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Wind farm threat to economy in northern Nova Scotia, group says  

Credit:  By JUDY MYRDEN Business Reporter, The Chronicle Herald, thechronicleherald.ca 25 August 2010 ~~

Developer scales back plans for Pugwash site to 11 turbines

Lisa Betts is continuing to fight against a revised plan for a wind farm in northern Nova Scotia’s cottage country.

Betts, singer Anne Murray and 100 other members of the Gulf Shore Preservation Association turned out Sunday afternoon to hear an update from wind developer Charles Demond about plans to build 11 large turbines in the area.

“We believe it would be economically detrimental to the whole entire area,” said Betts, who lives in the scenic Gulf Shore area just outside Pugwash, on Tuesday.

“This is a destination (for) tourism (and a) recreational and retirement area. People deliberately come here for the peace and quiet. If we have any net loss of people coming in, we have a huge loss in the whole area.”

Demond, whose Atlantic Wind Power is behind the proposal in Pugwash, gave few details about the wind project – which has been proposed for the last four years – except that the project will have fewer turbines, said Betts, chairwoman of the residents association.

The project’s original plan had 20 turbines and the wind farm would be located near the village of Pugwash.

Despite the news of fewer turbines to be built, the association still opposes the project, Betts said.

Following the presentation, the association overwhelmingly rejected the project.

“The resolve of this community to fight this threat is absolute. We want the Nova Scotia government, Nova Scotia Power and prospective wind developers to know that this kind of project is in conflict with established critical economic drivers and is unsuitable for our community,” said Betts.

Demond could not be reached for comment.

Betts said Demond was unable to answer many questions about the status of the project, including some about the investors and whether the company had any customers for the green electricity.

Betts said he did mention that he has spent a lot of money on the project and is not willing to “walk away” at this point.

Nova Scotia has one of the best wind power regimes in North American, according to a Stanford University study.

And wind-generated electricity is being pushed by the government because it produces no emissions, is entirely renewable and ranks as one of the cleanest sources of electricity.

Three years ago, Murray – one of the area’s more famous seasonal residents – wrote a commentary in The Chronicle Herald saying many people want to build their dream home in the area. A wind farm would be catastrophic, she said.

The Springhill native said she supports the idea of wind-generated electricity but opposes the location of the turbines in an area close to where people live. She said there were too many unanswered questions concerning noise, vibration and shadow flicker from turbine blades.

At that time, Demond was upset with her comments and said her remarks were not helpful for his business and the project.

Source:  By JUDY MYRDEN Business Reporter, The Chronicle Herald, thechronicleherald.ca 25 August 2010

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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