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Naturalists celebrate lapse of 30-day period to appeal decision to revoke REA for nine-turbine project

A 30-day countdown of watching for a notice of appeal to the most recent Environmental Review Tribunal decision has ended in a sigh of relief for Prince Edward County Field Naturalists.

On June 6 in the Ostrander Point hearing ERT members Heather Gibbs and Robert Wright found “the remedies proposed by Ostrander (Gilead) and the Director (MOECC) were not appropriate and the Director’s decision to issue the Renewable Energy Approval was revoked.

Following the decision both the Director (Minister of Environment and Climate Change) and Gilead Power had 30 days to appeal to the Divisional Court, based on legal errors in the decision.

“As of 5pm today no notice has come of that request to appeal,” said Cheryl Anderson, of PECFN. “In early 2012 Myrna Wood, Pamela Stagg and I started a blog on Countylive to try to let people know how important the habitat at Ostrander Point Crown Land Block was to migrating birds, bats, and butterflies. We also spent time writing about reptiles and amphibians at risk and the important imperilled alvar habitat.

“At the same time Nature Canada, Ontario Nature and PECFN were writing comments to the Environmental Bill of Rights about the proposed project which the government claimed was public input under the Green Energy Act,” she said. “All organizations pointed out the importance of this site to migrating birds, bats, monarchs and species at risk such as the Whip-poor-will and the Blanding’s Turtle.”

In spite of the input the Ministry of the Environment approved a project on December 20, 2012 to install nine turbines, associated roads and ancillary equipment at Ostrander Point Crown Land Block.

“Given 15 days to appeal, PECFN moved forward, solid in the knowledge that Ostrander Point was the wrong place for wind turbines,” said Anderson. “This action has been described as a David versus Goliath battle. PECFN, a rural organization of about 60 members was up against the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change and a large oil company-owned business. It is particularly wonderful to finally realize that the battle is over and that ‘David’ has prevailed.”

“This was a long and hard battle, but totally worth it – important habitat has been conserved and we are very happy,” said Myrna Wood, of PECFN.

Meanwhile, a final decision on the 27 industrial wind turbine project by White Pines has not been made. That ERT ruled in February that the project would harm the Blanding’s turtle and Little Brown Bat but did not revoke the REA, pending a hearing to consider remedies.

The tribunal has noted it will allow new evidence on remedies, by both sides, and written submissions are due by the end of this month. Hearing days are expected to take place in August.

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  1. Mark says:

    You have it right!

  2. notinduttondunwich says:

    Hildagard I still can’t comprehend why you think wind power is green…. I’ve been studying it in depth now for over a week and still can’t wrap my mind around the negative impact a wind turbine project has on the enviroment and communities!!! You need to re evaluate your green thinking….. if you dump 1 liter of oil into a river Im sure that dumping 2 litres of oil into that same river will not fix the problem…. adding negative carbon footprint with no chance of becoming positive for environment makes thing worst… especially when you triple the CIPK ….

  3. notinduttondunwich says:

    Hey there borys. ….. leaseholders are not interested in the environment…. only $$$$$ that the government has tricked them into taking…. leaseholders will loose 1000’s of acres of land to their stakeholders…. when the WHO recalibrates all the setbacks from 550 meter to ????? Meters and the leaseholders can’t fufill their obligations to the stakeholders due to extended setbacks then they will sue the leaseholders for lost revenues promised to them by the government. …. leaseholders will then turn to the government for compensation and will basically be told that they are on their own!!! Like financial expert Mr Kevin O’leary said ” if you partner with the government it will kill you” leaseholders…. please do not look for municipality involvement when things go sour for you!!! Like the whole secret backdoor procurement process…. us non leaseholders will treat you and your secret contracts as we were treated!!!!

  4. Borys says:

    Along with the need to protect against climate change, science shows biodiversity must be protected to guarantee survival. Our society should work to solve climate change and also protect the natural environment.

