Accuses singer of trying to sabotage project
AMHERST - Charles Demond is not happy.
Days after singer and part-time Gulf Shore resident Anne Murray came out publicly against a proposed wind farm near her summer home, the project's developer fired back saying Murray's comments will only inflame the situation there.
"It's not helpful at all for the business of our company and wind farms at large to have someone like Anne Murray saying this is going to be a catastrophe for the area," Demond said. "We don't accept that and it's categorically not true. If she did any bit of research she'd come to that conclusion herself."
Demond's company, Atlantic Wind Power, wants to erect between 20 and 27 100-metre tall wind turbines in the Gulf Shore area. Demond claims the turbines will be far enough away from homes and cottagers so as not to have a negative impact on area residents.
"I think it's NIMBY (not in my backyard) on steroids. She's 2.4 kilometres away," he said. "If that's an unreasonable interference with her property then I have no understanding of how society should work."
Murray joined a growing chorus of opponents to the proposed wind farm when she commented last week that she'd like to see the turbines moved further away from the Gulf Shore.
Demond has attempted to contact Murray, but was told by her publicist that the singer has no reason to talk to him.
Area residents have been fighting the project since it was first proposed and urged Cumberland County to set the distance between the turbines and their properties at a minimum of two kilometres. Instead, the municipality passed a bylaw setting the distance at the greater of three times the height of the turbine or 500 metres.
"We cannot have this province being led around by people who treat it as their own personal playground," he said. "It's insulting those people in Pugwash who support this project. Unfortunately they don't have the bank accounts that say they're important. I don't accept that."
Demond said his company wants to have a sensible dialogue with all parties regarding his proposed project, but is finding it hard to do so with all the rhetoric and misinformation out there.