“Winds of change” is a slogan often touted out during election campaigns —but it takes on new meaning in Ontario this year, says the head of Wind Concerns Ontario.
John Laforet will be in Cavan Monaghan Township tonight (May 24) as part of his cross-Ontario Truth About Turbines Tour, drawing attention to public concerns about wind power.
Cavan Monaghan is the proposed site of a new wind turbine farm. Another is planned for an area in the former Manvers Township, west of Bethany. Residents of Manvers, Lindsay, Cavan and Millbrook are invited to the township office (988 County Rd. 10) to share their concerns with Laforet and their neighbours.
“There’s no doubt this is an election issue,” said Laforet, who began his tour last Monday (May16) in Thunder Bay and will wrap up in June in Sault Ste. Marie.
“I’m doing 6,000 kilometres in 40 days because I believe this is an issue that needs to be heard,” he said.
“People will be voting around this issue this fall.”
MPP Rick Johnson and Conservative candidate Laurie Scott have been invited.
“It would be an opportunity to make their positions clear,” Laforet said.
However, Johnson told The Lindsay Post he was unable to attend the meeting because Minister of Culture and Tourism Michael Chan is in town today.
He added he thinks Laforet is hosting the meetings to raise his profile. “I think his tour has more to do with politics than with health or other concerns. He’s run unsuccessfully for several positions in the past. He has attached himself to the anti-wind issue likely in hopes of getting appointed as a candidate for Mr. Hudak.”
Scott told The Examiner she’ll be there.
“It’s certainly an important issue in a lot of communities,” she said.
The meeting begins at 6:30 p.m.
Laforet said meetings like these are crucial if the effort to slow the spread of wind power are to be successful.
The campaign could work much like the effort in Cavan Monaghan last year that saw the cancellation of a controversial water pipeline, he said. “That was a grassroots effort and so is this,” Laforet said. “It’s only by giving a voice to regular citizens that we can be successful.”
Laforet said groups like his are concerned that wind power generation should not be located near residential areas. He said he launched the tour to draw attention to what he said is hiding behind the green façade of wind energy.
Topics he’ll discuss include damage done to the environment by blasting and construction methods used to erect the towers, lack of environmental planning and the effect on humans.
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