Turbine noise can cause health problems: Erhard

Plympton-Wyoming engineer out to prove province wrong
PLYMPTON-WYOMING – Eric Erhard doesn’t like wind power. “If there was no other source of electricity in the universe, then maybe a wind turbine would be acceptable.” The professional engineer from Plympton-Wyoming first spoke up against them when Suncor tried to convince his municipality to host an industrial wind farm. Now, he will be one of the objectors when the Ontario government faces off against people opposed to the project February 21.  Erhard argues the wind energy industry isn’t sustainable without government funding. “It’s only sustainable when taxpayers are footing the bill. It’s really a welfare industry.”

And he says it is not environmentally friendly. Erhard says it needs other energy sources to back it up and the construction process for the turbine creates tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions, not to mention the harm turbines do to wildlife. “They’re improperly called green; they do significant damage to birds, bats and to the environment in the production of turbines.

But it is the health effects of four wind turbines just outside of Watford which will be under scrutiny at an Ontario Environmental Review Tribunal.

The Middlesex-Lambton Wind Action Group filed the appeal after provincial government approved Green Breeze Energy’s four turbine 10 megawatt project worth about $22 million.

WAG’s lawyer, Eric Gillespie, says the main focus of the hearing will be the “numerous indirect health effects associated with wind turbines such as sleep disturbance, vertigo, nausea, headaches.”

Erhard hopes to back the group up with information he’s found from the World Health Organization and studies done for the province of Ontario.

Erhard says a recently released study done for the province says a the placement of wind turbines 450 meters from homes will result in “non trivial numbers of people being highly annoyed” by the low frequency sound.

Erhard says government studies place the turbines at a distance which will “highly annoy” between 6.5 and 8 percent of the people nearby.

“They’re willing to accept that – that’s their standard…that’s okay,” says Erhard. “That to me is not okay …that 1 out of 12 …that’s not acceptable.”

Erhard says while the province argues annoyance is not a disease, a new WHO report links low frequency sound to disease including increases in blood pressure and eventual heart disease.

“That’s the link I’m trying to make …Europe is changing its standards so that they get away from problem with noise pollution,” says Erhard. “Why don’t they (the provincial government) do a study of people who are complaining to see whether or not there is an issue. It’s going to cost some money but we spend a lot of money on health in Ontario.

“It seems ludicrous to me to put these things in and annoy six to eight percent of people.”

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14 Responses to Turbine noise can cause health problems: Erhard

  1. Dave Bartlett says:

    I hope you can make the Tribunal acknowledge the points you are trying to make. Here’s a link that may help substantiate your efforts to identify the health aspects. See http://randacoustics.com/wind-turbine-sound/wind-turbines-published-articles/the-bruce-mcpherson-ilfn-study/ I find it’s very well done, and makes the point quite clearly.

  2. barbara says:

    Sorry, but disagree that the health affects caused by IWTs are INDIRECT? These are DIRECT effects. The noise/sounds produced by IWTs directly hit the victims inside and outside of their homes.

    • barbara says:

      When a bullet strikes someone is the damage inflicted indirect?

      • Free Thinker says:

        Barbara,
        Could you please rephrase the question.
        It’s confusing.

      • barbara says:

        Sound waves emitted by IWTs directly strike people outside and inside their homes just like a bullet can.Some become ill in ~ 1hr or less and others over time. Over time is direct cumulative damage or damage a little at a time.
        Arsnic in small amounts dosen’t kill people right away but is direct and cumulative damage.
        As long as people are being directly struck by IWT sounds/sound waves this is direct damage.
        Direct sound waves can destroy eardrums. Direct sound waves can shatter glass.

      • barbara says:

        The gun does not strike the victim but the bullet does which is the direct effect of the gun becoming operational/fired. So IWT sound waves produced by running the IWTs are like bullets being fired from a gun.

  3. ericjelinski says:

    Let me rephrase, if you’re surfing the beach and you’re hit by a wave.

    • Free Thinker says:

      Hey ericjelinski,

      Okay –
      but, if the argument is in reference to a wind turbine – that would mean the wind turbine would have to fall on your head – a direct hit.
      Obviously – that hasn’t happened yet.
      You can see a wave coming – and hope for the best.

      Now – you get a headache – what caused it?

  4. Protest voter says:

    Just came home from work and back to Hell torture home, this was a place of refuge for rest and peace for your body and mind to unwind and start another day at work refreshed and ready to perform your duties in society and to pay our slave costs. With to-days wind and snow and sitting here near the computer it is definitely not peaceful but irritating place to be at. So far very little sleep for 4 days in a row ,. What a nice break to the New Years and i didn’t even go out to have fun with friends when you feel like shit. There should be no torture in this country but this I what I classify as torture and harassment. Leading up to health issues. Today I went to our MOE office and handed them a bill in person for violation of not performing their obligated duties to protect us with the article “the smoking gun” referring to the infra-sounds do cause health effects.

  5. Ontariwoe says:

    Free Thinker,
    I think what Barbara is saying is that the noise and the low frequency vibration is directly hitting peoples houses and bodies. It is a direct hit, not an indirect hit causing the adverse health effects.

    Wounds from a bullet are direct. Wounds from low frequency pounding you are direct.
    The bullets draws blood so people can see it happen. The low frequency is invisible so it is hard for people to see it and grasp what is happening but it is no less direct.

    The big issue is with use of clinical terminology vs the descriptions from victims.
    It completely confuses people.
    They say that a direct effect would be like a blade coming off and hitting you in the head but other symptoms that manifest from living in the toxic environment are indirect. I do not agree. The effects are from a direct source but I’m not a medically trained professional so the government can tell me to go to he**.

    Same thing as that word “annoyance” It is misleading people into thinking that they are stronger and they would fare better than those who are affected. Not true.
    You have absolutely no power over the noise/ lfn and vibration and the strongest person can find it debilitating in a very short time.

    It is a disgusting abuse of words and terminology when actual victims are praying daily that someone will put a stop to it.
    This is what happens when new technology is forced into peoples environment without due diligence or care for the fallout. It becomes a bloody fight about peer review articles and bull**it terminology.
    Just know that no one wants to be forced from their home, I don’t care who you are or how tough you think you are. It sucks.

    • barbara says:

      People can be annoyed to death!

      • Gears says:

        I wonder what the ‘indirect’ health costs are of so many people being annoyed by McShifty? A boat load of people must have passed away last Oct 6th…

  6. Louise says:

    Our health care costs are soaring due to the aging population. However, the Liberals are deliberately putting all age groups of Ontario’s Rural population in harms way of Wind Turbines.

    The victims’ symptoms have been well documented in the Hansards, yet this Liberal Provincal Government refuses to acknowlege that they exist.

    CRIMINAL NEGLIGENCE!

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