Public feedback has resulted in a revision to the research design for wind turbine noise and health study, being conducted by Health Canada in collaboration with Statistics Canada.
Chatham-Kent Essex MP Dave Van Kesteren made the announcement late Sunday afternoon on behalf of Health Canada.
More than 950 comments were received during a 60-day public consultation period when the original proposed study design was posted on the Health Canada website last July for public comment.
After evaluating the public feedback, the expert committee introduced changes to the research design including an assessment of infrasound and changes to the questionnaire administered by Statistics Canada.
The expert committee includes specialists in areas including noise, health assessment, clinical medicine and epidemiology.
“Our government’s focus is on putting the health and safety of Canadians first and this study will do just that by painting a more complete picture of the potential health impacts of industrial wind turbine noise,” Van Kesteren said in a written release.
“This is particularly important because the number of industrial wind turbines has been increasing across Canada not to mention right here in Chatham-Kent Essex,” he added.
Minister of Health, Leona Aglukkag, said, in a written release, this study is in response to questions from residents living near wind farms about possible health effects of low frequency noise generated by the turbines.
“The expert committee has carefully reviewed and evaluated the feedback received during the public consultation and has taken it into consideration when developing the revised research design,” the minister said.
The results of the study are anticipated in 2014. An initial target sample size of 2,000 dwellings will be selected from eight to 12 wind turbine installation facilities in Canada.
In addition to taken physical measurements from participants, such as blood pressure, investigators will conduct face-to-face interviews and take noise measurements inside and outside of some homes to validate sound modelling.
The revised research design is available on the Health Canada website, along with a summary of the public comments received as well as responses from the expert committee.
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