- National Wind Watch: Wind Energy News - https://www.wind-watch.org/news -

Wind turbines need a separate noise standard

Gov. Mark Dayton is “too busy” to address a state policy that’s destroying Minnesotans’ health.

“We don’t have a noise standard that’s designed to work for turbines,” said Commissioner Paul Aasen, Dayton’s appointee to Minnesota’s Pollution Control Agency. Yet, the distance between an industrial wind turbine and your house is determined using the state’s noise standard.

Minnesota’s Department of Health recognized the link between wind turbine noise and human health problems in their award-winning 2009 study, “Public Health Impacts of Wind Turbines.” This department recommended the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission address turbine noise when determining the location of turbines.

Commerce’s Energy Facilities Permitting staff, who provide technical advice to the MPUC, acknowledge that the setback distance from homes is based on a noise standard that does not measure turbine noise. The MPUC continues to surround rural homes with 400-foot industrial turbines.

Minnesotans living close to industrial wind turbines commonly experience sleeplessness, ringing in the ears and chest pressure. Some wind companies “respond” to noise complaints by stating they “meet the state’s noise standard.” Others offered suffering residents a “white noise machine” in a failed attempt to mask turbine noise.

I’ve brought this issue to Gov. Dayton repeatedly for seven months. I’m told he is “very busy.”

If the goal is to destroy lives and reduce rural human habitation, Minnesota’s industrial wind mandate is succeeding.

Kristi Rosenquist