Never Give Up

Environmental Tribunal dismisses Wallace request for DWPI hearing

The Environmental Review Tribunal (ERT) has dismissed Green Party candidate Karren Wallace’s request for a hearing regarding the Amendment to REA No. 5460-98BPH8 held by Dufferin Wind Power Inc.

The dismissal decision by the ERT panel of Justin Duncan and Dirk Vanderbent said such an appeal “must relate to the Project design changes which the Director has approved. The Tribunal does not have the jurisdiction to consider, in this proceeding, other approvals, orders or decisions made by the MOE.”

The Environmental Review Tribunal is an independent body that hears public appeals including the Environmental Protection Act. Proceedings December 2nd were to confirm procedural directions for the main hearing that was to have been held in the coming year, but has now been dismissed.

Opposing Ms. Wallace were DWPI lawyers John Terry and Denis Mahony and Sylvia Davies was the lawyer for the Director of the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Control (MOECC).

Ms. Wallace said that from the outset the environmental review process was “heavily weighted against the average citizen,” and expressed her gratitude to Melancthon residents “who single-handedly kept pursuing the penta issue for months and months with the MOECC until they finally admitted there was in fact a problem.”

“The request filed by DWP (at the preliminary hearing in Shelburne, December 2nd) was for them to be excused from having to go to a public hearing because they were doing minor variations from what was originally approved at a public hearing last December,” Ms. Wallace said.

“This was a condition of their original approval; any major changes must go through a public process.  So my question is why file for an exemption for a minor variation, but a major deviation like remediating 316 penta treated poles did not go through a hearing and a public process?  Instead it was left up to a bureaucrat and DWP to decide how to fix the mess. The fact DWP and the MOECC won’t release the remediation plan is extremely concerning.” Continue reading Never Give Up

MOE says Amaranth wind farm transformer is safe, won’t put it in writing

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Photo by Hanno Rein for the Banner. An aerial view of Trans Alta’s Facility in Melancthon.

 

All Amaranth resident Ted Whitworth wants for Christmas is written confirmation that the transformer station located near his home isn’t hazardous to his health.

Unfortunately for Whitworth, he won’t find that memo he covets from the Ministry of the Environment (MOE) underneath his tree this year.

“The best thing would be to fix the whole thing,” Whitworth exclaimed, noting in absence of that he needs the letter from the MOE so he can move on and perhaps consider selling his rural property.

“Let them assume the liability, if there is any. If they’re right, then why won’t they provide it?” he asked. “Why do we have to assume the liability of selling it … when the ministry says there is no problem?” Continue reading MOE says Amaranth wind farm transformer is safe, won’t put it in writing

Appeal denied relating to Dufferin Wind’s utility pole sealing work

The Ontario Environmental Review Tribunal (ERT) has dismissed an appeal centred around the remedial utility pole sealing program completed by Dufferin Wind Power Inc. along its transmission line.

Earlier this fall, local resident Karren Wallace claimed the Ministry of the Environment (MOE) had made an amendment to Dufferin Wind’s Renewable Energy Approval (REA) license without properly consulting the public.

After holding a preliminary hearing on the matter earlier this month, the ERT dismissed Wallace’s appeal on Monday (Dec. 22). The ERT meeting scheduled to be heard in Shelburne on Jan. 5 was cancelled as well.

“DWPI does not see the dismissal of Ms. Wallace’s appeal as a victory; rather it was the only outcome that could be expected,” Dufferin Wind said in a statement released to the media. “That being said, it is important to stress to the community that DWPI is acting in everyone’s best interests in terms of the pole capping mitigation measures that were voluntarily put in place to protect the aquifers.”

The Ontario Energy Board (OEB) approved Dufferin Wind’s plan to construct a 230 kV transmission line running from its 49-turbine wind farm in Melancthon to Amaranth last year.

In August, however, MOE officials acknowledged it was possible more than 300 utility poles along the transmission line could act as conduits for surface water pollutants, such as fertilizers, to enter the groundwater supply in the event of heavy rain run-off or flooding. Continue reading Appeal denied relating to Dufferin Wind’s utility pole sealing work

DWPI has “No Comment” at tribunal hearing

At a preliminary hearing by Ontario’s Environmental Review Tribunal held Tuesday, Dufferin Wind Power Inc. (DWPI) lawyers refused to explain why the corporation, which has erected 316 transmission-line poles between its wind farm and Hydro One’s Orangeville Transformer Station will not make mitigation plans public as requested by Melancthon Council and residents near the right-of-way.

