December 17, 2010

West Lincoln wind group stages protest at Liberal dinner

Amanda Street, 16 December 2010

The West Lincoln Wind Action Group isn’t going anywhere.

That’s the message that 50 or so members of the community group planned to deliver to Premier Dalton McGuinty Monday, Nov. 29.

Wind Concerns Ontario, an umbrella group which represents 53 community groups from across Ontario including WLWAG, planned a protest outside of Liuna Station in Stoney Creek Monday, where McGuinty was to attend a Liberal party dinner. The group, which opposes industrial wind turbines, was joined by the Ontario Public Service Employees Union outside the James Street banquet hall Monday to greet the premier with placards and protest. Instead, the protest fell on deaf ears as McGuinty slipped past the protesting citizens to the awaiting dinner.

“When taxpayers and residents are concerned about something, you would think that (McGuinty) would have the decency to come out and talk to us,” said Cam Pritchard, Caistor Centre resident and spokesperson for WLWAG. “We were there to educate the premier on the issue.”

At issue in West Lincoln is a lack of health studies on the impacts of industrial wind turbines on nearby residents. Pritchard said green energy legislation passed through much like abestos and smoking did years ago.

“I grew up with abestos, playing with abestos clay and working with it in my working life,” said Prichard. “And then the government said don’t touch it, well I have been touching it my whole life and am at risk. It’s the same with the turbines, they are being passed through without any clear studies.”

While the premier ducked past protesters Monday, he did briefly comment on the situation during his remarks before the 600 people at the dinner according to reports in the Hamilton Spectator. He said their presence “speaks to a healthy democracy. I respect their commitment to their cause.”

The West Lincoln group was formed in response to an IPC Energy proposal to construct five industrial wind turbines in the township. Made up of more than 100 concerned citizens, the group was successful in encouraging municipal council to join the more than 70 Ontario municipalities by passing a resolution calling for a moratorium on the development of wind turbines.

More than 450 concerned citizens gathered at WLWAG’s first public event, a public meeting which took place on Nov. 10 at Caistor Centre School. The event included several speakers who discussed the impact turbines in their community have had on their lives.

For more information on the WLWAG and its activities, visit

— With files from The Hamilton Spectator

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