TORONTO — Out of sight, out of mind. That’s the only way to explain the complacency urban residents have for the desecration of rural Ontario.
Politicians from small towns across the province came to Queen’s Park Thursday demanding the Kathleen Wynne government return decision-making to the local councils.
Huron-Bruce MPP Lisa Thompson brought a private member’s bill that would counter the Green Energy Act, which stripped local politicians of any say in the siting of wind and solar farms in their communities.
She says such projects are forcing up the cost of electricity and causing job losses in the manufacturing sector. Thompson says companies in her riding are struggling to pay their soaring hydro costs.
One auto parts company, West Cast Industries, told her they’ve had an extra $5 million added to their bill over the past nine months by way of the so-called global adjustment to pay for green energy. Those staggering costs are forcing companies to move to places where electricity is cheaper.
A Volvo plant once located in Goderich has moved to Pennsylvania. Iconic local food producer E.D. Smith is shuttering its Seaforth salad dressing plant and moving to the U.S. in June.
“We need affordable energy for Ontario to prosper,” Thompson told a news conference Thursday.
Kevin Marriott, mayor of Enniskillen, said the GEA has been “nothing short of a nightmare for our community.”
Industrial turbines have become one of the most divisive issues he’s ever dealt with in his Lambton County municipality.
Local politicians have lost their local voice.
“People in Enniskillen are concerned that the cost of these industrial wind turbines is killing our existing manufacturing and not generating any new business,” he said.
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