Citizen concerns arising from pole bore holes extending into the local aquifers, possibly allowing for ground water contamination, and fears that the pentachlorophenol (penta), a wood preservative coating the entire length of the poles, may travel into surrounding wells, prompted Green Party candidate Karren Wallace to file for the hearing as a private citizen.

The panel for the preliminary hearing, held at Centre Dufferin Recreation Complex in Shelburne, included Dirk VanderBent, Vice Chair of the Environmental Review Tribunal, and Tribunal member Justin Duncan.

The Tribunal is an independent body that hears public appeals under the Environmental Protection Act. Also present were Sylvia Davies, lawyer for the Director of the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Control (MOECC) and lawyer John Terry plus an additional lawyer for DWPI. The hearing was to confirm procedural directions for the main hearing to be held in the new year.

Ms. Wallace had said previously that her objection was based on DWPI’s mitigation plan for transmission lines never having been formally approved. The transmission poles, located alongside the County-owned rail corridor, will carry power from 49 new turbines in Melancthon to the transformer station near Dufferin 109 and the 3rd Line of Amaranth.

Ms. Wallace looked at the issue of possible health risks posed by DWPI penta-covered transmission pole holes, many surrounded by water, some constructed in wetlands, and others near manure piles, “Walkerton had one conduit for contamination,” she said. “We now have 316.” Continue reading DWPI has “No Comment” at tribunal hearing

The First Overseas Wind Power Projects Invested by a Chinese Power Generation Enterprise is Completed and Put into Operation

On Nov. 17, China Longyuan Power Group Corporation Limited affiliated to China Guodian Corporation held a press conference in Ontario, Canada and announced that the Canada Dufferin wind power project, the first overseas wind power project invested by a Chinese power generation enterprise was completed and put into operation.

 The Dufferin 100MW wind power project was invested and constructed by China Longyuan Power Group Corporation Limited affiliated to China Guodian Corporation, one of the five major power generation groups in China. According to the introduction, the Dufferin wind power project is currently the largest wind power project invested by China in Ontario. A total of 49 GE WTGs have been installed in the wind farm and the annual on-grid energy is expected to be 300 million kwhs, which can meet the demand for electricity of about 30,000 households in Ontario.

Xie Changjun, vice president of China Guodian Corporation, who made a special trip to attend the project completion and putting into operation, said that the Dufferin wind power project is currently the first and the only wind power project invested, constructed and operated overseas by a China’s state-owned power enterprise itself.

Continue reading The First Overseas Wind Power Projects Invested by a Chinese Power Generation Enterprise is Completed and Put into Operation

DWPI transmission poles on right–of–way

Two transmission poles erected by Dufferin Wind Power Inc. (DWPI) on the 4th Line OS of Melancthon are on the right of way, just a step from the road proper where snow ploughs and local traffic will soon be navigating slippery winter conditions. CAO Denise Holmes of Melancthon Township told the Free Press that, “Concerns were raised during the Leave to Construct process by Council, our Acting Road Superintendent and our Engineer, but our concerns, as well as many others were all dismissed during that process. Council had requested right up front and before this project was even started, that they wanted the lines to be buried. Had DWP adhered to our request, we would not have this issue. When the province rejected the Township’s request for buried lines the Township was not given opportunity to review or approve the final pole locations.” Continue reading DWPI transmission poles on right–of–way

“Down Wind” blows a Conservative current

The Sun News documentary Down Wind was on screen at Grace Tipling Hall in Shelburne on November 15th for a crowd of about fifty on lookers. Focusing on industrial wind turbines in Liberal Ontario, the rather drawn out production highlights the truly tragic stories of rural families and communities torn apart by their ‘ill effects’ as the whirling towers, some up to 550 feet high, churn out costly electricity at the expense of their health and welfare. Sun News released Down Wind one week before the last provincial election in June, raising the question of whether or not Ontario turbine casualties, who have been treated with the disregard of lab mice by all levels of government, were once again the victims of a political agenda. Continue reading “Down Wind” blows a Conservative current