Expand turbine setbacks: Dr. Lynn

By Bill Henry, The Sun Times, owensoundsuntimes.com

Setbacks for wind turbines should be as much as twice the current 550 metres to avoid affecting so many people, Grey Bruce medical office of health Dr. Hazel Lynn said Tuesday.

But Lynn said she did not tell Huron-Kinloss council Monday night that further wind development should be stopped, as some media outlets reported Tuesday.

A news release circulated throughout Ontario Tuesday from The Society for Wind Vigilance said Lynn, on a local radio show, said she “thinks all industrial wind turbine development should be stopped until more is known about their effect on human health.”

“I didn’t say it like that,” Lynn said in a telephone interview clarifying her comments made at the Monday night council session. “What I probably said is we should have longer setbacks, and if you can’t have longer setbacks, well, then maybe we shouldn’t be having them (more wind turbine developments) right now.”

Lynn has been at odds with the Liberal government’s position on wind energy, and has said for several months that The Green Energy Act should not have taken away municipal planning control related to turbine developments.

“I’ve said that many times that the people who pay the land tax should have some say over what’s happening to their land. I’ve said that right from Day 1, this is wrong,” she said.

European research is ahead of that being done in Canada, she said, and minimum setbacks there are between 1.2 and 1.5 kilometres. That’s more than double the setbacks the government set as part of the Green Energy Act.

Europeans are concerned about low frequency sound waves, which are amplified in hilly terrain.

“Basically at this point in Canada, we’re not measuring those things,” she said. “To say that they can’t hear it so it doesn’t affect you isn’t quite true, probably.”

“I suggested to Huron-Kinloss that if I was making the decision — which I’m not — and if I was putting in more wind turbines, I’d want them at at least a kilometre or a kilometre and a half distance.”

In Europe, that setback is designed to reduce the impact so 5% of people are affected. In the Ripley area, Lynn said 10%, or about 35 people living within the wind development area, have said they suffer as a result of proximity to the turbines.

Lynn said she did not speak on a radio show, as the Society for Wind Vigilance claimed in its news release. She was interviewed briefly by a reporter at the council meeting Monday after raising concerns about what she considers inadequate setbacks and the loss of local control.

“I said basically I think we need longer setbacks until we can at least measure the low frequency sound.”

Lynn said her position is not at odds with Dr. Arlene King, Ontario’s chief medical officer of health.

“I don’t think she’s ever said anything about the setbacks, she’s just said there’s no direct health effect,” Lynn said.

“I wouldn’t say I’m at disagreement with the chief MOH. She reviewed the health effect literature and basically there’s not not much that you can say,” Lynn said.

“I’m looking at population and community interests and I don’t think it’s in any community’s well-being if you’ve got 10% of your people that are so stressed they just can’t do anything anymore,” she said.

With several large wind projects in the works in the area, Lynn said she raised her concerns about the setbacks out of consideration for the impact on communities.

“If we get another 10% from each of those, that’s going to be a lot of unhappy people.”

8 thoughts on “Expand turbine setbacks: Dr. Lynn

  1. We all need to lose our fear of being labeled “anti-green”. This is slowly happening as the fall-out from wind development reaches mass conciousness.

    Wind is not a viable solution and never will be. Is this too hard to figure out? What’s wrong with taking that stance?

  2. No wind Turbines anywhere.

    I’ve said it before. I am saying it again.


  3. Why is Dr. Lynn not willing to say that we should stop any more IWT developments until we are sure about what a safe setback is?

    She’s willing to say that setbacks of less than 1.1 km will cause real, and serious health effects to neighbours, but she’s not willing to follow through on this opinion.

    She’s a medical doctor.

    Is she admitting that her professional opinion and action is vulnerable to political pressure?

  4. “Primum non nocere.”
    Dr. Lynn, shame on you. You can do better.
    Do not turn your back on the people who you serve.
    Did they take away your Latin dictionary when you
    got the big raise?

