Ontario’s Superior Court has ruled legal claims against wind companies and landowners who agree to have turbines on their property can proceed as soon as a project is approved.
Huron-Bruce MPP Lisa Thompson said in a statement “It is a landmark decision and allows property owners who feel their property is being devalued by wind turbines an open and transparent voice in our court system. This is a major step in the right direction, and I am pleased that people with genuine concerns about wind turbines will have their voices heard.”
The ruling, released on Tuesday, is based on reports that found homes in wind turbine zones are selling for less than market value.
It also considered evidence from a doctor on the possible detrimental health effects of wind turbines.
In the past, wind companies have claimed that lawsuits could not be filed until after a wind farm was built and the health effects examined.
Meanwhile, the Canadian Wind Energy Association is touting the positive impacts of Ontario’s wind turbines, namely improved air quality in the province.
The group’s annual Air Quality Report for 2011 found a drop in several air pollutants and credits the replacement of coal-burning power with clean energy like wind.