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Experts clash on affects of wind mills  

Credit:  Crookwell Gazette, www..crookwellgazette.com.au 1 December 2011 ~~

Does the noise from the whirling blades of turbines on wind farms create real illness problems, or is it just annoyance?

It seems there is a wide divergence of opinions on this among the experts.

On the one hand, there is a wide body of opinion in both Australia and overseas that the noise from the turbines, both above and below hearing level, is the cause of real illness among those exposed to it.

On the other hand, a public health expert, Professor Simon Chapman, in the latest edition of the Medical Journal of Australia, says that the symptoms of such illness arise from anger at the nearby turbines, creating an “annoyed state.”

He finds it “telling” that these adverse health effects are never raised by landholders who earn income from hosting the turbines.

He added: “There is no consistent evidence of any physiological or behavioural effect of acute exposure to infrasound in humans.”

Against this is the successful Court action by residents in the area of the Hallet 2 wind frm in South Australia that the turbines involved could not meet the South Australian guidelines.

As a consequence, AGL has shut down 16 of the 34 turbines in Hallet 2 between 7.00p.m. and 7.00 a.m.

And the anti-wind farm protagonists claim that over 20 families in Australia have already left their homes and farms because of ill health created by wind farms.

And they also quote from 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.”

What, however, is too close?

Other published medical research claims that adverse symptoms have been reported in people out to a distance of at least 20 kms under certain weather and wind conditions.

The Upper Lachlan Council’s Develop Control Plan for wind farms requires that turbines not be located within two kilometres of a non-host residence.

But because the planning approval for wind farms lies with the State Department, not local Councils, this requirement has been generally ignored by development applications.

Source:  Crookwell Gazette, www..crookwellgazette.com.au 1 December 2011

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

The copyright of this article resides with the author or publisher indicated. As part of its noncommercial effort to present the environmental, social, scientific, and economic issues of large-scale wind power development to a global audience seeking such information, National Wind Watch endeavors to observe “fair use” as provided for in section 107 of U.S. Copyright Law and similar “fair dealing” provisions of the copyright laws of other nations. Send requests to excerpt, general inquiries, and comments via e-mail.

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