Economy

Wind Turbine Factory Would be Great for Hamilton

By Jason Leach
Published June 24, 2008

We need to land plants like this:

A German maker of offshore wind turbines is targeting southern Ontario as the location for its first North American manufacturing plant, a venture that would create thousands of local jobs and inject hundreds of millions of dollars into the province's struggling economy.

Jason Leach was born and raised in the Hammer and currently lives downtown with his wife and children. You can follow him on twitter.

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By Wind Turban (anonymous) | Posted June 24, 2008 at 16:06:35

If they wanted to build it on the airport employment lands would you still support it?

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By jason (registered) | Posted June 24, 2008 at 17:20:41

of course I would. they'd be the first company to show any interest in those lands. Alternately, they could build it at the top of Red Hill Parkway, and again, they'd be the first company to show any interest there. Alternately, they could build it at a high profile site along the QEW. Perhaps the interchange with Centennial Parkway or Fifty Road.
Oops! I forgot. Council just agreed to rezone those prominent lands for Walmart power centres. And why not?? There's not nearly enough of those in Hamilton, and who needs to build industry along the QEW when you can do it out in the middle of nowhere?

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By jason (registered) | Posted June 24, 2008 at 17:22:19

I received this email back from the Mayor's office on this topic:

Mayor Eisenberger asked that I touch base with you regarding the important Economic Development opportunity you shared with the Mayor and Councillors Bratina and McHattie.

The return of a wind turbine plant to the province is good news. Ontario had a wind turbine plant in London, Ontario which imported blades from Germany - the steel posts were made in Hamilton. The plant closed in 2005 due in part to changes in the provinces energy policy relating to wind turbines.

Back in 2002, the province had established a program and set the target of between 3500-4000 Mega Watts generated through wind turbines. The province is currently under 500 Mega Watts using this means. At present, new wind turbines constructed in Ontario have blades imported with the posts now also imported from the United States. Currently, Germany has the world's largest employment sector in terms of wind turbines with more than 250,000 jobs created from a standing start in approximately 1996.

Hamilton has natural advantages for this sector due to our port (importing of blades from Germany) and steel industry (posts for the turbines). Our Economic Development department is hard at work pursuing the province to short-list Hamilton as a prefered location for a potential plant. With the recent creation of the Energy and Infrastructure Ministry by the province, we anticipate that decisions on this file will be made in short order.

Thank you once again for sharing this exciting opportunity with us.

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By Capitalist (anonymous) | Posted June 25, 2008 at 12:37:30

Jason, the maple leaf plant in Burlington showed an interest in Red Hill lands. Do your homework before you spout out your nonsense.

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By jason (registered) | Posted June 25, 2008 at 14:01:07

I've done my homework. Why don't you look up whatever happened to that plant. And all those 'new jobs'.
It's a good thing we didn't let them build it or we'd have our first Red Hill brownfield site on our hands already.

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By Capitalist (anonymous) | Posted June 25, 2008 at 15:18:25

Jason,

I am aware that the plant did not locate here and is now closing their Burlington operation. The point I was making was that they did consider the Red Hill site and had serious discussions with the city about locating here. Do you have trouble understanding this?

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By jason (registered) | Posted June 25, 2008 at 16:31:22

'serious discussions with the city'??
No, Larry DiIanni was desperate to get something, anything, built near the highway and tried coaxing them into coming. Once the story went public, there were many in this city who wanted assurances of all these so-called 'new jobs' and grand expansion from Maple Leaf. They were never able to give it. I know you didn't read this in the Spec back then, but many of us weren't surprised at all when they announced that the plant would be closing very shortly after the 'apparent' Hamilton deal was cancelled. We expected it and had heard rumblings of it from folks inside the plant. Don't get mad at me. Get mad at your daily paper for never giving the facts. If local JoeBlow citizens all over town were concerned about the legitimacy of their actual will to build a new plant, surely someone who spends 8 hours a day as a 'journalist' could have stumbled across that info too.

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By JH (anonymous) | Posted July 06, 2008 at 18:28:48

Actually, the said German plant already has a Hamilton facility and headquarters, which is why the possibility of building turbines here is a real one. Inside source.

A meat-processing plant that decimates smaller farms' abilities to process, pack, and sell their own meat by creating monster agro-factory processing is hardly the kind of "quality employment" that represents Hamilton's long-standing labor and industry sector. Wind turbines, on the other hand, are a completely different kind of industry, which in the long run would generate much more of a beneficial (not to mention viable) type of production in the long run.

Last but not least: stop arguing about bullshit, people.

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By vertical wind turbine (anonymous) | Posted July 10, 2009 at 05:15:35

There are two types of wind turbines; The HAWT, or horizontal axis wind turbine, and the VAWT, the vertical axis wind turbine.The difference lies in how the rotor is attached to the apparatus - either vertically or horizontally.

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