Wind turbines now proliferate in rural Ontario, with more projects announced nearly weekly as December 2013 closed. “Merry Christmas, Ontario.” The speed with which a rural transformation has occurred has left communities reaching deep into pockets for legal fees, creative measures to self-protect, and engaging in, even helping to refocus a shifting political landscape. Not easy, given the block of City voters with little knowledge of the rural demise.
What city dwellers may not yet appreciate, but increasing are coming to know, is that the heartland of Ontario, the vibrant foodland and historic muscle of the province, Northern communities with impressive tourism and natural beauty, have been mercilessly shredded of democratic rights, rights to have a say about massive industrial energy facilities, and split from basic rights to protect home, property, community, and property values. In a few short years, the Green Energy and Economy
Act has all but “snuffed” democratic principles and laws, and meaningful public participation. Seventy-five municipalities have declared themselves “unwilling participants” to wind turbine projects. To little heed. More and more anti-wind groups form as communities are faced with menacing turbine projects that will deface their landscapes and impact their lives indefinitely.
There is break neck enlightenment about the impacts of turbines as projects creep from municipality to municipality, region by region, town by town. Sometimes it is a $10 million project for Bhuddist meditation (Cavan) that conjures up relief. Sometimes it is an Important Bird Area. Often it is human health impacts. But the roll out of projects into pristine and sensitive, often iconic landscapes, historic and multi generational farms, is relentless. And the promise to “converse” with communities about turbine factories leaves even the “Tooth Fairy deals” seeming more real.
Ontario now knows of 46 families that cannot live in their homes, but how many more are living elsewhere, at cottages, in trailers, some in parking lots at Walmarts nearby, not having self-reported their eviction? How many bought out with gag orders? Hundreds reporting ill health to an MOE (Ministry of the Environment) that has acknolwedged for years now that they do not know how to mitigate the complaints; and they have done nothing to shut down offending turbines. How many economic losses of reduced farm viability? How much dead or damaged, greatly reduced numbers of livestock? How many property values lost, some entirely? If you wanted to imagine a rural Ontario in a more chaotic and angry mood, it would not be possible.
Add to this angst the neighbor against neighbor: some have obviously made contracts with developers to host turbines. Nothing, in our view, could be more divisive. What happens when peoplelose20-100%oftheirmost precious financial and emotional asset overnight? Into the courts. 
continued at National Wind Watch