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Rural Prince Edward not invited to join energy conversation

Prince Edward County councillor Robert Quaiff would have been delighted to “join the conversation” about regional energy planning and siting in Ontario – if he’d just received an invitation.

The Ontario Power Authority (OPA) and Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) said they invited 1,400 “late last week” to share their views. But Prince Edward County never received an invitation for the meetings that started June 19.

Last month the Ontario Minister of Energy asked the OPA and the  IESO to recommend a new integrated regional energy planning process that would give municipalities and communities more of a voice, and focus, on improving the way large energy projects  are sited in Ontario. Recommendations are due August 1.

“The first stage to developing these recommendations is to engage municipalities, communities and the public. Strong public engagement in regional energy plans will lead to better decision making so that future infrastructure is in place where and when it is needed,” stated Colin Andersen, CEO OPA and Bruce Campbell, President and CEO, IESO, in a ‘Join the Conversation’ email about the sessions.

“Prince Edward County was not sent the invitation to attend, or to participate,” said Quaiff, who upon seeing a notice, noticed it was sent out after 5pm June 18th with the municipal session scheduled for the afternoon of the 19th.

Webinars were set for June 19 for municipal groups; June 20 for communities with meetings to follow in Sudbury, Niagara, Ottawa, GTA northwest; Guelph, Windsor, GTA east; Oakville, Thunder Bay.

“The locations selected “seem rather city-centric and it is hard not to conclude that they are not interested in hearing from rural Ontario in this process.”

Quaiff said the Wainfleet Working Group – supporting the interests of 50 municipalities who have declared themselves unwilling hosts to industrial turbines – was also disappointed there was no invitation to attend.  The group consists of Mayor April Jeffs and alderman Betty Konc, both of Wainfleet and councillors Stewart Halliday, of Grey Highlands; Warren Howard, North Perth and Quaiff, for PEC.

The email states the invitations were sent “late last week to 1,400 Ontarians including Ontario chiefs, Métis leaders, mayors, planners, developers, chambers of commerce and boards of trade, business improvement associations, residential and ratepayer associations and community groups. The OPA and IESO are asking for their opinions about how Ontario can improve its engagement process, integrate municipal and energy planning, and site electricity infrastructure.

“The feedback, research and current experience gathered in the stakeholder engagement process will be essential to developing effective recommendations,” Andersen and Campbell stated.
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  1. fed up says:

    @Jack–our house is Victorian 2 story –approx 1100 sq feet.
    We do not have air cond–but use fans and a dehumidifier liberally at this time of year. We have a variety of things we do to conserve energy–none of them is in any way inconvenient. One easy one is to just unplug things not in use. If something is plugged in, it is still drawing power, even if not in use. Also, for bigger items, such as a heated floor, or a clothes dryer, throw the circuit breaker for the summer.

  2. Jack says:

    Fed Up: I would like to know your secret for conserving electricity, perhaps you have your own wind turbine and not telling anybody. My hydro bill averages between 800 & 900 kWh. all year round, I have a small 3 bedroom bungalow appox. 1200 sq. ft. but I do use central air most of the summer months which consumes a lot of power.

  3. Jack says:

    Chris:I just had a brain wave, which doesn’t happen very often, the City of Detroit is about to declare bankrupt status within the next few weeks, possibly with could send our excess electricity to Detroit to help them out and the Provincal Govt. could provide each taxpayer with a charitable donation receipt. That way we would get a small return on this Govt. rip-off, I must be really bored to make this statement. Ha Ha

  4. Mark says:

    Well Jack, I guess it is a world gone mad! There is presently corruption at all levels of government and no party is immune. There seems to be no honour in politics anymore. In the 60’s to 90’s Harper would have had to step down given the scandal within the PMO office. Mulrooney grabs a paper bag full of cash in a hotel room then sues the government and runs off with another $2,000,000 of taxpayers money. McGuinty sells us off to foreign companies for an energy scheme that is unwelcome and unneeded. Then blows half a billion on canceled gas plants and deletes all the damning e-mails. Toronto has the Rob Ford fiasco and Montreal can”t find a Mayor that isn’t tied to construction corruption contracts. Trust is at an all time low. Alternative? Revolution I guess.

