Report on the May 26 Milford community rally

[This report was written by Anne Dumbrille immediately following the May 26, 2012 rally and published originally in the South Marysburgh Mirror.  Sorry for the delay in posting.]

A packed house – between 400 and 600 concerned residents and friends – gathered on Saturday at the Community Rally at the Mount Tabor Shed.

The purpose of the event was to bring people together in a forum where they could learn about how the large industrial wind turbines (IWTs) could directly and indirectly affect them. There were information tables where questions could be addressed, and sheets of information taken home, for further perusal. The information was carefully referenced – not just propaganda financed by groups for or against turbines. Areas of interest included the following: effects of IWTs on wildlife, human health, property values, property sales, tourism, local jobs and economy, electricity costs (are IWTs really green?), Wolfe Island, as well as an exhibit on efforts to expand the National Wildlife Area and the  St. Lawrence Islands National Park to include the South Shore.

Particular interest was shown in the PEC Economic Development Report, Ontario Auditor General’s Report (2011), and position statements from the Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA) and Winegrower’s Association. These, as well as the main information sheets, are available on the CCSAGE website (ccsage.wordpress.com).

Behind the Shed, the community mingled and talked, to powerful live music organized by Eric Schenkman: the Openhearts Society, and Rocky Roberts – with unannounced accompaniment by Brian Barlow and vocal by Emily Fennell. Chris Pengelly of the Milford Bistro served up a couple of hundred burgers and sausages.

Many went home smiling with raffle items – donated notably wineries and restaurants across the County. And if they did not already have one, most left with a lawn sign to declare their hope: “The County: Naturally Green – Turbine-Free”.

Comments from the tables:

  • It was impressive by how well informed are the people who spoke to me. Their insight and knowledge revealed evidence of having done their homework about adverse health effects. The Premier would do well to learn from such examples.
  • There was particular interest from people wanting to determine their legal options- all my information sheets on the Clearview case went by 5pm; there were a number of deep discussions.

Comments from the public:

  • Looking at the scale model that demonstrates the size of the turbine compared to people was astonishing – and horrifying.
  • We appreciate attending an event that does not increase our blood pressure or make us feel sick, while reading about the tough stuff. We feel supported.
  • The government and big business are removing our democracy.
  • I do not like the way the government handled the “Green Energy” issue.
  • PEC has peaceful fields and calm energy – let’s keep it as it is.
  • What can we do next to stop this process?
  • We are disgusted that this government would even contemplate industrialization of an IBA on Crown Land.
  • PEC has peaceful fields and calm energy – let’s keep it as it is.
  • What can we do next to stop this process?
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Posted on June 25, 2012, in Advocacy / politics / legal, Ostrander Point, White Pines, Wind turbines. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Thank you for your excellent work in keeping County residents informed about the possible impacts of these wind projects. The Ostrander Point project is most concerning because it is so far along in the approval process. And there are many questions to be addressed as to how the wind turbines will be transported to the site. According to a CN web site, each turbine requires 8 truckloads – 1 for the hub, 1 for the nacelle and 3 each for the blades and sections. Now these trucks are not Tonka toys; they are massive. Construction will no doubt be required to widen roads and curves. What route will be taken? What communities will be affected? Will any buildings have to be demolished? Will all the turbines be delivered at the same time or will the delivery be staggered? If roads get clogged, will someone be able to drive to the hospital in an emergency? Gilead Power and Stantec Consulting claim that “all roads will be put back to their pre-construction state” after project completion. If you hold them to that, they’d have to flood Helmer Road which is normally under 3 feet of water from the spring melt until nearly mid-July. It’s probably safe to say that the widened roads will stay that way; otherwise they’d have to do construction all over again if replacement parts are needed.

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