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Group of landowners fighting proposed wind farm

A group of landowners has come together to fight the province’s decision to build a wind farm in Hermanville and Clearspring.

Jack MacDonald represents the group of 23 landowners.

“We sent emails and asked questions and asked for the promised meeting we never got, so it’s extremely frustrating,” MacDonald said.

The $60 million plan is for 10 turbines generating a total of 30 megawatts of power. The province is planning on opening the wind farm next year.

Three members from the new landowners association have property within the project zone, and could receive compensation from the province.

The rest own property outside the project zone, including MacDonald’s family. He says they have unanswered questions about the effects of wind turbines on health and property values.

The new group says its members want the province to give them a say in whether the project moves forward.

Energy Minister Wes Sheridan says a majority of the people in the project zone voted in favour of the project.

“Those people that are complaining outside of this zone, that are saying they haven’t been consulted, that they’re not on these paper options and that they think they have community support – are outside this zone,” Sheridan told CBC News.

MacDonald doesn’t like the way government is viewing the community of Hermanville and Clearspring. “The community that Minister Sheridan keeps on referring to is a community he defined as his project zone. He’s made a new community, and to the best of my knowledge he doesn’t have a right to do that,” MacDonald said.

A public information session was held in July.

However, the group says the province gave them only a few days notice of the meeting, and some didn’t know about it at all.

MacDonald says all residents should be able to have their say in the project before it moves forward.

Gerard Campbell, whose property sits within the project zone, told CBC News he is in favour.

He says he could make up to $12,000 per year if the government puts a turbine on his property.

“From everything that we’ve researched of all the different wind farms that’ve been in place around the world, in Europe, the United States and Canada, there doesn’t seem to be a whole lot of negative feedback,” Campbell said.

The community and landowners will receive $4.875 million over 15 years, according to the province.

MacDonald and his group say they haven’t received enough information from the province.

They say they want a meeting with Sheridan and a vote.