Changes to Health Canada wind study target indirect effects

infrasoundFor Immediate Release
February 11, 2013

Simcoe – Haldimand-Norfolk MPP Toby Barrett says changes to Health Canada’s wind study take direct aim at previously unexamined indirect adverse health effects of industrial wind turbines – acknowledging a key complaint of concerned residents.

Changes to the study were announced following the submission of more than 950 public comments during consultations to inform the committee on how the study should be guided. The changes will ensure new considerations for the assessment of low-frequency infrasound and a questionnaire to be administered by Statistics Canada. The comments reflected a common chief complaint that infrasound (an indirect effect) caused by wind turbines can lead to adverse health effects.

“Finally some level of government is listening to the people these turbines are directly – or indirectly as the case may be – impacting,” said Barrett. “While we continue to await any acknowledgment whatsoever from the provincial government, the Health Canada announcement may help us finally shed some light on continued complaints about wind turbines.”

The Health Canada study will initially focus on residents in 2,000 homes within proximity of industrial wind turbines. The study will be led by more than 25 experts in acoustics, health assessment, and medicine, and will include four international advisors.

Barrett went on to note that the changes follow revelations announced by Opposition Huron Bruce MPP Lisa Thompson over Freedom Of Information documents from the Ministry of Environment indicating the province knew of the adverse indirect health effects.

“This change in Health Canada’s study criteria further goes to prove that we need a provincial moratorium now, while this important study is being completed,” said Thompson. “This government cannot continue to sit idle on the Chief Medical Officer of Health’s 2010 ‘study’ which only looked a the direct health impacts of wind turbines, like a blade falling off and hitting a passerby. It is irresponsible of this government to put the health of Ontarians at risk without knowing the facts.”

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For more information contact

Toby Barrett 519-428-0446 or 1-800-903-8629

22 thoughts on “Changes to Health Canada wind study target indirect effects

  1. WARNING:

    Many of us believe it is unethical for Health Canada to be conducting research on citizens who have not consented to be exposed to these known health risks.

    By participating in this research, you could be providing information that will be distorted and used against you.

    Health Canada and the federal government are not neutral parties, they are biased.

    Principal Investigator David Michaud has advocated for exposure limits of 45 dba (which is higher than Ontario regulations permit) even though he admits the science supporting this position is lacking. David Michaud will not retract this opinion.

    Also, NRCan is subsidizing offending wind turbine projects through the ecoENERGY program.

    You should seek independent legal advice before deciding whether to participate in this research or not.

    • This is not legal advice. Notice: no retainer, no qualification, no identification. In fact, everything on this website may be fiction.

      But, it could be argued, by those who are qualified, and are willing to opine, and are properly informed that one who is considering participating in a health study, performed by a public institution with credibility, that seeks to examine the nature of wind turbines health effects, but will not provide definitive answers on its own although the study is represented as a component of due diligence aimed at protecting public health, etc, etc, etc…

      should not make the mistake of assuming that participating in the Health Canada or University of Waterloo health studies ensures the protection of your rights.

      In fact, there is a lack of legal considerations in both of these initiatives.

      Bottom line: Canadians are between a rock and a hard place.

      But you’d have to be a fool, or disingenuous to believe that our governments give a hoot about our health protection…

      IMHO.

      I suspect that a qualified, independent legal advisor would tell you something like, “you’re damned if you do, and you might be damned if you don’t.” But that’s just a suspicion of mine, and I’m biased. So, do what you please. And have a nice day.

      Law d’ duh…

      • The problems can arise from the way the proceedings are conducted and not from the information people submit.

  2. The health studies are not court proceedings or contracts and no one is forcing people to participate. Anyone who participates is only providing information on what they are encountering with IWTs. This is not court testimony and so an individuals circumstances with IWTs can change with time. As long as this is not sworn testimony why do you need a lawyer?

    • Barbara:

      I suspect that people will be asked to sign “paperwork” when participating in the study.

      It would be nice to know what is in that paperwork.

      I agree with S&D as far as being deeply suspicious of the study terms and conditions (the remit)… I think an ILA might be a double-edged sword…

      For example…

      The agreement…

      Thank you for your participation. You agree that the data being collected will be used by Health Canada to determine if various types of noise including audible and infrasound is affecting human health. Your data will be used by an expert panel to determine whether the noise produced by IWs is causing direct or indirect harm to humans. etc.


      You agree the data provided by you to be used in the following ways…

      The data will be used to produce any required legislation based on the findings of the expert panel…

      There you just agreed the panel has the expertise to make that determination and set laws… Didn’t you? Or did you? Can you answer that question?

    • As well…

      Not all contracts are written — it’s certainly more convenient.

      Sometimes it’s difficult to determine whether there was or was not a contract, an offer, an inducement…

      • There are both written and oral contracts. A contract is an agreement between two or more parties to do something.
        For example a simple contract would be I’ll paint your house if you clean my house.
        Sending in a report of one’s experiences with IWTs is not a contract because it’s not an agreement between two or more parties.
        Because circumstances surrounding IWT issues can change in the future what you say today can be different than next week, next year, and etc. But it would be wise to keep a copy of what you do submit.

    • IMO, if the independent legal advice was worth what you paid for it, the advisor would recognize that there are risks to participation. One of these risks is the future burden you may face in trying to rectify misinformation, should the process produce a report that finds that health impcats are negligible, don’t exist, etc.

