BY ANDREW SMITH
LISTOWEL – North Perth council is not only against wind turbines in their backyard, but their neighbour’s backyard as well.
A proposal for a single wind turbine in Mapleton Township was brought up for discussion at the Dec. 9 meeting of North Perth council, which Coun. Warren Howard said falls right on the border between North Perth and Mapleton Township. According to Howard, several North Perth residents had contacted him regarding the turbine proposal.
“I think the residents in North Perth are concerned about it,” he said. “It’s the standard concerns about turbines.”
The proposal for a single 0.5 MW wind turbine to be located on Concession 12 of Mapleton Township has been deemed complete by the Ministry of the Environment, and is open for public comment until being granted final approval.
The 0.5 MW turbine is smaller than the model in the Elma-Mornington project proposed by Invenergy Canada, but Howard said there are still a number of concerns despite the size.
According to Howard, a similar turbine has been erected by the Canadian Auto Workers in Port Elgin at the Family Education Centre.
“It’s small but they’re having all sorts of problems in Port Elgin with one turbine operating at the same frequency,” he said.
The website for the Roubos Wind Farm says the turbine will operate below 102 decibels and is 700 metres from the nearest noise receptor, but Howard points out a noise study hasn’t been completed.
“They haven’t done a noise study because it’s not required for this size of turbine,” Howard said. “But obviously there are noise problems from this size of turbine.”
Another concern of Howard’s is the shadow flicker cast off the moving blades of the turbine, which will cross Perth Road 140 and distract drivers, according to a shadow flicker map completed for the project.
“It actually shows that shadow flicker will fall on North Perth across Road 140,” he said. “There is a lot of traffic on that road.”
According to the website, the plan for the Roubos Wind Farm is to “generate clean, renewable energy for the local grid and feed excess electricity into the Hydro One Grid.” Howard said this could lead to stray voltage or dirty electricity coming back from the power grid.
“A whole bunch of farms are hooked into that line, and they’re just feeding power directly into it,” Howard said. “There’s a whole series of questions around that and what problems it might cause.”