When an Industrial Wynne Turbine has to be taken down, for whatever reason, who pays for the teardown?[OntarioWindResistance]. Read original article in Farmers Forum: Who ponies up for Wind Turbine Teardown?.
Technically, and politically, it’s called “decommissioning”. The problem is not limited to the present but extends out 20 years, to the so-called lifespan of turbines; “decommissioning’ then becomes a problem, who does it and who pays for it?
“Many of these companies are relatively small or based outside of Canada and that creates what appears to be a real risk as there will be no pocket you can go to 20 years from now when a cleanup is actually required,” says Eric Gillespie, who has represented landowners and municipalities with wind turbine concerns. [FF]
Who’s left in this case? Landowners, municipalities, taxpayers. Wynne Turbines can weigh as much as 70 tonnes; a farmer and his tractor can’t take them down anymore than can the local municipality. World-wide costs for doing the job range from $30,000 to $80,000 per turbine. Developers need to present plans for turbine teardowns when they make their project proposals.
There is already a good model in place, says Gillespie. Under the Environmental Protection Act, the government will ask for financial assurance if there is a risk of adverse effects that could require remedial work. A letter of credit or security is required up front.
“Anything other than that might keep lawyers busy for a long time but won’t help communities. It’s about addressing the issue now rather than waiting for the end and crossing your fingers. It should be the companies that are earning the profits that have to pay the bill.” [FF, emphasis added]
The costs of decommissioning would be an unbearable burden were they to be foisted on the municipalities. For the smallest ones, like Wainfleet, it would be a fatal burden. Any sensible opinion would state that the Province should have a decommissioning plan in place for Wynne Turbines, so that unwilling host communities will not be doubly burdened or taxed for these namesake Turbines.