  5. Jack says:

    Mark: I agree with your point of view about the excessive costs that the Liberal Govt. agreed to with the wind generating companies with no technology in place to store the excess capacity but what is the alternative. The contracts are signed and probably as hard to get out of as the hospital trying to get out of QHC, a change of government in my opinion would make little difference. I think the Conservatives with a leader like Tim Hudak would continue the same dictator polices as the present Govt. and the NDP would have us bankrupt in a short time with all their social polices. Bye the way I still like the appearance of wind turbines, what I call ugly is the high voltage transmission towers that cross Hiyw.49 near the skyway bridge, the first thing tourists see upon entering the County but I will tolerate them rather than buy a gas generator and pollute the air to a higher degree.

  6. fed up says:

    oops meant to say 800 or 900 in the winter.

  7. fed up says:

    Speaking of energy bills–in the summer, ours rarely tops 4oo kwh a month, often less.
    In the winter, it varies around or 900.
    I’d be interested to hear what yours are, and why.

  8. Mark says:

    This is beyond what most people realize. A total fraud upon the citizens of Ontario and even those that like to stare at these intrusive environmental objects and get all excited and giddy. Perhaps those that get off on this should pay more on the energy bill. Perhaps the County Sustainabilty Group would like to respond to Chris’s post.

  9. Chris Keen says:

    Here’s a good place to start the conversation:

    “Take wind power: Official data from Ontario’s Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) collected by blogger Scott Luft shows that the wind power produced under Mr. McGuinty’s GEA is useless to the province and must be exported at dirt-cheap rates. For 12 months to the end May this year, Ontario’s electricity system exported vast amounts of power to Michigan, New York and other border regions at prices well below the price paid to Samsung and other wind producers.

    Over that period, about 4.8 terawatts hours (TWh) of surplus wind power was delivered to the grid, power the IESO promptly exported. One TWh is enough to power over 100,000 average Ontario households for a year. Effectively, the Ontario government system exported power to U.S. states at 2.4 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh) while paying 13.5 cents to subsidize wind producers under the GEA’s feed-in-tariff regime. Since Ontario does not need this wind power, Ontario rate payers are paying $648-million for power that is exported for $115-million for a net loss to ratepayers of $533-million. For one year.

    The wind power loss for the last 12 months is therefore on par with the cost of the cancelled gas plants. But these costs will be repeated annually for the next 20 years, and are likely to be higher. So far, the wind power in place represents only 35% of the contracted wind supply. By 2016, the Ontario Power Authority contracted wind (5,791 MW), if all built, will annually cost ratepayers (assuming demand and other generation remains as is) $1.5-billion to $2-billion — per year.”

    Utter madness!

    http://opinion.financialpost.com/2013/06/27/ontarios-power-trip-mcguintys-bigger-debacle/

  10. Marie says:

    I was pretty much disgusted by the site along the 401 last weekend driving from the County, to Toronto and on to Windsor. For anyone in the county who hasn’t made the drive that way it sure way eye opening. Those poor communities.

  11. fed up says:

    @Jack–I find them aesthetically pleasing, too–especially when looking up at them on a height. There is a large one on Manitoulin Island that is very striking.

  12. Jack says:

    Mark the first wind turbines that I saw was in 2006 while crossing the central part of France, this was a very flat area and you could see the turbines located up on a ridge from a very long distance away and I thought they were magnificent and have not changed my mind. I guess everything is in the eyes of the beholder.

  13. Jack says:

    David thanks for the info and their was no spelling mistake on your part, I had cataract surgery on both eyes last summer and of course I don’t see well up close now even with reading glasses. I read the Wikipedia article and it would seem that “whole body vibration” actually improves some body ailments such as osteoporosis, muscle atrophy, bone mineral density and blood circulation but a lot of the medical terminology was over my head. My daughter-in-law has her Doctor of Audiology and runs a clinic in Kingston, I will have her read the article and get her opinion about it and will ask her if she has any Wolfe Island patients that experience “internal body vibrations” or other noise complications from the wind turbines there. Oh before I forget, my wife took her nurses training at Toronto East General in 1970-71 and did a placement at the Queen St. Mental Health Centre but cannot remember the Hydro Therapy, perhaps by that time they had moved on to a new treatment.

  14. fed up says:

    I know undergrad tuition is free for seniors, but is tuition free at the post-grad level, as well ?

  15. David Norman says:

    Jack… If I had spelled predilection with “one less l” in my original comment it would have been seen as “prediection”. Either you’re seeing double or the CountyLive folk edited my spelling faux pas. As to your request regarding “internal body vibration” research, I suggest you start at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whole_body_vibration. Your request brought to mind an experience I had as a young man while working at Queen Street Mental Health Centre (lots of “nut bars” there) back in the late 60’s. In a basement room where they performed shock therapy, were two very technologically elaborate chairs with retraining straps. These chairs were outfitted with vibrating pads at specific locations (arms, back, butt, legs etc.) for what they called “vibration therapy”. Apparently this therapy had gone out of fashion and they were put there for storage. Vibration therapy had apparently lost efficacy and hydro therapy had replaced it as the treatment fashion. Hydro therapy was basically a shower with up to 30 high pressure nozzles aimed at various angles. The patient was locked into the confined shower room and the water turned on, often cold. Talk about a psychological sitz bath eh!

