By Stephanie Cattrysse, Watford Guide-Advocate
Laura Wilde who lives on West Ipperwash Road in Kettle Point has been a resident of the area nearly her whole life. She loves the area is close to her siblings and children, all of whom live within a short distance from her house.
Another area resident “Gerry”, (his name was changed), bought a 72 acre farm just off of Proof Line in Lambton Shores with his wife and son in 2000; a place he and his wife hoped would be their retirement home years down the road.
Unfortunately these perfect strangers who live within the vicinity of the six wind turbines in Ravenswood and four Turbines in Lambton Shores, have one thing in common. They are deeply concerned about health effects caused by wind turbines. Wilde said her skepticism about turbines started before they were even built in her area.
“When the wind developers had that meeting years ago, my brother, my son and myself asked if the turbines had any effects on people or our children,” Wilde said. “They said nothing would happen and everything would be good.”
But it’s not.
Shadow flicker from the turbines in the morning reflects through their windows and into their homes. Wilde said it’s so bad she can’t be in the room when the flickering is happening. Her son who has two-year-old twins, is also concerned about whether or not this will have a negative impact on the twins.
And that is not all. Wilde said some nights she is unable to sleep because of the noise coming from the turbines.
While some nights are worse then others, she has a tall dresser leaning against the south-facing window in her bedroom to help muffle the noise. On worse nights she will throw a few pillows in between. The noise from the turbines is bothersome for Gerry as well. With one turbine less than one-kilometer away from his home and others just over that distance nearby, he said he hasn’t had a good nights sleep since the turbines started turning.
“I used to sleep like a baby, but not anymore,” he said. “At first I didn’t know if it was the turbines, but when I go to Sarnia the humming in my ears goes away.”
Gerry said the humming in his ears keeps him awake most of the night and is so exhausted at times cannot function throughout the day.
Fed up with feeling this way, he has decided to put his house on the market and hopes he can sell his home and forget all this has happened.
But Gerry is concerned about the next person to move into his home. He has written to the Minister of Environment and to the turbine companies. “All my complaints have been filed.”
Gerry believes that as more turbines are constructed and running, more complaints and health issues will arise. He is hoping his interview will open up the eyes of government as well as residents of municipalities of municipalities who are destined for wind turbines in the next couple of years such as other areas in Lambton Shores, Adelaide and Metcalfe Township
and the Township of Brooke Alvinston to name a few.
“I want proper setbacks from homes, if people will be affected. It’s too late for us, but I want to help any person who may be affected by it.”