Both audible and low frequency impulse noise can be produced by operating WTGs. The noises produced and their impacts will differ according to machine design and size, and site specific characteristics such as topography. Noise has not been a primary issue where wind farms are in isolated locations. However, some counties are beginning to receive complaints about noise where wind development is occurring near populated areas. Alameda County has received a substantial number of complaints about the noise levels from residents near the Altamont Pass. If new wind farms are to be located near existing residences or businesses, mitigation measures for noise may be necessary. Such mitigation measures can include testing of the turbines(s) prior to installation to determine the level of audible and impulse noise generated by operation, monitoring of noise levels as individual WTG’s come on-line, and requiring compliance with local noise standards or ordinances.
This article is the work of the author(s) indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.
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