Turbine Update

The ExPlace turbine is still down with problems in the Technicon converter. Replacement parts have arrived and a technician familiar with the converter will arrive on October 1. We hope to have the turbine up and producing as soon as possible.

We will keep you informed of progress.

WindShare Technical Team

Maintenance update

Please be advised that the ExPlace turbine is offline for required maintenance until further notice. We thank you for your patience and apologize for any inconvenience. We expect the turbine to be up and running sometime mid next week.



Reminder: New Health Canada Study re: Wind Turbine Noise and Health is open for public consultation re: methodology

WindShare encourages all interested parties to submit their comments and suggestions re: Health Canada’s new study on wind turbine noise and health with respect to its design and methodology. The deadline for public consultation is Aug 8th, 2012.

**UPDATE** The deadline has been extended to Sep 7th, 2012.

We refer you to Friends of Wind excellent post below. Please note the list of contacts to whom you should direct your comments and concerns related to the study.

via @FriendsofWind:

As many of you know, the Canadian Federal Government has entered into the wind turbine debate, launching a wind turbine noise and health study. According to the press release, ‘The study will look at the relationship between complaints about noise and health effects with what has been “objectively measured” in people living near wind power installations’.

The proposed research design and methodology is posted on Health Canada’s website Tuesday for a 30 60-day public comment period, closing August 8, 2012 September 7, 2012.

Public feedback will be reviewed and a response will be posted to the site at a later date.

Final study results are expected to be published in 2014.

1/ Action

Friends of Wind Ontario and our affiliated partners concerned with the environment and renewable sources of power are requesting your participation in making a submission within the 30 60-day public comment period (ends 7 September, 2012), in response to any or all aspects of the Federal Government Wind Turbine Noise and Health Study.

Please use the email addresses listed below in your submission: (source: http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/ewh-semt/consult/_2012/wind_turbine-eoliennes/index-eng.php )
David S. Michaud, PhD
Principal Investigator
Consumer and Clinical Radiation Protection Bureau
Healthy Environments and Consumer Safety Branch
Health Canada
Email: wind.turbine.health.study@hc-sc.gc.ca
Fax: 613-941-1734

Please cc the following four associate researchers in list below:

email: stephen.keith@hc-sc.gc.ca
email: katya.feder@hc-sc.gc.ca
email: tara.bower@hc-sc.gc.ca
email: wricharz@echologics.com

Also please send Health Minister The Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, P.C., M.P a copy of the submission: Minister_Ministre@hc-sc.gc.ca
Ministry prefers submissions by online feedback form: http://hc-sc.gc.ca/contact/ahc-asc/minist-eng.php

2/ Health Study Direct Quotes (source: Health Canada)

Research Objectives:

To investigate the prevalence of health effects or health indicators among a sample of Canadians exposed to WTN using both self-reported and objective health measures.
To apply statistical modeling in order to derive exposure response relationships for WTN levels as well as self-reported and objective health measures.
To address the uncertainty that currently exists with respect to low frequency noise from WTs as a potential contributing factor to adverse community reaction.

Currently, there is insufficient evidence to conclude whether or not there is a relationship between exposure to the noise from wind turbines and adverse human health effects, although community annoyance and other concerns have been reported to Health Canada and in the scientific literature.

Health Canada acknowledges the World Health Organization’s (WHO) definition of “health” as “a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity” and, “the extent to which an individual or a group is able, on the one hand, to realize aspirations and to satisfy needs, and on the other, to change or cope with the environment” (WHO, 1999).

It is not clear if those receiving economic benefit experience lower WTN annoyance because they gain financially, or if they began with a lower annoyance and, therefore, were more likely to become participating receptors in the first place. Similarly, the interaction between visual annoyance and noise annoyance is equally difficult to disentangle. In both cases, it is difficult to make causal statements about the relationship between exposure to WTN and community annoyance and, therefore, to set science-based sound level limits.

The study will be conducted on a sample of 2000 dwellings randomly selected from those located near 8 to 12 WT installations in Canada. Sampling will be conducted on volunteers that are at least 18 years of age.

