Supporters and opponents of wind farms gathered in Canberra today for two separate rallies to argue their cases.
In front of Parliament House about 100 demonstrators joined radio host Alan Jones to protest against industrial wind farming in rural areas.
He says wind turbines should be erected in urban, not rural areas.
“That’s why I’ve constantly said to them well put them in Macquarie Street, put them in Anzac Parade, put them in Parramatta Road,” Mr Jones said.
“That’s where the people are, that’s where the energy is used and if they are not injurious to health, well, you’ve got nothing to worry about.
“But they don’t, they go to small communities.”
The protesters say the cost on the community from wind farms is too high and the economic benefits too low.
They are concerned about the affect wind turbines have on people living nearby them.
People at the rally complained they had been suffering from headaches and nausea since wind farms were developed near their homes.
They also say that wind power is costly to produce and inefficient because the turbines only turn when there is wind.
Supporting wind farms
On the other side of Lake Burley Griffin in Canberra’s city centre, environmental campaigners addressed hundreds of supporters.
Greens Leader Christine Milne called for the move to renewable energy to be sped up, and dismissed claims that wind farms caused health problems.
“We are not going to tolerate the lies and the misinformation about all these sicknesses that are supposed to be associated with renewable,” Senator Milne said.
“Instead I ask the real question, ‘What about the real sickness associated with coal dust?’, ‘What about the real sickness out there associated with the old fossil fuel order?’
Green groups say there is no scientific evidence that wind farms lead to health problems.
Leigh Ewbank of Friends of the Earth says there are 19 reviewed studies that show that wind farms don’t cause adverse health impacts.
Opponents of wind farms say the studies carried out so far are not accurate and were not conducted by independent researchers.
Both groups claims their members are vilified and that the other side disseminates misinformation.
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