  5. What follows is strictly political humor this is not an actual conversation:

    Secretary – “Hello this is the office of the Chief Medical Officer of Health, how my I direct your call”
    Aid-“This is the Premier’s office calling, the Premier would like to speak with the Chief, is she in”
    Secretary – “yes she is, one moment please”
    Simultaneously RING-ER-RING-ER
    Premier – “Yes”
    Chief – “ Yes”
    Aid – “Premier, Chief on line two”
    Secretary – “Chief, Premier on line two”
    Chief – “Good morning Premier”
    Premier – “What’s so good about it”
    Chief – “how may I be of assistance”
    Premier – “I want that Deserter fired, she’s making you look bad, which makes me look even worse. I have enough crap on my table, as it is. The last thing I need is this Deserter telling the rest of Ontario that my Windy Dream Project is disrupting rural communities and making people sick. I am not exactly sure how your May report will be regarded in the next couple of weeks. You promised me that all your Officer’s were on board, I want her __s fired, ASAP then, we can dispel and or spin anything that she says as being said, because we fired her, oh I mean you. I promised the Wind Companies that in Ontario we would be able to keep these truths hidden and now I have this crap. S__ t, I got two of my allies, on my case. One wants me to bring in the Troops and take over the Township of Arran-Elderslie this should scare the hell out of all remaining municipalities. The other keeps on telling me “our biggest problem is the anti-wind groups, we should continue on with the harassing and intimation of their women folk, we have to instill fear in to their minds and screw the Charter of rights and Freedoms, arrest them all like you did at Dump Site 41, if we don’t shut them up, then we won’t be able to continue on with this Sham for much longer”. I got a Minister coming up with all kinds of stupid ideas that are going to cost taxpayers even more money, I, i-i..,”
    Chief – “Premier, are you venting”
    Premier – “Well I suppose I am, you are a Doctor aren’t you”
    Chief – “well, I am kind of out of practice at the moment, I’ve been very busy trying to convince Ontarian’s that there aren’t any health related issues with regards to Turbines, what would you like me to do Premier, pull a rabbit out of my __s”
    Premier – “I am sorry Chief, you’re very good, you have a lot of Old Die Heart Liberal’s convinced the wind turbines are the next best thing to sliced bread”
    Chief – “No, I wouldn’t say that exactly, I suspect that they are into it for all the freebie’s, its far better to be ignorant than stupid about something. You can tie any excuse to being ignorant, but you can’t tie any excuses to stupidity”
    Premier – Your right, and lets get back on track, you know Chief are reputations are on the line, I have the Conservative Leader starting off his 2011 campaign threatening to give the power back to municipalities, and he’s talking about studies, he’s making our party sound like we are nothing more than bunch of fascists, the leader’s gone on record saying, “the Green Energy Act allows unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats at the Ontario Power Authority to arbitrarily override democratically elected municipal governments and built massive energy projects without any local consultation or consent. This abuse of local democracy is most clearly seen through the proliferation of industrial wind farms throughout the province”, what do you think about those comments Chief”
    Chief – “well maybe he is right because that’s the way the public is starting to view you and the party”
    Premier – “ is that what you think”
    Chief – “yes”
    Premier – “about getting back on track, I want you to get rid of this Deserter and about your comment, I am not exactly comfortable with being considered a fascist by the Ontario public I will have to look into this, it’s on my to do list for now, well I got to run, I have to check something out, I’ve been told that there’s some company proposal that’s been filed to put 30 monster wind turbines up at the cottage, so I got to make sure that this doesn’t happen”
    Chief – “Premier, I have to run as well, done deal her a__ is grass, talk to you soon”
    Premier – “good bye”


    Time will only tell, I have to agree with QUIXOTE “No Wind Turbines ANYWHERE!”

    We are not going to get anywhere by beating up those who have or are starting to jump ship. There are many of us who use this web site, who started out ignorant regarding the use of wind turbines, many of us have made the about face which is good.

    If this Health Officer is starting to lean away from the dark side, we must do what we can to help her get to the other side. The aforementioned Humor would be a reality if she totally jumped ship. The Ontario government has created one big elephant with regards to wind turbines when it unleashed the Green Energy Act. If asked, how does one eat an elephant, one bite at a time.

    My take on set backs if I had to make a choice I would say yes that I agree with set backs, set backs to the point of origin across the boarder where all this crap came from would suit me just fine.

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