With Wind We All Lose

Friends of Wind has used the tagline, “With Wind We All Win”, referring to jobs in rural areas, lease income for farmers, property tax revenue for municipalities, and environmental benefits of wind energy. But last week I drove past a billboard that said “With Wind We All Lose.” The billboard references Wind Vigilance Ontario, an anti wind group that splintered from Wind Concerns Ontario. I have always had difficulty agreeing with the anti wind people in the past. But finally, I think I agree with them. With wind, we all lose.

We lose the emissions from coal plants, which don’t need to operate when the wind is blowing. We lose their NOX emissions, that contribute to smog, that kills thousands of Ontarion’s per year. We lose the fine particulates, which cause major health problems. We lost the sulfur dioxide emissions, that causes acid rain, that kills lakes, stunts forests and agricultural crops, and damages historic buildings. We lose the mercury emissions that make fish from the Great Lakes toxic if eaten in large quantity, and has caused birth defects in loons as far away as Nova Scotia.

We lose the carbon emissions from coal and natural gas, which we burn to make electricity. We will lose the impact of climate change. We will lose the droughts, and the major rain and storm events. We will lose the climate refugees, which will be coming to our shores in search of a livable part of the planet. We will lose the risk to our food supply, as climate change disrupts world agriculture.

We lose the fracking for natural gas that we burn to make electricity. We will lose its toxic chemical cocktail that we inject under high pressure underground, with its risk to water supplies.

We lose the toxic waste that we don’t know what to do with at our nuclear plants. We will lose the risk that nuclear material falls into the wrong hands. We lose the chronic cost overruns that we face every time we do something nuclear. We lose any additions to the beloved Debt Retirement Charge that is added to our bill to pay for past nuclear follies.

Yes, with wind we have much to lose.

Let’s hope we do.

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