WAINFLEET – David Wyatt is not backing down in the township’s fight against wind turbines.
The alderman intends to deliver a notice of motion at Tuesday night’s council meeting recommending Wainfleet send a letter to the Electrical Safety Authority and the Ministry of Agriculture Food and Rural Affairs urging them to properly study negative effects wind turbines may have on residents, crops and livestock.
“(No studies were) ever done – even by the Ministry of Agriculture,” he said. “Their idea is that health is only one of 10 criteria and they rate health and safety risks low.”
But some people who live near wind turbines claim they cause sleep disorders, headaches, depression, anxiety and blood pressure changes.
The notice of motion states rural townships, including Wainfleet, have inadequate electrical distribution systems that were not designed to handle turbines and they are effecting the quality of electricity flowing to residents causing stray voltage, surges that cause equipment failure, overloads and imbalance issues on the electrical grid.
Wyatt wants the Electrical Safety Authority and ministry to conduct a scientific, third-party investigation.
In April the township passed a bylaw requiring a two-kilometre setback of wind turbines from any residence, even though the province only requires a 550-metre setback under the Green Energy Act.
Council was advised by township staff, Wainfleet Wind Energy Inc. and Rankin Construction representatives the bylaw was illegal because the Green Energy Act overrides it, but council approved it anyway.
Wainfleet Wind Energy Inc., the company interested in putting the turbines in the township, filed a lawsuit in July when the bylaw first came before council.
The company is owned by the Loeffen family and earlier this year Tom Rankin, CEO of Rankin Construction, bought into it.
Still, Wyatt won’t give up. He wants the province to know the township doesn’t take the health of their residents or the safety of the food grown there lightly.
“We’re trying to show the community we’re not going to stand for this,” he said. “We’re mad as hell and we’re not going to take anymore.”
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