3/ Questions and Answers
(source: http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/ewh-semt/consult/_2012/wind_turbine-eoliennes/question-eng.php )

4/ Health Canada’s Wind Turbine Noise and Health Study Research Design Working Group Members/Collaborators/Advisors
(source: http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/ewh-semt/consult/_2012/wind_turbine-eoliennes/committee_comite-eng.php )

David S. Michaud, PhD (Principal Investigator/Project Manager)
Health Canada
Research Scientist, Health Effects and Assessment Division
Environmental and Radiation Health Sciences Directorate
Consumer & Clinical Radiation Protection Bureau
email: david.michaud@hc-sc.gc.ca

Katya Feder, Ph.D. (Project Co-ordinator)
Research Scientist, Health Effects and Assessment Division
Health Canada
Environmental and Radiation Health Sciences Directorate,
Consumer & Clinical Radiation Protection Bureau,
Health Effects Assessment Division
email: katya.feder@hc-sc.gc.ca

Others (in alphabetical order)

Tara Bower, M.Sc.
Director, Office of Science Policy Liaison and Co-ordination (OSPLC)
Health Canada
email: tara.bower@hc-sc.gc.ca

James Brooks, M.D., FRCPC
Chief, National Lab HIV Genetics
Public Health Agency of Canada

Shirley Bryan, PhD
Chief Subject Matter
Canadian Health Measures Survey
Physical Health Measures Division
Statistics Canada

Allison Denning, M.E.S.
Regional Environmental Assessment Co-ordinator
Health Canada – Atlantic Region

Paul Dockrill, M.Sc.
Acting Program Manager, Wind Energy Technology Group
Natural Resources Canada

Christopher Duddek, M.Sc.
Senior Methodologist
Statistics Canada

Kenneth C. Johnson, PhD.
Research Scientist/Senior Epidemiologist, Science Integration Division
Centre for Chronic Disease Prevention and Control
Public Health Agency of Canada

Stephen Keith, Ph.D.
Research Scientist, Consumer & Industrial Products Division
Health Canada
email: stephen.keith@hc-sc.gc.ca

Antoine Lacroix, Eng., M.Sc.
Wind Energy Engineer, Renewable Energy Technologies
Natural Resources Canada

Eric Lavigne, Ph.D.
Epidemiologist, Environmental Issues Division
Public Health Agency of Canada

Serge Legault, B.Sc.
Survey Manager, Special Surveys
Statistics Canada

Tony Leroux, Ph.D.
Professor of Audiology
Faculty of Medicine, University of Montreal

Leonora Marro, M.Sc.
Statistician, Population Studies Division, Biostatistics Section
Health Canada

D’Arcy McGuire, B.A.
Senior Policy Analyst, OSPLC
Health Canada

Brian James Murray, MD FRCP(C) D, ABSM
Director of Integrated Medical Education, University of Toronto Department of Medicine
Associate Professor, Neurology and Sleep Medicine
Vice Chair, Research Ethics Board
Sunnybrook Health Sciences Center

Denis Poulin, M.A.
Chief, Special Surveys
Statistics Canada

Werner Richarz, Ph.D., P.Eng., FASA
Chief Acoustical Engineer
Mississauga, Ontario
Email: wricharz@echologics.com

Jason Tsang, P.Eng.
Senior Acoustics and Vibrations Engineer
Canadian Transportation Agency

Paul Villeneuve, Ph.D.
Senior Research Scientist, Epidemiologist,
Population Studies Division
Health Canada

Shelly Weiss, M.D., FRCPC
Neurologist, Director of Faculty Development
Associate Professor, University of Toronto
President-elect, Canadian Sleep Society
Department of Pediatrics, The Hospital for Sick Children

International Advisors

Roel H. Bakker, Ph.D.
Senior Researcher, Applied Health Research
University Medical Center Groningen
Groningen Area,

Norm Broner, Ph.D.
Practice Leader – Acoustics, Noise and Vibration
Sinclair Knight Merz
Melbourne, Australia

Sabine A. Janssen, Ph.D.
Senior Research Scientist
Urban Environment and Safety
TNO Department of Environment and Health
TNO – Nederlandse Organisatie voor Toegepast Natuurwetenschappelijk Onderzoek (Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research)

Hideki Tachibana, Ph.D.
Chiba Institute of Technology
Professor Emeritus
The University of Tokyo, Japan

We thank our growing base of subscribers for their news updates, while also reaching out and attracting even more new wind energy supporters for this email, and by doing so, are helping the collective wind energy cause. As always, all wind-related information from any recipient is welcome and we invite new recipients. If you have questions or concerns, please contact us directly.

