By Donal O’Connor, Stratford Beacon Herald
Friday, July 13, 2012
Pumped by Health Canada’s announcement last week that it will commission a new study on the possible health effects of wind turbines, Perth-Wellington MPP Randy Pettapiece has renewed his call for a moratorium on new turbines, and area MP Gary Schellenberger has joined the chorus.
“The McGuinty government is nothing short of negligent for ignoring the people who live near turbines,” said Pettapiece in a media release. “If the government isn’t going to listen to our constituents, they should at least wait for the results from the experts at Health Canada.”
Pettapiece’s missives to the Ontario government have included making Premier Dalton McGuinty aware of a survey done by the Elma-Mornington Concerned Citizens group which found that 96% of residents affected by an Invenergy turbine proposal in North Perth are opposed to the project.
The Health Canada announcement said the agency would be working with Statistics Canada and other external experts possessing expertise in areas including noise, health assessment, clinical medicine and epidemiology to design a research study that will explore the relationship between wind turbine noise and health effects reported by and objectively measured in those living near wind power developments.
The results of the study are expected in 2014.
Perth-Wellington MP Gary Schellenberger said in an interview Thursday that he, too, favours a moratorium on new wind turbines.
Speaking from his cottage at Grand Bend, Schellenberger said he and other members of the Conservative rural caucus took their constituents’ concerns about wind farms to Minister of Health Leona Aglukkaq.
“It’s a big issue all over Ontario, not just in Perth-Wellington,” he said “In Huron and Bruce they are very concerned and in eastern Ontario – it’s all over the place.”
He recalled attending a meeting in Sebringville about a year ago and hearing presentations about the health effects on people and “about how it has ruined their lives.”
“We took it to the minister over the course of the year and we did request something be done by Health Canada — that a proper study be done so that everyone can be heard and we can work on scientific evidence.”
“It’s not just a question-and-answer form. It (the study) will be quite involved and I look forward to that.”
“My concern with this is that’s it’s done properly and that when the results come out that either side — there are two sides to this — that whatever the findings are the differences can be resolved.”
“It would be my suggestion that there be a moratorium until this report comes out,” he added. “I would be really remiss if I didn’t express that.”