A Scituate couple fighting a wind turbine near their Driftway home signed a confidential agreement with the turbine’s owner, Scituate Wind, in which they agreed not to contest the turbine’s permit, the lawyer for the town’s health board told a judge Monday.
Mark and Lauren McKeever received $20,000 for signing the agreement, and at least six trees were put up as a sound and sight buffer between the turbine and their property, Scituate Board of Health lawyer Jonathan Davis said during a hearing Monday afternoon at Brockton Superior Court.
Davis said he obtained a copy of the agreement with a subpoena.
The McKeevers, who live 640 feet from the 390-foot-tall turbine operated by Scituate Wind, asked a Superior Court judge to shut down the turbine until their lawsuit against the town’s board of health over the turbine’s alleged health hazards is resolved.
Judge Charles Hely did not make a decision Monday, and took the matter under advisement.
Tanya Trevisan, the couple’s lawyer, said the turbine has harmed her clients’ health since it started operating last March.
She said the McKeevers and their children have been suffering from “sleep disturbance, headaches, extreme fatigue, nausea, dizziness, ear pressure and pain, anxiety, and difficulty concentrating at work and school” because of the turbine’s noise and shadow flicker.
Studies conducted before the installation of the turbine indicate that the sounds it emits are within state law, Davis said.
According to state law, a turbine can’t emit noise more than 10 decibels louder than ambient noise.
Davis said the family must show evidence and studies that confirm they have received “substantial and unreasonable harm.”
“The plaintiff has not submitted any studies that contradict that (the original studies),” Davis said.
Melissa Brennan, the family’s spokeswoman, declined to comment on the agreement with Scituate Wind.
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