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PICTOU – County council’s planning advisory will be receiving a request from Fitzpatrick Mountain landowners to adjust its setback for wind turbines.
Wayne Pierce of Tower Road asked county council Monday to amend its current bylaw for domestic and small wind turbines, which is one times the height from the property line from residences. He also asked council to consider a reduction in the output and that Department of Energy and Municipal Affairs guidelines are followed.
“This will not prevent multiple domestic wind turbine development,” he said, “for there are adequate locations throughout rural Pictou County to accommodate development at this increased level of setback and regulations.”
Pierce was speaking on behalf of eight other Tower Road residents who are concerned that three new wind turbines, owned by Northumberland Wind Field Inc., will disrupt the peace in the rural community as well as cause health problems and devalue their property.
In addition to the setback changes, Pierce said landowners would like council to review its process of approval for such permits and take any necessary steps to halt the proposed development by Northumberland Wind Farm Inc.
Council had little debate on the topic and unanimously approved a recommendation that the topic be brought before its planning advisory committee for a recommendation.
Sharon Henderson, president of Northumberland Wind Farm Inc., said Tuesday that the turbines will be quiet and no one on Tower Road will hear or see them unless they are on her property.
The Northumberland Wind Field Inc. was the original sponsor for two projects under the 2010 Nova Scotia Community Feed In Tariff (ComFIT) initiative of the Renewable Electricity Plan. ComFIT is a Nova Scotia Department of Energy initiative that established an enhanced, fixed price over a 20-year period for electricity supplied by smaller, community-owned wind energy projects.
Northumberland has obtained COMFIT approvals for the 1.750MW Avondale Community Wind Park, and for its 150kW Fitzpatrick Mountain Farm Project. The construction of the Avondale Community Wind Park is complete but for the installation of one 50kW machine, and the Fitzpatrick Mountain project will be built in 2017.
She said the company followed all municipal bylaws, and development permits were properly approved. The turbines are going on land owned by Nova Farm Blueberries and are expected to be up by late September.
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