      Sure, we know the results would be garbage because the process was garbage. But the ability to challenge a ‘credible’ public authority like Health Canada or Univ. of Waterloo is beyond most people’s grasp. For example, despite all of our efforts, it has yet to be officially recognized that the CMOH report of 2010 is fatally flawed.

      Can victims of wind turbines–who are already very burdened–afford to take on the additional risks of participation in these health studies? especially since there are already so many red flags about these processes, inlcuding, but not limited to, lack of ethics considerations.

      • It’s the process that one has to be wary of.
        At least there is information now on who the committee members are and who the consulting experts are. Then there are the already published works of these consulting experts which reveals their views on “noise”.
        Were issues created with the process by CanWEA?

      • The information that people send to Health Canada is UNSWORN testimony and it’s up to the individuals as to whether or not they want to participate.

      • The Health Canada Wind Turbine Noise and Health Study experts still entertain the possibility that all or some of the “annoyance” reported is caused by having a bad attitude about wind turbines.

        I had the opposite experience, however: unmitigated, physical, annoyance gave me one heck of a bad attitude about wind turbines.

        In fact, I now find it offensive these researchers choose to waste limited resources blaming the victim.

        It is unconscienable that victims must now fret about whether or not to participate in this bad research.

        This study is an affront to human dignity.

      • Too bad Health Canada only considers certain kinds of bias…

      • These ‘experts’ on industrial wind turbines probably haven’t heard of the Shirley Report (Wisconsin) which came out in Dec.2012. The primary conclusion was: “enough evidence and hypotheses have been given herein to classify LFN and infrasound as a serious issue, possibly affecting the future of the industry. The argument about whether wind turbines produce infra and low-frequency sound and if they do, whether it is sufficient to cause adverse health effects has taken a big step forward with this conclusion. That infra and low-frequency sound is a primary characteristic of wind turbine acoustic emissions was established by the team.”

      • Agreed with what you are saying but it is necessary for the general public to know what this process is likely to involve. It’s easy to fool the public if they don’t have any information as to what is taking place.
        The concern is not about the testimony affected victims will present but the process itself is of concern and what this process will likely lead to.

      • I agree, it is critical to understand the process.

        Let me put it this way: I suspect…

        if the physical measurements/information provided by a study participant, such as cortisol levels, blood pressure, etc., reveal higher than ‘normal’ stress levels, etc,

        and if you answer their survey and provide information that you dislike wind turbines (ie: you have a bad attitude about them)

        then (considering the approach these “experts” have taken in their other research)

        they are likely to produce a report that emphasizes the relationship between bad attitude and annoyance

        but will say something like, this is an ” association but does not prove causation.

        Then, they will leave it to the public (and the industry), (and they will probably make allusions) that annoyance is caused by having a bad attitude, ie: you don’t like how they look, “turbine-envy,” etc.

        This is how I see the ducks being aligned.

        So why would victims of wind turbines want to participate in this bad research?

  3. I think you can forget ethics on the part of any federal or provincial government body for a start!
    Practically every member of that ‘expert’ panel from Canada comes from a public sector body, many of them academics. They owe their generous tax paid salaries and pensions to government!
    Many of them have actively worked to support wind energy in Ontario.
    The ‘expert’ from NZ is a consultant who has submitted reports to the NZ equivalent of CANWea on two separate wind energy projects and additionally recommended that in an urban setting, 57dB is a safe noise level.(This from a gas plant not a wind project )
    I think there are 3 ‘experts’ from Holland? You can probably guarantee they are pro rather than anti, in spite of the fact that the Dutch government have already publicly admitted they will not be able to meet the reduced emissions level demanded by the EU and the SOLE reason for their wind energy policies.
    And, of course, even ahead of time Health Canada have already stated any conclusions will not be ‘definitive’. It just gives all the wind crooks in Ontario an additional 2 years to ‘screw over’ rural Ontario before HC agree that can carry on doing just that after 2014 as well………….
    We have absolutely no one but ourselves………..
    Andrew Watts

  4. This is a setup!
    Read the legal arguments from the MOE tribunals. Turbines need to be proven to cause a DIRECT negative impact to human health, wildlife, environment, etc. Even if infrasound is proven by HC to cause illness, it means nothing in preventing projects from steamrolling ahead because infrasound is an INDIRECT effect. Wake up people, we’re being played for fools!

  5. Things will get worse very shortly…

    Ran across this last night. Environmentalists should be cheering.

    http://www.sanders.senate.gov/newsro…9-e5b0c92d395b

    WASHINGTON, Feb 12 – Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) will hold a news conference on Thursday, Feb. 14 to announce comprehensive legislation on climate change. Boxer is Chairman of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. Sanders serves on the environment committee and also is a member of the Senate energy committee.

    Under the legislation, a fee on carbon pollution emissions would fund historic investments in energy efficiency and sustainable energy technologies such as wind, solar, geothermal and biomass. The proposal also would provide rebates to consumers to offset any efforts by oil, coal or gas companies to raise prices.

    Environment and consumer leaders set to participate include Bill McKibben, founder of 350.org; Mike Brune, executive director of Sierra Club; Tara McGuiness, executive director of the Center for American Progress Action Fund; Tyson Slocum, Public Citizen’s energy director; and David Bradley, National Community Action Foundation executive director.

    Hopefully the earth will begin to cool as we speak.

    I saw the original story here:
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/02/1…ming-thursday/

    Other info here:
    http://news.nationalpost.com/2013/02…tream-tuesday/

    The MSM has not yet picked up on this story.

    This will be an inducement to install more Wind power and more Solar Cells at a faster pace.

    Cheers. It’s all over except the weeping.

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