WIND TURBINES: Drinking Water Wells

WIND TURBINES: Drinking Water Wells

Postby Oscar » Wed Jun 07, 2017 8:16 am

Council of Canadians supports Water Wells First campaign to protect local drinking water

[ ... king-water ]

May 30, 2017 - 2:08 pm

(PHOTO: Dover resident Mark St Pierre with a sample of what a filter removed from his well water in just two days. Photo by Mark Calzavara.)

The Council of Canadians is supporting Water Wells First, a local group concerned about the impact of industrial wind turbines on the local aquifer and water wells in Dover and Chatham townships in southern Ontario.

South Korea-based Samsung Group and U.S.-based Pattern Energy Group want to build 34 wind turbines through their North Kent 1 project (in Dover and Chatham townships), despite concerns that have already been raised about the impact of their North Kent 2 project wind turbines on local water (in Dover Township).

Earlier this month, Toronto-based Council of Canadians regional organizer Mark Calzavara visited the communities.

Calzavara wrote in this blog, "Nobody I met was against wind power – in fact most welcomed the projects and never suspected that their sudden well water problems were caused by turbines a few kilometers away. ...[But] despite clear indications that anchoring wind turbines into the Kettle Point Black Shale threatens to render undrinkable the well water of hundreds of people, Samsung refuses to change their construction methods and refuses to offer guarantees to area residents that they will install municipal water lines to any homes whose well water is ruined." [ ... r-supplies ]

Chatham Daily News now reports, "Water Wells First has been sounding the alarm about the what it believes has been the impact of vibrations from the construction and operation of industrial wind turbines in Dover Township, citing the fact black particles have been appearing in water wells near wind turbines. It also fears the same impact will be seen when the North Kent 1 Wind project is built in Chatham Township."

That article adds, "Water Wells First wants answers about what the vibrations from the turbines are doing to the Kettle Point black shale that makes up the bedrock on which the aquifer is located, because this particular black shale is known to contain heavy metals such as arsenic, uranium and mercury that pose a risk to human health."

Water Wells First has now secured a meeting (date to be confirmed) with senior technical staff with the provincial Ministry of Environment and Climate Change. The group will ask the ministry to test for black shale particles in the water and if they have determined if there is an acceptable level of contamination. The group is holding a public meeting tonight to prepare for that meeting with officials.

Calzavara has commented that local residents have been following the official process, but despite those efforts their drinking water is still under threat. He notes, "Once again, people in Ontario have come to the realization that their governments will not protect the water – it is up to us." Water Wells First spokesperson Kevin Jakubec says The Council of Canadians “gave us backing and support and trained us in non-violent civil disobedience ... we're prepared to go that far [to protect our drinking water]."

This is an urgent issue in that the transnational corporations could begin work on the North Kent 1 site any day now.

To learn more, please check out Water Wells First on Facebook by clicking here:
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Re: WIND TURBINES: Drinking Water Wells

Postby Oscar » Thu Jan 25, 2018 10:15 am

Stunning 14,000 fold increase in black shale particles found in well water since start of Samsung turbine construction

[ ... ng-turbine ]

January 24, 2018 - 5:08 pm

(PHOTO: A pile-driver used to set the foundations of wind turbines into the bedrock)

The Chatham Voice reports: [ ... r-quality/ ]

“A Chatham couple whose family has been without clean well water since wind turbine construction began more than six months ago is coming forward with test results that show just how contaminated their well is.

RTI Lab testing reveals a 14,000-times increase in Kettle Point Black Shale particles, with the majority of the micro particles under one micron in size. The baseline sample from RTI shows particles of the shale go from 47 particles per millilitre of water to 681,939 counts/mL.”

Paul and Jessica Brooks had water samples taken by a hydrogeologist before Samsung began pile-driving nearby for their 32 turbine North Kent One wind power project. They are one of fourteen families that have filed well interference complaints with the Ontario government from Samsung’s construction activities. The lab results from water samples taken after construction began prove there has been a stunning decrease in water quality compared to the baseline samples taken six months ago.

The Chatham Daily News report continues:

“When their well went down because the pump was clogged with black sediment, testing by AECOM, the company hired by NKW1 to investigate complaints said in its report water flowed freely and the water did not appear cloudy, which contradicted the Brooks results and subsequent Ministry of Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) results. The ministry is still investigating the discrepancy and other AECOM test results from well complaints in the NKW1 project area.”

Over a year before construction even began, these pollution problems were predicted by experts who testified on behalf of the local community group, Water Wells First, in hearings of the Environmental Review Tribunal.

The Ontario Ministry of Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) based their approval of this project on a flawed computer model (paid for by the developer) which predicted there would be no impact on well water from vibrations. The reality of what is happening now must take precedence over the flawed predictions made before construction began.

The MOECC has so far refused to acknowledge that there is a connection between the start of pile driving and the sudden pollution of people’s well water. Perhaps the reason they are so willfully blind to this obvious connection is that the pollution problem doesn’t stop with the end of turbine construction. In certain wind conditions, the turbines themselves send vibrations into the bedrock that causes black silt to enter wells. People in neighbouring Dover Township have been finding black silt in their wells for years since the installation of nearby wind farms. The bedrock that underlies much of this part of South Western Ontario is made up of Kettle Point Black shale- a rock formation that seems to be particularly sensitive to vibrations. Several other multi-million dollar wind turbine projects are expected to be constructed in this area over the next few years.

Water Wells First has called for the Ontario government to also investigate the health effects of ingesting black shale particles. Kettle Point Black Shale is known to contain heavy metals such as mercury, arsenic and lead.

This isn’t about whether wind power is good or bad. This is about a poorly designed project polluting people’s well water and a government that is so deeply beholden to the interests of billion-dollar corporations that it refuses to protect its own citizens.

The Council of Canadians supports wind power as a sustainable alternative to fossil fuels which can help Canada meet 100% of its energy needs from renewables by 2050. But as with any other industrial infrastructure, wind farms must be carefully developed to avoid having serious impacts on vulnerable areas.

Click here to tell Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne to order a halt to Samsung’s project:
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Tags: water; groundwater
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