Petition Closed

Make Unifor Accountable for Turbine's Noise

Unifor, formerly the CAW (Canadian Auto Workers) is Canada’s largest private sector union and the owner-operator of the controversial CAW Wind Turbine. The turbine, located in Port Elgin, Ontario on the shore of Lake Huron, began operation in 2013 to generate money for the Union.

Unifor’s wind turbine is contentious primarily because it is located just 210m from the nearest home, less than half of the 550m distance required by provincial noise regulations.

The Ministry of the Environment approved Unifor’s turbine after the Union had the community’s zoning changed from a rural ‘tourist/recreational’ classification to city ‘semi-urban’ to allow for increased noise. To further address noise levels, the Union stated that its powerful 800kw turbine would operate at just 500kw (despite reduced revenue generation) and the Union would self-monitor its operation. Additionally, the Union agreed to hire an independent acoustic consultant to conduct noise audits.

Doris Dumais (responsible for Ontario’s turbine approvals at the time) assured residents in a letter that stated: “The Ministry has required the proponent (CAW) to undertake auditing once the turbine is in operation to ensure the noise limits are not exceeded beyond the Ministry’s standards. The proponent has committed to scheduled monitoring which will be performed over the first two years of operation. The proponent has agreed to share these results with the Ministry…”

Three years later, Unifor has not conducted the Ministry's required noise testing despite hundreds of noise complaints from neighbours and a formal testing request from Town Council. Nor has the Ministry enforced the testing despite knowledge of the ongoing complaints and no test results from Unifor.

Community efforts to conduct their own professional tests have been thwarted by Ministry noise test regulations that require Unifor’s participation. Meanwhile, Unifor has programmed the turbine to shut down when winds blow from the east due to excessive noise in its nearby training facility.

Nearly 200 families live within a 550m radius of Unifor’s turbine. Their complaints simply receive an automated email response with no follow-up. These families continue to suffer, with no recourse.

Support the families who live near Unifor’s turbine. Join us in asking Glen Murray, Minister of the Environment and Climate Change, to ensure Unifor conducts the noise testing it committed to do—now. This petition further requests that the results of Unifor’s noise testing be made public and that immediate corrective action be taken if the audit results show the turbine is not in compliance with provincial noise regulations.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This petition was delivered to:
  • Glen Murray-Minister of the Environment and Climate Change

    Greg Schmalz started this petition with a single signature, and now has 308 supporters. Start a petition today to change something you care about.