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Good Evening:
We would like to provide the supporters of the Charter Challenge with an update on the case.
As you know, the Divisional Court Charter Challenge appeal (heard this past November in  London)  was  to  the  constitutionality  of  certain  provisions  of  the  Environmental 
Protection  Act  which  was  amended  by  the  Green  Energy  and  Economy  Act.   In 
Goderich, in March of 2013, Justice Grace of the Superior Court ruled that Charter 
and  constitutional  challenges  of  the  province’s  wind  turbine  approval  process 
should be heard at the Environmental Review Tribunal (ERT) level.  In his Decision 
he also stated the following: “I am acutely aware that some may conclude that this ruling 
forecloses  judicial  involvement  in  the  dispute.   With  respect,  it  does  not  do  so.    The 
statutory  process  is  in  its  early  stages.   A  right  to  appeal  to  Divisional  Court  on  a 
question of law is expressly given”.

As  directed,  the  ERT  process  was  followed.   The  ERT  took  the  position  that  it 
lacked  the  jurisdiction  to  rule  on  whether  or  not  the  Ministry  of  the  Environment 
Director’s decision to issue a Renewable Energy Approval (REA) met the constitutional 
requirements of section 7 of the Charter. 

The next logical step was to go back to Justice Grace’s decision and appeal to 
Divisional Court.  The appeal was dismissed.  The panel of judges at Divisional Court 
(November of 2014) found that the ERT did not err in the way in which it dealt with the 
families’  claims  even  though  Justice  Grace  of  the  Superior  court  was  assured  by 
government  lawyers  in  Goderich  that  the  ERT  had  the  right  and  jurisdiction  to  hear 
constitutional and Charter issues. The Appellants were seeking to change the test of 
how a renewable energy project is approved from “must prove serious harm to human 
health”  to  “a  project  should  not  be  approved  where  there  is  a  reasonable  prospect of 
serious  harm  to  human  health”.  This  issue  was  not  specifically  addressed  by  the 
Divisional Court in its decision. 

The families have now filed a Notice of Motion for Leave to Appeal to the  Ontario Court 
of Appeal.  Falconers LLP is preparing  a factum  in respect of the Motion for Leave to 
Appeal and will submit it to the Ontario Court of Appeal by March 10, 2015.  The Ontario 
Court of Appeal will review the factum and decide whether or not to hear the appeal.  We 
should  know  by  mid-June  what  the  decision  is.   If  it’s  a  yes,  the  appeal  can  move 
forward. 

The economics and science of industrial wind turbines is evolving. 
The Charter Challenge is, of course, part of a much broader ongoing discussion across 
the  province  on  the  industrial  wind  turbine  front.   Other  concerns  related  to  industrial 
wind turbine developments include:
-  the overall economics of the provincial wind energy development regime.
-  increased hydro rates for municipal, business and residential customers. 
-  the impacts on animal health.
-  property values (lower property values leading to lower property assessments, a 
lower tax base and higher mill rates). 
-  impacts  on  tourism, source water protection,  animal health,  wildlife habitats  and 
migratory routes. 
-  the drain on local extractive resources. 
-  the  loss  of  longstanding  municipal  rights  and  authority  and  the  loss  of  local 
democracy.
-  the loss of prime agricultural land for food production.
-  the loss of future development potential within wind developments. 
-  the  loss  of  trust  among  family  members,  friends  and  neighbours  in  our 
communities.  
 

The following link may be of interest to you as well:
http://www.owensoundsuntimes.com/2015/01/20/anti-wind-farm-group-seeks-leave-toappeal-in-charter-fight
Thank you very much for your support.  If you know anyone who would like to be 
added to  our email contact list,  names can  be added by sending an email request 
to ninerubies@hurontel.on.ca.
Best Regards,
Dave Hemingway, President
Anita Frayne, Secretary/Treasurer
Kevin McKee & Deb Morris (HALT)
Gerry Ryan, Rob Tetu & Tom Melady (HEAT)
All On Behalf of SWEAR (Safe Wind Energy for All Residents)
P.S.  There is an opportunity to view a  special  pre-screening of the documentary,  Big 
Wind.   This  documentary  was  produced  in  association  with  TVO  and  touches  on  the 
concerns shared by many residents of Ontario with respect to the  industrial  wind turbine 
development  phenomena  in  our  province.   All  parties  in  this  discussion  –  wind 
developers,  municipalities,  leaseholders,  proponents,  opponents  and  provincial 
authorities – were included.  Big Wind will be aired on TVO in late March. 

1st
Pre-Screening of Big Wind Documentary
When: Feb. 27, 2015, Doors open 6:45 show 7:15
Where: St. Helens Hall  - 85656 St. Helen’s Line at Belfast Rd.
EVERYONE ENCOURAGED TO COME & VIEW DOCUMENTARY 
DONATIONS AT THE DOOR
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2nd
Pre-Screening of Big Wind Documentary
When: March 6, 2015, Doors open 6:45 show 7:15
(SNOW DATE March 20th)
Where: Colborne School, 37020 School Rd – 3 km north of 
Benmiller 
EVERYONE WELCOME -- RSVP: 519-529-7711 or ninerubies@hurontel.on.ca
DONATIONS AT THE DOOR
For  information  on  a  possible  pre-screening  in  your  area,  please  make 
inquiries to your local group. For information on organizing a pre -screening of 
Big  Wind,  contact  Dave  Hemingway  at  519-482-7005  or 
davehemingway@gmail.com.

 


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