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A serious hiccup has developed in the Sky Dive Burnaby Wainfleet Wind Energy appeal.  The developer wants to add additional information.  Sky dive’s objection to more clarifications after the gate had been shut, so to speak, was rejected..

“Our clients are having considerable difficulty in understanding how a process they thought was over, is back to where it was at two months ago,” Gillepsie [sic] said. “We haven’t been able to find any cases where this has happened before.” [Erie Media],

Sounds too much like a search for a way out of Sky Dive’s evidence on safety; in other words, what are limits of safety’.  How far can we bend the rules and still allow for construction?

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Will They Cause Harm?

That’s the issue for the Tribunal hearing the appeal on the two turbines in limbo in Wainfleet.  Whether or not they can be built depends on the Tribunal’s assessment of likely harm.

Not building them, says counsel representing the developer, would be tantamount to expropriation of property, as reported by Greg Furminger in the Welland Tribune. The same lawyer also said, any risk to skydivers would be “abnormal,” basing his statement on appellant testimony that at times referred to turbines being a navigation risk subsequent to a parachute failure.

The Test is, on the balance of probabilities, what is the likelihood of an accident? There is also a test used by the ERT: the mandate to push through applications for turbine development.

The Appellant’s lawyer, Eric Gillespie, outlined the risks to skydivers and stated that to rule against the Appeal would be to take “a gamble” on doing harm. “Rarely killing somebody … doesn’t come close to being acceptable for a project like this,” Gillespie said.

The time of the ruling on the Appeal is still up in the air.

Tell Andrea Horwath Where to Get Off!

Here’s the chance to tell the NDP what you think of its job of keeping Wynne-lose in power!  With a straight face and a butter-wouldn’t-melt-in-her-mouth smile, Andrea Horwath is appealing to Ontarians to get angry about high Hydro rates, as if we haven’t been screaming about them for more than a year.

Quixote’s Last Stand says, Go ahead. Tell them what you think by providing a link to an NDPee petition page on the issue of Hydro Rates and power sell-offs. Don’t be fooled by the smiling face that says, “It’s because of people like you that we are making a difference in Ontario.” Oh, really? Hadn’t noticed anything except your continuing support for the perpetrating Government!

Here’s the link: Save On Hydro. Yes, that’s the title, and here’s the sub-title:
Say yes to making electricity more affordable for families and businesses. Tell Andrea Horwath what you really think!  Go ahead, make her day.

The BS Keeps Piling Up…

AND UP!  One of the Plaintiffs in the 2nd lawsuit (same as in the first) against Wainfleet Township is protesting the Town’s grant of dollars to assist a private business in its fight against Wainfleet Wind Energy Inc. , which came as no surprise to the Mayor, after the appeal succeeded in obtaining a temporary stop-work order on construction of one turbine.

Besides being one of the developers who are working to build the wind turbine project, wind turbine developer Tom Rankin said he’s also a Wainfleet property-owner who’s concerned about how his tax contributions are being used. “We just think it’s wrong to start subsidizing a small sector of the economy. We just think it’s wrong,” he said. “I’d like to think I’m representing taxpayers that are pretty upset about that whole shenanigan of giving someone $40,000 to fight an appeal. That’s my take on it. I’m a taxpayer out there myself. I own property there, and some of our employees own property there and I’ve talked to a number of other people and they’re pretty upset.”, reported by OWR and first by Welland Tribune and St. Catharine’s Standard.

Rankin and company just recently ended his cozy joint venture setup with the Niagara Regional Government:
It was announced Friday the region is taking steps to dissolve a partnership formed with Rankin Construction Inc. back in 2001 that led to the creation of the Wind Energy Niagara Corporation in 2006.
The conflict of interest should have been obvious from the beginning. The motive for dissolution can be glimpsed in these words:
“It’s the right decision and the right time to dissolve this partnership with the Region,” Tom Rankin, chief executive officer of Rankin Construction Inc.

The right time, indeed!

