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Proposed Amendment to the Class Environmental Assessment for Waterpower Projects – by Hugh Currie, White Pine Lodge

September 16, 2012

Agatha Garcia-Wright
Director – Environmental Approvals Branch
Ministry of the Environment
12A Floor 2 St Clair Ave W
Toronto, ON
M4V 1L5

Re: Proposed Amendment to the Class Environmental Assessment Water Power Projects

Dear Ms. Garcia-Wright:

I wish to comment on the Proposed Amendment to the Class Environmental Assessment for the Waterpower Projects as follows:

  • there are a large number of small tourists outfitter throughout Ontario that are dependent on our undisturbed Natural Resource’s and our healthy River Ecosystems.
  • First Nations communities are dependent on a healthy river system throughout all the Water Sheds. They are dependent on a healthy river system for drinking water, transportation, trapping, food, and recreation.
  • only a few kilometers of our rivers are not in use by people.

The Environmental Assessment must continue on waterpower facilities of 2 megawatts or under as cycling, peaking, and run of the river projects continue to alter and result in negative impact on river ecosystems.

The Environmental Assessment process should not be altered, for the past, present, and future power generating stations. There needs to be a constant process in place for any unforeseen projects in the future, which may fall under the Environmental Assessment process. An example of this would be a mine closure rehabilitation I’ll give you a reason why this process should be in place and not altered -The NORAD Bases. These bases were constructed throughout Canada in the 1950’s to protect us from Air attacks and it wasn’t until 1988 The Canadian International Development Agency got involved and set up guidelines to clean up the horrific environmental damages that were sustained when the bases were abandoned. This cost our government hundreds of millions of dollars to clean up. The guidelines that were developed by this should be copied and continued to ensure that any future projects that involve our environment will be protected. These guidelines will prevent occurrences such as Fort Albany, a NORAD base that had PCB, arsenic, fuel and oil leaking into the ground. This base has cost in excess of 9 million dollars to clean up the environmental damage.

I feel as a steward of the environment that I cannot allow the Environmental Assessment process to fail, which will create giant footprints as in the past. This is just one of many examples why the Environmental Assessment process must continue and those who create footprints must be held accountable for the clean up and rehabilitation of the environment and not the taxpayers of Ontario and Canada.

The Environmental Assessment for all water powered facilities has to be ever more diligent so not to create an unsustainable ecosystem that will compromise future generations.

I am requesting that the Amendment to the Class Environmental Assessment for waterpower projects fewer than 2 megawatts be rejected.

Yours truly,

Hugh Currie
White Pine Lodge
Box 114
Foleyet, ON
P0M 1T0