Special meeting on planned ethanol plant being built at Oshawa’s waterfront, draws very loud opposition
It was standing room only, at a very rowdy meeting in Oshawa Tuesday night on the recently approved ethanol plant being built at the harbour. A majority of residents at the meeting were upset over a number of issues, including the approval process, how it might impact future development, the number of trucks on the road and potential environmental effects regarding noise, odour and the lake water. Jesse Cullen is with “Friends of Oshawa’s Waterfront” (http://www.oshawawaterfrontfriends.com/), and says they’re particularily concerned with the proximity to the Second Marsh and how the facility might impact the environmentally sensitive area. He says they’re wondering why there was no Provincial environmental assessment done, and why the Federal EA hasn’t been released. Officials with Farm-Tech Energy Corporation (http://www.farmtechenergy.com/) say this will be a state of the art facility and measures have been taken to eliminate any negative impacts to the environment or the community. They say there will be a buffer between the plant and the Second Marsh and the design and technology will eliminate any chance of noise or odour pollution. The Oshawa Port Authority (http://portofoshawa.ca/) for its part, says it has an obligation to bring investment to the port and make it economically viable, adding that the ethanol plant is being built on the east side of the harbour, in an area that’s already got plenty of industry. Construction on the $200-million facility is soon expected to begin, with the plant up and running by 2014.