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Timeline of Events

     Our organization was formed in May 2003 in response to the Brascan/Superior Wind Energy Inc. wind energy project that is proposed to range from about Banks in the Town of the Blue Mountains to about Singhampton in the Municipality of Grey Highlands. Since that date, our group of over 300 members has been working in a proactive manner to:

1) Educate ourselves about wind power and other alternative energy sources, through extensive research.

2) Share our results with residents, organizations, Municipal Councils, and Provincial policy advisors in order to contribute to appropriate and responsible planning policy at both the Municipal and Provincial levels.

 

Here is what has happened to date:

Date

Blue Highlands Citizens Coalition

Superior Wind Energy Municipality of Grey Highlands

Town of Blue Mountains

September 2002  
Letters mailed to potential leaseholders/landowners – Sept 2002.
 
 

 
May 2003
Blue Highlands Citizens Coalition is formed.
 

First Public Meeting in Thornbury, ON.
   
June 2003
Information flyer distribution throughout project area in both Municipalities.

Press releases and letters to local newspapers (June 2003 to present).
 

Hosted our first public information meeting at Thornbury Community Centre, Thornbury. Click here for the PowerPoint presentation from that meeting.
 

     
July 2003

 

Second Public Meeting in Thornbury.
 
   
August 2003
Submission to Ministry of Environment objecting to raising the threshold for industrial wind energy projects being approved without an environmental screening from 2MW to 100MW. Click here to read the submission.


Hosted public information meeting at Osprey Community Centre in Feversham. Click here for the PowerPoint presentation from that meeting. (This is a very large file - 4MB. If you are on dial-up you should right click and pick "save target as")
 

     
September 2003
 

Information Booth at Feversham Fall Fair.

Attended and participated in Municipality of Grey Highlands Planning meetings on a monthly basis - Sept 2003-present.
 

 
Final Public meeting for new Official Plan -
BHCC members issue objections to commercial wind power bylaw as written in the new Official Plan.  Objections also issued concerning an Ontario Power Generation fax requesting deletion of the entire provision for commercial wind energy in the Official Plan.
 
 
October 2003
Presentation by President Peter MacGowan at the Georgian Triangle Development Institute Annual Conference. Click here for the PowerPoint presentation from that meeting.

Presented information packages to candidates and attended all candidates meetings during municipal elections.
 


Bus Tour to Huron Wind in Tiverton.
 

 

November 2003
Presentation by President Peter MacGowan at the Pollution Probe Green Power Conference in Toronto.
Click here for the PowerPoint presentation.
 
Council votes “No” to proposal to issue a one-year moratorium on commercial wind power applications.
 
 
December 2003
Submissions to Niagara Escarpment Commission re – Draft Wind Power Policy Paper. Click here to read the submission.

Petitions gathered and submitted to NEC – in support of Draft Wind Power Policy.
 

     
Date

Blue Highlands Citizens Coalition

Superior Wind Energy Municipality of Grey Highlands

Town of Blue Mountains

January 2004
Meeting with the Office of Alternative Energy and Renewables (Ontario Ministry of Environment).
 

Presentation to Municipality of Grey Highlands Council.

Superior Wind Energy representatives Claude Mindorff and John Worts present information regarding the Blue Highlands Wind Project to Council. A new map was shown. The Council was told the turbines would be erected in a series of “pods” of 5 -10 turbines each.
 

 

April 2004
BHCC website up and running.
 
 
Council considers option of passing an interim control bylaw to study the wind power issue.
 
 
May 2004
Attended Greenbelt Task Force public meetings in Caledon
 
     
June 2004
Meeting with policy development personnel, Ministry of Energy.
 
 
Council votes unanimously to pass “interim control bylaw” for an initial period of one year. The bylaw states that Council has determined that it is in the public interest to prohibit the use of all lands within the municipality for electric power generation facilities (specifically including wind turbines), so that Council can study the issue and understand its implications with respect to the land use planning of the municipality.
 
 
July 2004
Submission to Greenbelt Task Force.
 
     
August 2004    
Council establishes the Wind Power Committee, consisting of the seven Council members, with Deputy Mayor Dave Fawcett as Chair of the Committee. Jones Consulting Group Ltd, from Barrie Ontario, is hired to prepare the study.
 
