Tribunal Report April 29 – May 3

May 5, 2013 admin Latest Posts

I am indebted to Henri Garand and Paula Peel for complete descriptions from the tribunal that I have used in preparing this report.

 

The week started with a witness panel from the Ministry of Natural Resources.  Melissa LaPlante and Andy Baxter were the last of the Ministry of Environment witnesses and testified about how project impacts on endangered species were determined and regulated.  On cross examination it became evident that the MNR relied on data presented by Stantec and, what seemed to be, informal consultations with colleagues in determining project approvals.

 

Witnesses for Gilead Power were heard for the rest of the week.  Dr. Scott Reynolds testified on bats; Dr. Doug Larsen, on alvar; Dr. Paul Kerlinger and Dr. Dale Strickland on the effect of wind turbines on birds; and Dr. Fraser Shilling on access roads.  In all cases the testimony was designed to refute the testimony of the PECFN witnesses.  We were lucky to have three of our witnesses return to the County to help Eric Gillespie with his cross examinations of the Gilead experts.  Paul Catling, Ted Cheskey and Bill Evans made “flying” visits to consult on alvar habitat and birds and migration specifically.

 

It was a long and somewhat tedious week.  One of the outcomes seems to be that the phrase “serious and irreversible harm” is impossible to prove.  This is not a bad thing.  It calls into question the Renewable Energy Act legislation. The PECFN ERT appeal is the first case in which expert witnesses have been called to comment on serious and irreversible harm to plant life, animal life or the natural environment. Other cases heard on harm to the environment have not had the benefit of legal counsel or expert witnesses.  It may turn out that the PECFN appeal ends up making law not following it.

 

As we go into the last week of the PECFN appeal the 6 little old ladies that are the active participants on behalf of the Field Naturalists are starting to think about the second phase of our fund raising and have we got a deal for you!

Anna Sand has donated a week in June at her lovely cottage at Prinyers Cove to the Save Ostrander Point Appeal.  In June, Sand Box Cottage rents for $800 a week.  Dates available are: June 1-8; June 8-15; Jun 15-22; and June 22-29.  If you book one of those weeks the fee will be donated in full to Save Ostrander Point.  This is a very generous offer.  If you have family visiting why not take advantage of it.  The cottage and surroundings are described at http://www.thesandboxcottage.ca/

 

Thank you for your continued support of Save Ostrander Point and the Prince Edward County Field Naturalists.

www.SaveOstranderPoint.org

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