Sprott proposal falls short

Darrell Cole
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Amherst wind farm expansion fails to make the cut

Sprott Power's proposed expansion to its Amherst wind farm may be on hold after its submission to the renewable energy administrator was not approved.

AMHERST – It appears as though Sprott Power’s plan to expand its Amherst wind project will not proceed, at least for the time being.

The company was not successful in its application to the renewable energy administrator to expand the project, although a smaller application through the COMFIT program is still moving forward.

The project was one of 19 submitted to Power Advisory LLC, the company selected to act as the renewable energy administrator for the latest round of expressions of interest.

“We’ll reassess we are. We have some other options we want to evaluate, but overall it’s not the news we were expecting,” Sprott Power’s chief operating officer Don Bartlett said.

The Toronto-based company officially opened its $61-million wind farm near Amherst in late June and was looking to expand on the 31.5 megawatts of electricity it’s generating by building up to 15 additional turbines on the east side of the Trans-Canada Highway closer to Amherst.

It also wants to erect three turbines near the existing project through the province’s community investment program.

Amherst Mayor Robert Small said he has mixed emotions with the news.

“I’d like to see Cumberland County have more opportunities for wind energy, but at the same time this gives us a little breathing room to have more discussions on the appropriate setbacks from the town’s perspective,” the mayor said.

Responding to concerns from citizens, the mayor had written the premier asking for a delay on any additional wind projects until the completion of a Health Canada study on the health effects of wind turbines. The results of that study aren’t expected until 2014.

The official announcement on the successful applicants is not expected until next week at the earliest, but it has been learned that three projects have been approved, including those that are minority owned by Nova Scotia Power.

The projects include South Canoe in Chester – a partnership of Nova Scotia Power, Minas Basin Pulp & Paper and Oxford Frozen Foods, the Municipality of Guysborough and one by RES destined for the Cobequid region near Nuttby Mountain.

It’s not known how many of the applications were from Cumberland County, but it’s believed the Pugwash project, proposed by Atlantic Wind Farms, was also turned down. The North Cumberland Wind Power LP project would have seen up to 12 turbines erected in the Gulf Shore area near the Irishtown Road.

Sprott Power had also applied for a 9.2-megawatt project in Lingan and a 25-megawatt wind farm at Hampton Mountain.

EDF Energies was hoping to erect a 50-megawatt project with 30 to 60 turbines on the marsh near Fort Lawrence.

Bartlett said the Amherst operation has proceeded smoothly since it went live earlier this year. The project led to a strong second quarter result for the company. It’s reporting the farm contributed $1.6 million to revenues of $4 million for the period between April and June – a 60 per cent increase over the same three months last year.

Overall revenue from other operations was down slightly to $2.4 million from $2.5 million – which the company attributes to warmer weather and fewer windy days.



Organizations: Power Advisory, Nova Scotia Power, Trans-Canada Highway Health Canada Oxford Frozen Foods The North Cumberland Wind Power LP

Geographic location: Amherst, Cumberland County, Chester Guysborough Nuttby Mountain Pugwash Irishtown Road Lingan Hampton Mountain Fort Lawrence

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Recent comments

  • jason
    August 06, 2012 - 09:43

    It is important that leaders of our province, county, municipality and town understand and recognized the needs of all citizens and protect each and every citizen from harms way. It is very difficult for some people to come forward and express their concerns let a lone vioce their pain and suffering. Our leaders job is to serve ALL not a select few... Is it just me or does this sound contradictory. Are you a politician like robert, cheryl.

  • Wow
    July 27, 2012 - 20:25

    Wow Cheryl---you scared me!! Worse feeling than the Flicker Effect Syndrome!!

  • jr
    July 27, 2012 - 07:32

    I know that you are against these tirbines Cheryl, but as it was stated, they have been in existence for decades and no one has died due to them and I have never seen an article as of yet that can actually prove that they have done damage to anyone at such a distance. They have rules and regulations that state how close they can be built to a residence so that has already been comsidered. I am curious how a town can dictate what can or cannot be done in the county. Soon you will state that someone has a house that just doesn't fit in because it blocks the natural sunlight and that is causing adverse conditions to somebody. Should they now tear the house down and force the people out? How many more years will it take to make someone like yourself look at the big picture? You say that you are so educated, then that maybe so. Who cares who you are. I certainly do not. I think about the community and the rest of the world as well. Open your mind up. Go out and smell the roses and stop searching for ways to stop civilization from moving forward with green methods which are much better for the ecology.

