Melvin Lake Wind

News Project information Schedule Community Benefits Project Consultation The Project Partners Q&A Contact

We are developing the Melvin Lake Wind project in response to Nova Scotia’s Rate Based Procurement program for low-carbon, low-cost energy to fight climate change. Up to 15 wind turbines would be placed on Crown land and private land, just south of Highway 101 and west of Pockwock Lake.

This renewable energy project would produce 100 megawatts of green power – enough for 28,000 homes and to displace approximately 2.2 million tonnes of CO2 equivalent over its lifetime.

The map below shows the preliminary location of the wind turbines.

We are glad that you are visiting our website. We hope to answer any questions that you may have and encourage you to get in touch.

Development
Current status
Permitting process
Construction
Operation

News

May 2022: Project Update 

We are mailing an update to households in communities close to the project.

Download the pamphlet

March 2022: Project Update

We are mailing an update to households in communities close to the project, with a new map of the proposed development area.

Download the pamphlet

September 2021: Open House on September 15, 2021

Please join us at the Open House to learn more about the proposed Melvin Lake Wind Project:

Wednesday, September 15, 7 pm to 9 pm
Upper Hammonds Plains Community Centre, 711 Pockwock Rd.

Meet the partners – Nova Scotia company Community Wind and international renewable energy experts ABO Wind Canada. Learn more about the construction schedule and process, how the turbines will look and sound, and about environmental studies underway. Hear about opportunities and provide your input on how to use a community benefit fund from the project.

Download Open House invitation

 

 

Project information

Site Location

The wind turbines will be located on private land and Crown Land between the communities of Sandy Point, Jordan Bay and Jordan Ferry.

 

Visualizations

These photos were taken from various locations facing the position of the turbines. We inserted wind turbines into the photos, so you can see how it will look.

The visualizations are based on the project layout and design from August 2021 with a turbine model that has a combined hub height and blade length of 201.5 m. New visualizations that reflect the most current layout and design will be added in fall of 2022.

We provided pdf files with more information in the Download section.

 

Download

 

 

 

 

 

Schedule

2021
  • Wind measurement, desktops studies, early environmental review
  • Conversations with property owners, the Mi’kmaq and community partners
  • Open House
  • Proposal to the Province
Spring 2022
  • ABO Wind and Community Wind submit RFP proposal
  • Begin environmental and other studies required by Environmental Assessment (EA) Regulations
Summer 2022 If the Project receives a Power Purchase Agreement, install wind measurement tower and continue environmental studies
Fall 2022 Environmental studies continue
Winter 2022-2023 EA submission goes to the Province
Summer 2023 EA receives approval from the Province
Fall 2023 Construction begins with clearing and road building
Summer 2025 Commissioning – turn on the wind farm
Schedule is preliminary and is subject to change

 

Community Benefits

Project Consultation

Consultation will continue through the life of the Project with stakeholders and First Nations. Currently, we are in the planning stage. There will be ample opportunity to ask questions, make comments and provide input during the Project design and environmental assessment stage.

We will continue to provide Project updates and correspond on a timely basis, through our website, open houses, mail-outs, personal meetings and expanded communication channels. Our objective is to facilitate open, honest and respectful discussion with all those interested in the Project.

The Project Partners

ABO Wind Canada

ABO Wind is a renewable energy company developing projects in 16 countries. It was founded in Germany in 1996 and has grown to be one of Europe’s leading developers with over 3,600 MW of developed capacity.

The company’s business focuses on planning, financing, and managing wind farms, solar farms and hybrid energy systems. We are currently working on the development of new projects with a total capacity of about fifteen gigawatts, exceeding the capacity of four average nuclear power plants. ABO Wind employs over 800 people, including seven staff based in Calgary.

Community Wind

Community Wind Farms Inc. works with local, national and international partners to help communities develop renewable energy.

Based in Halifax, Nova Scotia, the company works to develop the excellent wind resources of Atlantic Canada for the benefit of local landowners and communities, and to bring stability to electricity consumers across the region.

Community Wind has more than a decade of experience building wind farms with municipalities, local community groups and First Nations across Atlantic Canada.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

Environment

Are wind turbines really that “green”? 

Third-party studies have confirmed that wind turbines typically offset greenhouse gases emitted as part of their production and installation within the first year of operation. When the whole cycle of production and operations is considered, wind energy is recognized as one of the “greenest” or least carbon intensive forms of energy production.

