Big Wind’s “Ontario campaign”: prepare to be persuaded

Big Wind's lobbyist has an Ontario campaign to encourage support for more wind power--works best with city dwellers
Big Wind’s lobbyist has an Ontario campaign to encourage support for more wind power–works best with city dwellers

The wind power development industry’s lobbyist the Canadian Wind Energy Association or CanWEA published an article in its fall edition of the quarterly magazine Windsight, which sets the stage for further activity in Ontario to persuade the voting, tax-paying, rate-paying populace that wind power is “green” and good. The article refers in specific to work done by Nik Nanos, chairman of Nanos Research, “retained by CanWEA to examine the views of consumers on a wide range of energy issues”.

This is very timely of course, with Ontario’s IESO set to open up its Large Renewable Procurement process for even more wind power, despite the billions lost on selling off surplus power.

What’s interesting, however, is that the “spin” in Mr. Nanos’ writing on popular support for wind is actually quite different from what one gleans from a thorough examination of Nanos Research’s 119-page report on the consumer survey.

No doubt the survey set CanWEA (a not-for profit association) back some serious cash as it goes into great detail, but the negative details are abandoned in the sugary article in CanWEA’s publication. Nanos states broadly that “our research found Canadians have some clear opinions on how electricity should be generated, including broad-based support for the development of more wind power”.

He also states “the survey data indicates a clear appetite for a diversification of electricity sources.”  Mr. Nanos even cites “Quebecers, whose provincial identity is intertwined with hydropower, support continued development of wind energy”.   Why he invokes Quebec is unclear as the survey’s goal is stated clearly in the preamble: “This resource document for the CanWEA Ontario Campaign includes quantitative and qualitative data, a segmentation analysis (to identify priority groups in Ontario for persuasion), and a prescriptive Ontario narrative.”

The message is, doubters in Ontario should get prepared to be persuaded!  Mr. Nanos even manages to get a message in for the politicians by noting they should “embrace” the survey’s findings, despite the fact that the current government has already embraced them to the detriment of Ontario’s economy: “And for governments, the key takeaway should be to embrace environmentally responsible diversification of our energy supplies, and to see wind as a key part of the future mix”.

This is but another step in CanWEA’s campaign, which includes a slate of lobbyists.  CanWEA, is registered with three lobbyists and another five from Sussex Strategy Group.  If one does a keyword search on the registry using “wind,” 190 names pop up.  CanWEA’s registration in addition to member’s dues, shows they have secured funding from the federal government as noted:

Government Funding

Has your organization received any government funding (federal, provincial and/or municipal) in its current fiscal year?

Yes

Name of Government or Government Agency                                                  Amount

Natural Resources Canada                                                                                             $663,000.00

 

So Canada’s taxpayers are supporting CanWEA in a significant way despite the fact that their members are worth billions.  The money declared by CanWEA’s filing appears to be a part of a grant of $1,755,000 for a study to be conducted by CanWEA, referred to as the “Pan-Canadian Wind Integration Study”.  The objective, as described on Natural Resources Canada’s website, is: to undertake a study to evaluate the technical aspects of high      wind energy penetration on a national basis.”

It appears CanWEA wants coast-to-coast transmission towers also hooked up to the other grid networks in the U.S.A. skirting the Canada/U.S. border.  The rationale is to counter the fact that wind power is intermittent by proving that “the wind is blowing somewhere.”

Back to the Nanos Survey: was there some bias in the selection of the responders?  According to the report, 500 Ontarians took part with 250 from the GTA, where the only visible turbine is the demonstration Exhibition Place wind turbine.  The other 250 respondents came from “the rest of Ontario,” whatever that means.  In addition, the weighting given to the 18-29 age group was significant  so the 50 respondents in that age group got a 20% weighting, rather than the 10% they actually represented. The 60+ demographic (people who are more likely to be homeowners and electricity ratepayers) was almost halved from 220 to 117!

