Do you think Ontario should halt wind turbines?
21 Comments

  • Bill Palmer - 10 years ago

    This poll is a farce. One can sit and do continual updating of the "check the results button", and watch the results change point by point at a continual basis, indicating that either:
    - a continual stream of new voters are lined up and voting one after the other - or
    - someone is voting continuously - it's simple really, vote, hit refresh, and then vote again, hit refresh and then vote, ad nauseum

    The results are meaningless and should be discarded.

    Track the real picture elsewhere - look at the people who are hurting - that number is continually rising every day.

    Does money talk so loud that some do not care anymore about hurting their neighbour?

    The Bible puts it this way in Luke 16: 13, "“No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.” Which do you choose? Do you chose to follow the one who says in Luke 10 "love God ... and love your neighbour."

    The way our province is approving the installation of wind turbines, so that those who host the turbines can ignore the harm done to neighbours, and make a very nice profit suggests that serving money is more important than God. And your choice? Think about it carefully, as the results of your decision may last a long, long time.

  • Summer - 10 years ago

    This poll is not representative of the true feeling of residents in rural Ontario as people are allowed to vote more than once.

    A true poll would only allow one vote per person.

    This is a farce and should not be taken into consideration by anyone as to the real sentiments of Ontario.

  • Summer - 10 years ago

    This poll is not representative of the true feeling of residents in rural Ontario as people are allowed to vote more than once.

    A true poll would only allow one vote per person.

    This is a farce and should not be taken into consideration by anyone as to the real sentiments of Ontario.

  • Steve Baxter - 10 years ago

    Attention Kris Stevens, OSEA, and the rest of you green dreamers:

    I'll make this simple.

    Is this what you have in mind for rural Ontario and its farm land?

    http://deedsandwords.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/wind-turbine-forest.jpg
    http://ontariowindresistance.files.wordpress.com/2009/02/cropped-ugly.jpg

    The truth of the matter is that if you wanted to replace nuclear with wind, you'd need about 3,000 (yes thousand) 1.5MW wind turbines running at 100% nameplate capacity, 100% of the time, to even match the current output of the Bruce Power plant. But we all know that this isn't possible, so those 3,000 wind turbines would have to be paired with roughly equivalent output from gas generators; maybe 7 gas fired plants at 600MW ea. to compensate when the wind isn't blowing. See the pictures linked above, and then mentally add 7 gas plants to it. Think of all that land industrialized.

    Kris, you are either incredibly naive, or trying to blow smoke up everyone's wazoo!

    Secondly, are you aware that you're pushing the policies of a very questionable, faceless, and unelected global body? I refer to the United Nations. If it wasn't for the policies dreamt up by this group, we'd have no industrial scale wind turbines anywhere in the world today. Are you aware of the UN's less than stellar track record and its ties into the following disturbing events:

    - Oil for Food Scandal
    - Rwanda Genocide
    - Human Trafficking in Bosnia

    More recently, this same UN has been exposed via its IPCC to be misleading the world on the true human impacts of Global Warming, or should I say Climate Change. Why would they do this? Simple, to push their draconian socialist Agenda for the 21st Century (Agenda 21). If you read the document carefully, you'll see that part of the plan is de-settle rural lands and get folks back into the cities where services can be extended more efficiently. That, among other things, is what is meant by sustainability. Conspiracy theory? Not a chance. Read the document.

    So, may I suggest that you either wake up and figure out what the heck you're truly participating in, or better yet, take a hike.

    You're not welcome here!

  • Wammo - 10 years ago

    Warren,

    You have A turbine "down the street"? Are you referring to those little pinwheels in the suburbs?

    We are referring to 40 storey giant machines surrounding and towering over our homes by the dozens. These monsters can be seen from 15 km away.

    Please go away if you are just trying to muddy the argument.

  • 1greenian - 10 years ago

    To the pro - windies!
    Do you actually consider the negative impact that these (not-green, inefficient, unreliable, etc.) power plants have on the life’s of your fellow citizens when you count your money?
    Do you actually realize that you are enriching foreign corporations who will disappear after the subsidy well runs dry?
    Oh Canada ---!?

  • Warren McPherson - 10 years ago

    to Colette:
    There is a wind turbine just down the street. I am fully aware of the impact. I have no investment or affiliation with any wind producer. Speculation about bias and "vested interests" do not seem to have any foundation.

