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Wind farm equipment removed

The Otter Creek wind project is officially dead.

Crews could be seen taking away equipment for what was supposed to be a 12-turbine, 50-megawatt project led by the Boralex corporation which was slated to be located north of Wallaceburg. RES Canada and Walpole Island First Nation were the other partners in the venture.

In a letter to local landowners, Borolex said they will start removing equipment that was installed for the project’s studies, starting in late January. The letter said there would be workers and equipment going to and from the former testing areas.

Cancelling 758 renewable energy contracts—including Otter Creek– was one of the first moves of the newly elected Progressive Conservative party after they were elected in the spring of 2018.

The project was expected to be built and commissioned by the end of 2019.

In an email to the Courier Press, Adam Rosso, director of development with the Otter Creek project said they are disappointed by the government’s decision to wind down the contract of the Otter Creek Wind Farm project which was meant to create made-in-Ontario electricity and made-in-Ontario jobs.

Rosso said the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) identified in September 2018 an energy capacity shortfall of 1,400 megawatts starting in 2023. That deficit is large enough such that power to over 900,000 homes could be lacking during hot summer days

“We believe that renewable energy is the best option for ensuring that generation is affordable, reliable and clean, while attracting jobs and investment and helping local communities thrive. We also believe renewable energy can be put in place quickly to ensure stability and fight climate change,” Rosso wrote.

When the province made the announcement in 2018 to cancel green energy projects in the province, Tories said the cancellations – the contracts represent a fraction of Ontario’s power, most of which comes from nuclear plants – will save ratepayers nearly $800 million.

In response to a question about whether Boralex is considering taking legal action due to the province cancelling the project, Rosso wrote, “Boralex is evaluating its options in regard to our project.”