“I believe the acoustic trauma caused by large wind turbines is real and significant.” Dr. Sandy Reider
GRAFTON, VT—Dr. Sandy Reider, MD, general practitioner and primary care doctor in Lyndonville, VT will discuss the health effects of wind turbine noise on Friday, February 19 in the Homestead Room, Grafton Inn at 6:30 p.m. Grafton Woodlands Group sponsors the talk.
Dr. Reider’s presentation is based on a variety of in-depth, worldwide studies as well as personal interaction with his patients who have experienced adverse health effects while living near industrial wind turbines.
Dr. Reider, who graduated from Harvard Medical School in 1971, testified on January 31, 2013 before the Vermont Senate and Natural Resources Committee, stating, “I believe the acoustic trauma caused by large wind turbines is real and significant.”
In an editorial by Reider in VTDigger (attached), he states: “The Vermont Health Department and the Vermont Department of Public Service persist in reassuring us that there are no significant health effects related to industrial wind turbines under Vermont’s current noise standards. Such a blanket statement is not only incorrect, it is a disservice to the Vermonters who are already experiencing adverse health effects, such as headaches, vertigo, nausea, anxiety, ringing in the ears, and most importantly, chronic repetitive sleep disruption. There is an ongoing academic debate about the mechanisms behind these effects (direct vs. indirect, the nocebo “it’s all in your head” effect, audible vs. inaudible infrasound, etc.), but little disagreement that some persons living too close to these large wind turbines are suffering, whatever the mechanism.”
Reider goes on to say: “To the benefit of the wind industry, and apparently to those agencies promoting large wind installations on our ridgelines here in Vermont, the issue of infrasound has thus far been successfully suppressed and ignored.”
His talk will point out that methodological shortcomings plague many of the large-scale industry or government-sponsored studies that state agencies rely upon to establish protective sound levels.
For example, he states: “A recently released large Health Canada study found that at wind turbine sound pressure levels greater than 35 dB(A), health related complaints will increase, and at levels greater than 40 dB(A) a significant number of persons will be “highly annoyed” (meaning adverse health effects, especially sleep disturbance).”
The current Public Service Board threshold of 45 dB(A) of audible sound through an open window, averaged over an hour, has actually never been proven safe or protective. Some studies recommend that audible sound should not exceed 35 dB(A), or 5 dB(A) above normal background sound levels. (This is crucial in rural areas where background noise is minimal, particularly at night.) The level should be a maximum, not an hourly average. Above 35 dB(A) there are likely to be significantly more complaints, particularly difficulty sleeping.