LETTER: Danny Celovsky: Two Faces of Leadership in PEC

Image result for wind turbine

One of nine wind turbines at White Pines Wind Project in Prince Edward County. Mike Postovit / Global News

Dear Editor/Publisher,

I read the op-ed by Alan Whiteley entitled “The Two Faces of Government” in the January 22 edition of the Wellington Times and am compelled to respond.

It’s underlying premise is that wind energy is unnecessary as we in Ontario have more energy than we need. This completely fails to square with not only the facts but with common sense.

We are in a Climate Emergency. Our own Council declared it last May 16. Since then our carbon emissions continue to go up when acting on this Climate Emergency clearly and without compromise demands they go down.

To solve this we need a massive transition from our fossil-fuel driven economy and way of life to one that emits no carbon whatsoever. The scientists have presented this to be fact. To make this transition, all vehicles and all homes (just for starters) will have to move to clean energy alternatives. Every vehicle electric. Every building electric. I would think that such a large-scale transition to clean energy is going to require a lot more power-generation that we currently have. We do not have on oversupply or abundance of electric energy. Not when we actually act on the Climate Emergency. We will need all we can get.

The nine wind turbines constructed (and now dismantled) in the County were able to generate enough energy to power half the households in the County. And were doing so all with private investment – saving the Ontario taxpayer in the process. The dismantling cancelled clean energy we will need to solve the Climate Emergency and put the Ontario taxpayer on the hook for $141-million and counting to take them down.

But it gets worse when the argument for the dismantling is based on the NIMBY effect (Not In My Back Yard). Time for us to get real: The solutions to the Climate Emergency will require adjustment and inconveniences. Wars typically do. The underlying NIMBY argument is killing us all because it fails to recognize that we are in a war for our lives. The interests of the few do not outweigh the interests of the majority of us who want a future for all life on this planet.

A January 3 Abacus Data Poll showed that three-quarters of all Canadians recognize that Climate action is a priority; wants Government to work on it; and wants Government to not work against it.. Three-quarters. That is a majority of us. The dismantling of the nine turbines squarely is Government working against Climate Action.

This action to dismantle the White Pines wind energy project – and other clean energy projects – is clearly Government working against Climate Change action. It is not leadership. And we need leadership now more than ever.

The majority of us want and need our elected leaders to show the courage to act and to take the responsibility of informing us of what we need to do. How can you fight a war without courageous and responsible leadership? You can’t. Not if you expect to win it.

The debate should not be focused on taking these nine wind turbines down; but to double it – put eighteen wind turbines up. That would demonstrate the leadership we need and Canadians are clearly looking for.

Danny Celovsky

Picton Ontario

Residents Tell PEC Council Cancellation of White Pines Windfarm Is Folly

Council declared a Climate Emergency and then did nothing

Last night several Prince Edward County citizens protested Council’s lack of progress in developing a plan to help mitigate the effects of climate change and protested Council’s stance as an ‘unwilling host’ for renewable energy development in the County in a climate emergency.

Here are their presentations:

“We will persist and we will continue to grow in numbers. We will never give up on the vision of one day having a wind farm in the County; and someday in the future to be able to boast proudly that we are a part of the movement forward.”— Jenn Ackerman

Ontario to compensate White Pines wind turbine developers for cancelled contract

One of nine wind turbines at White Pines Wind Project in Prince Edward County.One of nine wind turbines at White Pines Wind Project in Prince Edward County. Mike Postovit / Global News

The Ontario government has introduced a regulation laying out the plan for decommissioning the White Pines Wind Project in Prince Edward County, which promises the company contracted by the previous Liberal government to build the wind farm compensation.

READ MORE: Cancelling Prince Edward County wind project could cost over $100M, company warns

Last year, Ian MacRae, president of wpd Canada, the developer behind the project, told The Canadian Press that reneging on the contract would cost the government more than $100 million.

Wpd Canada had worked out a deal with the Liberal government in 2009, but in early July 2018, within a month of being elected, the Progressive Conservative government announced it would be backing out of the contract.

Although the White Pines Wind Project Termination Act came into effect in July 2018, on July 3, 2019, the provincial government passed a regulation that entitles wpd to receive compensation for “eligible costs.” MORE