Library filed under Noise
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.
Dr. Robert Y McMurtry and Carmen M. E. Krogh published this response to commentary contained in the presentation of McCunney et al. McCunney et al. addressing wind turbine noise and the impacts on nearby residents. A portion of the response is provided below. The full response can be accessed by clicking the document links on this page.
Robert Gaffke, who owns property near the Big Turtle II project, addressed the Huron County Planning Commission last week regarding a noise complaint he has filed against Heritage Sustainable Energy of Traverse City. ...“It sounds like a guy’s in there with an eight-pound sledge pounding on it, every revolution,” Gaffke said.
In a complaint filed in October, the Reillys wrote, "It has been over four years now that we have respectfully requested that the BOH order an abatement to eliminate the strobing impacts to our property which, as described back in 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and now here in 2016, adversely impacts our family's health and well-being."
At a meeting Friday in the Capitol Plaza Hotel, Stephen Ambrose, a sound consultant and member of the Institute of Noise Control Engineering, argued that sound levels permitted in Vermont are too high and are causing sleeplessness, distress and other health-related symptoms.
At a special hearing Thursday, representatives from Georgia Mountain Wind appeared before the Vermont Public Service Board to appeal a ruling that wind turbines have violated noise and weather-related specifications listed in the project’s certificate of public good.
Complaints about noise disturbance can range from the steady swishing noise from the blade to a louder thump which can sometimes occur, the review said. But, it added, the annoyance is not just limited to the thunderous sound a wind farm can create. Flickering shadows can similarly irk those who live near one.