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Notice Board and Upcoming Events

February 15, 2006 - No definite dates yet. However there will be meetings both in the TBM and Grey Highlands over the next few months. As soon as we have specifics, they will be posted here.

Please keep checking back for new information.

Past Events

Monday January 31st at 7:30pm - Town of Blue Mountains MET Tower Public Meeting - Location is the Council Chambers, 26 Bridge Street, Thornbury - To consider the passing of a re-zoning by-law that would allow an 80 metre (262 foot) meteorological tower to be erected by Superior Wind Energy on Part lot 6, concession 5 of the town of Blue Mountains.  Although this is only one tower, it represents the "foot in the door" for Superior Wind Energy. Superior Wind has stated they did extensive testing already - Why another tower? The tower, together with the wind power installation, is not consistent with the land use for the municipality and is inconsistent with Niagara Escarpment Commission policy and recommendations. Let the council and planners of TBM know that a planning and environmental assessment must be undertaken before any part of a wind power installation is erected, even one tower. This is a public meeting. Show up and voice your objection. It's your right.

FOLLOW-UP - Opponents to both the Met (wind testing) tower and the wind power project were out in full force. Over 80 people packed into the Council Chambers, with no one speaking out in support of the application or the project.

Over a dozen letters of opposition were read by the Clerk, and person after person rose and voiced their concerns to the Council.

Town of Blue Mountains resident and BHCC member, Richard Bowden, presented our group’s position to Council, questioning the very need for the installation of such a tower. Since the company had already been obligated to provide detailed wind mapping data to the Ministry of Energy in their pursuit of this energy contract, they should already have sufficient data that proves the viability of the wind speeds for this area. (click here to read his presentation)

The Planner will be submitting a report to Council at the March 7, 2005 meeting. These meetings are open to the public, however, if anyone wishes to make further comments, you must contact the Municipal office, and be put on the agenda.

Wednesday February 2nd at 7:00pm - County of Grey Official Plan Public Meeting on Wetland Mapping - Location is the Grey County Administration Building, 595 9th Avenue East, Owen Sound - To consider correcting a number of mapping errors related to the identification of Provincially Significant Wetlands, as well as adding a number of new wetlands identified by the Ministry of Natural Resources as being Provincially Significant.   This public meeting enables you to verify that the mapping of these wetlands has been done properly. If you have wetlands on your property, it may be important for you to attend.

Thursday February 3rd at 7:00pm - BHCC Movie Night - Marsh Street Community Centre, 187 Marsh Street, Clarksburg - Come out and see two short films from England and Australia made by residents affected by industrial wind power projects there. These are a "must see". There will be an oppourtunity to discuss the movies and the proposed project after the showings. Refreshments will be available.

Tuesday February 8th at 7:00pm - BHCC Movie Night - Ravenna Community Centre, Ravenna - Come out and see two short films from England and Australia made by residents affected by industrial wind power projects there. These are a "must see". There will be an oppourtunity to discuss the movies and the proposed project after the showings. Not enough time for supper? We have stew, soup, sandwiches and cold drinks available .

FOLLOW-UP - It was standing room only at the Ravenna Community Centre as over 100 concerned citizens came out to see these films. We were happy to see two TOBM councilors also in attendance. After the films and a summary from the BHCC's Richard Bowden, an open discussion took place with many relevant issues and concerns raised. It was interesting to note the varying levels of knowledge about the proposed project from those in attendance. Many people are just beginning to learn about this proposal and what it means to the future of our community.

Tuesday March 1st at 7:00pm - BHCC Movie Night - Singhampton Community Centre, Singhampton - Come out and see two short films from England and Australia made by residents affected by industrial wind power projects there. These are a "must see". There will be an oppourtunity to discuss the movies and the proposed project after the showings. Refreshments will be available.

Monday March 7th at 7:00pm - Grey Highlands Municipal Council Open House on Wind Power - Osprey Community Centre (arena) Feversham. Council will be presenting the draft bylaw dealing with renewable and wind energy for our region. There will be time allowed for the public to discuss their concerns, so take this opportunity to let your elected representatives know how you feel about wind power development in our community. By being proactive now, and working together with Council, we are hopeful that a fair and balanced approach will result in the final policies.
This meeting is open to anyone interested. There is no obligation that you be a resident of Grey Highlands, so if you have some information to present or questions to ask, plan to attend. The meeting will provide for an exchange of ideas and will be very educational. We strongly urge you to attend.

