Wind Industry and Government will have to answer for the Wind SCAM!

Posted: April 23, 2011 in Uncategorized

Industrial Wind Power: Some gathering, some storm!

It will be the voters and grass roots organizations who will ultimately decide

by Parker Gallant

April 23/2011

Back on January 2, 2007 Richard Blackwell wrote an article for the Globe and Mail titled “Wind power faces gathering storm”. The gathering storm Blackwell was referring to was related to a study by Tom Adams of Energy Probe that had just been released and it’s potential effect on the burgeoning wind industry. Four years later the media and numerous blogs were citing record exports of electricity, in December 2010, costing Ontario’s ratepayers over $50-million. Most said it was excessive wind generated electricity that had caused it. Other articles appeared citing record one day wind production and one day exports had occurred on January 1, 2011 costing ratepayers $1.5-million. The gathering storm that Blackwell predicted four years earlier still hadn’t developed and wind was seemingly gathering steam.

CanWEA (Canadian Wind Energy Association), home of over 400 wind energy companies, pick record wind days to issue press releases, a kind of, in your face, to wind opponents. What their press releases never mention is that we usually don’t need the production of $135. per MWH energy on those days. Wind’s habit seems to be; its there when its not needed! IESO (Independent Electricity System Operator) are often forced to sell it off; sometimes to pay others to take it. Ontario has paid as much as $128.00 for Quebec, NY State and other jurisdictions to take our wind so our grid can simply remain alive and Ontario isn’t faced with a blackout. Ratepayers pick up the tab for 26 cents a kWh electricity they didn’t use!

That Blackwell G & M article cited Robert Hornung, CanWEA’s President complaining about how some of the wind projects might be delayed, particularly because an “Energy Probe” study from November 2006 pointed out that “wind turbines are much less reliable than expected.” The study said: “The wind often died in mid-morning when customer demand was gearing up.” At that point Hornung “expressed the view that he was “really frustrated” by the Energy Probe study of Ontario.”

Just two years later the Ontario Liberal’s passing of the Green Energy Act (GEA) curtailed local community involvement and any say on whether industrial wind turbines could be erected in rural communities. The GEA’s passing and the resulting feed-in-tariff (FIT) programs that the Act ushered in has done much to raise the hackles of rural Ontario residents who have created grass roots organizations to fight back. As industrial wind turbines have increasingly popped up on the landscape so too has opposition to their intrusion. Fighting back by wind opponents has meant raising objections with local politicians in last falls municipal elections. Some good success was evident. Many municipal politicians lost their mayoral or local councillor positions because they wouldn’t declare opposition to industrial wind farms. Those voted in opposed local wind development and in many cases have since passed “bylaws” which, while having no real teeth because of the overarching GEA, showed support for their constituents and have slowed the approval process.

This rising tide of anti-wind development has frustrated some developers, where they have even labelled opponents “terrorists” as noted in a January 2011 article in the Sarnia Observer: “John Andrews, president of IPC Energy, made the allegation in a Jan.17 email about Wind Concerns Ontario, a wind action umbrella group.” “I am not going to waste my time talking to you or anyone else from this group of terrorists (italics my emphasis) until you do your homework and put actual scientific proof on the table,” he wrote.” Innuendo has put industrial wind turbine opponents in the same class of people that are in favour of the oil sands. Some have quietly suggested that industrial wind turbine opponents are “funded” by coal and gas companies.

That latter perspective is a two edged sword, as industrial wind turbines require backup power and that responsibility will fall to gas plants. All one need do is view ownership of some of the larger wind turbine installations and gas plant ownership to see the blended relationship between the two. TransCanada, TransAlta, Blackstone Group, Eastern Power and Calpine Corp all have gas and wind investments and all are active to some degree in Ontario. The logic of doubling up on the opportunities the GEA provided was obvious to these large energy companies and they have taken advantage of the Liberals push to get rid of “dirty coal” that is a part of almost every press release by the Ministry of Energy.

CanWEA in an effort to capitalize on the “green” zealotry, registered Nov. 13, 2010 (10 days before the Long Term Energy Plan was released) and then launched a new website; http://friendsofwind.ca/ aimed at those who worship at the altar of wind energy. The site encourages the reader to write letters to the local media, MPs and MLAs. The site includes profiles of the letters to write and step by step instructions of what to include. The site instructs the reader to “please add the domain “canwea.ca” to your safe sender list so the Friends of Wind eLetter does not end up in your spam folder”. There is nothing on the site beyond the foregoing to indicate why or who founded it. CanWEA’s Mr. Hornung has not claimed it as his creation perhaps because it’s appearance as a “grass roots” organization would have more appeal to the media and politicians that are targeted?

CanWEA and the Government of Ontario have also organized an “Energy Connections Summit” in conjunction with the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters. Presumably the hope is to suppress the September 2010 grumblings of the CME about rising electricity prices in Ontario and its effect on their members. The Deputy Ministry of Energy is listed as a keynote speaker and will no doubt deliver the Liberal message that their Long Term Energy Plan will create 50,000 green jobs without mentioning how many jobs it has killed already or will in the future.

Big wind is using it’s financial clout and the “greens” hero worship to counteract rural dissent, keep the Liberals in power and the GEA intact. It will be the voters and those “grass roots” organizations who ultimately decide if the blowing smoke from the pro-wind side has dissipated the “gathering storm” that Blackwell wrote about four years ago. That storm will be felt at the polling booths of Ontario and on October 7, 2001 we will find out if those rural “terrorists” or the CanWEA proponents have won.

Parker Gallant,

April 23, 2011

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