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Council reviewing setback distance for wind turbines

PICTOU – The phones of local county councillors were ringing Monday with calls from a resident upset over noise coming from the new wind turbine site on Tower Road.

Coun. Robert Parker said he received a call Monday from someone in the area who asked him to come down to Tower Road where new turbines have been installed and listen to the noise they were making on a stormy day.

“The noise up there during (nasty) weather was unreal,” said Parker and encouraged fellow councillors to take a drive to the area before the next planning advisory committee meeting, which will look at the setback rule for wind turbines in the future.

A large contingent of residents visited council chambers in March asking that the setback for wind turbines be extended to 1.5 kilometres from 600 metres.

Their request came on the heels of the recent construction of a wind turbine on Tower Road in Millsville built by RMS Energy in Dalhousie Mountain. A second wind turbine has been installed and a third is scheduled to go up, all of which fall under the 600-metre setback rule.

RMS owner Ruben Burge told council on the same night that the Millsville wind turbine is 750 metres from the closest home and about an average of 1,300 metres from all of the homes in the area.

Council sent the matter to its planning advisory committee for a recommendation and it will be meeting again this coming Monday in council chambers.

Coun. Debbie Wadden said she received a phone call from a resident before council with the same request but it was too late to get the site before she had to be at this week’s council meeting.

She said she was told that Monday’s high winds and low-pressure system made for “ideal conditions” for noise coming from the wind turbines.

Many of the councillors said they have been at the site or would visit it again so they would have accurate information on the situation.