There’s not a whole lot good about wind turbines, or for that matter, Ontario’s Green Energy Act.
At least that seemed to be the general opinion expressed at the annual meeting of Local 328 (Lambton County) National Farmers Union, held recently at the Forest Agricultural Society Hall.
The organization’s outgoing president said issues surrounding wind generators and the Green Energy Act were among his greatest concerns for the rural community as he wrapped up his term of office.
“The thing that had the biggest impact on me are issues regarding wind generators and green energy and the true costs behind them,” said Joe Vye in his report to the membership.
Vye stressed that he hopes no one signs a lease agreement with any energy company, whether it be a natural gas, oil, wind or solar company without having it vetted by a lawyer who specializes in that field.
He noted that he was recently asked to look over a contract from an oil company that wanted to drill on one of his neighbour’s land and was astounded by what he read.
“There were clauses in it that stated if the company ran short of funding it would be allowed to mortgage the property and further to that, if the well was not productive, the company could cap it, walk away, and leave the farmer liable for the mortgage,” he said.
He noted that leases for wind generators can be 23 pages in length and are usually very complicated documents.
He suggested that once wind towers are in place, none of the contracts protect farmers from being sued by his or her neighbours for the devaluation of their property.
He pointed out that this is currently happening in the Lucknow area, where neighbours with property adjacent to wind farms are claiming their property has been devalued by as much as 49 per cent.
“The farmer gets sued, not the wind companies,” said Vye, adding that if a wind tower is visible from their property, a neighbour can sue and win for property devaluation.
“Neighbours suing neighbours is a nasty business.”
Vye said the bottom line is that energy leases offer little or no protection for farmers and all leases need to be read and interpreted by a professional who specializes in dealing with energy leases.
“This can’t be stressed enough,” he said.
Guest speaker for the evening was David Colling, an electrical pollution consultant from the Ripley area who conducts tests for what is known as “dirty electricity”on homes, farms and businesses.
Colling noted that at one time he had his farm leased to a wind company but was able to get out of the agreement.
“I really didn’t want to sign a lease but my neighbours had formed a co-op and I didn’t want to upset them so I signed on,” he said, adding that, fortunately, they were subsequently able to get out of the lease and all are pleased now that they did.
He noted that since then, he has done a lot of research on wind leases and doesn’t think farmers are getting proper advice.
“There are a lot of farmers who will be sorry they ever signed one,” he said.
“As they say, if it’s too good to be true, it usually is.”
He added that after seeing what has happened in his own neighbourhood (near the Ripley Wind Project) he predicts there will be many who will be very sorry they ever entered into an agreement with a wind energy company.
He noted that there are now five empty homes in the vicinity of the Ripley Wind Farm because the sound waves emanating from them as well as a phenomenon known as Electrical Magnetic Sensitivity (EMH) is making people sick.
Colling noted that sound waves emanating from industrial wind turbine are often very low frequency and not audible to the human ear, but c ause a resonance in the human body.
He said this can cause people to suffer from heart palpitations, increased blood pressure, ringing in the ears and sleep deprivation among other maladies.
He added that industrial turbines produce electro-magnetic waves and cross currents which create dirty electricity in nearby homes, which is his specialty, and is the cause of the EMH which is making people who reside near wind farms very ill.
He noted that the condition EMH has now been recognized by the World Health Organization as a significant problem associated with wind energy projects throughout the world.
He said based on the testing he has done, both before and after the start-up of wind projects, he has determined that the frequency of the neutral-to-earth voltage changed drastically after the generators were operational, significantly affecting the electro-magnetic waves within homes in the vicinity.
He noted, however, that some homes can be affected more than others.
“If your home happens to be in the vortex of these waves, you can be more affected than your neighbour,” he said, adding the high frequency of the waves coming off a wind generator can make the wires within the walls of a home radiate outward and that can impact the health of its inhabitants.
“It’s like living inside a microwave oven,” he said.
“Some of the people I have dealt with have essentially become prisoners in their homes, suffering from dizziness, headaches, fatigue and headaches.”
He noted that one home he tested following the start-up of the Ripley Wind Project was one of the worst he had seen.
He noted that the home-owners had become sick and when he retested the house he found the electromagnetic waves to be dangerously high.
“I told them they should get out of that house immediately,” he said, adding that as a result five families in the area did leave their homes.
“When I see that on a dairy farm, I know it will wreck a herd of cows within a few months.”
He noted that there are now 19 countries around the world that have backed away from using wind and solar generation, largely because they make no economic sense and people are experiencing health issues.
“If you do your homework, you will find they are having trouble with wind turbines all over the world,” he said, adding that solar installations are also fraught with the same problems and are making people sick as well.
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