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rhone1

These are my comments regarding the proposed TCE Pumped Storage Project at the Meaford Tank Range.

I am a senior of 91 years, an environmentalist since industrial development in North York, Ontario, in 1964 poisoned a local pond on Rivalda Road, killing a flock of ducks. Despite my report to authorities, nothing was done about it.

There have been many environmental issues since that I have been actively involved in, some successfully, most of them not.

My comments will be based on practical experience, and common sense, rather than scientific reports.

I respected the “Save Georgian Bay” group until one of their e-mails called this proposal a looming “catastrophe”......which I considered overkill to the point that it motivated me to make this comment.  First Nations near the Alberta Tar Sands Project could use this adjective with justification.

koepkenwerkFor the first 20 years of my life in Germany I lived within 5 km of a pumped storage facility on the Ruhr River , near the Town of Wetter. The Koepchenwerk.
Built in 1929 , it has been in constant operation to this day, with the interruption during WWII, when the Moehne Dam was broken by British bombers. Of course, there have been updates since. The original site is a tourist attraction to-day.

I am not aware of, nor can I find any environmental problems connected to this site. I attach a couple of pictures taken during a visit to Germany, in 1976, when the tour boat turned at the outlet during day time, when water was released to fill demand for electricity.
No further comment, because the pictures tell the story.

This facility does not interfere with residential or other development in any way, neither noise, light or any other pollution. It is simply an integral part of the German electricity grid. rhone2

To put another, historic perspective on this proposal, I remember construction of the St. Lawrence Seaway and the disruption/dislocation of whole villages in the National interest.

I remember spending weekends at beautiful Darlington Provincial Park on Lake Ontario, before it became the huge Pickering nuclear electricity generating site. In the Provincial interest, and necessary to supply reliable electricity to all of us...huge transmission lines included. I remember beautiful sunsets from where Bruce nuclear is situated, in the Provincial interest...

Every one of these developments have actual and potential environmental impacts such as deadly radiation from a nuclear accident, warming of the Great Lakes from cooling of the generators. Just to scratch the surface, population near these nuclear generating sites have to be prepared to evacuate their homes in case of accident at a moment's notice. Warning systems are active 24/7.

Compare these actual developments to the proposed pump facility under discussion, and the objections fade into mere temporary inconveniences for residents abutting the roads leading to the construction site.
All other objections can be eliminated through engineering applications.
Once completed, no one on either side the development will even be aware of its existence, if it operates the way Koepchenwerk does. Nor will there be any impact on the water pumped up and released back into the lake.

Considering the sacrifices residents in proximity of the nuclear plants have made and are making every day to secure ample supply of electricity for our extravagant and unsustainable lifestyles, the 4-years disruption by construction of some residents living on the access route to the tank range, fades into insignificance.

As well, many of the the Grey County residents living near the gravel pits that have become a permanent and growing feature of the beautiful Grey County landscape , and are essential for developments in all parts of Ontario, including the residences near the proposed pumping facility, are owed a debt of gratitude for sacrificing their enjoyment of peace and quiet to the betterment of the rest of Ontario. .

If our governments at all levels enforce environmental safeguards, this development has the potential to have a positive impact on the County of Grey, including the residents presently opposing it by making many unsubstantiated objections.

I am aware of a spotty environmental record of the proponent , TCE, In some of their oil pipeline projects. For that reason it is of vital importance all environmental and regulatory requirements be met by the proponent in planning as well as under construction.

While this is “old” technology, it is also proven technology with minimal impact on the environment.

Alternative battery type storage is on the horizon: until then this project has an important role to play in providing reliable supply of electricity during times of high usage.

My only regret in this undertaking, if it proceeds, is that it is not a PUBLIC driven and owned facility.
Sir Adam Beck, creator of the Ontario Hydro Electric Commission, which became Ontario Hydro, intended his creation to be a PUBLIC utility, to provide Ontarians with electricity at cost in perpetuity.
Subsequent politicians have made an absolute mess of this intention for political gain.
The rumble you are feeling is Sir Adam rotating in his grave , appalled.

I support this project if all environmental and social criteria are met.

With Respect

Karl Braeker, Meaford

ruhrtour


 

 

 

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