Category Archives: Property values

Impact of wind turbines on residential property values

CCSAGE Naturally Green – Rationale and Vision

CCSAGE NATURALLY GREEN (“CCSAGE”) is a not-for-profit corporation, under Federal legislation, continuing an informal group founded in 2009.

It supports and believes in green energy which is both safe and appropriate, and encourages small scale solutions and conservation measures.

In so doing, its actions are planned to be constructive in achieving those goals, and it has the following beliefs which support this mandate:

  1. CCSAGE welcomes the findings of two Ontario Auditors-General as expressed in their separate Reports up to including that of 2015. Translated into everyday language they find the Green Energy Act to be an economic disaster, enacted without benefit of technical advice and with no consideration of a business rationale or of its overall impact.
  2. CCSAGE agrees with the published opinions of several well-known economists and energy expert to the same effect, including Michael Trebilcock, Keith Stelling, Dr. Glenn Fox, Ross McKintrick and Tom Adams.
  3. CCSAGE agrees with the published opinion of the Energy Task Force of the Ontario Society of Professional Engineers (April 2015), which shows that increased use of wind and solar energy on the Ontario grid is causing a dramatic increase in both carbon emissions and electricity prices.

CCSAGE suggests to the Premier and Government of Ontario as follows:

  1. Put on hold immediately all proposed major wind and solar projects not currently operating, until considerations of appropriate placement and of Municipal jurisdiction be determined, and economic and scientific justification be established, including science-based justification of set-backs from property lines of houses, schools and other inhabited structures;
  2. Re-write the Green Energy Act based on results of economic, scientific and health analyses that are produced by acknowledged and independent experts (excluding those of the wind and solar industries and of their allies and supporters);
  3. The Act, as amended or replaced, would require the location of major safe and appropriate green energy installations to be considered in areas of this vast Province which are determined by the relevant and expert authority to be:
    • Consistent with the Environment Canada recommendations noted in Environment Canada document, Wind Turbines and Birds, A Guidance Document, including consideration of cumulative effects, requirement for baseline surveys, and consistent with the 11 listed criteria where they not be sited, such as Important Bird Areas and migration corridors.
    • Never where adverse health effects to humans are possible.
    • Never where local economies could be adversely affected.
    • Never where the natural environment could be unreasonably disturbed.
  4. Should any Municipality indicate that it is an unwilling host to such an installation, the wishes of that Municipality would prevail over the current provisions of the Green Energy Act.
  5. Energy projects would not be excluded from the Environmental Protection Act. Any appeal of permission granted for an installation would be to the Courts utilizing evidence presently permitted by the Courts.  The Environmental Review Tribunal would be abolished, as its terms are inconsistent with protection of the environment as well as the Statement of Values of MOECC and MNRF.
  6. Any such permission must restrict payment to the proponent to a maximum of the then weighted average price of electricity produced in Ontario by nuclear, hydro-electric and natural gas sources.

CCSAGE has filed an Application to the Supreme Court of Ontario for Judicial Review of the circumstances and background leading to the issue of a Renewal Energy Approval for 27 turbines in the south part of the County of Prince Edward. This does not detract from, but underlines, CCSAGE’s wish to be constructive rather than negative, as it concentrates on the deficiencies of the Green Energy Act, on its bias against rural communities and on the infringement of citizens’ rights and of statutes and international treaties.

Statement by CCSAGE on the White Pines wind project approval

On Thursday, July 16th, 2015, a Renewable Energy Approval (REA) was issued by the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) to White Pines Wind Incorporated (alias wpd Canada) for 27 of the 29 industrial wind turbines originally proposed, to be located in South Marysburgh and Athol. The two deleted were as a direct result of major efforts (and expense) by individuals concerned about the impact of these and other turbines on “cultural resources and protected properties”. The REA includes two large transformer substations. The 29 kilometre line connecting everything to the Hydro One system north of Picton was approved by the Ontario Energy Board in 2014. (Question: why would the transmission line be approved, apparently in a vacuum well in advance of the REA, unless the Ontario Energy Board was certain that the REA would be issued? Yet another indication that the entire procedure is a mockery of democratic norms).

