This week, Chatham, Ont. Councillor Michael Bondy will present a motion to council to seek a moratorium of wind turbines from the province until further assessment of the impacts of vibrations on local groundwater.
Bondy is calling on the province to end all further construction until an environmental study is completed and an independent consultant determines further turbine development has “no appreciable negative effect on water wells.”
In late June, a citizens group began to mobilize, to raise concerns over the signs of increased turbidity they experienced in their water wells. The Water Wells First group, called on the Ontario Groundwater Association (OGWA) to enlist their help in testing well water samples.
The OGWA later pledged its support of the Chatham-Kent residents in their efforts, stating, “Existing Wind Farm developments in this area are disregarding known science on vibration and seismic coupling, causing adverse effects on local ground water and drinking water wells.”
Chatham-Kent’s chief building officer, told the Chatham Daily News that he believes that the municipality has the ability to develop bylaws for such things as vibrations through the Municipal Act, although such rights would have to be further explore. Approval process for wind farms is done through the province’s Green Energy Act.
South Kent Wind currently has 124 Siemens 2.3 MW wind turbines in place. Siemens’ turbine blade facility in Tillsonburg, Ont. manufactured the blades and CS Wind’s facility in Windsor manufactured the turbine towers using steel from Ontario.