Ontario Land Values & Wind Turbines — Perception vs. Reality

Controversy has surrounded the giant white wind turbines nearly since the first turbine farms cropped up across rural Ontario. Wind turbines are commonplace in much of Europe and are expanding in Western Canada and Ontario, but not without push back from some residents who list several health issues as fall out from these green-energy generators.

Whether or not the turbines cause health issues is not the focus of Richard Vyn’s research but damage of a different kind — to land value — is. Vyn, with the University of Guelph-Ridgetown, is looking at whether or not the presence or proximity of wind turbines decreases the value of land or the saleability of a given piece of land. It’s not an easy question to answer, as Vyn explains in the video filmed at the recent Exploring Rural Land Use conference, as perception or what someone answers on a poll is not always what plays out in the real-world of farm land value sales and prices.

If you cannot see the embedded video, click here.

 

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2 Comments

Mike McCann

Another regression study that opines that the relatively small number of property sales that reveal actual value losses is somehow unimportant. Another value ‘expert” who holds no appraisal or property value credentials of any kind, but attempts to present his opinion regardless of the lack of vetted expertise.
When will these would-be experts realize that the question is not if all homes in a 10 mile radius of any turbines are all impacted uniformly and consistently, but rather, whether turbines developed in proximity to homes adversely affects any of the nearest homes?
But until student Vyn has successfully completed the 101 level real estate valuation courses, his credibility is suspect for anything beyond getting a grade for working on a regression analysis. Clearly, he has bad facts, as the unbiased professional studies all use actual sale data, and not just “surveys”. He is uninformed, at best.

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Jane Wilson

I have serious questions about the nature of this “study.” Certainly, the experiences in communities such as Clear Creek-Cultus-Frogmore and Ripley/Kincardine do not coalesce with Mr Vyn’s results, nor does this study align with research that has been done in the same Melancthon area, by qualified real estate appraisers and Realtors. Wind power generation facilities are not “farms” and they are not agricultural use of the land. I would be interested to know if the investigator was aware of, and how he dealt with, the buyouts of affected properties by the wind power developers, or how he handled the properties that were on the market for extended periods of time, some of which never sold? I would also like to see a list of references behind Mr Vyn’s work to see if studies done by Heintzelmann and Tuttle (Clarkson University), Albert Wilson, Michael McCann, or Sunak and Madlener (Aachen University) appear.

My last question: who is funding this research, and to what end? It is certainly not to bring fresh informed evidence to the people of Ontario communities forced to host wind power projects and watch equity in their formerly quiet rural towns and villages decline.

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