Eastern Lake Ontario Environmental Research Group 2000 (cont'd from eloerg.tripod.com/waupoos)

ERT Post Mortem: Ian Dubin lets it all hang out, August 2013
Leon Redbone, RIP, June 2019
Ontario Endangered Species Act at risk, letter to Rod Phillips, April 2019
Slide to Extinction, Chris Humphrey, letter to Globe, October 31, 2018
Peter Galbraith, FRCP, obituary, October 2017
White Pines on Death Bed, Bruce Bell, Intelligencer, July 17,2018
Thucydides Trap, letter to Globe, May 2018
Great Lakes toxics down, SUNY Oswego/Clarkson U, April 2018
Machine subversion of democracy, letter to Globe, April 2018
Air Pollution overrides Ancestral Genes, Globe, March 2018
Olympian Cathal Kelly, letter to Globe, March 2018
Environmentalists seeking unemployment, letter to Globe, February 2018
Less is more on Bike Lanes, National Post, January 2018
Tramadol, 10 years on, Globe and Mail, November 2017
White Stripes: Belleville bicycle lanes, letters, November 2017
Occupational Cancers, CCO research results, Globe and Mail, October 2017
Big Pharmoney and Canadian Drug Use Guidelines, Globe and Mail, June 21, 2017, Kelly Grant
Oxycontin, 20 years on, letter to Globe, May 2017
Lake Ontario wind turbines to remain on hold? Feb 2017
Obituary, Raold Serebrin, September 2016
Sartorial slip or signal? letter to Globe editor, October 2016
Weapons of mass distraction, letter to Globe editor, Oct 2016
Point O turbines 99% Down the Drain, CCSAGE, July 7, 2016
Point O turbines Dead and Damned, PECFN, July 6, 2016
Rabid diplomat, letter to Globe, May, 2016
More on bats: rabid rocker? letter to Globe, January 2016
Lighthouses of eastern Lake Ontario, new book by Marc Seguin, March 2016
Continuing corporate windpower malfeasance: Windstream and Trillium Corp, Feb 2016
Amherst Island: the next fine mess, Feb 2016
Valerie Langer: Thirty years of effort pays off on the B.C. coast, Feb 1,2016
Trillium log, 6th annual ELO expedtion, September 2015
Trillium Wind Corp intent on Spoliation of eastern Lake Ontario and Main Duck Isle, June 2015
Turtles rule? Ontario Court of Appeal Decision: Turtlegate, April 2015
Obituaries, Mary Terrance (Luke) Hill, January 2015; Valerie Ingrid (Hill) Kaldes, July 2015
Ontario Court of Appeal turtle hearing, December 2014
Trillium Log, 5th annual ELO expedition, September 2014
Planetary public health manifesto, The Lancet, March 2014
Ostrander Bioblitz, butterfly inventory walk, August 10, 2014
Victory at Cape Vincent: British Petroleum withdraws turbine proposal, February 2014
Stay of execution granted by Ontario Court of Appeal, March 2014
Never say die: Will the Court of Appeal let the Ostrander Phoenix fly free again? March 2014
Divisional Court ruling in Ostrander: turtles belly up, Trojan horses win, February 2014
Lafarge 2020, pushing the air envelope again, Hazardous waste as cement kiln fuel proposal, Jan2014
Another fine mess in Port Hope: municipal waste incinerator proposal, January 2014
Ostrander: fiasco, or snafu? you decide, December 2013
Ostrander rises again, Noli illegitimi carborundum, December 2013
British Petroleum backing off Cape Vincent after a decade of aggression? December 2013
Turbines best Bald Eagles in U.S law, December 2013
SARStock 10 years after, letter to editor, August 2003
Trillium log September 2013: Surfin' USA: Hanging Ten in a Hughes 29
ERT Post mortem: Garth Manning lets it all hang out, August 2013
ERT post mortem: Cheryl Anderson lets it all hang out, August 2013
ERT Post Mortem: Ian Dubin lets it all hang out, August 2013
Great Lakes United turns thirty, goes down, RIP GLU, July 29, 2013
ERT decision, Ostrander turns turtle, goes down, July 3, 2013
PECFN Thankyou, and Appeal for funds, July 6, 2013
Minister of Env on Lake Ontario Off shore wind turbine status, June 2013
Lake Ontario water level control plan, June 2013
Play by Play, Part II, APPEC Ostrander ERT Appeal, June 2013
Ostrander ERT June 2013, Appendix VI, an indirect cause of human morbidity and mortality ?
ELOERG Presentation to Ostrander ERT, Part II, Human Health, May 2013
The Dirty E-Word, Terry Sprague, Picton Gazette, April 2013
Toxics in Great Lakes Plastic Pollution, April 2013
Bill Evans on Birds and Wind farms, April 2013
Mayday, Naval Marine Archive, April 2013
Experimental Lakes Area, Kenora, Closing by Federal Gov't, March 2013
Fishing Lease Phase out on Prince Edward Point, March 2013
Windstream makes $1/2 Billion NAFTA claim, March 2013
Play by Play, PECFN Ostrander ERT Appeal, March 2013
Offshore Wind turbine moratorium 2 years later, The Star, Feb 2013
ELOERG ERT submission on Ostrander: Appendix V: Pushing the Envelope of the MoE SEV, Feb 2013
Wente on Wind and Bald Eagle mugging, Globe and Mail, February 2, 2013
Sprague on Wind and Bald Eagle mugging, Picton Gazette, Jan 25, 2013
Cry Me a River over a Few Bats: Submission to Env Review Tribunal, ELOERG, January 2013
Lake Ontario's Troubled Waters: U of Michigan GLEAM, January 2013
Letter to Minister of Environment re: Ostrander, January 2013
No Balm in Gilead: Ostrander IWT's as Trojan Horses, January 2013
Ostrander Turbines: another Christmas gift by the MoE, Dec 2012
Occupational carcinogens: Ontario Blue Collar breast cancer study, November 2012
Fresh water fish Extinctions, Scientific American,November 2012
Great Lakes Toxics revisited, November 2012
Frack the What ? November 2012
$ 2 1/4 Billion Trillium Power lawsuit knockback Appeal, November 2012
Canada Centre for Inland Waters decimated, October 2012
Birds, Bats, Turbines, and the Environmental Commissioner of Ontario, October 2012
Ecological public health, the 21st centurys big idea? British MedicalJournal Sept1,2012
Trillium log, Sept 2012
George Prevost, Saviour of the Canadas, 1812 - 1814. June 2012
The Victory at Picton: Bicentennial Conference on War of 1812-1814, Differing Perspectives, May 2012
Carleton Island and the 1812, letter to the Globe, October 2011
Queen's Fine Arts Department Succumbs, letter to Principal, December 2011
Mr. Kumar and the Super 30, November 2011
Letters, Articles and Projects from the Nineties
Alban Goddard Hill, web site manager