Who We Are

Friends of Wind Ontario (FoWO) is a network of independent people from a variety of backgrounds who firmly believe in the numerous economic, environmental and social benefits of responsible wind energy for the people of Ontario. We have formed to fill the critical participatory void that exists among community engagement, municipal consultation and achievable wind power development. Through science-based, peer-reviewed research, we are committed to delivering a balanced message to all who would like to learn more on the benefits of wind energy. We are a non-profit volunteer-run organization, not affiliated with any political party, under our own direction and have not received funding from wind developers, landowners, industry/government associations, foundations or environmental groups.

Please follow us on Twitter: @FriendsofWind

For blog updates received to your in-box, please sign on to our Ontario Highlands Friends of Wind Power blog .

ExPlace Wind Turbine Offline for Service during Honda Indy

While always a prominent moving fixture during the Honda Indy, our Ex Place Wind Turbine is being serviced over the next few days and will not be turning during the race. The maintenance will include the replacement of a failed component at the base of the tower, which is being shipped in from our European supplier.

While having one of the highest levels of availability of its kind in the world, Ex Place is an earlier design of turbine, consequently replacement parts are not as readily available. Special efforts have been made to lower overall costs and downtime by having the component shipped in and installed during a lower electricity production timeframe.

It is anticipated that our turbine will be back online by early mid-week after the race.

At this time, here are the 2012 Production numbers (June figures are not yet available) :

 Jan. = 151 MWh (record production month)
Feb. = 66 MWh (mechanical component failure, resulting in being offline several days)
Mar. = 108 MWh
Apr. = 81 MWh
May = 46 MWh

YTD Plan Line = 448 MWh (weather normalized)
YTD Actual = 452 MWh (net; above estimates)

Thank-you for your continued interest in following the progress of North America’s first urban wind turbine.


WindShare Co-operative
Toronto Hydro Energy Services Inc.

June 25-27 Speaking Tour: Living beside wind turbines – Perspectives from an Alberta landowner

Speaking Tour featuring Heidi Eijgel, neighbour to the Summerview Wind Farm in Pincher Creek, Alberta

Repost from Tim Weis, Pembina Institute
June 13, 2012

While Alberta may be better known for its oil and gas resources, it is also the birthplace of wind energy in Canada. The first wind farm — in Pincher Creek, Alberta — began producing electricity in 1993, and now there are communities and landowners in southern Alberta who have almost 20 years of experience with wind turbines on their own land, and on their neighbours’ land.

In Ontario, wind farms are a more recent addition to the rural landscape. While Ontario has been Canada’s leader in wind energy for many years, the advent of the Green Energy Act in 2009 has meant that rural Ontario landowners are seeing more proposals for wind power projects near their communities.

That’s why we have arranged for Heidi Eijgel — an Albertan rancher with a decade of experience living next to a wind farm — to tour Southern Ontario and share her experiences. Heidi will be making three stops on the tour, in Grand Bend, London and Chatham-Kent. The events are open to the public and we’d like you to join us.

From Monday June 25 through Wednesday, June 27, Heidi will share her story and answer questions from Ontarians. As Director of Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Policy for the Pembina Institute, I will also be on hand to facilitate the discussion and answer questions. I hope to see you there.

Tour dates:

Monday, June 25: Alhambra Hall, Grand Bend, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, June 26: Aeolian Hall, London, 7 p.m.
Wednesday, June 27: Chatham Banquet and Conference Centre, Chatham-Kent, 7 p.m.

