CORNWALL – A U.S. environmental group’s call for a moratorium on wind power development in the Upper St. Lawrence River Valley isn’t likely to affect a project in South Dundas Township.
Save The River, a Clayton, N.Y.-based group, put out the call after “a careful review of recent data showing potentially high avian and bat mortality from the first six months of operation of the Wolfe Island Wind project, the only operating wind project in the region.”
“Without a full picture of the impacts of wind energy development along the Upper St. Lawrence River, it is irresponsible to move forward with the wind projects currently in development at this time,” said Save The River executive director Jennifer Caddick. “Communities along the St. Lawrence River have worked hard to protect the river’s water quality and wildlife for many years. A precautionary approach is the only way to ensure that the St. Lawrence River ecosystem remains vibrant and healthy.”
A project still in the environmental assessment phase located near Brinston in South Dundas Township has been looking at the potential for bird and bat deaths near the site of its South Branch project, said Cathy Weston, president of Prowind Canada.
The South Branch wind farm is the United Counties of Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry’s first wind development project and would generate, at peak capacity, 30 megawatts of electricity from a maximum of 15 turbines – enough to power about 25,000 homes.
It’s one of six projects in the Upper St. Lawrence River Valley cited by Save The River as potential threats to birds and bats.
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