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Comments by Ostrander Point ERT presenter / expert

[Following is a comment (slightly edited) submitted to the Whig Standard recently by Ian Dubin, who was qualified as a presenter and expert witness in the Ostrander Point ERT appeal. He is a civil / geotechnical engineer with additional qualifications in law and environmental impact assessment, and with decades of experience in the field of environmental protection.]

I was very pleased to see the Ostrander Point Environmental Review Tribunal Appeal decision. I am especially happy that my small contribution apparently helped the ERT to determine that the proposed Industrial Wind Energy project will cause unacceptable harm to the natural environment, in particular the Provincially threatened Blanding’s Turtle. This is a milestone decision – and I can only hope it helps open the door to more successful appeals against Industrial Wind Energy in Ontario.

However, this is a very narrow victory and I was less pleased that appeal evidence of other serious potential impacts was not allowed by the ERT.

On reflection this is not surprising, since the grounds for a successful appeal against projects approved under the so-called Green Energy Act are extremely onerous. Under section 142 (1) of the Environmental Protection Act, in order for an appeal against a GEA approval to succeed, the appellant must show that the project will cause ‘serious harm to human health or serious and irreversible harm to plant life, animal life or the natural environment’. Any uncertainty as regards the potential for serious and irreversible harm and the appeal is likely to be dismissed.

Never mind that the impacts are incontrovertible. Never mind that the Environmental Impact Assessment carried out under the terms of the GEA and OReg 359/09 has serious technical shortcomings. Never mind that Federal siting guidelines have been ignored. Never mind that if this were under Federal jurisdiction the public concerns raised would warrant a public hearing on the project. Never mind that the Provincial approval process by the MOE appears to be a rubber-stamp: glossing over important social, environmental, economic and health issues, sweeping public comments under the rug – once that rubber stamp comes down (as it did for Ostrander Point on 20 December last year – arguably a cynical manipulation of a short statutory appeal deadline by the MOE) the onus of proof shifts to the very stringent requirements under the EPA. I submit this is not good law and more importantly is not good environmental policy.

For many years Canada and Ontario have attempted to promote an international reputation as clean and green jurisdictions and as shining examples of successful environmental protection regimes. When I started my career nearly 40 years ago this may have been true, or at least it may have been a goal we worked for. Nowadays, however, the tarnish is showing through the shine.

The Feds are not innocent. The 2012 budget omnibus bill included measures to ‘streamline’ environmental approval processes and a great many commentators have been critical of the removal of many protective measures. I have lots of issues with the Federal environmental assessment regime – in particular the lack of transparency and the woeful neglect of follow-up and audit measures.