Nanos held four focus groups with a total of 32 people, in two sessions in the GTA and the two in London—Ontario’s largest and sixth largest cities.

We will explore the “narratives” that stem from the Nanos report to CanWEA and the messages to be employed to persuade the people of Ontario that, yes, wind is good, and yes, we need more wind power generation in a province that already has a power surplus.

Part II tomorrow.

©Parker Gallant

January, 2015

 

Comments

John Vincent
Reply

Canwea’s moves are not surprising. After all, they are being strongly battled from the rural folk. The disturbing part of all this, is the participants have no idea how the electrical power system works, and the effects intermittent “Green Energy ” has on the over all operation of the power system. The majority of the public has no idea what constitutes an efficient, low cost and reliable electrical delivery system. For this reason alone, asking the public what power generation should be in the production mix is like asking the kid next door what kind of rocket we should use to get to Mars.
The mjority of arguments against wind (let;’s include solar in this too) are based on health effects to flora, fauna and the neighbours. All the arguments may welll be true, however, they won’t win the fight, nor the battle. It doesn’t encompass those who are not effected. The fight has to be based on unreliable electricty supply and the extreme high costs associated with it. That effects ever consumer in Ontario, and everyone looking for a job in Ontario. Only then will a real fight against Green Energy be made. Some areas are slowly begining to take this tact. However, it needs to be done on a major scale to get the word out. Even people in the GTA will understand this.

Adminn
Reply

The focus of the fight appears to be leaning heavily on health & environment, for the moment; but the fight’s focus should be all encompassing and must include the bottomline because that affects every resident, taxpayer and business enterprise in Ontario, Just as important, however, and again affecting everyone in the province, is the totalitarian nature of the GreenEnergy Act the provisions of which hobble all manner of rights and reduce democracy to provincial government Diktat.

Greg Latiak
Reply

Never underestimate the power of the big lie. If you have time, dig out the BBC series on the ‘Century of the Self’, a four part dissertation on the use of carefully crafted advertising to create ‘truth’. Or read Mein Kampf, or 1984. And reflect on how consolidated media ownership is today and how little ‘deviant’ opinion gets any traction. Add to this how little impact being caught with their hands in the cookie jar has on politicians. These folks may as well be working for space aliens — sure ain’t doing it for our benefit.

Al Taylor
Reply

Wind warriors take note:

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has”.- Margaret Mead

We are that small group keep it up- Al

Barbara
Reply

At the present, power is being wasted, sold at a loss but this situation is viewed by interested parties as necessary until adequate transmission infrastructure can be built so that Ontario generated power can be sold to U.S. markets. Short term losses for long term gains

There is information available on this issue but this information is not reaching the general public.

John Vincent
Reply

Barbara
I’m not sure what you mean by wasted power. The electricity produced must meet the electricity consumed precisely second by second. Each producing utility must meet its electricty demands by adjustment of its generation production second by second, there is no surplus running about through the wires. If a utlity can’t meet its production it buys from a neigbouring utility. If a producing Utility has too much electrcity available for its needs at the moment, it must back off its generation to meet the demand second by second. This keeps the electric power system frequency and voltage within prescribed precise limits, and ensures supply to the load.
Ontario has a surplus of electricity, always has, however, we are in the predciment of having electrcity that is produced by unreliable means (you can’t predict when you will get it and how much be it solar or wind). Unpredictable power is non saleable power. You’re not going to buy a car that works sometimes and not others and you have no say in it. The hitch, in Ontario is, we have to purchase all the power produced from Green Energy producers by contract. That leaves us a surplus of electrcity on the system which can collapse the system. Our bneighbours won’t buy it, because they either don’t need it or its unreliable. So, we have to pay them to take it off our hands, and we pay the Ontario Green producers to produce it. We also pay gas plants to back up that unreliable Green power in case it goes “flat” when the wind stops or the sun goes over the solar plants. We are paying for two sources of electrcity, one reliable, one not, and we can’t, by contract, control the unreliable Green power.
All the extra transmission lines in the world aren’t going to change that fact.

