A Plympton-Wyoming family trying to stop Suncor Energy from building industrial turbines will have to shell out $10,000 to look at data they think will help prove turbines hurt human health.
Lawyers for the Bryce family have asked the Environmental Review Tribunal to adjourn the hearing into the appeal of the project for six months so they can study data collected by Health Canada.
The federal agency recently released the preliminary report and the family’s lawyer believes there is evidence that can link some of the noise caused by industrial wind turbines to problems such as headaches and sleeplessness.
But Asha James told the ERT Stats Canada will only allow a researcher 22 days to analyse the data for $10,000.
Lawyers for Suncor also told the ERT adjudicators they had applied to see the raw data as well but had been told it would cost $4,500.
Elizabeth Bellavance speaks for We’re Against Industrial Turbines Plympton-Wyoming. She’s disappointed by the revelation, but not surprised.
“It’s unreasonable and is not common sense,” says Bellavance, noting Canadian taxpayers already paid $2.1 million for the study.
“It is one more added injustice to fairness,” says Bellavance.
“I’m getting to the point where I accept the unfairness, deal with it and move forward.”
But she’d like to see Suncor agree to a delay to allow researchers to look at the data.
“Why would they not want more information to support their safety values?” she asks, noting the study summary does talk about how wind turbines are “statistically associated” with health effects.
“An unbiased expert needs to access this data and review it,” says Bellavance.
While she believes the fee is unfair, for the Bryce family it is a heavy financial burden to bear, Bellavance says.
“I am hopeful the community will realize just how unfair the process is and come forward to help pay for this.”