Wind turbines generate trouble for two Ontario airports

Despite growing concerns over the placement of eight wind turbines south of the Chatham-Kent...

Despite growing concerns over the placement of eight wind turbines south of the Chatham-Kent Municipal Airport, it's business as usual. (Diana Martin/QMI Agency File Photo)

Christina Blizzard, Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 7:05 AM ET

TORONTO - Darwin understood these things so well.

Survival of the fittest.

Or, more succinctly, people who do dangerous things often don’t survive their own stupidity.

Sadly, when it comes to building wind turbines near airports, the consequences of a foolish act performed in the name of the flawed Green Energy Act are borne by innocent people who had no part in the stupid decision.

Two rural airports in this province are facing the serious consequences of wind turbines sited too close to their runways.

Transport Canada recently issued an order forcing the removal of eight turbines near Chatham-Kent’s airport. And Collingwood airport is fighting a plan to place massive turbines close to its runway.

A spokesman for Transport Canada said the turbine company, GDF Suez, was asked to voluntarily comply with its Airport Zoning Regulations (AZR) and remove or lower the turbines.

“When this was not achieved, Transport Canada issued a notice requiring the company to lower or remove the wind turbines in compliance with the Chatham AZR. The notice to enforce compliance with the Chatham AZR has been issued because eight wind turbines contravene the height limits and voluntary compliance was not achieved,” said Jana Regimbal by e-mail.

The company has until Dec. 31 to comply with the order.

Chatham-Kent-Essex MPP Rick Nicholls said this is not about a dislike for wind turbines. It’s a question of public safety.

“AZRs are put in place for a reason,” he told me. “On a beautiful clear day, for someone operating a small aircraft it’s probably not an issue. But what about on a foggy or windy night, and someone is not familiar with Chatham airport and has to fly into it under distress?

“I have concerns about that,” he said.


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