Province must take a closer look at concerns


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The Issue:
Industrial wind turbines

Our View:
Province must take a closer look at concerns

It’s hard to question the fact some people experience difficulties while living near industrial wind turbines.

A litany of health complaints — sleeplessness, nausea, headaches and anxiety, among other things — have been reported in Dufferin, elsewhere in Ontario and around the world.

While not everyone living near turbines has a negative experience, the quantity of complaints is not insignificant.

Of the roughly 300 properties neighbouring the Melancthon EcoPower Centre, 17 households (or about five per cent) have filed complaints with the Ministry of the Environment (MOE) regarding noise, sleep deprivation and loss of enjoyment of property.

Despite these complaints, the provincial Liberal government has yet to conduct an in-depth study of the link between wind turbines and health. 

Its response to date has been to look at what other jurisdictions have done and review studies conducted in areas that don’t necessarily reflect the situation in Ontario.

The MOE also pledged to fund an academic research chair to investigate potential health effects as “new information and new science emerges.”

This is a good start, albeit a little behind the ball, but more work is needed and needed quickly. The research needs to keep pace with the development of renewable energy projects since little can be done once health is already negatively impacted, as we’ve unfortunately seen all too many times in the past.

The government can’t cave to the strong and wealthy lobbying efforts of turbine advocates at the expense of our health, nor can they keep blinders on pretending there aren’t any problems.