Thursday, April 19, 2012

Barrie Examiner Article - Lawsuit Claims Against WPD Now More Than $17 Million

"groups are establishing a model that other groups across Ontario will now be able to follow... "

Clearview Township landowners line up in action against wind turbines

By Morgan Ian Adams, QMI Agency

Posted 23 hours ago

CLEARVIEW TWP. — The fight against two wind turbine projects is not about to blow over.

Twenty more residents have joined two collective actions against WPD Canada and the landowners who would host the turbines, bringing the value of the two claims to more than $17 million.

John and Sylvia Wiggins launched a suit earlier this year against WPD and Beattie Bros. Ltd., claiming the threat of wind turbines being located near their property on the 6th Conc. had devalued their property and made it difficult to sell.

The Wiggins' claim sought an injunction and $2 million in damages related to the proposed Fairview Wind Farm.

Kevin Elwood, a farmer and pilot who operates an aerodrome at his farm on County Road 91 west of Stayner, has also filed suit against WPD and the Beatties, citing that the proposed locations of the turbines would make use of his airstrip unsafe.

Elwood says one of the proposed turbine locations is in the direct path of his airstrip.

The allegations have not been proven in court.

The board of the Collingwood Regional Airport is also challenging WPD plans — albeit not yet through legal channels — noting the siting of turbines could jeopardize the airport's approach areas.

WPD has proposed to locate eight wind turbines in an area north and south of County Road 91.

On Friday, Wiggins announced in a news release that 15 residents are now proposed plaintiffs in his action; five other residents have launched a second action against another Beattie family, Ed Beattie & Son Ltd., who the release claims intend to host two turbines on their property south of County Road 91.

“All of these landowners near the proposed wind turbine development are clearly upset that 50-storey turbines are being foisted on them arbitrarily," Wiggins stated in the release. "These groups are establishing a model that other groups across Ontario will now be able to follow... a snowball effect that wind companies, landowners and the Ontario government should take note of.”