  • Colette McLean - 10 years ago

    To Warren, your response saddens me as well. Your response is from a basis where you have nothing to lose and have little concern over what is being lost by those who live near Industrial wind turbines. Read the Auditor Generals Report.

    On page 88
    “No comprehensive business-case evaluation was done to objectively evaluate the impacts of the billion-dollar commitment. Such an evaluation would typically include assessing the prospective economic and environmental effects of such a massive investment in renew¬able energy on future electricity prices, direct and indirect job creation or losses, greenhouse gas emissions, and other variables”. (89) Alarmingly, decisions continue to be made piecemeal without overall cost and effectiveness evaluation. The investigators found that “the ministry’s internal audit service team . . . had not recently conducted any audit work on renewable energy initiatives”.

    On page 119
    The government’s adamant contention that there are no adverse health effects from industrial wind turbines is also questioned by the Auditor General who notes that the report by Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health “was questioned by environmental groups, physicians, engineers, and other professionals, who noted that it was merely a literature review that presented no original research and did not reflect the situation in Ontario”.

  • BG - 10 years ago

    Looks like to me that none wants a power plant in Ontario, regardless if the plant is based on nuclear reactors, wind turbines (please do not call it windmill), solar panels, gas/coal boilers or hydraulic turbines. But every day, you all go back home, turn on incandescent bulbs , put your clothes in your dryer (what's wrong with the line we have used for centuries?), cook on the electric stove (even if gas fired burners cook hundred times better and more efficiently), switch on the air conditioner and set it at 24 C (millions of people live happily with no A/C at temperatures much higher than Ontario). In short, Ontario uses and needs electric energy, and a lot of it.

    Every power plant has its own issues that can be minimized (at an additional cost), but there will always be some consequences, especially for those living near these plants. Which consequences can you reasonably accept for the well being of the Province? For those that, in practice, say "none", you should then close your electricity supply and produce your own electricity with your (magic) technology that does not make noise, does not emits pollutants, uses a safe and sustainable energy source, it's nice to see AND it is cheap. Good luck with that!

  • Warren McPherson - 10 years ago

    The position of the OFA saddens me as well. I know many individual people have done a great deal of research to support the position they are determined to believe. But that tells us more about human nature than it does about the subject matter. The hate is worrisome. I only noticed one post with the phrase "city dwelling parasites" but many people feel justified in lying to themselves. Arbitrarily doubling the cost of wind power when real numbers are inconvenient, "discovering" that wind does not blow all the time and fixating on that issue as if it had been overlooked. My neighborhood has been through a very strong case of NIMBYism lately and I fear it may not be possible for people to think clearly about issues unless they are trivial or present virtually no difficulty.

  • Cindy - 10 years ago

    Contrary to Mr. Steven's comments it is actually the wind developing lobbyists representing their multi-national conglomerates that have been spreading propaganda about the need for wind energy. It is the concerned residents who have been spending their own time, energy and resources who have brought forth the truth about what is likely the biggest boondoggle of our time. There is nothing remotely "environmental" or "green" about the push to litter the land with these huge industrial monstrosities. It has always been and continues to be about greed. How to keep the gold rush going as long as possible is the goal. Anyone who takes the time to properly educate themselves could not in anyway whatsoever continue to support industrial wind turbine development unless they stand to profit from it. Despite the continuously spouted rhetoric, there is opposition to industrial wind turbine development throughout the world. There are hundreds of grassroots organizations made up of individuals who have come together to stop this travesty. So if by "vested interest" you mean in the land and the future for their children and their children's children then yes that is true. But if you think that there is some big business interest behind this you are sorely mistaken. Every day more and more people are coming to understand that industrial wind turbines do not make any sense whatsoever on any level. I would suggest that those who still believe they do start with reading the Auditor General's report, or does the Auditor General have a "vested interest" as well? Nobody is buying what you are selling anymore. "Dirty" coal CANNOT be replaced by wind. It is intermittent and unreliable Wind cannot replace nuclear or hydro-electric and why would we want it to anyway. Coal is being replaced by gas, thereby increasing CO2 emissions. At best wind can be a supplemental source of energy which is too expensive and not needed. It is simply a means for a few people to get rich at the expense of the health, financial security and way of life of the rural people. The OFA is responsible to its membership as the Ontario government is responsible to its citizens. Unlike the Ontario government, the OFA has listened to its members. The Ontario government should start listening to its citizens instead of the industrial wind lobby.

