‘Buy Ontario’ requirement added to Ontario green-energy plan

Erie Shores Wind Farm

Erie Shores Wind Farm

The tricky business of going green in Ontario got more complex on Thursday as the McGuinty government introduced a mandatory ‘Buy Ontario’ component for new solar and wind projects.

The changes were part of a bundle of key new policies designed to spark home-grown green manufacturing, as well as the wide deployment of its products — everything from small, rooftop solar panels to industrial-sized wind farms.

But in trying to strike a balance between competing interests, the Liberals appear to have rattled all sides in the debate.
Full story

Homes of reading and writing should now be rehabilitated

Awareness may be the sole ray of sunshine arising from the rubble and ruin of Alma College.
And, how appropriate in the same week two teenaged jokesters were slapped on the wrist for torching the main building at the former school for girls, the St. Thomas-Elgin branch of Architectural Conservancy of Ontario warns a similar fate of destruction by neglect could be in store for other educational facilities in the city.
The local ACO branch was established earlier this year to counter the lack of will from all levels of government to protect heritage properties in St. Thomas and Elgin.
At a public forum held Tuesday, it was noted a half-dozen city schools have either closed or will do so in the near future.
Continue reading

Plant closing means more than loss of jobs

When Ford closes its mammoth St. Thomas assembly plant in about two years – as it’s expected to – the fallout won’t stop with the loss of 1,500 or so well-paying blue-collar jobs. There’s the matter of the millions of tax dollars Ford pays in Elgin County, the hundreds of thousands of dollars Ford workers contribute to the United Way every year and the tens of millions they spend in their communities on homes, cars, groceries, appliances, municipal taxes, entertainment and recreation.
Full story