  16. Dayton Johnson-Frick or Frack? says:

    Mark, I continue to focus only on the cost to the consumer. (coin,dollars,shekals,bread,moulah etc.!)If we can’t afford it then there goes the farm.
    Business and the economy will suffer as electricity rates increase.If you have a job today it may be terminated if your company folds up or your laid off because of increased operating costs.
    New business will think long about establishing anywhere in Ontario because of high operating costs.Should mention that established operations schools, hospitals,airports,you name it will be increasing their operating costs too..Guess who pays for it! Wake up Consumer!
    Oh, and there’s that mean old backup power source to talk about….probably gas…a glut of it right now but for how long? “Fracking”could be coming to a County like yours.

  17. Mark says:

    And when physicians first related the connect between smoking and cancer they and their patients were cast off as nutbars as well. We now know all to well the outcome of that debate.Too early for science to have all the health impacts of Industrial Wind Turbines solidly confirmed. But I believe in time we will know the true cost to human health of these intrusive towering mechanical objects.

  18. Jack says:

    David great response to my question, you certainly have an outstanding command of the English vocabulary. This old, uneducated, county codger certainly had to dust off the old Websters too understand a couple of words and by the way predilection is spelled with one less “I” but big deal I learnt something new anyways. I noticed in your most recent post that you might enjoy doing research, perhaps you could help me out with something I ‘am trying to understand? A lady at the recent wind hearings in Demorestville stated that she was expeirencing “internal body vibrations” along with several other complications from the wind turbines.I have searched several medical websites and can find no description of this complication, do you have an answer, I will keep the dictionary close at hand awaiting your answer. Perhaps if I had the lady’s address I could send her some “nut bars” to help alleviate this complication, that is if she has a predilection for them.

  19. fed up says:

    Who? I work alone.

  20. David Norman says:

    @ fed up… thanks for your interest in my studies. Will be beginning my research component this Sept. at Queens. Invite me for coffee and I’d be happy to outline my research for you… invite Barb and Don along too, if you wish.

  21. fed up says:

    Aren’t you supposed to be at York working on your PHD?

  22. David Norman says:

    @ Jack… whilst I admit to the occasional head banging predilection in this respect, I’m not at all inclined, in the epicurean sense, to “nut bars”… grain and dried fruit bars are more my cup of tea even though I recognize there’s a higher calorie count to burn off. I usually don a helmet in extreme cases such as County Sustainability Group encounters.

  23. jrm says:

    I think the dog ate his thesaurus.

  24. Jack says:

    David are you calling yourself a “nutbar” for supporting the anti-wind issue?

  25. David Norman says:

    @ fed up… Calorie count?…as much as the average “nut bar”.

  26. fed up says:

    Banging your head against a wall burns how many calories? 😉

  27. lincoln says:

    @Jim… Robert represents the 90+% of us who are affected and voted “NO TURBINES” , all viewpoints need to be reflected, I agree ! But let’s not forget there was a vast majority on this issue !

  28. Jim says:

    If Robert Quaiff had been invited, who would have reflected the pro wind turbine viewpoint from PEC? He doesn’t have a balanced position. All viewpoints need to be reflected and a realistic policy developed.

  29. Chris Keen says:

    That sound you hear is peddles going backwards as quickly as possible!

    http://news.nationalpost.com/2013/06/21/ontario-liberal-wind-power-deal-slashed-by-3-7b/

  30. Mike Johnson says:

    I would also be interested in seeing and knowing who were on the list of invitees. I’d also like to know out of all invited who actually showed up. Something is out of sorts here.

  31. Jim mcmillan says:

    Is it possible to see the 1400 names who were invited, when they were each first informed of the meeting and the names of who showed up.

    Question is….Was the deck stacked?

    Smells a little like it might have been somewhat.

    Just asking.

  32. Chris Keen says:

    Infrastructure was partially completed in Oakville and Mississauga – where power was and is needed – and then scrapped to save Liberal seats in the last election. This crime will cost Ontario taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars and no jail time will be served by the guilty. Makes the whole process, described above, something of a joke, doesn’t it?

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