TORONTO, January 31, 2013 /Canada NewsWire/ - Community groups in Prince Edward County are demanding in an Open Letter to Premier-Designate Kathleen Wynne that she act immediately to amend Ontario's Green Energy and Green Economy Act. The County Coalition for Safe and Appropriate Green Energy (CCSAGE) says the Act's minimum setback of turbines from residences, of about 550-metres, is too close for safe human habitation. CCSAGE says current legislation also endangers wildlife, including migratory birds.
CCSAGE demands that large-scale wind turbines be prohibited within 2km of existing or future home sites and that they should be at least 10km from internationally-recognized Important Bird Areas.
"It is abundantly clear that existing setback limits are unsafe for protected and unprotected wildlife species in Prince Edward County, and for rural residents in Ontario," said Garth Manning, QC, Chair for CCSAGE. "Government is not protecting either birds or people from the profit-driven invasion of wind power projects. We need amended legislation now," he said.
Manning says the proposed interim "Safe Setback" amendments would remain in effect until scientifically-determined safe setback distances are decided by independent organizations such as Nature Canada and Health Canada.
Jane Wilson, President of Wind Concerns Ontario agrees:
"We're seeing dead birds by the thousand already, and hundreds of people exposed to the environmental noise from wind turbines in this province are now ill. It's time for the government to step up, admit mistakes have been made, and act to protect the health and safety of people, and the future of the environment."
The Open Letter is at http://tinyurl.com/adc8n9x