The following are the comments I submitted to the Ministry of the Environment’s (MOECC) Environmental Registry proposal posting (EBR 012-4493), Proposed Amendments to O.Reg. 359/09 Renewable Energy Approvals under Part V.0.1. of the Act.
According to the MOECC, all comments received during this comment period will be considered as part of the decision–making process.
If you have concerns which you would like the MOECC to consider, or experiences which you would like to relay, you can submit them before the posting closes this October 2, 2015. Just click on the following link, go to the “Submit Comment” box on the right hand side and seize the opportunity.
Thank you for extending the comment period until October 2, 2015 for the proposed updates and clarification to the MOECC’s Noise Guidelines for Wind Farms.
It would seem logical that prior to introducing new guidelines for Industrial Wind Turbines in Ontario, the MOECC would have developed a process incorporating the newest data on audible and inaudible noise into those guidelines. To my knowledge, the MOECC does not yet have evaluation criteria established for determining the application of new research relating to the noise/setback guidelines. Should I be wrong, please advise when you expect that process to be developed as well as an anticipated implementation date. As a citizen and taxpayer of Ontario who in essence, pays your salary, I believe I have the right to understand the process by which you have literally decimated the quality of my life.
In addition, please tell me exactly how many complaints the MOE/ MOECC has had with respect to active wind projects being out of compliance with current noise guidelines? Exactly how many have been ‘closed’? Of those closed, how many have had outcomes where the person complaining has had a satisfactory outcome? What, if any, tools/standards are you using to measure satisfaction? How and where are we able to access that information, easily?
Please clarify for me whether John Q. Public will be getting the same opportunities to review any changes to the ERB guidelines as the proponents of projects are allowed? Will the new guidelines afford us an iterative process before you grant approval to projects? Please explain why proponents get preferential treatment?
If you lived in my home, you might be able to begin to understand just how flawed the ‘comprehensive standards in the REA regulation that were designed to be protective of human health and the environment’ actually are. Since you don’t live here, or I suspect any where near any IWT’s, please share the data by which you are convinced that computer modelling is a predictor of protection against harm to my health from turbines.
Please clarify if you are proposing to move IWT’s even closer than the current inadequate 550 meter setback. By the way thanks for removing the word ‘stringent’ when you discuss setbacks. That word just added insult to injury.
You have said the newer models, which are being built around my home (9- 3 MW IWT’s within 2 km) are ‘quieter’, again ignoring infrasound/inaudible noise. Please share the sources / studies / reports of where you secured that information, unless your sources are from the wind industry itself, which as we both know, is biased. While you are at it, please share the outcomes of the noise measurements conducted in the Brinston, Ontario homes which is the only other community in Ontario (to my knowledge) hosting 3 MW turbines, 550 meters from people’s homes.
Please explain the process, if any, by which the Ministry is measuring infrasound, low-frequency noise, low-frequency modulation of broad band or tonal noises or other noises such as whine, hiss, screech, or hums, distinct impulses in the noise, such as bangs, clatters, clicks, or thumps, all which are emitted by IWT’s. Who is responsible for measuring this noise? Is it the municipality, the taxpayer, the Province, the wind developer(s)? If it is the MOECC, do you have the proper equipment to measure these noises which require a different scale of measurement other than A-weighting? Please explain what equipment is required to measure infrasound et al? What is the cost of such equipment? If you aren’t measuring these things, please explain why you aren’t, given you say you are doing all you can to protect us.
I do not wish a carbon copy of your responses you will provide to others who have identified concerns similar to those mentioned here. Please provide an individual response answering all of my questions in a straightforward, clear manner aka in layman’s language. Given I am providing you with my name, I would request that you respect me enough to clearly identify all the people who contribute in any way to responding to my questions vs. signing off as the ‘Office of…’ Just call me old-fashioned and a believer in transparency.