Residents have launched a protest against proposals to put a wind turbine on top of the Walkers Factory in Skelmersdale.
Campaigners claim research by independent experts shows the turbine could cause health risks.
Alan Horridge, one of the protesters, said: “The turbines through audible and inaudible ‘noise’ can disrupt sleep patterns.
“This can lead to high blood pressure in adults, which is a major contributor to a number of illnesses such as heart attacks and strokes. In children disturbed sleep can lead to a lack of concentration during the day which impacts on academic achievement.
“There are suggestions from the medical experts that turbines of this size should be sited no closer than 2km from residential property. This turbine would be closer than that to almost the whole of Skelmersdale!
“It could be that PepsiCo are trying to do this as they get ‘carbon credits’ and are trying to get in before any legislation stops them.”
Arthur Egerton, from Old Skelmersdale, said: “We are not against wind turbines, we just don’t believe they should be built so close to people.”
Peter Wilson, of Elmers Green, added: “The turbine should be built somewhere else.”
Protesters will be putting their objections in writing, and people who want to support them can email firstname.lastname@example.org
Simon Ely, Site Leader, Walkers Snack Foods, Skelmersdale, said: “This represents a significant investment and a long-term commitment to the future of this factory. It also helps us to support local, national and international targets on renewable energy and is in line with our policy of responsible environmental management. We would not be putting this proposal forward if there were any scientific evidence to suggest that it might have any adverse effect on the health of the local community.
“PepsiCo and Walkers Snack Foods Ltd have taken great care to consult openly and honestly. In addition to a three-day open exhibition, we have already agreed a number of off-site consultation events to ensure that the people of Skelmersdale know exactly what is being proposed and to get their views. We hope Mr Horridge will feel able to feed into this process and would be happy to meet him to discuss his concerns. There are no ulterior motives for our proposal or the timing of it.”More information on the proposal can be obtained from www.skelmersdalewindturbine.co.uk.
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