Renewable energy got a bit of a jolt on March 19 when Cramahe Township Council supported recommendations to delay plans for new developments.
The developments in question were not in Cramahe. (There are no wind turbine projects under consideration here.) But there have been proposals made in neighbouring Alnwick Haldimand.
The first document was a resolution passed by the Northumberland Federation of Agriculture (NFA) stating that research is currently being done by Health Canada, looking at blood pressure, heart rates, hair cortisol concentrations and sleep actimetry.
The NFA was approached by a group of people calling themselves The Alliance for the Protection of Northumberland Hills (APNH). The group was protesting a plan by Clean Breeze Wind Park to install 10 wind turbines in two locations in Alnwick Haldimand.
APNH claims the Centreton area location for some of the proposed turbines does not conform to guidelines established for the Oak Ridges Moraine. The NFA says in its resolution that the area is “an area of high aquifer vulnerability”.
The NFA resolution claims the wind turbines are not considered a permitted use under the Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Plan. The plan accepts only “land and resource uses that maintain, improve or restore the ecological and hydrological functions of the moraine” are permitted.
Many in the Save the Oak Ridges Moraine Coalition (STORM) are opposed the wind turbine developments but STORM Coalition member Debbie Gordon says they are allowed since they are classified as infrastructure projects. The coalition would like to see a moratorium on the industrial-scale projects and a tightening up of the provincial law governing acceptable activities on the moraine so that they cannot go forward.
Alnwick Haldimand CAO Terry Korotki would like to see the province allow municipalities more time to consider potential projects. Due diligence needs to be done and area residents must have time to be consulted.
Cramahe Councillor Clinton Breau was the sole member to oppose the NFA request for a delay. Councillor Breau feels there have been enough scientific studies which demonstrate the safety of wind turbines.