A local contingent of municipal leaders and residents of Sarnia-Lambton watched at Queen’s Park in Toronto on April 18 as Liberal and NDP members of the Ontario legislature voted to continue the march of industrial wind turbines across rural Ontario.
The Ensuring Affordable Energy Act, a bill presented by Ontario PC MPP Lisa Thompson, was debated in the legislature before the Liberal and NDP members teamed up to kill the act and its central purpose of returning decision making authority for industrial wind turbine developments to local municipalities.
The Act was drafted in response to a groundswell of criticism the Liberal and NDP parties have received since they passed and implemented the Green Energy Act (GEA) in 2009.
Several municipal leaders, including Enniskillen Township Mayor Kevin Marriott, joined in a full day of efforts to persuade members of the Liberals and NDP to amend the controversial GEA by voting in support of the solutions presented in Thompson’s bill.
But the Liberal and NDP parties chose to ignore the pleas of the municipal leaders and residents, choosing instead to support maintaining control of industrial wind turbine developments by Toronto bureaucrats, said Sarnia-Lambton (Conservative) MPP Bob Bailey.
“The (Liberal) Green Energy Act has been nothing short of a nightmare for our community,” said Marriott. “We feel like our democracy has been stripped away with this unfair piece of legislation. People in Enniskillen Township are concerned that the cost of these industrial wind turbines is killing our existing manufacturing sector and not generating any new business.”
“St. Clair Township, Enniskillen, Oil Springs, Petrolia, Point Edward, Sarnia and Plympton-Wyoming and the residents who live within those municipalities should have a say on the location of an industrial wind farm in their community,” said Bailey after meeting with the local delegation.
“I hear regularly from constituents across Sarnia-Lambton with real concerns regarding wind turbines being built near their homes,” said Bailey. “One mother told me she felt she had ‘no choice, no guarantee and no voice’ in regard to a wind turbine slated to be built to tower over her property. I think the premier is completely out of touch on this issue. I believe the people of Sarnia-Lambton know best when it comes to making decisions regarding our communities, not bureaucrats in downtown Toronto offices.”
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