Experts say be careful on wind deals
By MARY GOLEM,
SUN TIMES CORRESPONDENT
January 15, 2011
Farmers at a wind energy information session in Elmwood this week went home with a clear message: Make sure you know what you are signing if asked to lease land for wind turbines.
Both Ted Cowan, an Ontario Federation of Agriculture energy and taxation specialist and Paisley lawyer Patrick Kelly told about 120 farmers at Tuesday’s meeting “there are too many unknowns” surrounding lease agreements for wind energy projects.
Elmwood-area farmer Byron Monk, and others in the Elmwood area, have been approached in recent weeks by wind energy companies to sign leases.
Monk, who told those at the meeting he’s not against wind energy projects, said he’s interested in the compensation such projects offer farmers but “needs to know a whole lot more information” before proceeding.
“That’s why I thought we’d get some farmers and landowners together here today that could be affected by this and try to learn something,” Monk said. He added he’s been told that one company has plans to erect 100 to 125 turbines in the area.
Before addressing the crowd, Cowan handed out a two-page list of more than 30 items he said they “must consider” before signing anything.
…he’s [Byron Monk] been told that one company has plans to erect 100 to 125 turbines in the area.