How do you protect wildlife? 

As part of the regulatory approval process, an environmental assessment will be undertaken to understand the relationship between wind turbines and the local environment. This is a requirement of the Province of Nova Scotia. Through this analysis, our team will make the necessary adjustments to the Project to avoid or reduce potential impact on wildlife.

How much tree clearing is needed? 

By using existing roads and cleared areas as much as possible, we believe that we would need to clear 3 to 4 hectares per turbine, rather than the previously stated 5 to 6 hectares.

Is there any fear of contaminating groundwater downstream from the turbine construction area?

As part of the regulatory approval process, an environmental assessment will be undertaken to understand the relationship between wind turbines and the local environment. This includes wetlands, watercourses, fish habitat and groundwater. This is a requirement of the province of Nova Scotia. Through this analysis, the Proponent will make the necessary adjustments to the Project to avoid or minimize potential impact on water resources to the extent feasible.

What is the operational footprint of a turbine?

Depending on the turbine selected for the project, the concrete foundation for the turbine will range from 22 metres to 25 metres in diameter. Most of the foundation will be below ground and backfilled with soil.

Will any study be done on the impact of wildlife in the area such as bats, eagles, hawks, mainland moose, etc.?

If the Project proceeds, the Proponent is required to submit an application detailing the impact on the local environment to the Minister of Environment and Climate Change. These requirements are set out in provincial legislation and regulations, specifically the Environment Act and the Environmental Assessment Regulations. This will include impact on local wetlands, birds and threatened and protected species, such as mainland moose and bats.

Detailed studies, including multiple field surveys, supporting this application will be carried out by independent environment consultants. As of now, the Proponent has carried out initial desktop studies regarding the environment and species in the Project area, supported by field reconnaissance.

A large portion of the area is Crown Land. What kind of deal are you getting from the province?

Rates for use of Crown Land are set by legislation and regulations. Please refer to: https://novascotia.ca/natr/land/clo/, for more information regarding the applications for the use of Crown Lands.

 

Wind Turbines

What will we see? 

The visibility of each turbine depends on the viewpoint. On the Project website there are preliminary visual simulations prepared by a third party. During development, we will ask community representatives to offer more viewpoints for more detailed visualizations.

Will you be updating visual and noise assessments? 

The proposed layout and turbine technology will likely change based on stakeholder, environmental and technical input. We will update the visual and sound assessments to reflect the most up-to-date plan as part of the environmental assessment process.

How big will the turbines be? 

A few factors contribute to the choice of wind turbines, such as the wind profile and the height of nearby vertical obstacles. The Project is still at a preliminary stage. Once we have more wind data to tell us where the wind blows the strongest, we can choose a turbine. We anticipate that the hub height will range from about 100 metres to 120 metres with an approximate blade length between 60 metres and 85 metres.

Will safety lights have to be on all night? 

Aviation warning lights on wind turbines are required by Transport Canada regulations. However, the Project is exploring the feasibility of light mitigation options to reduce the visibility to those on the ground.

Will the turbines be noisy? 

During development, we will prepare a noise impact assessment with a map showing predicted sound emissions in relation to nearby residential properties. As the Project team gains more information about the wind, the engineers adjust their recommendations about turbine models. Once we have selected a model, more information will be made available related to sound.

What is infrasound and is it harmful to me? 

Infrasound can be defined as sound waves with frequencies below the lower limit of human hearing. We will design the Project to meet Nova Scotia’s regulations regarding audible sound criteria.

Humans are exposed to infrasound on a regular basis from several natural and engineered sources, at levels that generally exceed those produced by wind turbines.

Will you be doing a Visual Impact Assessment or Noise Impact Assessment for my home? 

We will prepare Visual Impact Assessments from several viewpoints around the Project as advised by the community. We will prepare a Noise Impact Assessment with a map showing sound emissions in relation to all nearby residential properties.

Have health issues been taken into consideration? 

We respect that some individuals may have concerns regarding health. The Project will be designed to meet or exceed all provincial regulations and guidelines currently in place to protect human health.

Health Canada with Statistics Canada and other external experts conducted a Community Noise and Health Study on wind turbines. The results, which were released in 2014, indicated that wind turbine noise was not linked to self-reported medical illnesses and health conditions.

