25 Aug

Bala Falls Power Struggle

This is a shot from the south side of the Bala Falls on Lake Muskoka. There is a lot of controversy with regards to turning the falls into a new hydro electric dam site. Swift River Energy, a power company has been fighting to develop this site and many of the long term cottagers and locals are not too happy about it. Its been a war.

In: historic muskoka, in and around muskoka ontario, tripin around towns

11 Responses
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  1. Jenn Jilks says:

    Beautiful photo, Ed.

  2. Ed
    If you’d really like to learn more about the fight about the proposed hydro plant redevelopment at the north Bala Falls dam site, come to council Monday afternoon.

  3. Marion Vermeersch says:

    I cannot believe that, somehow, this horrible hydro project cannot be stopped. Why ruin the beautiful Bala Falls and, in so doing. the whole town of Bala? As long time cottagers in the area, we love to visit and shop in Bala and enjoy the fact that it is the only town left in Muskoka that has not been “messed with” by development.
    As far as “green energy” goes, what is so green about this project? There are two generating stations further down the Moon River that were operational not so many years ago: we went on a tour of Ragged Rapids OPG once. Why not refurbish those since they are already there? With as much criticism as OPG gets, at least it is in the public domain, whereas Swift River is a private, for profit company designed to make lots of money for its owners.
    Another idea might be to just leave Nanticoke running, although the Province is busy getting rid of it which looks good politically as it was a major polluter. However, we live near it, know lots of people working there and understand the province spent millions on scrubbers years ago to reduce pollution which are mothballed, never having been installed. The environment there was destroyed in the early ’70’s when beaches and farms gave way to that generating station. So it is already ruined, why ruin another place?
    Anyway, this whole Swift River thing makes me sick and it is not right that the District of Muskoka and the people in the area cannot seem to stop them.

    Thank you for the absolutely beautiful picture you’ve shared with us. Soon that may be all we have, is pictures of Bala Falls and the town as we know it.

    Marion Vermeersch,

  4. Cindy Angrove (nee White) says:

    This picture brings back many memories of swimming in the falls when I was a teenager. It is a beautiful part of nature and should be left alone

  5. Christopher says:

    I think a power station at the bala falls would be awesome. I love beavers and therefore I love dams.
    Canada’s landscape was built with beaver dams…..
    So who the hell do the people of Bala think they are when a dam brings money, energy and more people to town.
    The towns folk are very facist and the region has a history of facism so they think that their opinion is what matters and forego any reasonable argument for a dam. I want the dam to happen… it’ll be beneficial and a sign of progress.
    A lot of people come to this area to see the wildlife and the fall colours, about 1-2% of all visitors to Bala even partake in any way of the falls. I know, I live here and have visually seen the percentage of people admiring the falls. Yeah, they’re good but people don’t come here for the falls they come because their cottages are here, their friends are here and clean air and peacefulness are here but if you pay close attention you can hear the whine of the townsfolk…..Like a bad re-run of I love Lucy.
    I love beavers therefore I love dams…. if the town would have accepted the first proposal, they would have had a beautiful park beside the dam instead of what they have now, a life insurance salesman’s dream…. rocky, step free walk ways(surprised nobody has died yet) rotting bridges and rusty metal where the over-run dam is(would be replaced) dangerous precedents of kids jumping from railroad bridges into the water above the dam(would be banned anywhere south of here for sure) and locals who only care for the dam because it’s theirs!!! well actually it’s not really, it’s ALL canadian tax payers and countrymen’s dam….and I want a dam there, it would bring some excitement to this pathetically facist town.
    Go energy company go…… we’re behind you 110% and so are more people than you may think. I have talked personally, interviewed about 26 people personally and have found that only 10% feel a change would be bad… most people I have talked with see it as a need, to be more sensible as well in life.

    As we all know, those people who have nothing better to do in their lives than whine and complain about stuff are causing all the uproar and the noise but trust me, the smart people, the people who are too busy to whine want the dam because they understand what it means, not the unintelligent whiners who are stuck in the 1930’s when SWASTIKAs were adorned on most households…. facism is dangerous people… speak up if you want progress.

  6. christopher says:

    you townies are pathetic… seriously.
    This isn’t YOUR town, you can express your opinion but at least have a sensible one not just “it’s pretty, it’s mine, my precious waterfalls, my precious”!! gimme a break, Bala is a pathetic little town led by a known cocaine addict and drunk and an illiterate chip wagon type person…… way to go Bala…. you pathetic facists. I will be drumming up lots of factual pro dam propoganda this fall for toronto, barrie and other close metropolis’. embrace change you have a choice with or be forced to accept change with no choices…. 2013 people….. not 1913…ya know.

  7. Nina says:

    Christopher, first of all, this site is not the place to air your diatribe and people visiting this site don’t appreciate it. Secondly, Ed will probably remove your rantings when he reads them.

  8. chris says:

    probably. would expect nothing less.
    editors end up being the facist sword…..

    look up definition and how it’s applied

  9. chris says:

    what about marion’s then. she talked about the dam being built….?

    like i said… facism…. editors and public domain are the first attacked…..

    lest we forget!

  10. P. George Sampson, Esq. says:

    Cindy Angrove – White is correct: The Bala Falls “…is a beautiful part of nature and should be left alone.”!!!

    Would People elsewhere like us going to their Town and ignoring what they want and having us, not them, push to change things .

    As for a City… the City of Toronto and some City Council elected officials having drug addictions… Mayor Ford would like, us being outsiders, to have us and not Torontonians push for the City Hall Skating Rink to be torn up, Casa Loma demolished due to its financial burden, etc???

    Sane people come to Muskoka to appreciate Nature, be it the Flora and Fauna, Water – the sound of and sight of Falls, Rapids and water lapping at the shore on
    Lakes, the Air quality, on and on.

    There is too much REgress in Muskoka and too little so called
    Financial GREED fogs the mind as anticiapated Financial Greed..

    Many have “SFB” as per what Croc Dundeee said in the movie Crocodile Dundee. SFB = “Shiskabob” for Brains.

    Unless one has SFB… there is NO debate about leaving Bala Falls and the Canoe Portage unchanged, PERIOD!!!



  11. Tasha says:

    It’s beautifully captured in video…Thanks.

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