Here from a Grand Valley letter writer, a take on wind power.
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We are very sorry to report the sad news that David Colling has passed away. David was involved in a workplace accident on the weekend, and had been in hospital since Sunday.
Those who met Dave or perhaps were lucky enough to hear one of his presentations, will recall a polite, smiling, deeply caring individual who was truly working toward a better environment for everyone.
Our thoughts are with his wife Kim and his family today.
Wind Concerns Ontario
[Tongue in Cheek Letter # 4 ]
October 29, 2013
The Honourable Bob Chiarelli, Minister of Energy,
Dear Minister Chiarelli:
I hate to bother you but I’m still waiting for a response to my three letters of September 9th, September 13th and September 22nd. I am becoming concerned about being able to not produce electricity from wind or solar and get paid for it. I sure would like to know if I can be one of the chosen ones. I see that Mike Crawley who used to be the President of the Ontario Liberal Party has done pretty darn good. Those CanWEA people gave him a nice pat on the back in their magazine for getting 700 megawatts of wind turbines up and running so I`m hoping I can have the same success. I will be happy to serve a term as President if that will help make my requests happen. Just let me know, please!
I see you have been very, very busy closing coal plants, raising money for the Liberal Party and visiting the Bruce nuclear plants, so I kind of understand why you haven’t answered me yet but I want to plan for all the things on my “wish list” and really want to know when the money will start coming my way.
I have also been keeping track of all the money you are saving, going back to your June announcement about the reduction in the Samsung contract. You told us that one saved us $3.7 billion; your recent announcement about saving $95 million from closing the Lambton coal plant seems like small potatoes compared to the “billions and billions” you said we are saving by not building new nuclear plants. I did note however that the press release said that the coal plants were costing us $4.4 billion annually so that makes it worthwhile. That sure sounds like they were paying way too much for coal! Good for you for saving us all that money.
I also read that the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) would save $200 million from constraining wind —that is a pretty big number too, which was the subject of my first letter. The new president of IESO also said that profits from exporting our electricity had generated $5/6 billion dollars, which is even more than you said it was generating. But he probably has more details than you do so I guess he is right about that, eh?
You have probably been way too busy to add up all those savings so I will do it for you.
Here’s what I get: Samsung $3.7 billion plus savings of $16 billion by not building new nuclear plants, plus $4.5 from closing the coal plants and $200 million from constraining wind. Add the $6 billion we make from selling our electricity to NY and Michigan —I think that adds up to $30.4 billion.
Samsung Savings $ 3.7 billion
No new nuclear $16.0 billion
Closing coal plants 4.5 billion
Constraining wind .200 million
Exp to NY & MI$ 6.0 billion Total $30.4 billion
Impressive! I bet Finance Minister Sousa will be thanking you for getting rid of his deficit and handing him an extra $15 billion or so to pay down Ontario’s debt. He owes you big time for saving all that money and should at least treat you to a couple of beers at your local pub near Queens Park.
I think you should hold back on some of those savings however to pay me and the other guys for not generating electricity from any wind turbines or solar panels.
Keep up the good work but please, let me know soon about my offer as I would like to head south for the winter. I heard the electricity rates in Florida are much lower than Ontario’s, especially now that they are going up again November 1st.
The opinions expressed are those of the author and not Wind Concerns Ontario policy.
Wind Concerns Ontario, immediately upon learning the results of the University of Waterloo research prepared for the Renewal Energy Technologies and Health (RETH) project, wrote a letter to the Ontario Premier and Ministers of Energy and the Environment, demanding a halt to all wind power generation approvals immediately.
Today, we wrote to Health Minister Deb Matthews and Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr Arlene King. The letter is below.
WIND CONCERNS ONTARIO
For a link to the PDF of the University of Waterloo’s poster presentation on results of the study of industrial-scale wind turbine noise and infrasound and health effects, as posted earlier on this log, please go to http://freewco.wordpress.com/2013/10/28/u-waterloo-health-study-results-positive-link/
|No thanks: I already know what I am supposed to think|
The University of Waterloo’s RETH team released results of its study on wind turbine noise and infrasound at a symposium in Toronto last week; this is a link to the poster presentation.
Here from The Independent, is the responses received by the newspaper to a set of questions put to Ontario Energy Minister Bob Chiarelli, on the new procurement process for large-scale wind power projects. The announcement of the new process has been delayed.
