For Immediate Release
January 7, 2013
Selkirk – Haldimand-Norfolk MPP Toby Barrett says approval to remove an eagles nest east of Selkirk smacks of big money corrupting Ontario government procedure.
The tree hosting the nest was cut down to make way for an access road for a Next Era wind turbine. The Ministry of Natural Resources published permission for the removal at 5pm Friday, January 4, 2013.
“Frankly, I feel betrayed – I was in communication with the Minister’s office through December, and we were never alerted to this unconscionable decision until it was too late,” asserted Barrett. “I got to the site on Saturday just after the nest had been removed.”
Ontario’s Environmental Review Tribunal green-lighted the Next Era project last fall following a month-long hearing in Hagersville.
“Clearly the Ontario government and its Green Energy Act have corrupted the system – with so much money to be made by government’s wind proponent friends, concerns for wildlife and rural values are rolled over while opponents are kept in the dark,” Barrett intoned. “We’ve been told that the nest was removed to reduce eagle mortality – a clear admission that wind turbines kill eagles.”
Barrett visited the Lakeshore Road location early Saturday afternoon to witness the tree removal. Onlookers informed him that the nest was “active” – despite official remarks indicating the opposite – and that there have been a number of eagles inhabiting the area over the last 4 to 5 years.
The Haldimand Norfolk MPP noted that it was just a few years ago that a dead eagle was found near the base of a wind turbine in Norfolk County – Government officials at the time described it in the media as a “careless eagle”.
“Bottom line, government’s continued refusal to listen to or include rural residents in decision-making affecting their way of life is leading people to reach some unfortunate conclusions,” Barrett said. “People ask me, ‘if government isn’t going to play by the rules, why should we?’”
For more information please contact MPP Toby Barrett at 519-428-0446, 905-765-8413 or 1-800-903-8629