 
September 2004
Submission to Bill 26 – Places To Grow Planning Reform.

Information booth at Feversham Fall Fair.
 


Application for Temporary Use Permit for Wind Testing Towers (MET tower)– Municipality of Grey Highlands and Town of Blue Mountains (details in adjacent columns).

Application submitted to Grey Highlands from Superior Wind Energy Inc. requesting a temporary use bylaw amendment to erect an 80m. (250ft.) meteorological (MET) tower to study wind speeds for the area. The tower would be erected on a parcel of land south of County rd. 4 in the former Osprey Township.
 


Application submitted by Superior Wind Energy Inc. requesting a temporary use bylaw amendment for the erection of an 80m. (250ft) meteorological (MET) tower to test wind speeds in the area.  The tower would be erected on a parcel of land west from the 4th line, in close proximity to the hamlet of Gibraltar

October 2004


Letters of Objection filed at public meeting at Municipality of Grey Highlands opposing Superior Wind Energy application to erect an 80m (240+ft) meteorological tower (MET tower) adjacent to CT rd 4, opposite Brewster’s Lake. Presentations made voicing objections and concerns.

 


 

Public meeting regarding the application for the MET tower held in Council chambers, Municipal offices in Markdale. Despite being an afternoon meeting, over 25 residents were in attendance and all voiced their objection to the erection of the tower. Written objections were also submitted.

Council voted to approve temporary use bylaw amendment for Superior Wind based on a recommendation from their planning consultant. Vote was 6 for and 1 against.  Amendment was granted for a period of 2 years and provisions were written prohibiting the company from sharing or leasing space on the tower with communication companies.
 



 

November 2004

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

November 2004

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

November 2004


Organized meeting with Ministry of Environment - Environmental Assessment and Approvals Branch Policy advisors presented to Municipality of Grey Highlands Council.

Hosted Public Information Meeting (Movie Night) in Singhampton. Two movies showing the impact on residents living near industrial wind power generating facilities in England and Australia were shown. This was followed by an active and open discussion.
 

President Peter MacGowan presentation to Town of Blue Mountains re – information on Ministry of Energy Request for Proposals, local and provincial planning policies in relation to the SWEI project.
 


Additional details of the MET tower given to TOBM regarding the Application for Temporary Use Permit for the Wind Testing Tower.

Presentation re – project to Town of Blue Mountains.

 


First public meeting for the interim control bylaw wind power study, held at the Osprey Community Centre, Feversham, Ontario. Representatives from Jones Consulting Group Ltd. described the study and summarized their research to date. The public was given the opportunity to ask questions and provide comments, and a questionnaire was also presented to the over 80 people in attendance.

Superior Wind Energy representatives Claude Mindorff and John Worts come to Council for the first time. Some details of their wind energy proposal were presented, however, no specific turbine sites were provided.

Blue Highlands Citizens Coalition president Peter MacGowan presents to Council.  Concerns over planning conflicts, especially with the Official Plan and the NEC wind power policy were discussed.  Council was asked to submit a letter to the Minister of Energy requesting that an energy generation contract not be awarded to Superior Wind Energy, as it would put undue pressure on the council, planners and residents of the municipality, since planning policies had not been established and public meetings had not taken place. The contracts would be announced Jan 31, 2005.

Ministry of Energy awards a 50MW contract for Renewable Energy Generation to Superior Wind Energy for phase 1 of the project located in The Town of Blue Mountains. The contract approval process was inexplicably moved forward from its original date of Jan 31, 2005.

Mayor Ellen Anderson discusses with local media her disappointment and surprise at learning the provincial government had moved up the deadline.  She was especially concerned that the Municipal Council had not been included in the process, and had not been notified of any change.

The Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Ministry of Energy assure Mayor Anderson and Council that any commercial energy company must fulfill its obligations with respect to local planning laws and the Ministry of Environment environmental screening process.  Only then will a project be allowed to proceed.


 

December 2004
BHCC members participated in the Brock University Focus Group on wind energy at Blue Mountain Resorts.
 
Brock University Focus Group on wind energy at Blue Mountain Resorts.    
Date

Blue Highlands Citizens Coalition

Superior Wind Energy Municipality of Grey Highlands

Town of Blue Mountains

January 2005
Stop the Wind Farm!
Sign campaign initiated.

