Two American health consultants who have embarked on an international crusade against the ”ill effects” of windfarms visited Fife on Saturday.
They met people who claim their health is suffering because of ”shadow flicker” and others who fear their lives will be ruined if turbines get the go-ahead in their area.
Lilli Green and Preston Ribnick visited a site at an industrial park in Dunfermline where, it is claimed, an existing turbine is making people too ill to work in nearby offices.
They visited the premises where some staff claim they have been ”disturbed and distracted” by the flickering shadow of a 100 metre turbine in the yard of a business 400 metres away. Staff have complained about problems when the sun is behind the turbine.
Accompanied by Fife anti-wind turbine campaigners, the visitors then visited Methil to see where a 196m turbine is proposed for a site at Fife Energy Park. They also met independent Fife councillor Andrew Rodger before meeting residents who live near the proposed West Coast Energy windfarm at Lingo, near St Andrews.
Lilli said that there are real health issues to be considered when wind turbines are put up in populated areas.
She said: ” We live in a small town called Wellfleet on Cape Cod in Massachusetts. My husband and I are owners for the past 32 years of a healthcare education and consulting firm providing services to hospitals, physicians, health insurers and drug companies throughout the US.
”Almost two years ago our town was on the verge of erecting a 410-foot Vestas V-90 wind turbine on town-owned land in the Cape Cod National Seashore. If successful, it would have been the first industrial-size wind turbine in any US national park.
”We, and a group of concerned citizens, launched an aggressive public education outreach programme to inform elected and appointed officials as well as residents of the ‘realities’ of wind energy, including noise, flicker, severe health problems, decreased property values, impact on tourism and visual impacts.
”Our community group was very successful and within 30 days of beginning the outreach programme, our town Board of Selectmen completely reversed earlier positive votes and unanimously voted on March 30 2010 to terminate the project.
”During the course of educating ourselves we became completely convinced that the vast proliferation of wind turbines throughout the world is a huge mistake. So for the past two years we have worked with many others on Cape Cod, in our state, nationally as well as internationally to halt the spread of wind turbines.”
As co-founders of Windwise Cape Cod – a coalition of community organizations on Cape Cod and Windwise Massachusetts, a state-wide organisation – Lilli said they had worked closely with Dr Nina Pierpont and her husband, Calvin Martin.
In December 2010 and in January and February this year they travelled extensively in Australia and New Zealand.
The Fife visit was welcomed by anti-windfarm campaigner Graham Lang, who said the Dunfermline turbine flicker was ”as bad as anything” he had ever seen. He said that from his point of view it would make working conditions ”intolerable”.
Mr Lang said: ”One of the staff described the effect as stroboscopic or like a camera flash going off time after time. Even with the blinds closed it was still impacting on the office space and across the warehouse.
”They have complained but so far the turbine continues to operate at times it should be switched off so that the shadow flicker does not occur.
”Wind turbines that are sited too near to homes and businesses will inevitably cause problems of noise and shadow flicker and evidence is mounting that these have serious impacts on health and wellbeing.
”Noise guidance used by councils is too permissive, and conditions virtually impossible to enforce, leaving people exposed to health endangering effects. It is simply wrong.”
[also published as “American anti-windfarm campaigners make Fife visit”]
|Wind Watch relies entirely
on User Funding