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Here we go again – White Pines Wind project meeting March 22

Babylon Road, February 2012

Here we go again.
Dalton McGuinty’s Green Energy Act has convinced another wind turbine company that the South Shore of Prince Edward County is an appropriate place to situate their industrial wind turbines.
WPD’s White Pines Wind Project aims to build 30 turbines – all on private land – in the southern part of the County.
PECFN has reviewed this plan and finds that, once again, important natural habitat has been ignored.  Twelve of the turbines are located within the PECSS Important Bird Area.  Eight turbines are planned on the northern border of the IBA.  Not only is the IBA threatened, but also provincially significant wetlands, Life and Earth Areas of Natural and Scientific Interest (ANSI) are designated for turbines and access roads.  The project is close to Little Bluff Conservation Area – an important spring and fall avian migration area – and the Prince Edward National Wildlife Area.

Approximately 18 km of new roads are proposed to service these turbines. The transmission line, approximately 24 km of cable to be buried in the road allowances of existing roads, would start in an Earth ANSI and cross the Big Swamp wetland.  Ten permanent culverts will be built; many through the sensitive marsh and wetlands spread across the South Shore, which are important to biodiversity and a healthy environment.

Many aspects of this project pose significant risks to migrating land birds and raptors.  If it is allowed to proceed, the effects on the natural environment will be catastrophic.  The roads, burying of cables, turbine pads, turbines and culverts of this project will do irreparable harm to the ecology of the area.  We need to take responsibility to protect the valuable habitat of our South Shore.

The first open house for the White Pines project is being held on Thursday, March 22 from 5:30 pm to 8:00 pm at Prince Edward Collegiate.  Take this opportunity to speak to the proponents of this questionable project and let them know of your opposition.

* * *

The Prince Edward County Field Naturalists, founded in 1997, is an affiliate of Ontario Nature. It provides an educational forum dedicated to the study, promotion, appreciation and conservation of the flora and fauna within Prince Edward County. The public is welcome at the meetings held on the last Tuesday of the month from September to May, except December, at Bloomfield Town Hall. Guest speakers introduce a variety of nature related topics. All members are encouraged to participate at meetings by sharing their experiences and observations. Regularly scheduled field trips in the vicinity offer members the opportunity to experience various habitats. Membership in PECFN is open to all. Contact: Prince Edward County Field Naturalists, P.O. Box 477, Bloomfield, Ontario K0K 1G0 Or Cheryl Anderson 613-471-1096

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About the Author: The Prince Edward County Field Naturalists, founded in 1997, is an affiliate of Ontario Nature. It provides an educational forum dedicated to the study, promotion, appreciation and conservation of the flora and fauna within Prince Edward County. The public is welcome at the meetings held on the last Tuesday of the month from September to May, except December, at Bloomfield Town Hall. Guest speakers introduce a variety of nature related topics. All members are encouraged to participate at meetings by sharing their experiences and observations. Regularly scheduled field trips in the vicinity offer members the opportunity to experience various habitats. Membership in PECFN is open to all. Contact: Prince Edward County Field Naturalists, P.O. Box 477, Bloomfield, Ontario K0K 1G0 Or Cheryl Anderson 613-471-1096

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  1. chris says:

    thanks gary, there’s hope.

  2. Gary Mooney says:

    Chris, the White Pines project is at an early stage. The OPA contract means nothing if MOE does not approve the project. WPD has to hold two public meetings (the first on Mar 22) and provide a whole lot of documents first.

  3. chris says:

    is white pines project a go? although they have received contract from o.p.a. my understanding is they need to obtain full approval yet? is it possible that modifications to green energy act will alter their plans?

    here’s link to info about change to green energy act.

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/mcguinty-powers-up-a-compromise-on-renewable-energy-plan/article2368524/

  4. Marie says:

    Does anyone want to congregate as a group united on Main street and march over together? Time? Sign ideas?

  5. Gary Mooney says:

    It has been pointed out that 12+8=20, not 18. Point taken.

  6. Gary Mooney says:

    As PECFN points out, the WPD project includes 12 turbines within the IBA and 8 more just north of the boundary, for a total of 18 turbines affecting the IBA, as compared to 9 for Gilead. So the combination of the two projects are triple the problem of Gilead alone.

    Also, while the Gilead project extends along the shore for “only” 2 km, the WPD project is spread out over 15 km (both west and east of Gilead and including its 2 km).

