Cut red tape, enforce wind turbine noise rules: WCO to Ford government

Ontario rural residents caught on a ‘hamster wheel’ of emails and phone calls to government, and endless testing for wind turbine noise — but nothing ever gets done

February 18, 2019

One of the cost-cutting initiatives of the now eight-month-old Ontario government is the “Red Tape Reduction” plan, spearheaded by Government and Consumer Services Minister Todd Smith.

Last week, Wind Concerns Ontario wrote to Minister Smith (who is also the MPP for Prince Edward County where citizens have been fighting wind power projects for over 10 years) to suggest that reviewing to wind turbine noise compliance protocol and actually enforcing Ontario’s noise regulations could go a long way to cutting “red tape.”

“The Compliance Protocol for Wind Turbine Noise is a costly and ineffective process,” Wind Concerns Ontario president Jane Wilson wrote in a letter that accompanied a box of printouts of noise complaints and Master Incident Report summaries that are government records collected since 2006. “Rather than requiring the project operators to address complaints to the satisfaction of local residents, the focus of enforcement has shifted to proving compliance with audible noise levels using this protocol. While the original Ministry compliance actions were focused on the actual complaints about the project, the new compliance process has no direct connection to the complaints registered with the Ministry about the turbine operations.”

“That is complex and costly for both the government and the power operators,” Wilson said.

This process is incredibly problematic, Wind Concerns Ontario asserts: staff time is being used to receive and respond to complaints coming in to the Ministry via its complaints tracking process (the Spills Action Centre and District Offices), staff is involved in liaising with wind power operators over the audit process, and now, an enormous backlog of long overdue audit reports is also being dealt with by staff. And meanwhile, complaints about the adverse effects created by wind turbine projects are not being resolved.

“This is the very definition of inefficiency,” Wilson said.

In one example provided to the MInister, a family in the Windsor area has been complaining about wind turbine noise and adverse health effects for more than eight years. According to documents received via Freedom of Information request, in one year the family had more than 50 interactions with government staff, staff with staff, and staff with the power operator. Ministry staff made two site visits with no action taken. Meanwhile, one member of the family visited the family’s doctor multiple times and underwent diagnostic testing including MRIs and acoustic testing, all of which place a burden on Ontario’s healthcare system.

“The fact is, the government and the power operators are relying on this protocol instead of listening to resident’s actual complaints, some of which clearly indicate the presence of other than audible noise. These complaints need to be addressed, the noise emissions need to stop, and the enormous cost to the people of Ontario can be identified,” said Wilson.

contact@windconcernsontario.ca

Comments

Sommer
Reply

The low frequency noise and infrasound emissions also need to stop.
The harm is cumulative and irreversible according to LFN and infrasound expert Dr. Mariana Alves-Pereira. That’s why she has stated publicly she would not live within 20 km from a turbine.
Calculating the financial cost in terms of the harm is impossible. How do you put a price on the harm to health of innocent men, women and children whose homes have been surrounded by turbines.

Stan Thayer
Reply

I too have been affected by turbines.
I quit at the power station. I have self diagnosed mindboggleamania.
Last week the Nappanee Gas Generating Station across from the Amherst Island Wind Farm was synced to the grid at just under 100 megawatts.
The Ontario hydro ratepayers paid the off shore gas cosortium to produce the unnecessary power with their own supply then they paid again to dump it into Michigan and New York through Ontario distribution switchyards.
This is crazy, ridiculous, wasteful, not green!
The only known cure for mindboggleamania is to get rid of the Green Energy Act and all the lucrative off shore kickback contracts.
Stan

Richard Mann
Reply

Dear WCO and readers,
On October 28, 2108 I wrote to Health Minister Christine Elliot requesting an urgent meeting on wind turbines. It has been more than three months and I have not heard anything back.

We need an open and public dialog with the decision makers on this issue.

Has WCO met with government officials? If so, can they get me a meeting?

Richard Mann
University of Waterloo

Wind Concerns Ontario
Reply

It is not easy to get meetings with a Minister, or even ministerial staff. Our suggestion is that you contact your MPP and see what he/she can do to help you. You might consider going to the local district office of the MECP to share your concerns, by asking to speak to the District Manager.

David Libby
Reply

Begging the government for help? Because it has worked so well in the past?

Richard Mann
Reply

Here is a 28-minute documentary by the science programme “planet e.” of the second German television ZDF — November 4, 2018.
Many experts are interviewed, including Alec Salt, Washington University Medical School, and the German researchers who did a human fMRI study:
https://youtu.be/ywWNx3OJyuo

Sommer
Reply

Take a look at what is being described at this blog site in NZ:
http://www.palmerstonnorth.blogspot.com

Is this what’s happening here in Ontario as well? Is this a tactic being used in order to be able to claim ‘plausible deniability’ in court?
In Ontario, letters have been sent with critically important information in them as well as a request for response and a request that they be archived for legal reasons going forward.
MP’s and MPP’s have been ineffective.

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