A Saugeen Shores anti-wind group wants the Bluewater District School Board to join them in their fight against wind turbines.
Greg Schmalz, a spokesman for S.T.O.P. – Saugeen Shores Turbine Operation Policy, a resident-based advocacy group dedicated to educating the public on the risks of industrial wind turbines operating too close to people’s homes, workplaces and schools – urged the board “to be aware of the negative health effects” of industrial wind turbines.
“The health and cognitive abilities of your students could b e compromised by the closeness of the CAW turbine to schools and day care centres in Port Elgin,” Schmalz told the board at a meeting in Chesley Tuesday night.
“Until you see the human suffering, it may not seem real, but it is,” Schmalz said, urging the board “to err on the side of caution when student health is at risk” and join them in their call for a province-wide moratorium on industrial wind turbine construction “pending further study of the health effects.”
According to Schmalz, the YMCA day care in Port Elgin is only 800 metres away from the C AW turbine, elementary schools are about 1,200 metres away and the high school at 2,000 metres. The Town of Saugeen Shores passed a bylaw in enacting a 2,000 metre setback from any industrial wind turbine, a distance commonly used in Europe and far exceeding any regulation set out under the Green Energy Act. There are 4,000 people who live within 2,000 metres of the turbine at the CAW. 4,000 people live inside the 2,000 metre zone, a safety buffer zone of the municipality and Europe’s most widely used setback.
“With no consensus on residential setback regulations, most European countries, where wind power began, have chosen to err on the side of caution using 2,000 metre setbacks and yet there are still people who experience health effects,” Schmalz said.
Trustees took no action on Schmalz’s request, although trustee Kevin Larson did remind his fellow trustees it is the board’s role to not only encourage student achievement “but also be mindful of student wellbeing.”
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