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Ontario farmers group says wind farms are tearing communities apart

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Windfarm and CowsWEB

The Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA), the province’s largest farm organization, has called for a moratorium on wind power development.  In a statement, the OFA says that “we are hearing very clearly from our members that the wind turbines situation is coming to a head – seriously dividing rural communities and even jeopardizing farm succession planning.”

While also stressing the need to address the price paid for wind power, as well as noise issues and concerns about health impacts, Mark Wales, OFA’s President, said that “Most disconcerting of all is the impact wind turbines are having on the relationships across rural communities. When wind developments come to a community, neighbours are pitted against neighbours. The issue of industrial wind turbine development is preoccupying the rural agenda.”

Both the Canadian Wind Energy Association and Ontario Energy Minister Chris Bentley expressed disappointment with the OFA’s position, saying that a current provincial review of the feed-in-tariff program is already addressing many of the OFA’s concerns.  This may well be true of the economic issues, but the deeper question of community impacts is what appears to be at the heart of the OFA’s position, and that’s a question that may not be so easily addressed.

(Image: The Globe and Mail)

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