FOLLOW-UP - The March 7, 2005 Open House sponsored by the Municipality of Grey Highlands, was very well attended, despite the adverse weather conditions. Well over 150 people came out to the Osprey Community Centre in Feversham, Ontario to discuss the development of wind power policy for this Municipality.

     Ray Duhamel and Tim Cane from Jones Consulting Group in Barrie, presented a clear and informative power point overview of the work that has been done to date. Questions from the audience focused on visual impacts, noise, ice throw, shadow flicker, and property values. The information and responses from the Mayor, Mr. Duhamel and Mr. Cane demonstrated that the Municipality is on the right track with respect to ensuring "appropriate" renewable energy for Grey Highlands. As mayor Mullin summarized, they undertook this extensive study because they wish to do this right the first time.

     The majority of residents in attendance voiced their opposition to an industrial scale wind project in the proposed location, which lies between Singhampton and the Pretty River Valley. (This proposal continues into Town of Blue Mountains, north to the village of Banks). There were, however, a few supporters of large-scale wind projects in the audience, including representatives from Superior Wind Energy, Ontario Sustainable Energy Association, and other wind power companies.

     Of particular interest was a quote provided by a local Rob Roy resident. From an article entitled, "Tilting at Windmills", he read the following statement by Mr. David Boileau. The wind power executive, was quoted as saying --

"The only problem with wind farms", Mr. Boileau says, laughing, "is people." (Globe and Mail - Mar 5, 2005)

     Grey Highlands Council is looking at a June 2005 deadline for the completion of their wind power study. If they have finished by then, the Council will hold a public meeting for anyone to review and comment on the completed bylaw. The meeting will be advertised in the local papers and on the Grey Highlands website. BHCC will also post the date of the meeting on our website.

Monday March 7th at 7:00pm - The Town of Blue Mountains will be having their regular Planning Meeting - In the Council chambers at 26 Bridge St. E. Thornbury. The Planner is scheduled to present his planning report on Superior Wind Energy's application to erect a MET tower in land adjacent to Gibraltar. The meeting is open to the public. Unlike the Public Meeting held Jan 31st, people wishing to make comments here must contact the Planning Dept or Clerk to be put on the agenda. This request must also be followed up in writing. The telephone # is 519-599-3131 to contact Stephen Keast, or visit the website at www.thebluemountains.ca .

FOLLOW-UP - Blue Mountains Planning Committee Defers Met Tower

     At a regular meeting of Planning Committee on March 7th, 2005, Blue Mountains councilors voted in favour of a motion to table Superior Wind Energy Inc.'s application to build a meteorological tower on private land near Gibraltar.

     The Blue Highlands Citizens Coalition had made representations to Blue Mountains council at a public meeting held January 31st, 2005 that the application was in fact the beginning of the implementation of a wind generating facility. Since such a facility would not be approved under the terms of the town's official plan and since serious concerns of residents in the affected area should first be addressed, we urged council not to approve this application.

     A planning report was brought forward to last night's Planning Committee meeting recommending approval of Superior's application. The Coalition had provided council with a further written submission advising against approval. However, before the planner's report could be presented, committee members voted to defer the matter until such time as Superior's wind generating application is received, at which time both matters could be dealt with together.

     The Coalition congratulates the Planning Committee for taking this step. It reflects the Coalition's view that the meteorological tower is inextricably linked to the wind generating facility and should be dealt with as part of the whole issue.

Sunday April 3rd at Noon - "Renewable Energy for the Home and Farm" workshop at Flesherton Kinplex from noon to 5:00pm. Learn about small scale renewable energy options for your own property. For more information contact Vitold Kreutzer at 519-923-3005.

Saturday April 9th at 10:30am - Grey Association for Better Planning -16th Annual General Meeting "Next Steps in Planning" - Annesley United Church Hall, Hwy. 10 & Victoria Ave. Markdale. The Grey County Planning Department will discuss Provincial Planning reforms and their impact on future land use in Grey County. At this meeting members are encouraged to bring their comments and ideas. The discussion will be a precursor to the five-year review of the Grey County Official Plan. GAPB will provide beverages and utensils for the potluck lunch beginning at 12 noon.

