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Wind farm noise a concern: engineer  

Credit:  Cimara Pearce, The Weekly Times | www.weeklytimesnow.com.au 14 June 2012 ~~

Acoustic engineer Steve Cooper says there is cause for concern about wind farm noise.

Existing noise data was not accurate and a multidisciplinary approach to address wind farm concerns was necessary, Mr Cooper told a room of people at a wind farm forum at Bacchus Marsh last night.

Mr Cooper stressed he was not “anti wind farm” but in his work had found there were problems with low frequency wind farm noise.

“There is cause for concern but I don’t have the qualifications to talk about the health impacts,” Mr Cooper said.

“All of us are different. We operate differently and we react differently.

“I can’t answer if wind farms are a health concern… but the noise levels need to be justified.”

The forum, hosted by Ballarat Senator John Madigan, was well attended and saw a number of passionate speakers share their views for and against wind farms.

Andrew Gadd, a fifth generation farmer from west of Ballarat, told the meeting he had concerns about wind farms but was not against renewable energy.

“People who question wind power are not necessarily pro coal and just because we question the efficiency of wind farms doesn’t mean we are against renewable energy, we just want our questions answered,” Mr Gadd said.

“I think the guidelines (for building wind farms) were written by the wind industry for the wind industry and those guidelines are seriously out of date.

“In regards to health, flora and fauna and our native farm land if we continue to roll out wind turbines the way we do we are going to have a number of issues to address.

“The wind industry live in denial that anyone is getting sick from this and I think one family or one person getting ill from wind turbines is a blight on the industry.

“I would love to see more clean energy but we have to get the balance right and at the moment it is completely out of whack.”

There were calls for more thorough, independent research on noise and health impacts of wind farms and suggestions for more research into solar energy.

Source:  Cimara Pearce, The Weekly Times | www.weeklytimesnow.com.au 14 June 2012

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

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