  • Dan Scharf - 10 years ago

    Kris. Marginalizing people who are now well-informed about the true impacts,costs AND benefits of Industrial Wind Turbines is a technique that everyone in the Wind Industry (i.e. CanWEA aligned organizations) should simply pledge to eliminate. It simply doesn't help your cause (or is that a "vested interest") to try to explain away tangible, fact-based concerns with labels, disingenuous accusations (e.g. we're in it for the money), and absurd comparisons to the world's second worst nuclear accident. Unfortunately for your cause, through ALL oversight, measures, indicators and inspections (i.e. evidence), Ontario's nuclear facilities are safe. Not to mention that they are ALL built in a area that is geologically sound, safe from tsunamis, forest fires, and hurricanes (but maybe not an asteroid hit). Is there something to FEAR from Ontario's reactors - yes. If there significant RISK in Ontario's reactors - no.
    BTW, the US Department of Energy has very different relative costs of energy - very different. But I'm sure you'd have to classify DOE as a "vested interest" while the Clean Air Alliance is an independent and objective agenda-free fully self-funded scientific organization... right?
    Belief systems supported by world-class branding campaigns are difficult to counter. What you as a charter member of the Green belief system should really be questioning is whether having Industrial Wind Turbines as your brand is the best thing for your movement? How badly has the global opposition to these machines damaged the credibility and effectiveness of the overall sustainability movement? How badly does the economics of Big Wind, the aggressive subsidy pursuit of Big Wind, and ridiculous commitment to their "build everywhere" operating principle hurt the Green movement overall? THAT is what you should be questioning today, Kris. Not whether farmers, rural residents, engineers, nurses, doctors, energy professionals are ALL in the pocket of "vested interests".

  • Parker Gallant - 10 years ago

    Kris Stevens makes his living from pushing wind as the saviour of global warming but wind consistently provides power at the wrong time meaning we must back it up with fossil fuel generation and those private sector gas generators are paid whether they are providing power to the grid or simply idlying. Costs as he alludes are therefore almost double what he suggests. On top of that we must build new transmission lines representing a further cost to ratepayers and Ontario often exports the actual production at a loss. We spill clean hydro and steam off nuclear at Bruce simply to accomodate first to the grid rights of the wind generation. So how does spilling no emission hydro or steaming no emission nuclear save emissions?

    So using good farmland for placing industrial wind turbines in the fields, chopping down trees for the tranmissions lines, kspilling hydro, steaming off nuclear power is how he sees us saving the planet. How does any of these events reduce emissions? Its time for Stevens to get a real job!

  • Alleyne - 10 years ago

    One man's story in Falmouth:

    FALMOUTH, Mass. — Standing on his home’s porch, Neil Andersen points through the thicket of trees in his front yard and across Blacksmith Shop Road towards one of his closest neighbors: A wind turbine.

    “Right now we are 1,320 feet, which is one-quarter mile south of Wind One, which is Falmouth’s first wind turbine. It’s been online since April. And we’ve been trying to get it stopped since April,” Andersen says.

    Wind One, as the turbine is officially called, is owned by the town of Falmouth and is located at the town’s wastewater treatment plant, where it stands 262 feet tall to the turbine’s hub. That’s about 10 feet taller than the Pilgrim Monument in Provincetown. The blades extend just shy of 400 feet, which is about half the height of the John Hancock Building in Boston.

    When it was installed last spring, Andersen didn’t think Wind One would cause a problem. For 35 years, he’s owned and operated a passive solar company on Cape Cod. The energy conservationist in Andersen considered wind power a good principle. He wasn’t alone — before the turbine switched on, Falmouth residents almost universally welcomed Wind One as a symbol of renewable energy and a way to keep taxes down.

    “I was proud looking at it from this viewpoint — until it started turning,” Andersen said.

    But now, as many as 50 people are complaining about the turbine and the noise it makes at different speeds. A dozen families are retaining a lawyer for that reason.

