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No environmental risk in wind farm: province

The P.E.I. government presented an environmental assessment statement Tuesday night for a wind farm in the northeast part of the province, concluding there is no risk to public health.

“I’m so glad,” said local landowner Joyce MacDonald.

“You need something good in the Island. And this is going to be one good project.”

The Hermanville wind farm project has faced opposition from some people in the area. They want the project put on hold until Health Canada completes a study on wind turbine noise. That report won’t be out before the province moves ahead with the project.

But MacDonald is not concerned. She is thrilled because she and her husband were planning on selling their Hermanville property. Instead, they could end up making money by having one of 10 proposed turbines built on their land.

The proposed farm would generate 30 megawatts of power. More than $300,000 in fees would go into the community each year.

Janet Blackadar, who wrote the environmental assessment statement, said current evidence suggests there is no real risk to public health.

“We’ve ensured that the setbacks respect the legislation, and in fact in this particular case, they’re slightly more than what’s required by legislation,” said Blackadar.

Provincial environmental assessment officer Jay Carr said the province will consult with Health Canada before moving forward.

“If they do have any concerns they will be addressed before they move forward from here,” said Carr.

Over the next 10 days the province will be accepting submissions from the public, and it expects to hear more from people opposed to the project.