WINTERSET, Iowa —
An Iowa cardiologist is worried about wind turbines he says are too close to homes.
A discussion is underway in Madison County to get regulations in place before more turbines go up.
Dr. Ben Johnson believes there are true, real health affects related to industrial wind turbines. Johnson not only has a medical professional perspective, but he’s also a landowner near wind projects in Madison County.
As a physician, he says he’s seen rhythm disorders, which are often associated with sleep disorders. He’s worried environmental noise from the turbines could impact people’s sleep.
He says turbines should be placed 1.25 to 1.5 miles from property lines, saying only then will people be protected against adverse health effects. Right now, turbines are much closer to homes in his county.
KCCI’s Tommie Clark asked Johnson why he’s so passionate about this.
“It’s so obvious to me. And people. Don’t. Get it. We just need to have an epiphany of understanding what the dimensions are,” Johnson said.
KCCI reached out to James McCalley, a professor at Iowa State. He leads the University’s graduate program in wind energy.
We asked if he believes wind turbines can adversely affect health.
“No, not with sufficient setback,” McCalley said. “I don’t see that wind turbines pose a significant health impact in any way, as long as noise and shadow flicker are addressed.”
KCCI’s Tommie Clark will have more on the controversy tonight on KCCI 8 News.
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