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Gulf shore wind project back on track?

PUGWASH – A wind project near Pugwash that was put on hold in 2007 is being brought back to life, albeit on a smaller scale.

Charles Demond, of Pugwash Wind Farm Inc., is proposing to erect the wind farm to the north and south of the Irishtown Road east of the village. The project would include 11 to 12 turbines, as opposed to the 27 proposed five years ago, and it will generate about 30 megawatts of electricity.

“This project has evolved and we have done what is logical to do,” Demond said. “We started in 2005 and worked hard at it. In the summer of 2007 we were going to bid the project into the Nova Scotia Power RFP but we decided not to. We really reflected on the project from front to back and sat down with the landowners and made some adjustments.”

The project was introduced at an open house at the Sir Thomas More Roman Catholic Church hall in Pugwash on Tuesday. A second open house is planned for Wednesday from 3 to 8 p.m.

Demond said the turbines are further away from homes than the original project with most much further than the Municipality of Cumberland’s 600-metre setback and some more than 1,000 metres away.

“At the end of the day it’s up to us to build a good project that’s a sensible project and one we feel comfortable with on a business level and a corporate value level. It’s one that’s fair to our host landowners and has a high degree of respect for our neighbours,” Demond said.

Demond said the company plans to submit its environmental assessment to proceed with the project and then respond to a provincial government request for proposals in March.

If all goes well, he hopes to see construction begin in late 2013 or 2014.