EDPR has been forced to halt all construction activities for its 100 MW Nation Rise Wind Farm in Ontario after its Renewable Energy Approval was revoked
EDP Renewables Canada (EDPR) has issued in a company statement that the firm strongly objects decision made by the Ontario Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks’ to revoke its Nation Rise Wind Farm’s Renewable Energy Approval (REA) and that it is now assessing all potential legal actions. This unprecedented decision means the REA that was issued by the Minister’s own staff, defended by Ministry legal counsel and subsequently ratified by the Environmental Review Tribunal is no longer in effect. As a result, EDPR has been forced to halt all construction activities in the region, including the 100 MW Nation Rise Wind Farm.
The firm further stated that “the Minister’s decision effectively overturned previous findings of both experts and the Tribunal, which had both concluded based on a significant investigation, expert evidence, and due diligence, that the project has no material adverse effects on the natural environment.
Decisions of this nature should be based on science and law, yet there was no expert testimony or evidence presented at the Tribunal or to the Minister that would provide a reasonable rationale for the Minister’s decision. Instead, the Minister based his decision upon an issue the appellant did not raise even once in its appeal submission. The decision also contradicts scientific and expert findings and appears to exceed the Minister’s legal jurisdiction under the Environmental Protection Act.”
The Nation Rise Wind Farm is a 29-wind turbine, 100-megawatt wind energy project in the Municipality of North Stormont within the United Counties of Stormont, Dundas, and Glengarry in eastern Ontario, Canada. Nation Rise began construction in May 2019 and construction is significantly advanced with numerous wind turbines already fully erected. The project was competitively procured under the IESO Large Renewable Procurement and will produce zero-emission electricity.
The project also represents a very significant investment for the local and provincial economy. It has created over 230 local construction jobs to date and will create around 10 permanent direct local jobs and numerous indirect jobs during operation. Further, the project will inject more than CAD 45 million over 30 years into the local community through municipal taxes, a community benefit fund, charitable contributions and landowner payments.
“While EDPR is wholly perplexed by this unfounded decision on the part of the Minister, it is prepared to pursue all legal courses of action in response and fully trusts the Canadian justice system as a means of positioning EDPR to resume the construction activities at Nation Rise Wind Farm,” the firm stated.