WCO president chastises OFA president for “archaic” isolationist view on wind power

AgriNews - Etcetera Publications (Chesterville) Inc.
Eastern Agri-Business News, July 2015
FINCH — Wind Concerns Ontario President Jane Wilson has penned an open letter to OFA President Don McCabe chastising his “isolationism” during a public presentation on wind energy in Finch, May 6. The activist has also requested a meeting with the OFA board to discuss her organization’s concerns.
While praising the OFA president for repeatedly advising prospective wind farm participants to consult with a lawyer, Wilson challenges McCabe on a number of points made at the session, including his assertion that Ontario has no surplus of power and his suggestion that farmers make arrangements to draw power directly from the wind turbines on their land — in order to save on rising hydro rates OFA itself has complained about. (On the last point, Wilson says that sort of that “net metering” is not permitted on projects built under the Feed-In Tariff program.) She also counters some of his advice on thoughts related to turbine noise, community input, and farmers not happy with turbine contracts on their land.
She also expresses disappointment at the “overarching theme” of the OFA president’s remarks, “that if people are going to sign a lease for a wind turbine project they should make certain that they get concessions from the power developer that benefit them. There was not a single mention in your remarks of the need for responsible consideration of other members of one’s community, including fellow farm operators, and neighbours.”
She alleges of his comments “a very narrow view that demonstrates no balance and instead indicates an archaic, I can do whatever I want on my land’ view.” Contemporary and socially responsible farm operators don’t share that viewpoint, she also writes.
“Our concern with this isolationist view of farm ownership is that it will further divide Ontario’s rural and small-town communities.”
The Canadian Wind Energy Assocation’s Director of Technical and Utility Affairs, Tom Levy, also spoke at the public event organized by the Finch Lions Club in the Township of North Stormont. Although officially not a willing host to wind projects, the township is the proposed site for two similarly sized developments currently competing for the next allotment of renewable energy contracts.
Editor’s note: the OFA has not responded to Wind Concerns Ontario’s offer to meet.

What's your reaction?


  • Sommer
    Posted July 11, 2015 2:02 pm 0Likes

    In Huron County, which is Ontario’s leading agricultural county, there are parcels of land that are zoned residential and/or recreational because they adjoin large tracts of bush or because the land is river valley or too hilly to farm. Huron County is along the shore of Lake Huron, so decisions to live their had much to do with the proximity to Huron’s gorgeous shoreline.
    People bought their properties and had no idea whatsoever that K2 Wind would surround their land/homes with turbines.
    Some participated in consultations in advance of the project’s construction and voiced their concerns regarding placement, but they were ignored and now they’re homes/land are seriously altered by these industrial turbines that surround them. The farmers who leased their land and K2 Wind did not for a moment consider the potential negative impact their decisions would have on their neighbours.
    This is absolutely wrong and unfair. … a perfect example of what you’re talking about Jane.
    Thank you for this attempt to bring common sense back into rural communities.

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