Noise from the new wind farm at East Point on P.E.I. is loud enough that some some residents of Elmira say it wakes them up in the middle of the night.
“It’s something like a washing machine when the clothes get off to one side. It goes thump, thump, thump. It’s similar to that. Some people say it’s like a jet engine,” said Elmira resident Dwayne Bailey, who lives about one kilometre away from the turbines.
The Island’s newest wind farm began producing electricity late last year.
While there have been no previous complaints about turbine noise from other wind farms, the turbines at East Point are the largest yet installed for commercial purposes. The blades of the 10 turbines cover a 90-metre span, making each turbine the height of a 30-storey building. The 30-megawatt farm produces enough power for about 12,000 homes.
As the turbines went up, there were some worries about about the placement of power lines and the turbines’ potential danger to birds.
The noise complaints are something of a surprise.
Wayne McQuarrie of the P.E.I. Energy Corporation wouldn’t agree to a full interview, but did say he’s aware of the issue and is looking into it.
But the people living nearby want more action.
“We can’t get anybody to come up and help us,” said Bailey.
“Do some tests or studies. Something. Anything. Just get somebody to get up to talk to us.”
Bailey said if nothing’s done, he and his family will move.
2 April 2007
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