How much power will the Project generate?

The Project is planned to produce approximately 80 megawatts of electricity from no more than 14 turbines, depending on technology. This is enough electricity for more than 23,000 Nova Scotian homes -- nearly all the homes in Yarmouth, Shelburne and Queens counties.

 

Permitting 

When and what are you submitting? What is involved in the permitting process? 

ABO Wind Canada with Community Wind will submit a proposal in the Rate Based Procurement RFP issued by the Province of Nova Scotia. The submission deadline is expected to be in Spring 2022. For more information https://novascotiarbp.com

If the proposed Melvin Lake Wind Project receives a Power Purchase Agreement, the developers will carry out a variety of environmental and other studies, including those required by the Environmental Assessment Regulations set by Nova Scotia’s Department of Environment and Climate Change. In addition to these studies, our team will continue to consult with the local community as the Project moves forward.

Why is the Project this size? 

Several factors contribute to the size of a project such as Melvin Lake Wind

  • available lands under contract
  • local electrical grid capacity
  • wind profile
  • local environmental features, and
  • any applicable criteria outlined in the RFP

 

Public Engagement 

What is the consultation process? 

Community Wind and ABO Wind strongly value positive community relations. It will be our practice to provide updates to the project at key milestones ensuring that First Nations and those living and working in the area have opportunities to discuss and comment through a variety of methods, including, phone, email, video meeting, and face-to-face meetings.

We want to hear from the community. Please contact us anytime through the form at www.melvinlakewind.ca.

Has the proponent consulted with the local Indigenous community? What was their feedback on the project?

ABO Wind and Community Wind recognize that the proposed Project is in Mi’kma’ki, the ancestral and unceded territory of the Mi’kmaq of Nova Scotia. We have active ongoing communication with Acadia First Nation and other Indigenous communities. Acadia First Nation has provided a letter of support for the Melvin Lake Project.

How do we keep the community involved and up to date?

Community Wind and ABO Wind will send out updates on the Project via mail to addresses located in the areas surrounding the proposed Project. Updates will also be added to our website (www.melvinlakewind.ca) so that those outside of the immediate Project area can remained informed. Advertisements in the local paper will also announce the release of these updates.

If the Project receives an approval from the Province, we will establish a Community Liaison Committee. The committee would meet regularly to bring forward community concerns throughout the construction and life cycle of the wind site.

When is the next Open House?

The date of the next Open House has yet to be determined but will be influenced by public feedback, the environmental assessment and the award of a Power Purchase Agreement by the Province.

Why not give a formal presentation with Q&A at the end? Why do an open house format?

The aim of the open house is to provide Project information and respond to questions or concerns in a safe and comfortable environment. Through experience, we have found that one- on-one or small-group conversations with posters allows people to learn about the project at their own pace, and to voice their questions and concerns without feeling the pressure of an audience.

What if I have more questions? 

Please send questions and/or concerns to us through the form at www.melvinlakewind.ca .
We will continue to update visualizations, maps and other information on the website. For general information, visit the Canadian Renewable Energy Association website: Canadian Renewable Energy Association - Wind. Solar. Storage. (renewablesassociation.ca)

 

Construction 

How do you select the areas for the turbines? 

There are many factors to consider in siting wind turbines, such as the following: our ability to keep setbacks to at least 1,000 metres from homes; the wind resource; environmental features; access to transmission lines; and the ability to access and build turbines at the location.

What type of road access is needed for the turbines? 

We will require approximately 10 km of new roads and upgrading of 32km of existing roads for the Project. A 6-metre-wide road will be built for both construction and operations. New and existing road intersections will be widened temporarily for turbine delivery and reclaimed once turbine installation is completed.

What is the life expectancy of the Project? 

The lifecycle of a turbine is typically 20 to 30 years. The life expectancy of this Project will be subject to the requirements set out by Nova Scotia Power within the Power Purchase Agreement, which we expect to be 25 years.

Is your schedule achievable? 

The current Project schedule is subject to change depending on the criteria in the upcoming Request for Proposals (RFP).

Who maintains the turbines, access road, equipment, etc.? 

