EDPR said it was "wholly perplexed" by the decision by Ontario’s Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks, that claimed the project would be harmful to a local bat population.
"The minister’s decision effectively overturned previous findings of both experts and [a] tribunal, which had both concluded — based on significant investigation, expert evidence, and due diligence — that the project has no material adverse effects on the natural environment," said EDPR North America.
"Decisions of this nature should be based on science and law, yet there was no expert testimony or evidence presented at the tribunal or to the minister that would provide a reasonable rationale for the minister’s decision.
"Instead, the minister based his decision upon an issue the appellant did not raise even once in its appeal submission. The decision also contradicts scientific and expert findings and appears to exceed the minister’s legal jurisdiction under the Environmental Protection Act," the developer added.
The 100MW project has already seen a number of its 29 Enercon E-138 EP3 3.5MW turbines installed. It was due to be competed in early 2020.
The country’s wind trade association, CanWEA, said the decision will damage investor reliability in the market.
"This decision is shocking and unprecedented and is one of a series of decisions taken by this government with respect to renewable energy that have dramatically reduced the confidence of the electricity industry and its investors in the Ontario market," said Robert Hornung, CanWEA president.
"Maintaining investor confidence is important for Ontario’s short- and long-term economic prosperity and a decline in investor confidence will add costs to Ontario’s electricity system and the broader economy as new investors incorporate increased risk into their investments.
"Looking ahead, Ontario will have a need for new electricity generation in the 2020s.
"No other source of potential new electricity generation in Ontario can better meet these multiple priorities than wind energy. Securing such investment at the lowest cost for Ontarians will require a more positive and stable investment climate," Hornung added.
100MW Nation Rise Nation Rise (100MW) OnshoreOntario, Canada, North America Click to see full details