Government records for reports of wind turbine noise 2006-2016 have already been released — what’s the big deal about 2017?
October 10, 2019
Wind Concerns Ontario has filed a second appeal with the Information and Privacy Commissioner following failure of the environment ministry to respond to a routine request for copies of government records of citizen reports of wind turbine noise.
A request for the 2017 records was submitted in 2018, and full payment for the record search was made earlier this year. The environment ministry has already been the subject of one appeal, and was ordered by the Privacy Commissioner to respond.
Months have passed since and WCO, the coalition of community groups, individuals and families across Ontario concerned about the negative impacts of industrial-scale wind turbines, decided to appeal again.
The government launched the reporting system for wind turbine noise and other environmental health and safety concerns in 2009 when it passed the Green Energy and Green Economy Act. Then Premier Dalton McGuinty assured Ontarians that their health and safety would be protected, and concerns addressed.
The number of reports of noise pollution used to be public but posting that information halted in 2013; the Wynne government’s promise to reinstate a public accounting of the number of pollution reports in 2017 has never been fulfilled.
Wind Concerns Ontario already has records for 2006-2016, which include the number of individual Incident Reports filed with the environment ministry Spills Line or now Spills Action Centre as well as Master Incident Reports.
There were more than 4,500 such reports, which is almost certainly not the whole picture as some District Offices did not give Incident Report numbers and reports cannot now be tracked.
A request for 2018 documents is in process, and fulfillment expected within days.