  • Cheryl La Rocque
    July 26, 2012 - 11:44

    It is important that leaders of our province, county, municipality and town understand and recognized the needs of all citizens and protect each and every citizen from harms way. It is very difficult for some people to come forward and express their concerns let a lone vioce their pain and suffering. Our leaders job is to serve ALL not a select few... Jobs are important. Health and wellness are important. Caring and compassion is paramount. Unfortunately, when their is a lack of understanding and compassion this reflects back on the commuty, the leaders, businesses and corporations. I feel sure the leaders in our town, county, businesses and coporations will reassess and reconsider common ground and take the appropriate action that reflects and includes the application of the "PRECAUTIONARY PRINCIPLE": Excerpt from a Legal Letter Dated April 17, 2012 from Eric K. Gillespie Professional Corporation, Barristers & Solicitors Sent to The RIght Honorable Steven Harper and The Honourable Robert Douglas Nicholson Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, and sent to each Canadian province's and territories Premiers and thier Ministers of Justice and Attorney Generals and/or Attorney Generals and Department of Justice, as well as cc to all members of Parliament of Canada, this letter states: "There is evidenece that state and national industrial wind energy policies and- / - or legislation fails to protect human health; and further that industrial wind energy facilities negatively affect the physical, mental, and social well being of family members when sited in close proximity to residents and as a result, a number of Articles of the UN Declaration of Human Rights, the United Nations Convention for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) and United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child may ne violated....." Research inidcates wind developments need to be sited with care and setbacks need to be implemented to reflect the precautionary prinicple so as to not impact in any way any person. Children, special needs, seniors, and those all ready suffering need to be protected. Each of us need to foster caring, compassion and understanding. Each of us have responsibilities that include a responsibility to ourselves, our families, our friends, our neighbors, our town, our county and province... each component of wellness and health in that this incompasses reflects well on the environment becuase of this caring attitude to others extends to the environment. To cause needless pain and suffering on others will reflect back on all.

    • A Different World
      July 26, 2012 - 15:56

      Gee Cheryl---they are just wind turbines---golly gee---just wind turbines---you certainly live in a different world than I do or anyone that I know for that matter. Just wind turbines Cheryl. Come down to earth!!

    • sueb
      August 01, 2012 - 12:02

      You certainly have a lot of freelance writing experience and I'm sure you do quite a bit of research; however, just because one writes about health doesn't qualify them as a medical expert. "Freelance" could also be defined as unemployed and research could be no more than reading several online articles. Think you'd better haul in your attitude until you prove your qualifications to speak as an expert on the topic of wind turbine related health issues.

  • Concerned Citizen
    July 26, 2012 - 11:16

    Amherst continues to think small. San Jaoquin County in California has been running these for two decades. While the environmental impact will be different for Amherst obviously, much of the human impact to exposure has been documented. Did you give the same level of scrutiny to cell phone towers? They produce close to the same level of magnetic fields as wind turbines. Open the mind, Amherst politicians, and work. Yes, gathering knowledge is hard, and the victim excuses you are using is wearing thin.

    • Cheryl La Rocque
      July 26, 2012 - 13:41

      If your comment is directed at me- Cheryl La Rocque - I research extensively on many issues that affect the health and wellness of people. Obviously you are not aware of who I am or what I do. To assume I am ignorant of other issues or unaware of other negative issues demonstrates to me that you are trying to avoid the issues at hand. To redirect attention to other issues shows you are a concerned citizen yet still uninformed in this matter. If you wish to "open" your mind then I challenge you to reveal who you are and then we will be able to communicate in a more effective manner. I have written on health and wellness issues for over 19 years in many daily, weekly, provincial, national and international publications... I am not afraid to share my research or discuss concerns. I feel confident in my position. I am aware of research on a global scale... and what other countries are doing with respects to the issue of set backs of large scale turbines and large numbers of wind turbines and multitude of wind developments.... I am aware of litigation issues that other communities and developments are facing, be rest assured I know much more than you do.

    July 26, 2012 - 09:10

    all i really wanna know is how many times is this photo gonna be in the paper haha.

  • Robert McCallum
    July 26, 2012 - 03:43

    Unfortunate that private developers proposed to spend a cumulative 4 billion in NS and the govt chose to go with about 300 million instead. really thought that through. What's the tax revenue on 4 billion?

  • Mr. Chow
    July 25, 2012 - 20:06

    One word "WATERWORLD". When we go under water there will be people complaining to the mayor about how big your boat is. I still do not understand how a very "small" amount of people can complain and pretty much destroy the rest of us. People really are selfish stopping thinking about now and think about your kids and the future.

  • weme
    July 25, 2012 - 19:23

    how a few people in amherst runs this town it has been that way for years it will never change they do not want good jobs in this area these mayors and counsel have to go get some people who wants to bring good jobs to amherst

  • Thank you
    July 25, 2012 - 18:00

    Thank you Mayor Small for helping kill the opportunity for the additional wind turbines and the resulting employment as well as income for those fortunate enough to own marshland near the towers. With friends like that who needs e-------! I would imagine your letter asking the Premier to hold off 'til 2014., in case someone gets a wind turbine headache, carried a lot of weight. Hey those downtown brick sidewalks look great though. Should be good for 4 years or so. Sure will dress up the NEW town office.