    I side with position of the United Nations regarding the importance of safeguarding biodiversity:

    22 May 2016 – Biodiversity and the ecosystem services it supports are the foundations for life on Earth and the livelihoods and well-being of people everywhere, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said today on the International Day for Biological Diversity, as he urged the international community to preserve and sustainably manage the variety of life on the planet.
    “Protecting biodiversity and preventing further losses is an essential investment in our collective future,” Mr. Ban said in his message marking the Day.
    “On this International Day for Biodiversity, I urge all Governments and stakeholders to preserve and sustainably manage the variety of life on Earth for the benefit of current and future generations,” he added

    Link to above found here: http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=54008#.V2F2KKP2aHt

    Canada is signatory to the Convention on Biological Diversity http://www.biodivcanada.ca/default.asp?lang=En&n=BBFC5974-1

  5. Hildagard says:

    The status quo is unacceptable! We must do something and windmills and solar are among the few technologies that we have currently to address the problem of global warming! To do nothing is committing suicide and endangering our very existence. Of course the production of windmills is going to produce a carbon footprint but we need to do anything reasonable that will reduce our carbon output in the long term.

  6. Fred says:

    Hildegard fails to address the carbon footprint of Industrial Wind Turbines.

  7. Chris Keen says:

    @Hildagard – The fact that some County residents are opposed to IWTs sited inappropriately in the middle of a major migratory flyway, on ground housing endanged species, does not make them ostriches!

  8. Hildagard says:

    Dear Ostriches–get your head out of the sand! The climate is changing at an unprecedented rate never before seen in history. You can’t blame this on China, the EU or any other cause other than the carbon in our atmosphere. Our air contains the most carbon ever seen in the history of life upon our planet. Either we stop putting huge amounts of carbon in our atmosphere or we accept the consequences of the green house effect. Take a look at the planet Venus which suffers from a green house atmosphere. Venus demonstrates the effects of runaway atmospheric change. How do temperatures in access of 100 degrees centigrade sound? This makes windmills look benign!
    To all the anti-wind people living in your fantasy world of no climate change, what is your solution to the highest recorded summer temperatures in history that the world is now experiencing? In the past, climate has changed cyclically but never at the rate experienced in the last 100 years since we have been putting carbon in the atmosphere. It’s either windmills, solar panels and renewable energy or the only spaceship we have got, planet earth, ceases to be habitable for turtles and people and all other life. Renewable energy may not be perfect but is the best answer to the carbon threat of extinction that faces all life on earth. We’ve to try or die!

  9. Dennis Fox says:

    The PEC Field Naturalist deserve a huge THANK YOU! You have shown that standing up for you what you believe in in is not only possible, but that it is important to try. Way to go!

  10. Chuck says:

    And we have the CSG groupies writing nonsense in our papers every week. They spew garbage with no accountability. Their lease holder supporters have to be getting nervous. I will never forget when one of them (I think Williams) said that County folk did not have the intelligence to understand what was being proposed! OH! I think we did.

  11. notinduttondunwich says:

    Side note…. There are over 2700 complaints to the ministry of health. … all sidelined as “whatever!!!!” People are getting sick!!! These monstrosities vibrate the shat outa everything!!!! It’s turning groundwater into silt water. … it’s killing endangered species…. brown bats. .. bald eagles….
    you’re not even aloud to submit a noise study if it’s. .. in your house… under 18 years of age
    … over 79 years of age… too close to another IWT project… if you’re too close to any IWT project… ok….. now I’m going fer a beer there SkepticalGord! !!

