FINCH – Ontario’s environment minister this morning issued a decision revoking renewable energy approval for the Nation Rise Wind Farm.
In a statement, Jeff Yurek responded to an appeal filed by community group Concerned Citizens of North Stormont of a quasi-judicial decision supporting the project approval.
Yurek concluded that the wind turbines would cause serious and irreversible harm to endangered bat populations in the area. The potential for harm to wildlife was considered in the context of the contribution to Ontario’s electricity supply, which would be minimal. As well, the minister concluded that it was in the public interest and a precaution to protect the environment to revoke approval for the power project.
Margaret Benke, representing the CCNS, welcomed the Yurek’s decision. The group had raised many concerns about the environment in its appeal.
“Now,” she said. “The environment, wildlife and human health will be protected from the harmful effects of wind turbines.”
Benke thanked the many people who supported the Concerned Citizens group financially and with submissions of information for the original appeal before the Environmental Review Tribunal and subsequent appeal to the Minister.
“This power project has been very divisive for our community; now North Stormont can again be a good place to grow,” she added.
The Nation Rise project consisted of up to 33 turbines located near Finch, Berwick and Crysler. The project was planned to generate up to 100 megawatts of electricity under a 20-year, $400-million contract awarded by the IESO.