Land Being Considered for Wind Energy Projects

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Brendan Kelly

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Nov 8, 2022, 10:39:40 AM11/8/22
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Good Morning,

I just wanted to get the word out that the Government of Newfoundland & Labrador is preparing to offer large sections of the island for wind energy projects. Yesterday they released a map of the locations. Immediately I noticed that the areas identified are important locations for wildlife and should not be open to such developments. Here is a list of some of the areas I noticed:

- The highlands surrounding Cape St.Marys
- The entire coast near Argentia (A known Whimbrel flyway)
- The area that is home to the easternmost population of Rock ptarmigan
- A huge area surrounding Barachois Pond Provincial Park (and the proposed expansion area)
- The majority of the mountain range in the Codroy area (Starlight Trail area)
- The proposed Cape John protected area (West of Codroy)
- Cape Ray and Red Rocks Road
- A huge swath of core caribou habitat identified by the government in 2014 (NW of Conne River)

This list is just a small portion of what it looks like the government has planned. The maps they have released are poor quality so I can not see fine enough details to confirm other locations at risk. I did notice that some of the areas identified butt up against multiple existing and proposed protected areas and include intact landscapes.

If you would like to learn more about this and have your voice heard, information sessions are taking place next Monday and Tuesday, from 12 to 1:30 p.m. You must register here: https://www.gov.nl.ca/releases/2022/iet/1107n03/

Brendan

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Martin Berrigan

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Nov 8, 2022, 5:42:01 PM11/8/22
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It's very very scary what the agenda of the Canadian Govt. along with any Newfoundland Provincial Govt. who could really care less about this beautiful Island and just bow to Ottawa's demand to appease all the energy that our Prime Minister is promising to deliver to the Western world.l fine this very alarming for our beautiful habitat,the birds,the beautiful Mountain ranges that draw tourists here,are we to just sacrifice it for the sake of wayward Govt.'s,once it's destroyed there is no getting it back and it's far more valuable as pristine wild land.With Musrat Fall's why in this forsaken Island would we sell ourselves,our Island,it's as if there has been absolutely no lessons learned whatsoever since Churchill Fall's.I'm signing up immediatedly and I'm hitting Open Line,when will this mad senseless hypocrisy end.I understand there's a war going on,I know it's terrible and destructive but must Newfoundland,it's heritage of wild,untouched land,must it be destroyed to supply Hydrogen and so forth to the Western world,do not be blind to this fact what is running this concept is our Federal Govt.,in my opinion we should just say no to Justin and do everything in our power to protect this beautiful Island and publicly made all Newfoundlander's aware of what Andrew Furey is agreeing to in alignment with the Federal Govt..Gerard

J. Russell

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Nov 9, 2022, 7:56:20 AM11/9/22
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Brendan,

Thank you for posting that heads up and link.

I don't know what criteria sites have to meet to be viable sites for wind energy projects but if it is true that there can be too much wind to be good for such projects then it should be possible for the government to predetermine by sound arguement areas that meet that threshold and not beyond among other criteria. I don't know if that has been done but if not it would be helpful to know what those threshold criteria for the industry are and to see them mapped. Perhaps they already are. Personally I don't have the time right now to find out so I will go ahead and make speculative comments which if I am lucky are already covered.

Among the "other criteria" to be assessed in limiting the area available for development consideration are as you suggest Brendan:

- considerations of known ecological importance (e.g. bird and caribou migration corridors, foraging and breeding habitats)

- ecological value of an area based on it's adjacency to:
- existing protected areas and/or other large areas of intact landscape
- landscape that provides important connectivity to other larger or different habitat

It is important to acknowledge that we do not understand landscape ecology well enough to know the full implications of our choices. The Precautionary Principle may provide helpful guidance.

Public discourse is served well by aiming for :

- Honesty and clarity in the selection of our criteria and decision making process

As a bottom line for acceptable landscape planning choices, it is entirely reasonable to challenge the planning process to focus on identifying sites which will meet the needs of projects with minimal disruption to the landscape (e.g. require the minimum installation of access points and routes both to the project sites and for transmitting power from the sites).

And this BEFORE allowing preventable investment on the part of the industry with which they can hogtie government and the public later.

The development of oil and gas off our shores is a good example of how not to offer up our Landscape for bidding. Our model with offshore oil and gas land rights acquisition has been to ask the industry to identify where they'd like to go, put their choices up for bid, require them to invest Capital and then after accepting the winning bid's committment to spend money only later do we have the environmental assessment when the Proponent knows what they want to do. At that point, the perception and cultural values more or less insure that the project is a given already - cart before the horse approach.

Lots to think about and it will all happen too fast for most of us so with any luck defining simple bottom lines upfront increases chance of meaningful participation.

Brendan Kelly

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Nov 15, 2022, 11:05:14 PM11/15/22
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There is now a questionnaire that people can fill out to voice their concerns on places they think should not be selected for wind development.

Future generations will thank you for taking 5 minutes to give feedback.

https://www.engagenl.ca/engagement-initiatives/crown-land-nomination-process-onshore-wind-energy-projects

Brendan
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