Editor’s note: The Independent recently requested an interview with Ontario Energy Minister Bob Chiarelli about the concerns about industrial wind turbines. We submitted five questions and here are the unedited responses forwarded by the minister’s office.
When will the province outline how it will handle FIT program?
The Large Feed-in Tariff (FIT) program is being replaced with a new competitive procurement process for renewable energy projects. We asked the Ontario Power Authority (OPA) to develop a new competitive procurement process for future renewable energy projects larger than 500 kW, which will take into account local needs and considerations before contracts are offered.
The OPA has engaged with the public, municipalities, Aboriginal communities and other stakeholders to help inform the identification of appropriate locations and siting requirements for future renewable energy projects. The OPA has reported back to the government with interim recommendations and additional engagement activities will occur later this year.
We need to make sure our approach is balanced and considers the views of local communities while ensuring the long-term sustainability of Ontario’s electricity system. We expect to have more information on this once the province has updated its Long-Term Energy Plan later this year.
Is it deliberately ignoring those opposed to wind energy projects?
We’re moving forward with renewable energy in a balanced (way). We listened very extensively to the public and we’re changing the way we procure renewable energy projects to respond to community concerns while continuing to encourage a strong renewable energy sector in this province.
Will the government return planning authority to municipalities on Green projects?
The Ontario government is making key changes to increase local control over the siting of renewable energy projects. As a former Mayor and Regional Chair, I understand how important it is for communities to be involved in decision making from the beginning.
Our government wants to ensure that future renewable energy projects will be built in the right place at the right time. That’s why we are replacing the current Feed-in-Tariff program for large renewable energy projects with a competitive bidding process, tailored to the needs of communities. Potential developers will need to work directly with municipalities to determine appropriate locations and site requirements for any future large renewable energy project.
Our government will also provide up to $90,000 for municipalities to develop Municipal Energy Plans. These plans will help municipalities better integrate energy, infrastructure, growth and land use planning to support economic development, increase conservation and identify energy opportunities.
Finally, we’ll work with municipalities to determine a property tax rate increase for wind turbine towers.
If municipalities declare themselves “Not Willing Hosts” is it a guarantee there will not be wind energy projects in their municipalities in the future?
Recent changes will ensure that municipalities have more say over renewable energy projects. Through the priority points system municipalities will have increased influence over the siting of projects through the prioritization of applications that have demonstrated municipal support. Developers that work closely with municipalities and have broader support will receive points during the application process, helping those projects move forward. During the recent round of Small FIT contract awards, over 98 percent of the successful applications received municipal council support resolutions.
These recent changes also gives municipalities more tools and enables them to participate directly in the FIT program
Municipal energy plans will give municipalities a much stronger role in identifying local energy needs and opportunities. Municipal Energy Plans are comprehensive strategies to align infrastructure, energy and land use planning.
The competitive procurement process will ensure that renewable energy developers work directly with municipalities, before contracts are awarded, and that large renewable energy generation is targeted regionally, based on system needs. This process will better integrate renewable energy into our communities and economy, encouraging growth in the renewable energy sector and respecting communities.
Will there be a moratorium on the [wind] current projects until the two-year federal health effects study is complete as many municipalities have asked?
The government is committed to protecting the health of residents in communities that are home to renewable energy projects. We have taken a cautious approach when setting standards for wind turbine setbacks and noise limits to protect Ontarians.
Large-scale wind energy projects in Ontario are subject to the Renewable Energy Approval (REA) regulation, which includes minimum setbacks for wind energy projects, and minimum requirements for environmental studies and community consultation activities. Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Arlene King undertook a review of the potential health effects of wind turbines. Her 2010 report stated that there is no scientific evidence to date to support claims that wind turbine noise cause adverse health effects.
The Ministry of the Environment continues to review emerging scientific, health, acoustics and engineering studies to ensure Ontario’s REA regulation remains in line with the latest and best in science. The ministry also continues to support further research by funding, through an agreement with the Council of Ontario Universities, a Research Chair for the ongoing study of Renewable Energy Technologies and Health.
Translation: if we decide your community is getting a wind power project, you’re getting a wind power project. You can have “say” but the word “no” will not be allowed.
Obviously, at the time some person in the communications warren answered The Independent’s question, the results of the Renewable Energy Technologies and Health were not known—it will be very interesting now to see what the Minister does with that, keeping up as he is with the “latest and best in science.”
See also the blog Smithville Turbine Opposition Party for more comment. http://smithvilleturbinesoppositionparty.ca/news/energy-minister-bob-chiarelli-answers-turbine-questions/