The proponent will have a local operations team, including an operations manager who will be responsible for the wind farm’s maintenance program. Depending on the project’s turbine contract, the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) may be responsible for turbine maintenance and any required repairs for an agreed term of the project life. Local contractors are typically hired for maintenance items, such as road maintenance, snow removal, equipment service, etc.

Where will electricity generated from the Project go?

Power generated from this project will feed into the Nova Scotia grid.

In a power grid, the power from a generator will flow to the needs of the local load first. So, if your home or business is connected to a local distribution grid where there is a wind turbine operating, the power from that turbine would first meet the local need on that distribution network. We can’t say exactly where the power goes. However, when the wind is blowing and you turn on your lights, power from the turbine would flow to your home.

 

Land Development 

Can people continue using the land as they are (hunting, fishing, cutting wood)?

Project planning will be done to minimize restrictions on land use. Typically, most activities underway before construction of a wind site can continue afterwards.

How much money do landowners get and how do you calculate that? 

For confidentiality reasons, all we can say is we propose contracts that are typical and competitive within this region and within the renewable energy industry.

What’s the difference between lease versus option? 

An option, or option period, is an agreement signed by a landowner that provides a company with the ability to perform certain activities on lands (soil studies, environment studies, site visits). It also grants the ability to execute a lease on a portion of the lands for a specific purpose, such as wind development.

A lease is the agreement executed if a company chooses to proceed with actions outlined under the option agreement (such as building a wind turbine). A company may option an entire property yet end up leasing a smaller portion of those lands.

What happens if the company goes bankrupt? 

Under the rare circumstance of a renewable energy company going bankrupt, the inherent value in the operating wind facility remains. Typically, the major investors in the project will buy out the bankrupt company to ensure their investment is protected. A bankruptcy would not typically affect the operations of a wind facility, as the investment community understands the economic value of an operating electricity generation asset.

Are there provisions in the lease that you use for decommissioning wind turbines at the end of the project? 

Project land contracts and regulatory approvals will contain requirements for reclamation and decommissioning. The Project will also complete a salvage value study before decommissioning turbines – to evaluate potential costs of salvaging compared to decommissioning costs. ABO Wind and Community Wind anticipate the salvage value of recovered metals (for example, copper, steel, rare earth metals) will cover a portion of decommissioning costs.

 

Property 

Will a turbine be placed on my land? 

Community Wind and ABO Wind Canada have contracts in place with landowners who will have infrastructure on their property.

How close will a wind turbine be to my house? 

We have made the commitment that turbines will be located at least 1,000 metres away from any existing active dwelling unless the property owner has agreed otherwise. This commitment exceeds those of the municipality where the required setbacks are 500 metres from a habitable dwelling, 1 x turbine height from the property line (unless adjacent property owner has signed a lease), and 220 metres from a public road.

Will the wind farm affect property values? 

Studies have been conducted on property sale data in and around wind farms in Canada, the United States, and internationally. Data gathered cannot support or disprove the impact on property values.

In Ontario, the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC) examined assessments of properties located at 1 kilometre, 2 kilometres and 5 kilometres from wind turbines. The studies found that for 2012 and 2016, there were no conclusive findings on the prices of residential properties resulting from the proximity to a wind turbine. See https://www.mpac.ca/en/PropertyTypes/SpecialStructuresProperties/Windturbinesnearorproperties

 

 

Project Benefits 

What are the local job opportunities?

ABO Wind has a Local Content and Indigenous Policy that emphasizes opportunities to surrounding communities. ABO Wind has preferential weighting to local businesses that meet safety and capacity requirements. We will work with local contractors and businesses to let them know of opportunities and will hire local contractors whenever possible. The Proponent anticipates much of the work during the 12- to-18-month construction period could be carried out by local businesses.

There would be some specialized tasks (e.g., provision of large cranes, installation of turbines) that could require contractors from outside the region or elsewhere in Canada. We expect the construction and installation of the Project would provide approximately 100 person-years of employment opportunities.

The Project will require 2 to 3 full-time wind turbine service technicians during its operating life. Training for this position is available for these positions at Holland College in Prince Edward Island.

 

What questions do you have about Melvin Lake Wind? Please do not hesitate to contact us.

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Contact

Dave Berrade

Dave Berrade

Tel. +1 (902) 802-4540
dave.berrade(at)abo-wind.com

News Project information Schedule Community Benefits Project Consultation The Project Partners Q&A Contact