.