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Canada

Canada

MUDDY HEADED THINKING

Kenetech's and Hydro Quebec's plans have nothing to do with questions of Canadian national unity. They have to do with the extent of the wind resource -- which in Quebec is one of the best in the world -- and with the nature of the contractual agreement between the parties. This article (WINDPOWER MONTHLY, January 1996) may have done damage to Kenetech and to the future of wind energy in Canada. The Editor replies regarding the Quebec vote for independence.

I am completely at a loss to understand the connection you are attempting to make between last autumn's Quebec referendum and the proposed Kenetech wind farm in the Gaspe (Windpower Monthly, January 1996). The article is full of muddy headed thinking and a non story. Kenetech's and Hydro Quebec's plans have nothing to do with questions of Canadian national unity. They have to do with the extent of the wind resource -- which in Quebec is one of the best in the world -- and with the nature of the contractual agreement between the parties.

There is a tendency to become overly melodramatic where the Quebec question is concerned. I fear this article may have done damage to Kenetech and to the future of wind energy in Canada. Hydro Quebec, CanWEA, Kenetech and even Greenpeace Montreal would dispute the distorted connection made between Parti Quebocois, ecological pillage, the referendum and public hearings on Kenetech's projects. You have earned a reputation for high standards that is well deserved. Unfortunately "Quebec Shaky" was not worthy of your publication.

From Jeff Passmore, President, Canadian Wind Energy Association

The point we made was that if the Gaspe project was delayed by a protracted public consultation exercise, Quebec might vote for independence in the meantime, changing the whole economic climate for spending on renewables, including renewables on the Gaspe Peninsula. This remains a distinct possibility. ED.

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