However, despite the problems with Federal environmental controls, and with many other aspects of the Provincial environmental assessment requirements, the Green Energy Act is in a class by itself, a control regime that is worthy of the worst third world dictatorships.

During the public comment period on the Stantec Environmental Assessment Report on the [Ostrander Point] project, I (and many other stakeholders including other experts and interested members of the community) raised numerous issues with regard to the assessment and particularly with Stantec’s reports. According to the Ontario Environmental Bill of Rights website, a total of (from memory) about 1500 public comments were received. The EBR website listed about 400 of those comments and included replies to those from the Ministry of Environment. But what happened to the other 1100 comments? There is no record that anyone at MOE even bothered to read them. The comments and responses are no longer available on the EBR website.

My own comments, which were not recorded nor dealt with in any way, were technical in nature and called the conclusions of the Stantec EIA Report into question. It was on this basis that I filed a witness statement with the ERT. As I set out in that submission, the primary issue I was concerned with was that the MOE approval had ignored potentially important criticisms of the Stantec Report. Therefore the Provincial EIA Process failed to demonstrate that all relevant environmental issues had been dealt with. I pointed out that the Minister of the Environment had therefore not fulfilled his primary duty under the Environmental Protection Act which is (S 3 (1) EPA) ‘to provide for the protection and conservation of the natural environment.’

I referred in my ERT submissions to the Precautionary Principle. This principle – a corollary of the Hippocratic Oath and one of the precepts of modern medical ethics: ‘first, do no harm’ – has been one of the keystones of environmental protection legislation worldwide, since Richard Nixon – yes, that Richard Nixon – signed the National Environmental Protection Act (NEPA) into US law in 1969. It was expressed succinctly during the Second International Ministerial Conference on the Protection of the North Sea in 1987 and codified in Principle 15 from the Rio Declaration put forward at the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development.

Under the precautionary principle it is the responsibility of a proponent to establish that the proposal will not (or is very unlikely to) result in significant harm.

The precautionary principle denotes a duty to prevent harm, when it is within our power to do so, even when all the evidence is not in. This principle has been codified in several international treaties to which Canada is a signatory. Domestic law makes reference to this principle but as a number of authorities have pointed out, implementation remains limited. As regards the Green Energy Act the precautionary principle is roundly ignored and that was part of the basis of my submission to the ERT.

This is also the problem with the ERT process. Once the approval has been given, no matter how flawed the approval process was, the onus shifts to an appellant to ‘prove’ that the project will cause serious and irreversible harm. This violates the precautionary principle and is an important reason why the Green Energy Act needs to be repealed.

During the public review and comment period on the Stantec EIA report for Ostrander Point, interested parties commissioned several independent studies on various environmental issues. Amongst these was Dr. Beaudry’s report on the Blanding’s Turtle, which was submitted to MOE as a response to the Stantec Report. Because of the slipshod MOE approval process there appears to be no record that anyone at MOE read or considered Dr. Beaudry’s report. I raised that omission in my ERT submission and the Prince Edward County Field Naturalists subsequently called Dr. Beaudry as a witness.

It was Dr. Beaudry’s evidence that turned the tide of the appeal.

Again, I am pleased at the outcome, but it does not go far enough. It is high time that McGuilty’s – oops, I mean McGuinty’s – so called ‘Green Energy’ fiasco is brought to a richly deserved and long overdue end.

As a final comment, it disgusts me to see the MOE committing taxpayers dollars to an appeal of the ERT decision. The people that don’t want this project will pay for the MOE appeal.

Signed.... Ian Dubin



Sent:July-04-13 1:20:44 AM

iandubinhk@gmail.com (iandubinhk@gmail.com)

Hello Ian.
Looks like your man Beaudrie turned the key in the Ostrander case.
Good job !
Thanks !
  • RE: Waiting (no more) for the ERT‏

    Sent:July-04-13 8:09:06 PM
    To: Cheryl Anderson (cherylanderson23@sympatico.ca); myrna@kos.net (myrna@kos.net)
    Hello Cheryl and Myrna.
    Can't tell you how much I admire your steely determination in shutting this project down.
    Your opportunistic and brilliant conversion of the Dubin near-disaster by getting his man Beaudry to appear in person as the turtle expert proved to be a mortal blow to the Lords of Gilead, and the moguls of the MoE, and well deserved too. However I think that the evidence on plants, bats and birds was no less critical because as you know, turtles don't live on paved parking lots, they live in complex ecosystems, and so the stage was set and the context was created in the minds of the judges by Catling, Barclay, Okines et al, thus allowing Beaudry to nail it down.
    Marvellous.  Heroic.
     The best way to show our appreciation for Eric's work will be to pay his bill but you can't control all of that ladies, so don't take on more than you already have.  You have been carrying a heavy weight and its time to lighten your load.
    Best regards.

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    Eastern Lake Ontario Environmental Research Group