The disingenuous hyporcrisy of Rankin and company makes the gorge rise.  Now Mr. Rankin is “playing” the injured Wainfleet resident because the Town Council stepped in to help its own fight against wind turbine development with a grant of aid.  The Town was an appellant in the matter but withdrew in order to assist the two main private appellants.  In so doing, the Town was indirectly pursuing its own appeal against the development and acting to protect part of the Township’s economic base (the appellants’ business will be destroyed by IWT development).

And there is a potential for lawsuits growing because IWT construction will affect many residents who are opposed to it in light of a possible devaluation of the their properties (it’s already happened on Wolfe Island which is covered with IWT’s).  This fact of potential suits and devaluation was pointed out by Alderman Betty Konc:
Konc said she conservatively estimates that there are about 800 properties on the lakeshore who will be affected by the turbines.
If the value of those properties is reassessed and reduced by MPAC, “the township is going to suffer a $500,000 a year deficit in our tax base from the lakeshore for 20 years,” she said. “That’s $500,000 a year for 20 years.”
(St.CatharinesStandard above).

There is something rank in the Niagara Region, and it smells of more than BS and hypocrisy.

Mayor Jeffs Not Surprised

But she wasn’t expecting yet another lawsuit from Wainfleet Wind Energy Inc.(OWR).

“The lawsuit, which has yet to come to court, claims the funds are a form of bonusing to Skydive Burnaby. A court document said council does not have the power to grant the funds to a private business under a Section 106 of the Municipal Act.
That section says no municipality shall assist directly or indirectly any business through the granting of bonuses, which includes giving or lending any property of the municipality, including money. “The provision of $40,000 from the Township to Skydive Burnaby Ltd. is an obvious financial benefit,” the court said, adding it is in clear contravention of the municipal act.”
Erie Media

So, the cause of action is the Town had no legal jurisdiction in the matter because its action amounted to a bonus to a private entity, but this is confusing: “The provision of $40,000 from the Township to Skydive Burnaby Ltd. is an obvious financial benefit,” the court said, adding it is in clear contravention of the municipal act.” If the suit is not yet in court, how can the court have pronounced upon it? Maybe documents filed in court by the plaintiff said that?

In any case, did the Town Council offer a “bonus” to a private group, or did it act in defence of part of its economic base about to be ruined by turbine construction? Or was it acting in the interests of the Town as an Unwilling Host to Turbine development, consistent with its attempt to enforce a Setback By-law for turbines? Or both?

On the surface, court challenge appears to be part of a fight against the Town and the wishes of the majority of citizens; underneath, it could just be, vendetta.

The Vendetta Continues

Wainfleet Wind Energy Inc.(WWE) is suing the Township of Wainfleet, again: OWR quoting from Erie Media.

Why? Because it’s angry that construction of one of its turbines has been halted on appeal, an appeal that was facilitated by a grant of $40,000 from Wainfleet Township to appellants Mike and Tara Pitt while at the same time the Township ceased to be a party to the action.

This is the second time WWE has sued the Township, the first being over the Setback By-law that was ruled legal but unenforceable for a defect in the definition of “property”.

I am at a loss to imagine the cause of action in this suit: prospective damages?
You have to suffer damages before you can ask for recompense, I should think.
Then, what? No fair, you aided and abetted the other side?
Or, the grant is ultra vires the Town’s jurisdiction?

The Town did not exceed its jurisdiction when it decided to make the grant (for an appeal where it was also an appellant until it withdrew in order to make the grant) – it was trying to protect a part of its economic base as well as support the appeal as a declared Unwilling Host.

