Articles filed under Impact on People from Australia / New Zealand
“That is something which we expect will be the subject of further study,” the AAT said. “For our purposes, it is sufficient that annoyance is produced, and it appears that it may be associated with adverse health outcomes. “An identification of the causes of that annoyance may allow it to be reduced or mitigated and adverse health outcomes to be reduced or avoided.”
Hawkesdale farmer Paul Lewis says noise from Macarthur wind farm, five kilometres from his home, wakes him up at night. ...“No one can do anything to really address the problems with existing wind farms. Moyne (shire council) have wiped their hands of it and don’t take responsibility, and the State Government isn’t doing anything,” Mr Lewis said.
Now with a slew of new wind farms planned around his town of Hawkesdale, 300km west of Melbourne, and impending changes to Victorian state planning policy, Mr Lewis is seriously pondering his future. “Everyone thinks these things are great, but they’re not the ones living beside them and getting woken up at night,” he said.
Huffman told commissioners the problems were worst when wind speeds were low, particularly between 6 metres per second and 10m per second. She backed the city council's position, that there should be an 8m per second threshold before the turbines kick in at night. She also said subjective assessment was a legitimate way to monitor noise.
Tablelands residents have accused the developer of a wind farm of destroying part of a mountain for the $380 million project and turning it into an “eyesore”.
The question of whether wind turbines are physically capable of producing the adverse reactions claimed is unresolved. However, it is now scientifically demonstrated by Swedish researchers that amplitude-modulated low-frequency wind turbine noise can directly cause sleep disturbance, even in young fit people taking part in its research study.
The council and many residents living close to the proposed turbine site say the adverse effects on the nearest neighbours’ enjoyment of their properties were so significant the proposal should not proceed. Many of the concerns related to anticipated noise from the wind farm, despite the number of turbines having been reduced from three 90m structures to one 110m tall turbine. The likely harm to birdlife from the huge blades was also of concern.
A factor which may have impacted on the expansion of wind driven technology in Australia was the ongoing claim by people living near turbines that their health had been impacted. The institute is working with acoustics experts to test surrounding inaudible, or infrasound noises, generated by wind turbines.
Since a year ago, when independent commissioner Colin Weatherall refused consent for Blueskin Resilient Communities Trust’s planned three turbine wind farm, the number of turbines proposed has been reduced from three 90m tall structures to one 110m high turbine. Mr Weatherall said his decision was ‘‘significantly influenced’’ by the adverse effect the wind farm would have on the amenity and character of properties in Pryde Rd.
Victorian firm Maddens Lawyers filed the class action against Infigen Energy Ltd in the NSW Supreme Court after a crow electrocuted by a transmission line carrying power from the company’s Woodlawn wind farm sparked the fire, which burned 3400ha and caused up to $20 million damage.
It’s time to stop denying that wind farm noise causes adverse health effects in some people. It’s insulting to sufferers to be accused of only suffering from a “nocebo” effect. Everyone who is adversely affected by wind farm operations deserves to be heard and deserves adequate compensation, which should include an offer to purchase their property at a fair price.
Putting money into investigating possible health effects of infrasound was consistent with previous National Health and Medical Research Council recommendations, said the environment minister, Greg Hunt. ...“A reasonable exercise for the government is to ... investigate the matter,” the prime minister told reporters.
National Health and Medical Research Council defends decision after grants attacked as waste of time An Australian research council has given two grants worth $3.3m to research the impact of wind turbines on human health despite concluding last year there was no evidence turbine noise was harmful.
"This is a hotly debated area, with many residents convinced that their health is suffering and other people sure that it's all a figment of their imagination. There is a genuine scientific question here that needs to be solved definitely so we can inform both the public and public policy."
A public hearing has been told a proposed wind farm in the New South Wales central tablelands has been so divisive it has destroyed the fabric of the local community.
Opponents of the Mt Emerald Wind Farm claim expert advice was ignored before the $380 million project was approved by the Queensland Government. The Tablelands Wind Turbine Action group has demanded an emergency meeting with the government to discuss why expert advice about potentially harmful effects of wind turbines was “withheld”.
“These documents show that warnings from the Queensland Government’s own noise expert were hidden from the relevant Minister and from the public. The expert report reveals that the proposed Queensland Government Wind Farm Code (V2) will not protect resident’s health and well-being and will not protect their environmental values. The documents obtained under RTO also reveal these concerns were not passed on to the Planning Department or the Minister for Planning.”
“The extraordinary thing about this is we don’t have a planning system to deal with it. This is the equivalent of a factory being built in the middle of a new suburb,” Taylor told broadcaster Alan Jones in October. “People would scream about it and so they should.”
Ms Goward went further on Monday, telling Fairfax Media turbines' blades created pressure waves that "resonate in the skulls" of people living as far away as five kilometres. "I don't think we know enough about the impacts," she said. "It is something we should be prioritising."
“There are a number of people with health problems ... it is clearly not psychosomatic.” She argued that securing and protecting residents from the turbines' noise pollution was important. “They impact upon the landscape and have an immediate effect upon land value.”