David Libby has lived on Golf Course Line outside Ridgetown for nearly 20 years.
He built his brick home with ceramic tiled floors in the kitchen and dining room.
A decision, all these years later, that is helping him sleep in his basement at night.
In December 2010, two industrial wind turbines began operating a few hundred metres to the south of his property.
The noise coming from their direction was waking him up at night.
“I tried six different kinds of insulation to block out the noise through my bedroom windows,” said Libby.
Sheets of one-inch Styrofoam and thick corrugated cardboard still cover his upstairs bedroom windows.
“It helped,” he said.
But, he says he gets his best sleep now in the basement.
“I’m lucky I have nearly an inch of cement in my floors to help deaden the sound,” he said.
A neighbour isn’t as fortunate.
Mike, who asked his last name not be published, has lived on Shewburg Line for over 20 years.
“I would lie there wide awake (at night in bed),” said Mike.
He too has moved a mattress into his unfinished basement to try to get a better night’s sleep.
But rest still doesn’t come easy without sleeping pills, said Mike.
Both men can’t prove the wind turbines nearby are keeping them awake at night.
Their lives before the towers arrived was not measured by a night’s sleep or a lack of rest, they said.
Officials from the Ministry of Environment have done sound studies at both properties.
The men claim the tests show levels above the maximum standards of decibels set by the MOE.
Yet, in over two years, the neighbours haven’t received a satisfactory answer from any level of government, as to why the turbines are allowed to continue working without some modifications, they said.
In the meantime, Mike’s prescription drug costs have shot up from $186 in 2010 to $1,577 in 2012.
“I’m tired all the time. My body aches. I feel pressure on my chest when walking outside,” said Mike.
He blames his aches and pains on stress caused by a lack of sleep.
Libby’s house is full of boxes.
He’s moving closer to Blenheim.
There are wind turbines in that area too, but, “There will be more people between me and the turbine, so more people to complain about them,” he said.
While it’s not listed for sale yet, Libby expects his current property will only sell for 80% of market value.
|Wind Watch relies entirely
on User Funding