The impending death of South County?
Gilead = 9 turbines. Wpd = 29 turbines. Can it get any worse for South County? Yes it can.
There are persistent rumours that wpd Canada (“wpd”) is preparing to a second, larger wind project for South County, even as it gets ready to submit its REA application for the 29-turbine project.
When the original White Pines project was announced back in 2008, it was to include 75 turbines. This project was subsequently split into two phases of 30+ and 40+ turbines, respectively.
In 2010, wpd was awarded a power supply contract for 30 turbines (later reconfigured to 29). Many people assumed that wpd had decided to proceed with Phase 1 only.
We believe that wpd has decided to proceed with Phase 2 — an additional 40+ turbines – and has, or is close to having, sufficient options of land to support this number.
Phase 2 could be infill within the Phase 1 footprint, or could extend the footprint north, west and east – likely some of both.
Three projects, Gilead and wpd Phases 1 and 2, would total about 80 wind turbines. Adding 21 turbines from the proposed (but currently inactive) Loyalist wind project located mostly in Athol, brings the total to about 100 turbines. Note: We have heard that Hydro One has prepared a map for its internal planning purposes that shows 99 turbines in South County.
If the rumour about Phase 2 is false, wpd has the opportunity to deny these plans, definitively and in writing. We published an article on our website on March 21, 2012 that mentioned the possibility of Phase 2, and received no denial from wpd (see http://wp.me/p1M8CZ-f9 .) So we have to assume that it’s true.
It’s common for wind projects to be expanded after the developer gets its foot in the door. To illustrate, the 22-turbine Kingsbridge project in Huron County is being followed up by the huge 140-turbine Kingsbridge II (renamed K2) project.
Further complicating the situation is the involvement of a well-known investor from outside the County who owns property in South County and is seeking to expand. He and a local real estate agent are knocking on doors of landowners asking if they will sell or lease their property. Ostensibly, he’s accumulating property for raising beef cattle and growing hay on a large scale but, for purchased property, who knows?
We have a potentially disastrous situation on our hands. County residents have been up in arms about the threats posed by Gilead Power’s 9-turbine Ostrander Point project. Now we are faced with a problem that is 10 times as great. Repeat: 10 times as great.
It’s not an exaggeration to say that 80 to 100 turbines would be the death of South County. We, County residents, cannot allow this to happen.
What can you do? If you are concerned about the threats to Prince Edward County posed by wind turbines, you need to get involved in some way. Start by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to let us know of your concerns. Get up to date by browsing the CCSAGE blog / website at www.ccsage.wordpress.com .
And (IMPORTANT) attend the wpd open house at Prince Edward Collegiate Institute on August 30 at 5:30 pm to protest wpd’s plans — announced and unannounced — to impose their turbines on our County.