Barbara
Reply

Ontario has been in the business of producing enough electricity for its own needs with a little for export.

Now Ontario is going into the electricity EXPORT business to the U.S.

Proposal case in point: Canada – U.S. Transmission

U.S.Dept. Energy -Quadrennial Energy Review, Sept. 18, 2014

Canadian proposals to furnish electricity to the U.S.

http://www.electricity.ca/media/IndustryIssues/USAffairs/CEACommentsQERSept2014.pdf

Selling electricity to the U.S. requires both federal and state approvals where the electricity enters the U.S.

Canadian federal approval will also be needed as this cross-border.

There will be plenty of money to be made selling electricity to the U.S.

Not difficult to understand these issues.

John Vincent
Reply

Barbara
Sale and purchase of electricty are going on constantly through out the day between utilities. This is handled by the production section of the IESO in Clarkson. Over all International agreements are handled through the North East Power Co-ordinating council that encompasses a number of utilites in the north east US and Canada, except Quebec. Tha council sets the rules on trading electricty commodities.

Barbara
Reply

International agreements for new electricity interconnections to the U.S. are handled by FERC, Dept. of Energy and require the consent of the President, Sec. Of State and Sec. of Defense for national security reasons.

See: Presidential Permits, U.S. Dept. of Energy

More interconnections or upgrades will be needed to sell more electricity to the U.S. More transmission infrastructure will be need or upgraded to export more electricity.

Point is that the public does not know that more Ontario power will be sold to the U.S.

The new 1000 MW Nanticoke HVDC line to Pennsylvania is being built to sell Ontario power to the U.S.

Issues need to be clarified for public understanding.

John Vincent
Reply

It doesn’t change the fact you can’t sell unreliable power (non dispatchable power). It doens’ matter how many tranmission lines you put in, you can’t sell something that is unreliable, can’t be called when needed, and will shut down at the time you need it most without regulation. that sort of power has to be sold at either rock bottom prices, or some utility has to be paid to take it off your hands. Its only economic sense on the part of the purchasing organization. More transmmission lines aren’t going to change that.

thebiggreenlie
Reply

CANWEA advocates very clearly in their “Windvision” pamphlet on Page 12 that Ontario should become an electricity generator for U.S consumption much like Alberta supplies oil to the rest of the world.
In other words all Ontarians are good for is to be a “host” for electricity “parasites” which includes all the investors that sanction CANWEA and their disgusting pro-wind fraud!
Time to cut these goons loose from our tax dollars and ask for a criminal investigation about being a “fake LOBBY GROUP”!

Barbara
Reply

True John, Can’t get a long term contract to sell wind and solar.

The plan is to backup this wind and solar power sales with Ontario’s hydro and nuclear power.

Markets like PMJ require a guarantee that a certain amount of electricity will be delivered when needed.

Problem comes when the public can’t tell the differences in all of these issues.

John Vincent
Reply

I completely agree the public is very ignorant of issues relating to commercial electrcity. However, it is a complex issue.
In any event, how do you expect to sell a product, “Green Energy”, that is up to 20 times higher in price per Kw than that produced by coal or nuclear. this is especially true when it is not a quality product as we’ve discussed. No one is going to sign oto a contract for a long term high priced low quality item.
As the curent FIT contracts are set up we are obligated to buy wind and solar regardless of the need or output. As you say, that would prsume nuclear is a back up. To do that , nukes would have to swing load, they can’t beyond very minimal margins. they’re a base load producer. Nuclear physics doesn’t allow them to be anything more.
Out of curiosity, do work for the pro wind/solar side?

Barbara
Reply

Sure don’t work for the wind or solar crowd!

Does the public know how much money can be made off from these wind and solar projects?