    -As reported by Sean Corcoran posted on http://www.windwise.org/

  • Colette McLean - 10 years ago

    To Kris, Firstly please explain to me what could possibly be the "vested" interest of those who oppose industrial wind development? My experience has been that these people (including myself) are hard working decent citizens who pay their taxes and bills, live in rural communities and are simply trying to preserve their HOMES!!! & HEALTH!! & environment. The last time I checked, that's what law abiding decent people do who have "vested" interest in their communities.
    Secondly, suggesting that all it takes is for these people with "vested" interest to fork over money into a community based energy project, completely ignores the fact that wind is not proven to be a technically, economically or environmental sound solution to our energy needs.. i.e. does it reduce the burning or mining of coal, does it reduce emissions, can it actually replace the need for nuclear or other conventional sources (gas, coal, hydro), can it stabilize the price of electricity, provide stable high quality energy for our grid, or provide long term green jobs without atrophying jobs in other sectors. NO!
    The capital investment needed for nuclear represents a lot of money, I agree, but what does that have to do with Industrial wind turbines that produce over 50% of the time less than 50% of their capacity and on a yearly avg. only provide 25% with many times producing less than 10% of their capacity. Wind along with other renewables are increasing consumer electricity rates by 8% per year as noted by the auditor General's report.
    Talking about wind energy in the same light as nuclear is like asking a golf cart to transport the equivalent capacity of a tractor/trailer truck. As for the unfortunate residents near Fukishima, please explain to me how shoving wind turbines up rural residents backsides is going to help this situation or avoid it altogether in the future. As far as I can see the Long term energy plan for Ontario still includes Nuclear as a mainstay for much needed baseload generation.
    Addressing how industrial wind developer treat rural residents completely ignores the fact that their treatment is the result of LAWS (the Green Energy Act) which you promoted on the taxpayers dollar, that only encourages the expression of concerns by those affected and never obligates a wind developer to do anything about those concerns. As for the cost, refer to the Rhine-Westphalia Institute for Economic Research, RWI, in Germany, the renewable systems connected to the grid in 2011 will cost electricity customers in Germany about 18 billion euros in subsidies over the next 20 years. The RWI expects the EEG surcharge on electricity bills to increase. It is currently 3.59 eurocents/kWh. Because of recent developments (decommissioning nuclear plants), Germany predicts that the surcharge will soon increase to 4.7 eurocents/kWh. For the average family, this would amount to an additional charge of about 200 euro/yr. The AG report indicates approx $300 per family /yr in Ontario.
    German households complain about having the second-highest electricity prices in Europe; 26.3 eurocents/kWh. Denmark, another renewables maven, has the highest; 30.1 eurocents/kWh.
    Cheap electrical energy is a mainstain for manufacturing and don't forget that the price for electricity gets translated into absolutely everything we as taxpayers consume & use. So you see Kris, despite your beliefs, as a resident living with the annoyance of wind turbines I have done the critical thinking & OFA's new position is only reflecting their new found insights about the major drawbacks of wind energy, that have finally come to light. It may be too late for many residents like myself but all I can say is it's about time.

  • Liz - 10 years ago

    To Kris Stevens : I am a farmer living and working in France. I'd love to know where you get your information from concerning Europe. I would respectfully suggest that you look at www.epaw.org. In my area, there are many wind turbine projects despite the fact that there is no real wind resource ( AWEA wind class I). Time to stop the subsidies.

  • Tom Stacy - 10 years ago

    To Elizabeth Barry: No wind turbine should be located within 2,000 km of our WALLETS!

    To Kristopher Stevens: It saddens me that you feel wind energy is a substitute for any source of controllable power (power sources with a responsive 'ON' switch). The cost of wind electricity can only fairly be compared to the cost of the FUEL it saves, because no amount of wind investment substitutes for the capital investment and fixed costs of dependable, schedulable base load and flexible power generation plants (gas, nuclear, hydro and coal).

    Look at the DOE EIA chart here (http://www.instituteforenergyresearch.org/2009/05/12/levelized-cost-of-new-generating-technologies/) and compare the full cost of wind to the variable costs (olive green-mostly fuel) of the other sources. Now you have apples to apples comparison on the costs wind energy is a substitute for. But that's not the whole picture, is it? No. Wind energy comes and goes sporadically. And the windier it is, the worse the phenomenon. Who can measure and verify how much fossil fuel wind energy really saves, when we know variation in DEMAND is a huge fuel waster. Now we add uncorrelated (negatively correlated, actually) wind volatility and say we are saving fossil fuel? Prove it!