November 3rd 2005 at 7:00pm - Town of Blue Mountains Information Meeting on Renewable Energy for Electricity Generation including Wind Power - Beaver Valley Community Centre - The following is from the TBM ad for the meeting:

"The Town has initiated a study to review the policies and regulations applicable to electric power generation facilities, and this Information Meeting is one of a series of meetings designed (2 Information Meetings, and 1 Public Meeting) to gather input from the public on this topic. The purpose of this meeting is to discuss electric power generation within the Town, with particular emphasis on the various forms of renewable energy generation. No specific applications will be discussed at this meeting."

Renewable Energy is in our future, but not all types are right for every community. We believe that the Brascan proposal of 67-400ft industrial wind turbines for the top of Blue Mountain, one of the most scenic parts of the Niagara Escarpment, is the wrong location. It is the responsibility of local communities, not the province, to decide what type and size of renewable energy facilities are best suited to their unique regions. Right now local input from residents is an extremely important part of this process.

WE URGE YOU TO ATTEND!

 Find out how these projects could affect the nature of your community, the local economy, your energy costs, property values and your quality of life.

 THIS IS YOUR HOME – HAVE A SAY IN ITS FUTURE. THE TIME TO GET INVOLVED IS NOW!

FOLLOW-UP - This was the first public meeting concerning renewable energy for the municipality.  Over two hundred people attended.  The planning consultants from Jones Consulting Group reviewed various types of renewable energy systems, both large and small scale, and outlined the work they had done to date for the Municipality of Grey Highlands.

The purpose of the meeting was to get public feedback, and a questionnaire was distributed to the audience.  The last half of the meeting was open to comments and questions.  The majority of comments focused on wind energy and the Brascan proposal.  Many comments were in opposition to the project, and many questioned the appropriateness of any large scale wind power installation in this part of the Escarpment.

November 13th, 2005 Noon until 5:00pm - "Renewable Energy for the Individual" Workshop - Kinplex Community Hall, Flesherton, Ontario - "Examining power generated from the sun, wind and water with an emphasis on conservation methods and practical options for the individual and the community. Presentations, displays and information packages offered. All are welcome. Cost by donation only. For more information contact Vitold Kreutzer 519-923-3005."

Monday December 12th at 7:00pm - Town of Blue Mountains Council Meeting - We have learned that Brascan Power Wind (formerly Superior Wind Energy) will be making a presentation to the Town of Blue Mountains council this upcoming Monday night, December 12th. This is not any type of application, but instead is apparently an update to council as to where they are with their proposal. This is tentative and we will follow up where with more details when we have them.

This is open to the public and we strongly encourage you to attend!

FOLLOW-UP - No new information about the project was presented outside of some updated timelines. Possibly a public meeting by Brascan in March or April (This will most likely be a "Open House" instead of a proper meeting) and then an application to council in the Summer. They are concentrating on Phase I in the Town of Blue Mountains. Even though Phase II (Grey Highlands) is no longer on their website, they have verbally indicated they are still interested in Grey Highlands for possible future phases of the project.

Saturday January 14th,  2006 at 10:00am - Town of Blue Mountains Information Meeting on Renewable Energy for Electricity Generation including Wind Power - Beaver Valley Community Centre - This meeting will address the impacts and issues related to wind energy.

FOLLOW-UP - Despite a snow storm, there was a large turnout for this meeting. It started with an address from Mayor Anderson regarding  section 23 of Bill 51 and her displeasure with the province for attempting to remove local planning from energy project proposals. This was followed by a thorough presentation from Director of Planning Peter Tollefsen and Jones Consulting explaining general planning framework the town is looking at in regards to large scale wind power plants, small scale renewable and accessory generation and biomass facilities. This was followed by a question and answer session where many residents voiced their opposition, fears and concerns regarding the proposed Blue Highlands Wind Power Plant. No one stood up in support of the project.
 

Copyright, The Blue Highlands Citizens Coalition, 2004, 2005, 2006  All rights reserved.