About Heidi

Heidi Eijgel raises horses on a ranch 700m from Summerview Wind Farm, a 70.2 MW wind power project in southern Alberta. Heidi and her husband do not have an ownership stake in the wind farm, but for 10 years they have been some of the wind farm’s closest neighbours as well as some of its biggest advocates.

Renewables Helped France Avoid Freezing in the Dark

French Wind Offsets Down Nuclear Reactors
French & German Wind Likely Made the Difference during Arctic Cold Spell

By Paul Gipe
February 10, 2012

In a startling development widely reported across Europe in the English-, French-, and German-language press, France imported electricity to meet peak demand during a brutal cold snap February 7, 2012.  And one of the countries France imported electricity from was Germany.

Post Fukushima, Germany closed two-fifths of its nuclear reactors and there were fears that Germany would not be able to meet its own demand let alone export electricity. Nuclear reactors provided one-fourth of Germany’s electricity before Fukushima.  Available French nuclear capacity was operating flat-out with three reactors off line.

However, France’s famed nuclear fleet delivered only 60% of the 100,000 MW of peak load experienced at 7:00 pm (19:00 hours) as millions of French homeowners switched on their electric heaters. The remainder of demand was met by oil, coal, hydro, imports from neighboring countries, and renewables.

French wind turbines produced 3,600 MW at the time, or 3.6% of demand. There is 6,600 MW of wind capacity installed in France. Thus, wind delivered 55% of its installed capacity during peak demand, indicating good but not exceptional wind in parts of France.

The amount of wind generation during peak demand was roughly equivalent to the three nuclear reactors that were not available at the time. France imported 500 MW or 0.5% of peak demand from Germany.

Both French and German grid operators noted that there was never any danger of a blackout as operators held some hydroelectric capacity on standby as an emergency reserve.

German Supply during French Peak Demand

Meanwhile, Germany was enduring the same Arctic weather as France. The sun had set so Germany’s solar photovoltaic capacity was not contributing to supply.

Winds were lighter in Germany than in France, but Germany’s fleet of 29,000 MW of wind turbines was generating 6,300 MW at the time for about 22% of their potential.
Nevertheless, German wind turbines were providing 9% of total German demand, more than enough for Germany to export 500 MW to France.
Earlier in the day, wind and solar in Germany met nearly 12% of German demand.
It is likely that German biogas and biomass plants also contributed significantly to supply. However, the public data source, EEX Transparency Platform, does not report biogas and biomass separately from conventional generation.

  • Craig Morris: French power consumption exceeds 100 GW— Eleven months ago, when Germany shut down 40 percent of its nuclear power capacity, some experts warned of blackouts in the winter, but it turns out that the German grid is one of the most stable in the region. . .
  • Liberation: Le Grand Froid Met Le System Electrique en Haute Tension–Un pic passé toutefois “même pas mal”, dit-on du côté d’EDF et de sa filiale RTE chargée de veiller à l’équilibre entre consommation et production. Les moyens disponibles et programmables pouvaient assurer 95 GW, auquel on pouvait ajouter 5 GW de moyens diffus et une prodution éolienne réelle de 3,6 GW. Du coup avec 7 GW importés, soit 7% de la consommation, les marges de sécurité, avec plusieurs GW d’hydraulique mobilisables rapidement étaient conservées. . .
  • Brutal cold triggers reserve power plants–“We do not have a problem of supply, of quantity, it’s principally a question of stabilising the network,” a spokeswoman for the Germany electricity market regulator said. . . A recent study showed that Germany is now compensating for the off-line nuclear stations primarily with renewable energy: around three-quarters of the atomic gap. So although it’s been extremely cold recently, sunny weather in Germany helped fill France’s power shortfall caused by the country’s heavy dependence on nuclear energy. . .
  • Some Facts on the Electricity Heating Crisis in France December 2009–Two excellent documents have been released by the Association négaWatt in France. These reflect on the electricity crisis in France during a previous cold spell just prior to Christmas, 2009 caused by the unchecked growth of electric heating. . .

Paul Gipe is an author, advocate, and renewable energy industry analyst.  He has written extensively about renewable energy for both the popular and trade press. He has also lectured widely on wind energy and how to minimize its impact on the environment and the communities of which it is a part. The views expressed are his own and are not necessarily those WindShare.

