Library filed under Noise
These papers document an important debate between wind-friendly academics who argue that those living near wind turbines benefit from the experience and those who insist such conclusions are backed by inappropriate study methodologies and broad assertions that cloud actual findings. In this circumstance, Dr Daniel Shepherd a PhD in psychoacoustics and head of research at AUT University in Auckland, New Zealand, challenges the methods and conclusions of Mroczek et al.’s “Evaluation of Quality of Life of Those Living near a Wind Farm“ published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 2015, 12, 6066–6083. The academic editors of the Journal, after granting Mroczek the opportunity to respond, agree with Shepherd's main criticisms. In total, there are four papers documenting this debate; three are attached to this page. These include Shepherd's critique, Mroczek's response and the position of the Journal's academic editors. Portions of the response by the Journal's editors are also provided below.
Councillors were quick to voice their support for the families living close to the Raheenleagh Wind Farm and asked that the matter be put back on the agenda for April’s meeting so that it doesn’t get forgotten about. Speaking after the presentation at last Monday’s county council meeting, Cllr Shay Cullen said that the families were living a ‘ horrendous nightmare’.
South Wicklow residents living in the shadow of the Raheenleagh Wind Farm had a simple message for the elected members of Wicklow County Council this week: help us.
“Vermont Wind has deflected its non-compliance since 2011 and Mr. Brouha’s proposal to adhere to Vermont Wind’s original methodology ends the pretense,” argues Anderson. As the independent sound monitoring firm hired by the DPS, Acentech confirmed, Anderson argues, “…if Vermont Wind had tested with windows open, Mr. Brouha and the State of Vermont would not be here today. The proof of compliance is in the proper execution of the method and using the methodology that Vermont Wind used to get us here should be the one that ends this inquiry.”
Critics of industrial-scale wind farms say the Vermont Public Service Board’s new sound standards are a step in the right direction but ultimately may not help Vermonters. “On the surface it is a big improvement over the current standard, and over the first draft, but there will be more public process, and the industry will fight against what I view as still inadequate to address all the issues,” said Annette Smith, director of Vermonters for a Clean Environment.
"[Police] Officer confirmed that turbine noise in bedroom was excessive," the officer reported, but because the noise was coming from Plymouth, Plymouth police were called. Plymouth police told them to call the board of health, which passed the call along to the building inspector.
The Public Service Board has issued its draft rules on wind turbine sound that, if adopted, would put much stronger restrictions on wind development in the state.
Town Supervisor Don Bilow said that the town would be seeking an independent third party to conduct noise tests for the Chateaugay portion of Jericho Rise wind farm. Twenty-nine of the wind farm’s 37 turbines are located in Chateaugay, with the other eight in Bellmont.
In “Ireland must continue to invest in wind farms” (Opinion & Analysis, February 20th), Gary Healy states that new planning guidelines are being finalised that will determine how future wind farms will be developed, and adds that it is critical that these guidelines do not imperil future investment in the sector or Ireland’s obligations regarding renewables.
A pensioner claims he has been forced to give up his dog and relocate to a caravan just to get a decent night’s sleep because he is tormented by the noise from a wind farm opposite his home. Clifton Lockhart, 83, has lived in Tralodden Cottage near Old Dailly for the past 35 years, but says his golden years have been robbed from him since the turbines arrived 14 years ago and he has since been kept wide awake most nights.
"During the big windstorm two weeks ago the sound of the blades was plainly audible inside my home, and my house actually vibrated," McGrath said. "My wife had to steady a television on the dresser upstairs as it moved toward the edge." McGrath says he doesn't want to make this personal. He wants data to be gathered, analyzed, and appropriate action taken.
Village residents were surprised when one of the property owners who agreed to host a turbine said his neighbours aren’t imagining things. “I’m surprised I can hear them as loud as I do, and I wear an earpiece,” said Wally Faulkner. “They’re louder than I expected.”
The case is next listed for hearing on April 25, and will be closely observed by many of the families living in close proximity to wind farms and who claim that there should be a greater distance between homes and turbines.
Editor’s note: This commentary is by Annette Smith, of Danby, who is the executive director of Vermonters for a Clean Environment.
“The PSB has sent us a clear message that we may as well stop filing complaints when GMCW is in violation,” said Melodie McLane, who issued the complaint.
Blomberg’s presentation was most clear when it was most simple, never more so than when he presented a list of six problems with industrial wind noise and six ostensibly simple solutions. Blomberg’s list stated regulatory techniques for wind turbine sound are too complicated, and suggested using setbacks, a mandatory distance between any industrial wind project and a homeowner’s house or even property line, and metrics based on maximum sound outputs rather than average sound outputs.
Kevin Sigourney, who is suffering the impact of EDPR's Jericho Rise wind facility sited in Chateaugay, NY, addressed the Hopkinton (NY) Wind Advisory Committee (WAC). Four turbines are directly behind Mr. Sigourney's home. Two are 1/3 of a mile away. The other two are 1/2 a mile a way. Mr. Sigourney explains how he is at the point where the noise makes living in his home unbearable.
The request stems from claims of wind turbines affecting the health of those who live near wind farms, such as the Shirley Wind Farm in Brown County. People have said the wind turbines generate low-frequency sound, which causes headaches, nausea and sleep disruption.
Residents living within the Golden West Wind Energy Center’s footprint in Calhan, Colorado, have reported negative physical and psychological effects from the turbines since it became fully operational in October 2015. The center consists of 145 453-foot tall industrial wind turbines, connected to an electrical substation in Falcon by 29 miles of overhead transmission lines.