Sign Shellie’s Petition

SIGN SHELLIE CORREIA’s petition: Ontario Liberals, Kathleen Wynne: Enforce a 5dB penalty, for cyclical sound, and a 10dB penalty, for impulsive sound, coming from wind turbines.
By Shellie Correia
Wellandport

WIND TURBINE CYCLICAL NOISE CAUSES SERIOUS HARM TO HEALTH / WARRANTS ONTARIO PENALTY   Germany’s highest court has ruled against Enercon, the largest producer of wind turbines in Germany and major supplier to many wind projects in Ontario. Enercon was successfully sued by a citizen’s group for making false claims that their turbines do not emit cyclical sound - the culprit swoosh/ thump that causes sleep disturbance. The United Nation’s World Health Organization’s (WHO) which Canada is a party to, classifies sleep disturbance as a serious harm to health. The much touted Ontario Ministry of the Environment’s own $1.5M health study, the University of Waterloo analysis of 396 families from 8 counties living in wind projects, has concluded that citizens experiencing sleep disturbance is real, widespread and statistically significant.   The facts speak for themselves:   HIGHEST COURTS SAY TURBINES EMIT CYCLICAL SOUND AND PENALTIES MUST BE ENFORCED CYCLICAL SOUND ( SWOOSH/THUMP) CAUSES SLEEP DISTURBANCE SLEEP DISTURBANCE IS A WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION RECOGNISED FACTOR FOR SERIOUS HARM TO HEALTH SERIOUS HARM TO HEALTH FROM WIND TURBINES HAS BEEN PROVEN BY ONTARIO’S MOE STUDY ONTARIO REFUSES TO APPLY CYCLICAL SOUND PENALTY TO WIND TURBINES YET DEMANDS CITIZENS PROVE SERIOUS HARM TO HEALTH   Ontario has to be forced to apply its own penalties for cyclical sound (5dB) and impulsive sound (10dB) to wind turbines. Setback distances to homes double and sleep disturbance, vertigo, tinnitus all identified as harms to health in the MOE study, are minimized.   IF AN ERT WILL NOT ACCEPT THE EVIDENCE OF A $1.5 M HEALTH STUDY AS PROOF OF SERIOUS HARM TO HEALTH, PROOF WHICH CITIZENS COULD NEVER AFFORD TO PROVIDE, THEN THE ERT PROCESS IS DESIGNED SO CITIZENS CANNOT WIN AND THAT IN ITSELF IS A VIOLATION OF OUR CHARTER RIGHTS. DEMAND ACTION FROM YOUR ELECTED OFFICIALS AT ALL LEVELS.    CALL FOR ENFORCEMENT OF CYCLICAL AND IMPULSIVE SOUND PENALTIES ON WIND TURBINES Important addition:

The Federal Court of Justice has rejected the ENERCON case. The Federal Court of Justice is the highest Court for such cases in Germany, so Enercon has no possibility to go further in this case. The 3 dB addition for pulsed noise for the E82 is official.   Enercon, Europe’s largest wind turbine manufacturer, has a problem: The decision of the Bavarian Higher Regional Court in Munich about the wind turbine in Kienberg points out that in the  E 82 turbine emits pulsed noise. Therefore to any actually measured sound level three decibels would have to be added. This supplement  seriously could question any wind turbine site close to dwellings. As previously reported, the 27th Civil Division of the Bavarian Higher Regional Court now affirmed the pulsed noise and granted a lawsuit by opponents of the wind turbine in Kienberg, Marktgemeinde Rennertshofen. ” To us this verdict is completely incomprehensible”, says Felix Rehwald, spokesman for the largest European wind turbine manufacturer Enercon. The market leader, headquartered in Aurich, Lower Saxony, Germany, sells its wind turbines with the grade “no pulsed noise”. Experts instructed by Enercon  have not confirmed pulsed noise so far said company spokesman Rehwald. Now the sentence of the Bavarian court bothers the Enercon-lawyers. They will consider further steps. Unofficially its almost clear that the company will apply for appeal at the Federal Supreme Court. In that case the judgements of  the Court of the District of Augsburg and the Bavarian Higher Regional Court in Munich would be checked for legal and procedural errors. The acceptance of the case at the Federal Supreme Court in Karlsruhe shall be deemed as a  not insignificant hurdle. In 2011 in Germany 895 wind turbines were established of which Enercon has delivered 550. The new E 101  3 MW  WT has a hub height up to 149 metres. The windmill (sorry, they allways call these machines “windmill” – Marco) type E 82, as it stands in Kienberg, Enercon has sold over 3000 units – all without any status of pulsed noise. That means a strong increase and quick decrease of clear audible noise. In the meantime the Kienberger “wind miller” Herbert Kugler has experienced his 14th trial in terms of the wind turbine (WT). His lawyers are very surprised that the wind turbine on the Kienberg is questioned by Civil Courts now after all proceedings going as far as to the Administrative Court had been confirmed the legality of the wind turbine and its operation. From the District Office of Neuburg-Schrobenhausen you can hardly hear anything in that matter. The supervisory authority had approved the plant with a (turbine) hub height of 140 metres (in operation since October 2009) after a comprehensive immission protection legislation proceeding. The complaintants of the Community of Burgmannhofen in the district Donau-Riesagain have complained in their letters to authorities, ministries and MPs about the intolerable situation caused by the sound  (noise emmission) of the Kienberger Rotor. Meanwhile operator Herbert Kugler too calls the continuous struggle against his authorized wind turbine “unbearable”.
Original German article: http://www.donaukurier.de/lokales/neuburg/Neuburg-Jetzt-zum-Bundesgerichtshof;art1763,2644361 Translation: Marco Bernardi with the friendly assistance of Anna Fabigan

