Ontario Nature is adding its voice to growing opposition to a gas-fired power plant in King, on the edge of the sensitive Holland Marsh.
The environmental group says it will fight any move to use a 60-year-old Hydro 1 easement across the Cawthra Mulock Nature Reserve for a transformer connecting to the power plant. A transformer tower on a nature reserve would clearly be at odds with Ontario Nature’s mandate to protect wild spaces, spokesperson Amber Cowie said. “Opening the door to infrastructure in one of the few natural areas left is really not what we want to do.”
Ontario Nature owns and manages the 109-hectare reserve, between Bathurst and Dufferin Sts. north of Green Lane, one property away from the proposed plant.
In December, Ontario Power Authority chose Pristine Power of Calgary to build the 393-megawatt, $365 million peaker plant, intended to handle peak periods and emergencies, and slated to be in operation by the end of 2011.
I grew up in Bradford, where half of the town works in the Holland Marsh, growing and harvesting the vegetables we eat on a daily basis. If you ever pick up a bag of carrots and it says “Bradford’s Best” on the label, you are eating carrots grown a 5 minute drive away from where I grew up.
Now it’s obvious driving down Yonge Street towards my home town that things are growing very rapidly. And, where there’s growth, there’s power requirements. Anyone that’s ever played Sim City will know this. What you’re not supposed to do is build your industrial sites beside your parks and farm lands. The two don’t mix very well, and the later always ends up turning into a toxic wasteland.
The Holland Marsh has some of the most fertile soil in the region and we can’t afford to let this turn the way of the dinosaur just because some suburbanites need to power their convection ovens.
People, please write to your mayors and town councilors. We can’t allow this power plant to be built.