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Solar Projects in Prince Edward County

Under the Green Energy Act, solar projects are now covered by three separate programs:

* microFIT: up to 10 KW, including both rooftop and small ground-based installations;

* FIT: 10 to 500 KW; ground-based installations up to 5 acres;

* Large Renewable Program (LRP): greater than 500 KW; ground-based installations averaging 10 MW and 90 acres, ranging from 5 MW to 25 MW.

The microFIT and FIT programs have predetermined prices, while the new LRP program (for wind as well as large solar) involves competitive price bids by proponents.

There is limited allotment available in 2015 under both FIT and LRP programs, so developers must find ways to maximize their appeal. One way is to obtain formal support from the municipality.

Currently there are five large solar projects located in the County, most of which are 10 MW requiring about 90 acres of land, plus a number of smaller FIT projects requiring up to 5 acres of land.

Skypower, which already owns one large solar project on Chuckery Hill Road, is proposing six more large projects for approval in 2015, ranging in size from 5 MW to 25 MW (45 to 225 acres). In all likelihood, they will ask for municipal support for their bids.

At the Committee of the Whole meeting on June 25, 2015, Council received two deputations recommending against any municipal support for additional solar projects.

You can read Garth Manning’s deputation HERE and Carol Page Heyding’s deputation HERE.

Turbine Factories and County Road Access

OVER 4,00 MASSIVE OVERSIZE TRUCK LOADS…AND COUNTING

That’s what will hit the County – particularly Cherry Valley, Milford and much of Athol and South Marysburgh – if both Gilead Power and wpd Canada are allowed to proceed with their wind turbine factories. And they all have to come from Highway 401.

Gilead Power’s own consultants believe that some County roads will have to be strengthened and corners widened. They looked at three entry points and settled on Highway 33 and Highway 49 although nothing has yet been carved in stone.

Highway 33 would be followed over the Murray Canal bridge (59 tonnes maximum) to Consecon, then along County Road 1 for its entire length – including the roundabout- to the junction with County Road 10.

The Highway 49 option would skirt Picton to the west to reach the same junction of County Roads 1 and 10.

From that point County Road 10 would be followed through Cherry Valley and Milford to County Road 13, thence via Babylon and Helmer Roads to the Ostrander Point site. The Highway 33 route is 71 kilometres long, the Highway 49 option 56 kilometres. It is assumed that wpd Canada would use the same route(s), at least as far as Milford; from there its proposed turbine locations are scattered.

The following statistics cover both projects. Each turbine will require 40 truckloads of concrete for its base (1,520 ready mix concrete trucks).Each turbine needs 10 truck loads of turbine blades, tower parts and other components (390 special, oversized vehicles). Such vehicles need escort cars or trucks (760 in all). Separate trucks/trailers will be required for the delivery of other material (1,710 of them). So far that’s 4,380 individual vehicles, most of them large and heavy and many oversized and articulated. The turbines will be erected by giant cranes. Special vehicles (number unknown) will be needed to transport them in parts.

wpd Canada’s transmission line will span 28 kilometres from Royal Road to the Hydro One connection north of Picton. Add all required vehicles and equipment required for that work, number unknown.

County roads and normal traffic will take a beating. No information appears to be currently available as to the state of negotiations (if any) between Gilead Power, wpd Canada and Shire Hall as to final routing, road widenings and strengthenings, indemnity for damage to all roads , cost and responsibility and security for payment. Is the Murray Canal bridge adequate? Will the roundabout be taken out temporarily? How much OPP escorting will be required and who pays?

Is anybody concerned about the dust, noise, vibration and incredible inconvenience to be suffered by County residents and businesses along the routes, particularly those in Cherry Valley and Milford and along the transmission line?

And all of this spectacularly objectionable activity to enable the south end of the County to be desecrated, an Important Bird Area ravaged, the County bisected by the transmission line, and two corporations enriched at the expense of all Ontarians so that the power they may produce about 27% of the time can be exported abroad for considerably less than its inflated cost, the difference being absorbed by those same Ontarians in their taxes and hydro bills.

