[Here is a statement by Ted Cheskey of Nature Canada, issued following announcement of the approval of Gilead Power’s Ostrander Point wind project. See http://tinyurl.com/chrmvou for the full statement.]
We are dismayed by Minister Bradley’s decision to approve a wind energy project on publicly owned Crown land within one of the most significant areas of bird and bat migration in Ontario.
Ostrander Point is in the heart of the globally significant Prince Edward County South Shore Important Bird Area, and is well-known for its significance to migrating and breeding birds. A wind energy plant at this location poses a high and permanent risk to birds and other animals, plant life, animal life and the natural environment. It is particularly shocking that an announcement of this significance would be made as Ontarians turn their attention to family and friends for the holidays. The public now has 15 days during this holiday period to submit a formal request for appeal.
While we support the government’s intention to expand the use of clean and renewable sources of energy through the Green Energy and Green Economy Act, it must not come at the expense of protecting wildlife and intact ecosystems to enhance landscape resilience. Protecting wild species and wild spaces is vital if we are to buffer the effects of climate change and provide options for wildlife as they cope with our changing climate.
We strongly believe there are sound, science-based reasons for rejecting a wind power facility inside this Important Bird Area, and we intend to press for a reversal of this unfortunate decision during the current appeal period.