    Do not forget that there are also government programs that make electricity less expensive for those willing to use less electricity when we all need it most (making the rest of us pay more for the same level of service.) If such "demand management" is really energy efficient, then just imagine how inefficient it is to add sporadically producing wind energy to the grid.

  • lsarc - 10 years ago

    @ Kris (the Propagandist for OSEA ) Stevens
    Exerpt: Those with vested interests are running around spreading propaganda first of all.
    ...if you look at the dirty energy it offsets.

    You make unsubstantiated statements and demonstrably false claims.

    Who has more "vested" interests than lobbyists and INDUSTRIAL WIND developers many of whom, like Suncor, are actually Big Oil and just farming subsidies and tax breaks?

    BENTEK Energy's, "Wind Power Paradox" is just the latest and most precise study of actual performance data which exposes the facts that wind does not eliminate CO2 emissions or dependence on fossil fuels. Coal or gas generation is required to almost duplicate the amount of wind on a grid system.

    Gas works more efficiently alone, wind does not work at all far too often to ever work alone. We pay top dollar for unreliable, non-dispatchable electricity we have to then pay to get off the grid as it typically produces when there is no great demand.

    All this for Industrial-scale "windmills" which grind up wildlife which does provide important ecosystem services, "windmills" which churn rural communities into social tatters, "windmills" which grind down the economies of whole nations, and "windmills" which have pulverized democratic principles and even common sense.

    Ban GREED Energy!

  • tom clark - 10 years ago

    Kris Stevens - George Smitherman's chairman of the committee that wrote the Green Energy Act . Stick to facts Kris and compare apples to apples .
    More and more people are realising that wind power and solar power are a testimony to ignorance and greed and cannot under present day circumstances replace any coal fired stations.
    Rural Ontario has spoken and are sick and tired of city dwelling parasites dictating the conditions under which they live

  • Kristopher Stevens - 10 years ago

    Farmers are living in harmony with wind turbines across Europe. What's different here?

    Those with vested interests are running around spreading propaganda first of all.

    Second of all they own them fully or in part. In fact in Denmark developers must offer at minimum 20% of new projects to the local residents and limit the size of projects. (perhaps we could do that too!)

    Thirdly they recognize that nuclear isn't and option and that it is bloody expensive!

    Fourthly they recognize that despite experts saying its impossible they have incorporated up to 30% of their supply from wind are are pushing further.

    I've just returned from Fukushima and had the opportunity to meet with farmers who have slaughtered their herds, lost their livelyhoods, sent their families away for fear of radiation, are being dosed with radiation 10 times the normal level, are being discriminated against for being from the region and really not getting any help from their government that told them it was safe.

    If we are unhappy with the way commercial developers are working lets address the problem. Lets also not use the term "industrial" to make windmills seem scary. Those who have a vested interest in keeping us tapped into expensive dirty energy are doing a great job of directing the narrative. It is too bad that folks aren't looking critically at what our energy choices are and taking control of the grid. Community Power is key. A moratorium is not what is needed. Community projects are.

    Here is the blog on nuclear and the transition to a 100% sustainable energy system http://www.ontario-sea.org/Page.asp?PageID=122&ContentID=3524.

    Here are the costs for new energy generation in Ontario.

    Energy conservation and efficiency 2.3 to 4.6 cents

    Water Power imports from Quebec 5.8 cents

    Combined heat and power 6 cents

    Wind 13.5 cents

    Nuclear - new and re-build 19 - 57 cents (http://www.cleanairalliance.org/files/Roof.pdf)

    Notice that wind is not a bad deal and even a better one if you own it instead an external company and if you look at the dirty energy it offsets.

    It saddens me that the OFA has taken this sensationalized position. I understand the politics of it. It still saddens me.

  • ELIZABETH BARRY - 10 years ago

    NO TURBINE SHOULD BE POSITIONED WITHIN 2 K OF HOMES. 2K is the very least distance. It is very unfair for those owning wind farms to ruin neighbours' living.

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