Places of power: an exploration of a wind energy landscape

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Hall, Shirley A.
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University of Guelph

Wind Energy Facility (WEF) development in Canada is progressing rapidly, as indicated by recent government initiatives. Financial incentives such as tax breaks for farmers who own land deemed desirable for wind turbines illustrate the joint promotion of WEFs between government and private industry, yet local public opposition to WEFs is common. Although recent studies show that most people generally support the idea of renewable energy sources, public perception is a significant factor in determining how and where WEFs are developed. This study used in-depth interviews and resident cognitive mapping to identify how local community members perceive potential impacts of WEFs with specific emphasis on what the community identifies as valued or important. Insights gained include the vital link between the intimate rural social network and lack of vocal opposition.

Wind Energy Facility, Canada, government initiatives, financial incentives, public opposition, public perception, potential impacts