Articles filed under Impact on People from Australia / New Zealand
The Danish wind turbine manufacturer accuses concerned neighbours of giant wind turbines of merely wanting to destroy the wind turbine industry. A harsh smear, but it works, says a professor. Vestas rejects the criticism.
"I mean the lights are appalling, they're a complete invasion of space. I moved out here from Melbourne six years ago and I didn't come out here to be surrounded by flashing red lights." The request to turn the lights off was made by the wind farm operator Acciona, and it is now up to them to decide when that occurs.
NSW Planning Minister Brad Hazzard says the decision to audit the three southern NSW farms follows ongoing complaints from local residents. The three facilities in question are the Capital, Cullerin Range and Woodlawn farms near Canberra.
The NSW Government will commission an independent noise audit of three wind farms to ensure they are meeting their approval conditions, Minister for Planning and Infrastructure Brad Hazzard said today.
Rand's testimony shows that, when it comes to wind turbines, what you can't hear can hurt you. It puts the spotlight on whether governments and the wind industry are hiding behind the reality that you won't find what you don't look for. It is difficult to reconcile Rand's experience with confidential briefings reportedly given by NSW Health to politicians who claim health impacts from wind turbines are "not scientifically valid".
Draft planning guidelines for wind farms in NSW could make approval processes more complex and time-consuming, set possibly the world's strictest noise standards, and limit opportunities for placing wind turbines within 2km of a residence.
State Opposition Leader Isobel Redmond said a future Liberal government would ban new wind turbines being located within two kilometres of existing homes. She said her government would also protect nearby landowners from economic losses caused by restrictions on aerial spraying and crop-dusting, and would help develop national guidelines on wind farm locations and noise emissions.
An interim development plan will be published today confirming councils as the premier planning bodies but introducing a 1km barrier between new farms and residential areas. Premier Mike Rann said the proposed barrier - which could be removed if both parties agreed - would overcome concerns about turbine noise.
"That means 100 per cent of neighbours have to be happy within that 2km zone," Mr Hazzard told reporters. Mr Hazzard said he hoped the idea would find a balance between residents living near wind turbines and supporters of renewable energy.
"There is a pattern of systematic non-compliance by wind farms with audible and inaudible noise going beyond agreed allowable limits," the report's author, rural GP and farmer Dr Alan Watts said. "That has real impacts on the health of people living near turbines, such as sleep deprivation and stress."
With mandatory renewable energy targets and so much money on offer, wind is booming, despite mounting evidence it is inefficient, costly and does not reduce greenhouse gas emissions. But the residents of Blayney in NSW have decided to strike back.
A court finding in Ontario, Canada, that "the debate should not be simplified to one about whether wind turbines can cause harm to humans. "The evidence presented . . . . demonstrates that they can, if facilities are placed too close to residents. "The debate has now evolved to one of degree."
A Supreme Court decision in South Australia should send a warning to wind farm developers that they need to consult with the community, Member for Orange Andrew Gee said this week. The third stage of AGL's Hallet wind farm was challenged by a resident who claimed that it was depriving residents within a 3.5 km radius of sleep.
Residents opposed to Stage 3 of the Hallett Hill wind farm have had a win in the Supreme Court. The case now will go back to the Environment, Resources and Development Court, in light of new evidence showing unacceptable levels of noise from Hallett Hill Stage 2.
Upper Lachlan Council will ask the State Government to take "urgent action" to prevent some families from being virtually forced off their properties and homes by proposed wind farms at Gullen Range and Taralga. These families have been given the choice to accept the close proximity of turbines to their homes, or to sell out to the developers.
Amongst these grounds of appeal was a challenge to the EPA SA Wind Farm Noise Guidelines, and specifically whether their limits take proper account of the impact on residents from the wind turbine noise. In other words, the appeal is questioning the ability of the guidelines, as they are currently, to adequately protect human health.
The case now will go back to the Environment, Resources and Development Court, in light of new evidence showing unacceptable levels of noise from Hallett Hill Stage 2. ...AGL Energy confirmed 16 of the 34 turbines have been shut down at night since December.
The Supreme Court allowed the appeal on Friday after AGL admitted it had found that some of the turbines from the first two stages - opened by former premier Mike Rann in 2008 and last year - were emitting an audible tonal noise that breached government guidelines.
With the benefit of recent acoustical studies and medical papers, it has become increasingly clear there is a link between wind turbine operation and health effects, the only question is to what degree and what action to take. ...It is distressing that we can get public policy so wrong so much of the time and then take so long to fix it.
"Information about the dangers of wind farms keeps coming to light. "This new evidence needs to be investigated urgently and fixed before any more towers are constructed." Senator Madigan said the inquiry had received more than 1000 submissions and had made seven recommendations.