Insult added to injury, indeed, following the flight of democracy and common sense so fundamentally reflected in the Green Energy Act.

There is but one ray of light. The Court of Appeal has still to rule on the Gilead Power project while wpd Canada has not yet received its required approval.

Garth Manning.
CCSAGE NATURALLY GREEN.
April, 2015.

TVO Documentary Big Wind and The Agenda on tonight at 8

Watch TV Ontario at 8 pm tonight when Steve Paikin’s Agenda will focus on wind power topics to be followed at 9 pm by the documentary “Big Wind”.

Press release issued by APPEC on March 20, 2015

Alliance to Protect Prince Edward County

P.O. Box 173
Milford, Ontario K0K 2P0

APPEC Press Release

Wpd’s 28 kilometre transmission line in Prince Edward County approved

Milford, ON/ March 20, 2015 — A 28 kilometre high-voltage transmission line in Prince Edward County has been approved by the Ontario Energy Board (OEB). The transmission line is needed to  connect wpd Canada Corporation’s White Pines wind project to the provincial electricity grid.

The transmission line, to be installed almost entirely in County road right of ways, extends from Royal Road south of Milford to the Elmbrook transformer station north of Picton. County landmarks impacted during construction of the line include Milford Black Creek Valley ANSI, Millenium Trail, Waring’s Creek Watershed, Big Swamp Provincially Significant Wetland and the roundabout at Loyalist Parkway and Cty Rd. 1. The transmission line, which wpd says will be buried, poses a threat to the stands of century-old maples lining Crowes Road and Maypul Layn Road.

Extensive excavation needed to bury the line is expected to cause structural damage to residential properties, including wells, heritage homes and some of the 600 + structures along the route.

wpd has provided little solid evidence about the transmission line. Repeated requests for information and studies needed for a full assessment of the project have been ignored.

The Alliance to Protect Prince Edward County is dismayed by the absurdity of the OEB approval of the 28 kilometre transmission line without prior regard to impacts on County Heritage landmarks, environmentally sensitive habitat and residential property structural damage without prearranged property owner agreements. The Alliance is frustrated even further by the fact that the OEB has granted approval without ensuring sufficient information was provided to the Prince Edward County Municipality to allow them to properly plan out the municipal right-of-way usage and understand the potential impact to County residences.

We strongly object to an OEB approval process that does not properly protect residents, residential property and the environment.

The Alliance calls on the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change to reject the renewable energy application for the White Pines Wind Project.

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For more information please contact: Paula Peel
APPEC (Alliance to Protect Prince Edward County)
613-476-7693
contactus@appec.ca

Two important events in the County this week

Please plan to attend one or both of two important events happening this week:

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400 PEC residents and business owners threaten claims for compensation if wind turbines are built here

Naturally Green sign[NATURALLY GREEN signs.  Due to strong demand, we have ordered new signs, which are now available for purchase.  For pickup in the  Picton area, phone 613-476-2700; South Marysburgh, 613-476-7310; Wellington, 613-399-2407, Ameliasburgh, 613-962-6902 .]

At the beginning of May, CCSAGE NATURALLY GREEN took ads in local County papers and on CountyLive to point out existing legal rights to claim compensation if the construction of industrial wind turbine factories cause adverse effects to the value of businesses and properties.

Within three weeks, almost 400 County business and property owners indicated they would consider bringing such claims.

What did we do with this overwhelming response?

  • On June 4th, we wrote to the Premier, the Ministers of Energy and the Environment, the leaders of the two opposition parties and the Presidents of Gilead Power and wpd Canada Corporation. Below is a copy of our letter for your information.  You can read a copy of our letter HERE .
  • We notified our colleagues in all parts of Ontario with or threatened by industrial wind turbines of our initiative and its result.
  • We issued a media release to every print and electronic outlet in the entire Province.

We’ll keep you informed from time to time of future developments. Meanwhile, thank you to all respondents on-line, by mail, at our Town Hall meeting in Milford and in response to canvasses on Picton, Bloomfield and Wellington Main Streets.

CCSAGE NATURALLY GREEN