  12. notinduttondunwich says:

    Hmmmm. Power outage…… all the turbines must have shut down…. anyways as I was saying…

    wind turbine projects faster than the liberals GEA can put them up…. in Poland new regulations require the distance to be 10 x the height of the turbine…..under liberal rule 550 meters is good…. no scientific evidence… no actual documentation….. no studies….. 550M….. good enough!!
    Windbuddy is hacking on me calling me a nut job because I don’t want these things in my back yard and cause I’m willing to sacrifice my feeddon to prove a point… windbuddy calls our fight against this intrusion harassment! !! Windbuddy is ignorant and uneducated and for sure is on the perverbial liberal trough feeding…. anyone with half a brain would sit down and say somethings not right!!!! Not Ole Katty Wynnd…. she doesn’t care about jack shat! !!! I’m going to burn some plastic!!!!

  13. Susan says:

    Well said. I hope Hildegard responds.

  14. notinduttondunwich says:

    Congratulations to all who participated in obringing Goliath down!!!!

    Hildagard. ….were you aware that an industrial wind turbine carbon footprint starts so far in the negative column that if it lasted 20 years it would literally climb out of the negative column and start producing green energy in the 19th year in the 12th month the 31st day in the 23rd hour in the 58th minute!!! Of its 20 year lifespan That includes the tonnes of steel and hundreds of meters of concrete check out Andysrant.com
    If you look up the CIPK you can track how much “pollution ” WE are creating. …. the current course the Grey Energy Act is taking will increase the CIPK to well over 200 grams per kwh because wind and solar must be backed 100%…. 100% of the time… we were at 45 to 50 grams per kwh years ago… so I AM ANTI WIND TURBINE because if you use logic and put all the variables into the equation you would look at that and say ” hey that’s not helping our environment it’s actually making it worst!!!!” You would be on the right path then to figuring out the problem with global warming….. China plans to build 155 new coal fired generation units!!! 155!!!! No scrubbers no anti pollution measures at best…. that’s where the REAL problem is….
    Considering all over the European Union countries are dumping wind

  15. Old Local says:

    I agree with Taffy , the County wins ! Yeah. They can’t take these things down fast enough in California and Germany. And they are not replacing them anywhere ! Huge thanks to all of the groups working to save our County and the species at risk .

    ” THANK-YOU “

  16. Sue3 says:

    @Hildagard – Clearing out forests and destroying natural habitats in rural Ontario and replacing them with concrete and steel isn’t going to save the world.
    The GEA was started by a bunch of do-gooders in Toronto who have absolutely no interest in anything except lining their own pockets. Take a look at their own city – lights on all night, bumper to bumper traffic, A/C on full force, etc., etc.
    This entire renewable energy ‘project’ in Ontario is a farce.
    The majority of people in rural Ontario have always had an appreciation for the land and the environment. It’s the ignorant city politicians that don’t have a clue.

  17. Susan says:

    A whole new range of fear mongering by the windies. Climate goes through periods of change and is cyclical. Always has been.

  18. wevil says:

    i agree Hildagard

  19. Hildagard says:

    When the temperature rises significantly in the future, the wildlife habitat will be be either dried out by significantly increased heat and lack of precipitation such as we are experiencing right now or, in the alternative completely flooded by the backup of the St. Lawrence River into the Great Lakes caused by significantly rising ocean levels the result of polar ice caps melting! Your children will not be able to enjoy Blanding’s turtle under these circumstances! Windmills, solar panels and renewable energy sources are the only hope for Blanding’s turtle and our children. The prohibition of windmills in Prince Edward County and elsewhere puts all species at risk of extinction! Global warming has already made a species of rodent extinct in Australia and deprived East Africa of badly needed farmland due to rising waster levels in our planet’s oceans. Banning windmills is comparable to playing Russian roulette with our planet and our children’s future.

  20. Taffy says:

    Congratulations to PECFN and to their lawyer, Eric Gillespie. This is a landmark first defeat of the flawed and undemocratic Green Energy Act and it took two courageous and knowledgeable members of an Environmental Review Tribunal to state the obvious. No approval should ever first have been given for a project on land owned by the Crown in trust for all Ontarians, a designated Important Bird Area, the habitat of endangered species and part of the most prolific avian flyway in Ontario.

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