They get the FIT contract money
Now wind and solar projects can be used for Yieldcos. So more money.
If their plan for carbon credits goes through then pile on more money.

There is plenty of money to be made by developers, money lenders and assorted investors at the expense of rural Ontarians but how many people know this?

John Vincent
Reply

We’re trying to spread the word that rural Ontarions are being ripped off big time, as are all electrical consumers in Ontario. The only green in “Green Energy” is the dollar bill……them’s that pay it…US….and them’s that receive it…. the developers.

ScepticalGord
Reply

John,

You must be new to the Wind Wars, or maybe you’ve never perused the Ontario Wind Resistance website.

Over at OWR, Barbara has been posting dozens of times a day, including Christmas, for probably 4 or 5 years or more.

To suggest that she may work for a wind or solar company has given me the laugh I needed today.

Cheers,
SG

Barbara
Reply

If people have time, read the comments section on Monte McNaughton’s article in the Financial Post.

These comments provide perspective on what rural Ontarians are facing in trying to get their message out to the public.

Link to this article is posted on this website page today.

John Vincent
Reply

I was merely querying her stand as per wind and solar because I didn’t see where her arguments were supporting the anti wind/solar view. This is because I have no idea who “Barbera” is, as I’m sure non of you have any idea who I am. Since you SG(?) seem to know who she is, doesn’t help me by saying my query is laughable. i asked a simple question. I still don’t know who either of you are.
That said, I’ve been fighting wind/solar in my own area of the country since the “Green Energy” act came into force. I’ve written letters to the point the local paper won’t even publish them anymore.
So you have some idea who I am, I worked for Ontario Hydro in coal fired and nuclear stations on the operations side, and I was a power system dispatcher and supervisor for 15 years. So I do have a small inkling of what goes on in the power system, however, I may not be up to date on all the individual anti wind/solar groups to know who each individual is.
A simple introduction would have sufficed.

ScepticalGord
Reply

John,
I’ve never met Barbara and she doesn’t know me from a hole in the ground.
But, we’re both glad you’re on the truthful side of the wind turbine debate.
Thanks in advance for your continued input.

BWM
Reply

I’m new to rural Ontario and did not understand the impact of Green Energy on my life. My early observation was the same as John’s. Fighting turbines based on Heath issues is a losing game. We need to fight on the economic, legal and political grounds.
Where are our municipal leaders? Who has a call to action?

Wind Concerns Ontario
Reply

We cannot ignore the health issue and as more non-industry-funded research is being done (see Cooper, Australia, recently) the facts are clear: infrasound as produced by utility-scale turbines can harm health for a “non-trivial” portion of the population.
That said, we have been vigorously pursuing the economic aspects of wind power generation. If we may suggest, go to the category “Parker Gallant” on this website and read his past investigations. Parker also recently appeared on BNN TV on our behalf, discussing this same topic. You may also wish to visit the blogs of Tom Adams and Scott Luft.
In the last provincial election, and in many parts during the municipal election, candidates referred to the economic debacle occurring in Ontario. However, it is a sad case or rural vs urban voters in Ontario.
Please stay tuned.

John Vincent
Reply

WCO
I don’t think anyone is saying ignore health issues, however, we know that unless people are directly affected by an issue, they will tend to ignore it (“its their problem, not mine”). I feel that is why the financial aspects should be brought to the fore, as is now being done, to drive home to the urbanites as well as every other Ontarioan, that we are all affected by the Green Energy act through our pockets, and , as has been pointed out, our loss of local self determination. We are all loosers in this, not just the population with health issues.

Barbara
Reply

John, people are on-board with you and all of the issues involved in IWTs need to be investigated.

Keep at the issues you are looking into! You are on the right track.

John Vincent
Reply

Barbara

Thanks for the support. Good luck to us all.

John

Barbara
Reply

John, Can you post at OWR where a broader range of issues is being discussed?

John Vincent
Reply

Barbara

yes, I can

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