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Grand Bend wind farm green-lighted  

Bluewater is already home to a wind farm in the final stages of construction by NextEra Energy Canada. Other wind farms are planned east and south of Grand Bend by NextEra. Steve McAuley, chief administrative officer of Bluewater Municipality, told The Free Press the municipal council has repeatedly informed the Ontario government it doesn’t want wind farms and was one of the first in the province to declare itself an unwilling host for turbines.

Credit:  Free Press staff | Monday, December 29, 2014 | www.lfpress.com ~~

Ontario’s Environmental Review Panel has given the go-ahead for the Grand Bend Wind Farm, a 40-turbine, $380-million project hugging the Lake Huron Shoreline.

Major construction can now go ahead on the wind farm.

Developer Northland Power had applied the brakes to its plans, putting off major construction until appeals were settled.

The original plans for the facility called for 48 turbines, but that was scaled back to 40.

It will be located in the Huron County municipalities of South Huron and Bluewater over about 2,400 hectares. It will have a total capacity of 100 megawatts.

“Our company policy is not to do much during an appeal process,” Gord Potts, director of business development for the company, had told The Free Press this summer.

Potts had said at that time that Northland anticipated the Grand Bend Wind Farm would start commercial operation in 2016.

The farm is a joint project of Toronto-based Northland Power and the Aamjiwnaang First Nation at Sarnia and Bkejwanong First Nation at Walpole.

It was given the green light by the Ontario Ministry of Energy in late June, but the approval was appealed to the Ontario Environmental Review Tribunal.

The municipal council of Bluewater, where the majority of the 40 wind turbines will be located, had voted to file an appeal.

Potts said Northland Power had hoped the project wouldn’t be appealed, given the failure of all but one appeal against other wind farms in Ontario.

“One would think that after a while those opposed would lose their appetite to fight this fight, but they haven’t yet,” Potts said.

Bluewater is already home to a wind farm in the final stages of construction by NextEra Energy Canada. Other wind farms are planned east and south of Grand Bend by NextEra.

Steve McAuley, chief administrative officer of Bluewater Municipality, told The Free Press the municipal council has repeatedly informed the Ontario government it doesn’t want wind farms and was one of the first in the province to declare itself an unwilling host for turbines.

Source:  Free Press staff | Monday, December 29, 2014 | www.lfpress.com

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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