I write in response to Mark Bretherton of the Clean Energy Council and his criticism of evidence of research that has been conducted in the US.
To help clear up the controversy about whether there are adverse health effects occurring as a result of turbines being placed too close to peoples’ dwellings, we need all the research we can get.
The Senate inquiry into the social and economic effects of rural wind farms which was held last March recommended that a precautionary approach be taken and that further research be done.
In his letter, Mark Bretherton seems to suggest promoting thorough scientific research on wind turbines. With its long list of sponsors as shown on the CEC website, there must surely be someone fair-minded enough to help finance research.
Quite obviously the Clean Energy Council has not met any of the landowners who have had to leave their properties, businesses and livelihoods because they are unable to live there.
His comparison of noise produced by wind turbines and noise generated from farming equipment does not make sense as farming noise is controlled by the farmer.
The turbines work when the wind blows, whether it be night or day, and they are not turned off for the weekend or when people wish to sleep.
Turbines are not just like any other sort of infrastructure a farmer has on his land. They are huge, intrusive structures which, if placed too close to their neighbours’ properties, are causing much angst and unhappiness.
In his article in The Courier on January 6 the acting CEO of Clean Energy, Mr Kane Thornton, stated that appropriate regulations and community consultation should apply to any wind farm and that the wind industry is working hard to improve its consultation with and information to local communities.
In regard to the wind energy facilities operating in Victoria this has not been done correctly, otherwise there would not be the plethora of complaints and home abandonment.
The perception and myths that are promoted by the CEC that all of us who speak out about the poor planning and lack of consideration for non-host landowners who live adjacent to 150m high turbines are anti-wind farm activists is unfair and mischievous.
Of course, the aims of the CEC are to promote clean green energy and I agree with those aims as long as those aims do not blind them to the fact that they have a social responsibility to the community.
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