    Also, the original White Pines project was for 75 turbines, 30 in Phase 1 and 45 in Phase 2. If WPD follows through on Phase 2, most of the additional 45 turbines would likely be in the IBA. The total number of turbines in or near the IBA could be 60 or more.

    The stakes are high. We must defeat every project that includes turbines in or near the IBA.

  7. Mark says:

    David:

    Amazing! You must be transcending with my thoughts as I just said to my wife, we should get a thousand people in front of Shire Hall next council. Voices need to be heard.
    My experience however is that many will not take their opposition to that level. And that is just what the government is counting on. But we have to try to do our best for this beautiful County and our future generations. Our action or in action will be judged long after we are gone.

  8. David Norman says:

    Good idea Mark. let’s start with a protest in front of Shire Hall asking for the Bylaw that Chris has posted. What do you think?

  9. Mark says:

    I think the rubber stamp was used long ago. The whole public consultation process is a sham. These foreign companies are not investing to this level of planning with no assurances or taxpayer $$$$$. The only thing that will have a chance at stopping this is civil disobedience something Canadians are not accustomed to supporting. I don’t believe for a minute that we can count on our municipal government to take up the cause. While sixty some other municipalities walk out on the premier in protest of these industrial monsters our mayor is still patiently waiting for dialogue. LOL. Well he can wait and wait and wait while our County’s environment and the residents health, and property values are destroyed. Stand up County residents I say. Stand up!

  10. Suzanne Lucas says:

    I think that folks who have questions for the WPD meeting should post them here and then post the answers they get back, if any. We need to make sure that these “consultations” work for us and that our concerns are addressed, otherwise these open houses are nothing more than a sham, just another hoop to go through on the way to a rubber stamp.

  11. Chris Keen says:

    @Mark – Anecdotal information from realtors is that no one will buy a house anywhere near South Marysburgh until this matter is settled. This effectively makes property here worthless.

    In the meantime, appealing MPAC assessments makes sense if for no other reason than to make the point that even the threat of this sort of industrial development severely impacts the property values of near and not so nearby homeowners.

    God forbid that the many dozens of IWTs planned are ever built but, should that be the case, the seriously negative effect on property values in South Marysburgh will result in higher taxes for property owners in the rest of the County. Not a welcome outcome for anyone.

  12. Jo Anne Slaven says:

    I have sent three emails to WPD Canada with questions – Feb 24, March 2, and March 8. They have not replied, except for three auto-responses: “We appreciate that you have taken the time to write to us. We will respond to you as soon as we are able.”

    They really don’t give a shit about giving us any information.

  13. Mark says:

    Can anyone imagine the impact that this industrial development is going to have on Milford and South Bay areas. And it is now too late to sell and get out of Dodge as you will have to declare the incomong monsters to any potential buyers. And they just keep coming and they just keep growing and no one in government is listening to the people.

  14. Jack says:

    Meeting for WPD in Picton March 22nd , be there , not for information but to tell them in no uncertain terms to go away , make sure they get the point.

  15. Renee says:

    Pamela that is exactly what we are “collateral damage” and because we are so polite about it, they just put them up and keep adding more projects to the list.

  16. Pamela Stagg says:

    It’s sickening to know that a bill to put health studies before wind turbines was defeated. Are we in Prince Edward County regarded simply as “collateral damage” in the McGuinty government’s ill-advsied quest to erect industrial wind turbines in eastern Ontario, regardless of the cost to us, our health, jobs, property values and our environment?

  17. Gary Mooney says:

    Don’t forget the 29 km of high-voltage transmission lines that will snake its way from south of Royal Road to the Hydro One substation north of Picton.

  18. Renee says:

    MPP Lisa Thompson’s bill to put a moratorium on wind projects until health studies can be completed was defeated today by Liberal and NDP votes.

    Our own Todd Smith spoke about the impact that the Ostrander Point project (and now White Pines) will have on the health of families, the environment and tourism in Prince Edward County.

    This wind issue will not go away on it’s own and the impact to communities is real (just review older posts on this topic to see how heated they can become). Please do not let this opportunity pass to let your concerns be known.

  19. Doris Lane says:

    I have attended these mmeting for Gildead and Skypower.
    I urge everyone who is able to attend this meeting for White Pines. Not only is this project effecting the natural haitat of South Marysburgh but the lives of all the people who live in this area.
    Virgina I am sure the municpality is in a better poition to decide what is best for PEC than some person at Queen’s Park–these turbine companies are really a branch of big oil and usually off shore companies.
    In case of the IWT companies they do not care at all for PEC and our future
    I am a fifth generation native of this County and care what happens to THE COUNTY

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