Articles filed under Impact on Landscape from Canada
The province of P.E.I. has confirmed that it will increase the distance wind turbines must be from homes, but not by as much as some were looking for. The setback distance will now be four times the height of the turbine, as measured from the ground to the top of the blade. For the biggest turbines, the V90s, that would mean increasing the setback to 500 metres. Currently it is 375 metres. Noise was the biggest concern.
In the area of environmental action, there's recycling newspapers to save forests, and then there's Erecting The Biggest Wind Turbine In B.C. to reduce your carbon footprint. The latter example of look-at-me symbolism is becoming a reality this summer at the summit of Grouse Mountain, where engineers are installing a giant, propeller-like machine.
This year, things have changed utterly. The future has arrived on Wolfe Island with a wind-turbine vengeance. And many ferry passengers will surely lament this summer that one of Ontario's more tranquil refuges has been turned into a wind-turbine theme park. ...Whatever the technical merits of the project, there's no question about the aesthetic impact on the island. The turbines have tilted its ambience from the pastoral to the industrial.
So people on Manitoulin can't handle change or that we think that turbines are monsters. I would suggest to Martin and Northland Power that people on Manitoulin are not children to be condescended to. We know turbines are not monsters and we would accept change as well as anyone, provided that it is to the benefit of all of residents, adjacent landowners, farm owners who are leasing their land. We want the concerns clearly addressed, not just reassurances that turbines are not monsters and that everything will be fine. Islanders deserve better then that.
Art installation or environmental protest? No one is sure what the 90 or so plaster hands, each holding a rock, that appeared on a Wolfe Island sideroad this week are meant to symbolize. Nor does anyone know who created them and placed them beside the 2nd Line Road on the west end of the island, but it just so happens that they are situated on a contentious piece of ground.
Before we go any further, let me address something that comes up every time someone asks questions about a green project in this province. It's a favourite tactic of our Liberal government to dismiss concerns of their constituents as being NIMBYism (Not in My Backyard), or those people don't want to help the planet. A word of warning to the province: that kind of dismissal here on the Island just makes Islanders dig in harder. As far as I can tell, the concerns of this citizens group are legitimate and I believe they need to be addressed.
In Huron County, the local federation of agriculture is calling for a moratorium on projects pending results of an epidemiological study on wind power's health effects. Alternative energy companies, such as the one proposing the Middlesex project, are paying close attention to the rising opposition. "It has kind of taken off across the country."
Back in the good old days there was a saying - "necessity is the mother of invention" but times are changing and in order to meet these changing times we need a new philosophy; case in point - the St. Joseph Wind Project. In a strange twist of logic, it has been deemed - "invention is the mother of necessity" and the St. Joseph wind project is a perfect example of this new way of thinking.
At the latest public information meeting on July 7, they were saying the same thing, but this time with a brand new plan aimed at being implemented starting August 2009. The plan unveiled to people in St. Joseph called for a decrease in turbine power from 2.4 to 2.3 megawatts, and an increase in numbers, from 120 to 130.
It's a dilemma that forward-thinking, environmentally conscious people do not want to face: Will moving toward carbon-free energy sources mean disrupting bird migration routes and having a negative impact on wildlife populations? This weekend sees the July 12 deadline for public comments on the massive NaiKun wind farm proposed for Hecate Strait. ...The problem arises, however, that this exact location, the shallow water around McIntyre Beach and Rose Spit, is a designated important bird area under the BirdLife International program that lists critical sites for bird populations in over 200 countries worldwide.
A Kerwood area woman is appealing to other Adelaide-Metcalfe residents to join her in a last minute effort to stop wind turbines from being erected in the township until more information is known about possible negative health effects. "Just stop until we get some studies done," said Esther Wrightman, who recently produced a pamphlet and a website to try to increase awareness of possible health risks.
A group of residents in the countryside west of Port Rowan is looking for help now that the McGuinty government has conceded that wind turbines and people don't mix very well. The McGuinty government proposed last month that new wind turbines in Ontario be at least 550 metres away from the nearest residential dwelling.
Plans to build a wind turbine park for Digby Neck hit a snag this month when Nova Scotia's deputy minister of environment told an executive at Skypower Corp. in a letter that more information about the project is needed before an environmental assessment application is approved. Skypower Corp. of Toronto and Scotian Windfields of Dartmouth have jointly proposed a 30-megawatt wind farm on Digby Neck comprised of 20 wind turbines, each generating 1.5 megawatts of electricity.
Nova Scotia's Deputy Minister of Environment has issued a decision on the Digby Wind Power Project's Environmental Assessment Report that appears to leave the project twisting in the wind. ...In a June 19 letter addressed to SkyPower Corporation VP Charmaine Thompson, Deputy Minister of Environment Nancy Vanstone states quite simply, "I have determined that the registration information provided is insufficient to allow me to make a decision."
At 20.6 metres, the tower, with its distinctive black bands on the three sides facing the water, is the tallest structure along the coast. It is, however, dwarfed by the 80-metre towers in the nearby West Cape wind farm. This wind farm is still growing; some of the towers haven't been completed.
It's a sad day when Ontario's Environment Minister trivializes the preservation of landscapes by declaring that renewable energy development won't slow down "just to preserve scenic views"
New rules proposed by the Ontario government would forbid the placement of large wind turbines closer than 550 metres to a residence, a distance that could affect the economic viability of many wind projects across the province. The province-wide regulation would create for the first time a minimum setback distance for wind turbines from dwellings, roads, railway lines, wetlands and other environmentally sensitive lands or airspace.
Ontario could become a North American environmental leader, but municipalities can't stand in the way of wind power. That was the message Tuesday from Ontario Energy and Infrastructure Minister George Smitherman as he toured a hydroelectric plant here. Smitherman, also Ontario's deputy premier, praised Innergex Renewable Energy Inc. for its operation of the eight-megawatt plant.
Three Alberta families near Three Hills have taken their fight against a proposal to build wind turbines near their homes to a local appeal board. FPLE Canadian Wind plans to construct 54 wind turbines in Knee Hill County northeast of Calgary for a project called the Ghost Pine wind farm.
Noise was one of the possible side-effects that most concerned Wolfe Islanders prior to construction of the $475-million project. Health surveys conducted on people living near wind farms in Europe and the U. S. have registered a number of medical disorders they blame on the machines -- sleeplessness, depression, anxiety and even tinitis, a ringing in the ears possibly related to turbine noise. By the end of next month, all 86 turbines will be turning.