Public Information Meeting (Movie Night) in Clarksburg, ON. Two movies showing the impact on residents living near industrial wind power generating facilities in England and Australia were shown. This was followed by an active and open discussion.
 

Presentation and meeting with the Grey Association for Better Planning.

Letters of Objection filed on Jan 2005, opposing the Superior Wind Energy application to erect an 80m (240ft.+) meteorological tower (MET tower) near Gibraltar, (beside the Niagara Escarpment). Presentations made at this public meeting voicing objections and concerns. Click here for the Coalition's submission.

Meeting with a Senior Policy Advisor to the Honourable Leona Dombrosky, Minister of Environment.

 

   


Public meeting regarding Superior Wind Energy’s application for a temporary use permit to erect an 80m. meteorological (MET) tower near Gibraltar. With over 80 people in attendance, it was suggested by Deputy Mayor McKinley that the meeting be moved to the Thornbury Community Centre. Room was made for everyone in the Council chamber by opening up adjacent meeting rooms that were then filled to capacity. For well over an hour, person after person stood and voiced their opposition not only to the tower, but also to the whole wind power project. BHCC representative Richard Bowden presented our group’s view that the tower should not be considered on a separate basis, but in the context of the entire proposed wind power project.
 

February 2005


Meeting with a Senior Policy Advisor, Ministry of Tourism and Recreation.

Public Information Meeting (Movie Night) in Ravenna. Two movies showing the impact on residents living near industrial wind power generating facilities in England and Australia were shown. It was standing room only and was followed by an informative and open discussion.
 

Submission on Greenbelt Act.

Information packages about the SWEI project and BHCC mailed to local residents (800+ homes). Click here to view one.
 


Proposed release date of Brock University Focus Group results.

(January 2006 - Still waiting)

   
March 2005
Public Information Meeting (Movie night) in Singhampton. Two movies showing the impact on residents living near industrial wind power generating facilities in England and Australia were shown. This was followed by an active and open discussion.
 
 
Second public meeting for the interim control bylaw wind power study, held at the Osprey Community Centre in Feversham.  The draft planning framework for commercial wind power generation was presented to the public. Despite the bad weather, over 130 people attended and all were given an opportunity to ask questions and provide comments. 
 


Councilor John McKean puts forth a motion that the application from Superior Wind Energy to erect a MET tower be tabled until the application for the entire wind energy project is brought to Council. Councilor Gail Ardiel seconded the motion. Council then passed the motion.

April 2005  

 

     
May 2005  

 

 

 

 
Council votes to extend the "interim control bylaw"  for up to 12 months (see June 2004). This gives council more time to study the issue and complete their official plan amendments and bylaws for wind energy.
 
 
 

June 2005

     


The Council unanimously voted to accept the Staff Report to hire Jones Consulting Group Ltd. from Barrie, ON., to carry out a planning study for renewable energy.  Jones has been doing the same study for MGH since June 2004. (See above)

 

July 2005
BHCC executive submitted comments to the Ministry of the Environment.  The Minister called for submissions during a 90-day public comment period regarding the Environmental Assessment  Panel's Report - "Improving Environmental Assessment in Ontario:  A Framework for Reform".  Many areas dealing with the environmental assessment for wind power projects are under review, and we are confident that our recommendations will be given due consideration.
 

Superior Wind Energy name changed to Brascan Power Wind as per their web site.

Jones Consulting Group, planning consultants, submitted comments on behalf of MGH to the Ministry of the Environment.  The Minister called for submissions during a 90-day comment period regarding the Environmental Assessment Panel 's report- "Improving Environmental Assessment In Ontario: A Framework For Reform". 
 
 
August 2005
BHCC launches newsletter - "The Wind Power Sentinel".  The newsletter's mandate is to provide timely and important information to our members and local residents.  The first issue was circulated to over 2500 residents, BHCC members and other concerned government and environmental agencies
 
     
September 2005        
October 2005        
November 2005
.
 
   


Town of Blue Mountains Information Meeting on Renewable Energy for Electricity Generation including Wind Power - 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. 
 

December 2005  
Brascan Power Wind presentation to TBM Council - 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.