NextEra threatens legal action against Bluewater Township
By Mac Christie, Times-Advocate Staff
[excerpt] VARNA – NextEra Energy, the developer responsible for the Goshen and Bluewater wind projects, which propose 52 turbines for the municipality between the two, also addressed council at its Feb. 19 meeting. Nicole Geneau, the project director for the Bluewater and Goshen projects, updated council on where the projects stand.
She noted the company expects to hear back from the government about the Bluewater project in mid-March. “We would anticipate starting construction, as I’ve always maintained, in the middle of this year, so June of 2013,” she said. “We would be fully operational by the end of this calendar year.”
NextEra’s legal counsel John Terry, with the law firm Torys in Toronto, spoke to council about the bylaw. He expressed concern with the bylaw, noting NextEra is making serious investments with regard to the project. “There are certain limitations as to what municipalities can do under the provisions of the Green Energy Act,” Terry said. “Council has to be very careful about staying within what it’s legally empowered to do. “I must say, when you look at the numbers involved . . . I am concerned that once we look at it that we may find that some of the proposals here are going beyond what municipalities can do.” He added there may be similar concerns regarding the unreleased road use agreement.
Terry added NextEra does have certain legal rights that they are willing to pursue. “If it becomes necessary to take steps in court in regard to bylaws that are passed or potentially to have to seek damages, if damages are involved, then NextEra will have no choice but to follow those routes,” he said. “There are very serious legal issues at stake here.” Read article