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Leading Conservation Group Issues Warning about “Green” East-west Power Corridor

by NationTalk on April 20, 2007490 Views

TORONTO, April 19 – In response to today’s planned Green Power Corridor Summit in Ottawa, a leading Ontario conservation group is warning caution about a proposed east-west mega hydro corridor that would bisect Ontario’s intact Boreal Forest. CPAWS Wildlands League, a chapter of the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, warns that building a mega hydro corridor accompanied by roads would permanently remove forests and fragment intact Boreal ecosystems.

“We want Canadians to know that this project is not a panacea. It must be approached with caution,” says Anna Baggio Director, Conservation Land Use Planning for CPAWS Wildlands League.” Canada’s Boreal Forest is the largest terrestrial storehouse of carbon on the planet. “Protecting the carbon stored in intact Boreal Forest ecosystems must be part of the plan for any new resource development project,” Baggio adds. The proposed corridor would transmit power between Manitoba and Ontario cutting through a broad swath of Ontario’s Northern Boreal region. CPAWS Wildlands League urges governments to proceed with caution and says the construction of a corridor must meet the following conditions:

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Background- Is this green power or brown power?

To be green, power must meet or exceed the ecological bar on two counts – how and where it is produced.

How power is produced dictates how damaging to the environment it is. Where power is produced is equally as important in deciding whether power is green. There are two components to be considered, where the power source is and how far it is from market or end user. Green power facilities can only be sited after completion of a comprehensive land use plan taking into consideration all land uses, including impacts to species and vegetation. In addition, to be truly “green”, facilities must be constructed close to the end user. Why? Long transmission corridors and transportation of power can be as damaging to the environment and as inefficient as a heavy power production footprint.

For further information: Anna Baggio, (416) 453-3285, www.wildlandsleague.org

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