Sign Shellie’s petition

Wainfleet Wins One

Albeit a temporary win.
Alderman Betty Konc told us privately on Dec.12/13 that a Stay was granted by the ERT, and it is now official, as blogged by Ontario Wind Resistance: Precedent-setting decision.

“The Environmental Review Tribunal of Ontario has ordered a stay preventing the construction of two industrial wind turbines in Wainfleet, Ontario.”  The decision is the result of an appeal by Skydive Burnaby in the Township.

The turbines are being built on a property off Station Rd: “The motion, decided by Executive Chair Lynda Tanaka who oversees the ERT, OMB and three other tribunals, temporarily stops the construction of two turbine towers during the appeal of the Ministry of the Environment’s approval of the project. The Appellants, Skydive Burnaby Inc. and the company’s co-owner Mikel Pitt, argue the turbines are too close to their skydiving school.”

The news comes from appellant’s lawyers, Eric Gillespie PC.  This is the first time a Stay has been ordered during a REA (Renewable Energy Appeal).  The stay is temporary, but it appears the Appeal Tribunal accepted the submissions that showed the turbines were a threat to Skydive’s business and a danger to skydivers.

Corporate Welfare Does NOT Create Jobs

The GEA of Ontario, and the F.I.T. system designed to implement it are flagrant examples of how not to stimulate economic benefits for the long term.

The recent West Lincoln decision not to support F.I.T. projects, whether for wind or solar (OWR), demonstrates that so-called Green projects can only be achieved by tax subsidies and increased power rates. In other words, by Corporate Welfare.

The economic activity generated by such Corporate Welfare is not only short term but also vacuous: that is, but for the Welfare, the Corporation wouldn’t pursue such activity. In fact, any economic return from Green projects results only because taxpayers foot the bill for development and, then again, when power rates go up.

Read the whole story here: Welland Tribune: Jeff Bolichowski.  The objection to the Town’s refusal to back a solar project is raised by the developer who cannot proceed, NOT BECAUSE THE TOWN WON”T LET HIM, but because he will not be subsidized by the taxpayer.

His development, in fact, does not need Town approval (the sneaky Ontario government is saying that with municipal support such projects will easily receive approval).  The development can proceed, on the developer’s dime.  But he wants a WELFARE payment from the government, otherwise, his project will generate little or no profit to cover the costs of development.

Why? Because Green Energy is a snare and an illusion.  We know that, which is why unwilling Town Councils want to regain full control of developments in their respective jurisdictions, want the return of local democracy which was removed by the provincial government to facilitate Corporate Welfare on a billion dollar scale.