The Wallaceburg Area Wind Concerns group has asked the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) to halt the Otter Creek application process.
The group says they want the stoppage until “all the missing data” is complete. They’re also calling for another public meeting to present this information to the community.
The group sent a letter to the MOECC on Tuesday via its lawyer, group officials say.
Executive members with Wallaceburg Area Wind Concerns met with representatives of Boralex and members of Chatham-Kent council on December 7.
At that meeting, the group learned that the noise assessment data for the, as yet untested Eneroon turbines, was not complete, and there was no timetable for when it would be available, group officials say.
Boralex also indicated that the developer is considering another option for the turbine foundations, and that geo-technical testing was being planned, but again there was no date for the testing, group officials say.
“We’re very concerned that there is not enough information for two critical aspects of this power project, noise and the foundations,” stated Violet Towell, spokesperson for Wallaceburg Area Wind Concerns, in a press release.
“We have asked repeatedly for the facts about the effect of the noise from these huge turbines on residents, and what the impact on water wells will be from construction and vibration during operation.”
Group officials say requests for a public meeting have been denied.
The group says last week residents in the Wallaceburg area “were shocked” to learn that pile testing had begun at a number of sites for the Otter Creek project. Read more, here: Pile testing starting at Otter Creek site
Wallaceburg Area Wind Concerns officials say letters sent by the developer to a handful of residents contained “limited information” and “limited notice.”
The group added that most of the larger community was uninformed of the activity.
Adam Rosso, director of project development for the Otter Creek Wind Farm project, told the Sydenham Current last week that “independent engineering experts” are conducting geotechnical testing.
“As part of the geotechnical test program, one test pile will be installed at three separate locations,” Rosso said.
“Pile testing is an important step in the engineering process. It helps us understand the ground characteristics, and provides us with the information needed to design the foundation for the turbines.”
Rosso says the community was informed about the testing beforehand.
“The Boralex approach is to keep our neighbours informed,” he said.
“Letters were sent through the mail to residents in the immediate vicinity of the three testing locations.”
Wallaceburg Area Wind Concerns officials say they question the choice of project site.
The group questions whether the soil conditions are conducive to wind turbine construction and they question the location and how close it is to a town of 10,000 people.
Wallaceburg Area Wind Concerns officials say the developer told them the site was “far, far from ideal” but the company proceeded because Chatham-Kent was so accommodating.
“The Otter Creek power project must not be approved until residents of our community have accurate information about this project,” stated Towell.
“There are many compelling questions not answered, key information that is missing, and changing project details. In order to protect our health, our homes and our community, we want answers now.”
Watch for more on this story.