Opponents of new wind farms in Ontario are accusing Energy Minister George Smitherman of trying to duck protesters.
A group called Wind Concerns Ontario says Smitherman’s office hasn’t told anyone the energy minister will attend Thursday’s grand opening of the Wolfe Island wind project near Kingston.
The anti-windmill activists say Smitherman is “deathly afraid” he’ll face protests at Wolfe Island after he ran into about 50 protesters at a wind farm near Kincardine in April.
The government still had not put out an announcement late Wednesday afternoon indicating that Smitherman and Environment Minister John Gerretson would be at the Wolfe Island event.
By now, the residents of Wolfe Island, Ont., are getting used to the whirr and thump of wind turbines overhead. By next year, they’ll get a glimpse of whether those whirrs and thumps could be damaging their health.
Researchers at nearby Queen’s University have embarked on the first study to probe whether wind turbines built over communities can cause adverse health effects. The study measures residents’ health and well-being before the turbines arrived on the island, again when the turbines were built but not yet operational and again after they’d been operating for a few months.
People living close to turbines in other regions have reported nausea, headaches, dizziness, anxiety, sleep deprivation and tinnitus – an incessant ringing in a person’s ears.