County setting parameters for transmission lines
Chris Montanini, Londoner
Two subsidiaries of NextEra Energy Canada have applied to the Ontario Energy Board for leave to construct electricity transmission facilities for their proposed wind farm projects in Middlesex County. The applications were submitted to the OEB Feb. 8 and in anticipation of an upcoming hearing to allow the public and other agencies to express interest, county councillors at their bi-monthly meeting Feb. 19 in London gave Middlesex County staff permission to intervene on their behalf.
Chris Traini, a Middlesex County engineer, said the procedure will be “fairly standard” for electricity infrastructure on county property. “We want to go to the (OEB) to make sure they know (NextEra) has to follow the normal county bylaws and policies,” Traini said. “So they’ll need work permits, entrance permits, moving permits, the same as anyone else who would install infrastructure on a county road.”
Traini said they will also need to craft a Road User Agreement outlining the terms that will allow NextEra to install infrastructure on county roads. The applications include transmission lines within the right of ways of Kerwood Road, Nairn Road and Elginfield Road. “We’re trying to put ourselves in position so we don’t have additional costs to do our normal jobs (like road maintenance and construction) and therefore increase the burden to tax payers because of this infrastructure,” Traini said. “We ask for that because we don’t have detailed engineering drawing until they actually go to construction which will be a few months after approval is given.”
It typically takes the OEB around 30 days from the date an application is submitted to announce a hearing, Traini said. Read article