CanWEA disappointed with OFA statement on Wind Energy

Will continue to work to ensure farmers enjoy productive relationship with wind energy

The Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA) is extremely disappointed that the Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA) has called for a suspension of wind energy development at a time when farmers across the province are actively participating in, and seeking to participate in, wind energy developments throughout Ontario. In fact, many of the issues that the OFA has identified as areas of concern are already being reviewed and examined through processes like the Ontario Government’s Feed-in-Tariff (FIT) Review process.

“We are surprised and disappointed the OFA is proposing to put thousands of jobs at risk in Ontario and limit the ability of farmers to participate in Ontario’s clean energy economy,” said Robert Hornung, CanWEA president. “We will be seeking a meeting with the OFA to better understand their point of view and discuss their concerns and will remain active participants in the processes that are already in place to discuss many of these issues.”

The wind energy industry has a long history of working with the agricultural community and in fact sees farmers as a key partner in wind energy development as thousands of Ontario farmers are participating in Ontario’s clean energy economy through FIT and microFIT programs. CanWEA has worked with leaders within the OFA and other agricultural associations to inform our best practices in stakeholder engagement and to ensure the industry continues to be a good partner.

“We will continue to provide fact-based answers to ensure Ontarians have the information they need to make informed choices as Ontario moves towards a cleaner, stronger and affordable energy system,” added Robert Hornung.

Wind energy plays increasing role in meeting Ontario power demand

 November marks highest output month on record for wind energy

(OTTAWA) Jan. 11, 2012 – Wind energy is playing an increasingly important role in meeting Ontario’s demand for electricity, according to the Independent Electricity System Operator’s annual release of supply, demand and price data. Total wind energy production rang in at 3.9 terawatt hours TWh – up substantially from 2.8 TWh in 2010. November 2011 marked the highest monthly wind output ever seen in Ontario, with production in that month alone exceeding 0.56 TWh. In annual terms, wind generation represented 2.6 per cent of total output across all fuel types of 149.9 TWh.

A record level of new wind energy projects were commissioned in both Canada and Ontario in 2011. In 2011, new wind energy projects were built and commissioned in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia. More than 5,000 MW of wind energy projects are already contracted to be built over the next five years.

“Wind energy is proving itself a key partner as Ontario builds a stronger, cleaner and affordable electricity system. Increased growth of wind energy in Ontario means cleaner air, new jobs and local investments for the communities that host wind energy projects,” said Robert Hornung, president of the Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA). “Maintaining Ontario’s leadership position will require continued commitments to aggressive targets for wind energy development and a stable policy framework.”

In 2011, the wind energy industry in Canada represented more than $3 billion in new investments that have created 17,000 person years of employment. Canada is now ranked ninth globally in terms of total installed wind energy capacity.

About CanWEA:
CanWEA is the voice of Canada’s wind energy industry, actively promoting the responsible and sustainable growth of wind energy on behalf of its more than 440 members. A national non-profit association, CanWEA serves as Canada’s leading source of credible information about wind energy and its social, economic and environmental benefits.

To join other global leaders in the wind energy industry, CanWEA believes Canada can and must reach its target of producing 20 per cent or more of the country’s electricity from wind by 2025. The document Wind Vision 2025 – Powering Canada’s Future is available at www.canwea.ca

Auditor General of Ontario Report: Incompetent or Intentionally Misleading?

Glen Estill
December 14, 2011

When I re-read the recent Auditor General’s report on renewable energy, I continued to find significant deficiencies. The report was either written by incompetent people, or was written in a way to intentionally mislead the reader.

On page 104 of the report, it states, “Ontario’s FIT prices were originally designed with the intention of allowing a reasonable rate of return, defined as 11% after-tax return on equity, for developers of all types of renewable energy projects.” Later in that section is states, “The OPA said it initially developed Ontario’s FIT prices based on the long-established and successful FIT programs in Germany and Spain. We noted that the internal rates of return offered to the developers in these countries varied depending on project risks and ranged from just 5% to 7% in Germany to between 7% and 10% in Spain.”

