January 18, 2011

Turbines could be boondoggle for Liberals: MPP

By ALLAN BENNER/Tribune Staff, The Tribune, www.wellandtribune.ca 17 January 2011

WAINFLEET – The Green Energy Act could end up being the provincial Liberal government’s worst boondoggle since the scandal surrounding its eHealth program, says Welland MPP Peter Kormos.

“Everybody’s in favour of green energy and everybody’s in favour of creative solutions, but wind turbines could end up being the biggest financial and corporate scam the province has witnessed since eHealth,” Kormos said, referring to the roughly $1 billion spent on consultants by the provincial eHealth organization.

Kormos attended a meeting in Wainfleet, Saturday, held to discuss concerns about wind turbines planned for Wainfleet.

Neither Kormos nor Welland’s federal New Democratic Party MP Malcolm Allen spoke during the meeting attended by nearly 200 people. But Kormos said information provided at the meeting – by Skydive Burnaby owners Mike and Tara Pitt, by John LaForet from lobby group Wind Concerns Ontario and by other speakers – was consistent with what the NDP has concluded about ongoing installation of industrial wind turbines across Ontario.

For instance, Kormos said energy produced by wind turbines could cost as much as 45 cents per Kwh.

“That’s pretty bloody expensive electricity,” he said.

Wind turbines are expected to produce “just a scintilla of electricity,” he added.

Kormos said there’s a great deal of secrecy regarding green energy legislation. For instance, he said, his office filed a freedom of information request in an effort to obtain a copy of a contract between the province and Samsung, one of the primary developers of alternative energy projects in the province. That request yielded 20 pages, but half of those pages were left blank, he said.

“Basically all we know is there’s some sort of a deal between the province of Ontario and Samsung,” he said.

Kormos said he’ll be paying close attention to a legal challenge of the Green Energy Act being heard this week in the Ontario Court of Appeal in Toronto.

Lawyer Eric Gillespie, who successfully sued Vale Inco in Port Colborne over lost property values due to concerns about soil contamination, is representing a farmer from eastern Ontario, arguing that the government failed to follow precautionary principals when it determined wind turbines need to be 550 metres from neighbouring homes.

“We’ll see what happens with that (court case).”

Ultimately, Kormos is hoping the case will slow down wind farm development across the province until studies regarding their impacts can be measured “and then using that data to set guidelines and standards.”

With that data, Kormos said the province will have an “understanding of whether this is simply a political stunt by (premier Dalton) McGuinty and the Liberals to talk about green energy, and a corporate gravy train, or whether it is indeed a meaningful contribution to green energy in the province of Ontario.”

[rest of article available at source]

URL to article:  https://www.wind-watch.org/news/2011/01/18/turbines-could-be-boondoggle-for-liberals-mpp/