The report is comparing return on equity (ROE) to internal rate of return (IRR). Further, the report offers no explanation to the reader that these are two entirely different concepts. ROE is the return earned on the equity portion of the investment. IRR is the return on all capital, including equity. For example, if you invest $1000, and the IRR is 10%, then the investment will earn $100. But if you can borrow 80% of the $1000, at an interest rate of 7%, then your equity is only $200. The $100 in income goes first to pay the interest – $56. The balance of $44 is your return on equity, or 22% of the equity amount of $200. Internal rate of return is 10%. Return on equity is 22%. (Note that I have simplified things a bit and assumed that the borrowed amount remains borrowed for the life of the investment. In practice, lenders usually like the loan to be paid off over the life of the investment instead of just at the end. This would reduce the return on equity, but the point remains – return on equity is higher than IRR if you can borrow for less than the IRR.)

Surely the Auditor General understands the difference between ROE and IRR. If not, then there is serious incompetence. And surely the Auditor General knows that his writings need to be accessible and understandable to media, politicians, and bureaucrats, most of whom would not understand the difference between ROE and IRR. If the Auditor General doesn’t understand that, then we have a serious problem. Who else reads the reports?

So where are we left? The only plausible explanation is that the Auditor General was writing a report with a strong bias against renewable energy, and the policies designed to enable it. Another word for that is propaganda. Shame.

Reprinted from Wind Blog, http://wind-blog.com/?p=428 by our Colleague & Friend of Wind, Glen Estill.

Improving the Green Energy FIT (2011)

 By Don McCabe, Vice President, Ontario Federation of Agriculture

Developing green energy and securing sustainable energy sources has been a priority for government, industry, researchers and consumers for decades. In Ontario, we are fortunate to have programs that ensure green energy is a priority today, and for future generations.

The Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA) was an early supporter of green energy and joined with the Ontario Sustainable Energy Association and other like-minded groups in 2008 to campaign for a Green Energy and Green Economy (GEGE) Act. The act was passed in 2009 and set a commitment to the Feed in Tariff (FIT) program. Ontario’s FIT program is North America’s first comprehensive guaranteed pricing structure for renewable electricity production offering stable prices under long-term contracts for energy generated from renewable sources including wind, solar, biomass and biogas.

A past provincial Conservative government passed legislation to remove coal fired power from Ontario’s energy mix. A key objective of the GEGE act is to assist in the phase-out of coal-fired generating stations inOntario by the end of 2014. In a recent speech to the Economic Club of Canada, Premier McGuinty commented that, “we know the price of fossil fuels will keep going up, while we know the price of renewable technologies will keep coming down. We know where the world is going. And we choose to lead, not follow.” These words from the Premier indicate a rock solid commitment to the development and implementation of green energy technologies.

With the new act, the government also committed to a FIT program review (this includes microFIT) within two years to evaluate the program’s rules and pricing. The provincial government has kept its promise and OFA is pleased to be involved in the FIT program review process. 

Farmers are in a unique position. All farmers are consumers of energy and rely on an efficient generation and delivery system across the province. But now there is also potential for many farmers to participate in the generation of energy through the FIT and microFIT programs. The OFA’s critical assessment of these programs will identify both strengths and weaknesses in each. The intent will be to recommend changes that enable both of these programs to continue into the future and provide opportunities for Ontario farmers to contribute to Ontario’s long-term goal of generating green energy from renewable sources. The OFA’s submission to the FIT program review is in the final stages of drafting. It will be submitted to the Ontario Ministry of Energy by mid-December and posted to the OFA website. The position will include recognition of the balance of improved technology cost implementation and consumer pricing.

OFA continues to advocate for the development of green energy for farmers, consumer pocketbooks, and the health of the province. All farmers are power consumers. And now they have opportunities to become power generators. We must ensure policies embedded in the FIT programs are in the best interests of all Ontarians. Green energy has an important place in our industry and we’re working to make it a better fit.

We encourage you to leave you own supportive comment at the following link http://www.ofa.on.ca/media/news/Improving-the-green-energy-fit.