Suncor wants much of Plympton-Wyoming’s noise bylaw axed

turbine-noiseThe Independant
A Suncor Energy representative calls Plympton-Wyoming’s noise bylaw “a novel approach” but wants much of the bylaw changed. Suncor Energy is planning a 43-industrial turbine project around Camlachie. It’s the subject of an Environmental Review Tribunal Hearing. But the town has written and passed a noise bylaw to make sure residents aren’t bothered but low-level sound – called infrasound. While the bylaw was passed, under the Municipal Act, people can ask for changes for up to a year.

Chris Scott was at Plympton-Wyoming Council recently to outline the company’s concerns with the bylaw which Suncor says “are concepts that are not well defined and not accepted by the general consensus of (acoustical) industry standards.” While the noise bylaw wouldn’t stop Suncor from building the project, Scott says operating it would be another thing. The bylaw, he says, amounts to an “outright ban on infrasound” and “the testing methods are vague and inadequately defined.”

Scott says everything, including people, emit infrasound, making it impossible to turn on the turbines. And he suggested it would be difficult to measure low-level noise. Scott says there are instruments to measure the lower limits of infrasound as Plympton-Wyoming’s bylaw suggests, but “they are not typically available…and should be struck from the bylaw.” Read article

26 thoughts on “Suncor wants much of Plympton-Wyoming’s noise bylaw axed

  1. Some of the key findings of the NASA research into the neighbours’ complaints were that:
    “very low frequency” noise generated by NASA’s turbines (which was defined to include “infrasound”) was the cause of the “annoyance” reported by neighbours (“annoyance” being an acoustics term which does not involve emotional responses – ie “antipathy” to the “look” of wind turbines);
    the “annoyance” being reported by neighbours included numerous physiological responses, which were described as “sensations”. These “sensations”, which they felt rather than heard, were sensations of “pressure”, “a sense of uneasiness”, “booming or thumping pulsations”. These sensations were at their worst in the bedrooms where they were trying to sleep;
    the “very low frequency” noise generated by turbines interacted with, and was amplified by, the complainant’s homes, creating “structural resonances”, whereby low-frequency sound-waves “excited” materials within the home, causing vibration of the home;
    the “very low frequency noise” generated by turbines was not “attenuated” by the structure of the homes (ie, sound pressure levels were not significantly reduced inside homes), but, rather, interacted with homes in the manner described above – resulting in higher sound pressure levels at very low frequencies (ie the noise levels recorded were higher inside than outside), causing greater “annoyance” to neighbours, as a result;
    the vibration of these homes, caused by turbine generated infrasound, resulted in neighbours perceiving that vibration with their whole bodies (ie “whole body perception”);the vibration of these homes, caused by turbine generated infrasound, resulted in neighbours perceiving that vibration with their whole bodies (ie “whole body perception”);
    the very low-frequency noise generated by NASA’s turbines was replicated in a “house” (a three room structure) during a further study; and was shown to cause “annoyance/displeasure” as a “presence” which participants could “feel” to varying degrees, up to “extremely annoying and uncomfortable”; sensations of “vibration/pressure” and “pulsations”, which participants could also “feel” to varying degrees, up to and including “severe vibration” and “very heavy pulses, booms and thumps”;
    the common noise descriptor or weighting, dB(A) (used to measure noise sources such as air-conditioners) was found to be totally inadequate, with almost no significant relationship to the sensations and symptoms being reported; and, was, accordingly found to be the worst possible measure for predicting the level of “annoyance” being reported by neighbours;
    a variety of noise descriptors, designed to capture low-frequency noise, showed strong correlations between the noise levels generated and the sensations recorded;
    the first of the NASA turbine designs being studied as part of research had its blades down wind from the tower. The second turbine design placed the blades up wind (ie, in front of the tower). The infrasound and low-frequency noise levels generated were not significantly altered as a result. (Modern wind turbines use the “up wind” design);the homes where people were adversely affected were situated out to as far as 3km from a single turbine;
    the propagation distance (ie the distance over which noise travels before it “decays”) is far greater for low-frequency noise and infrasound generated by turbines, than the propagation distance of noise which does not contain sound energy at low frequencies.

  2. Pingback: It’s an “outright ban on infrasound” | WAINFLEET WIND ACTION GROUP

  3. Suncor wants…….. Suncor wants……. Yes, Suncor wants all abstacles removed from their agenda to install wind turbines, just like every other wind developer. And what do the people want? The municipality is speaking for the people. At least we still have democracy at lower levels of government. I look for the Mayor and Council to fight for the people to the best of their ability.

  4. This is going to require forceful assertion on the part of Plympton Wyoming’s leaders. These companies were not expecting intelligent resistance like this. I applaud you all for your persistence and determination to protect citizens rights.

  5. If this By-Law holds……………….

    ‘[excerpt] While the bylaw was passed, under the Municipal Act, people can ask for changes for up to a year.

    Chris Scott was at Plympton-Wyoming Council recently to outline the company’s concerns with the bylaw which Suncor says “are concepts that are not well defined and not accepted by the general consensus of (acoustical) industry standards.”’

    ‘[excerpt] Scott says everything, including people, emit infrasound, making it impossible to turn on the turbines. And he suggested it would be difficult to measure low-level noise. Scott says there are instruments to measure the lower limits of infrasound as Plympton-Wyoming’s bylaw suggests, but “they are not typically available…and should be struck from the bylaw.”’

    ——————————————————————————————————————-

    Again – ‘[excerpt] Scott says there are instruments to measure the lower limits of infrasound as Plympton-Wyoming’s bylaw suggests, but “they are not typically available…’

    ——————————————————————————————————————-
    Good News!
    Re: ….Instruments
    So – it’s an – availability problem – according to ‘big mouth’ Scott.
    – but – could be made – available!

    Go Big Mouth Scott!

    • Big Mouth Chris Scott’s whining about Suncor’s needs and wants makes about as much sense as the following discourse.

      Dig it, Scottio?

    • Generally speaking – what the heck
      does – ‘general consensus’ – mean?

      ‘[excerpt] …Suncor says “are concepts that are not well defined and not accepted by the general consensus of (acoustical) industry standards.”’

      ——————————————————————————————————

      Grammar is everything –
      in the draconian age of the new green economy
      created by the McGuinty – Wynne liberal government;
      in screwing with your head.

      General consensus? – hahahahahahaha
      General?……..hahahahaha

  6. Suncor wants to have a free hand to pollute. Just ask their neighbours in Sarnia on the Reserve. How much does Suncor dump crap onto your reserve? Suncor is a poor corporate neighbour.

    They suggest Infrasound cannot be measured easily. So what. It can and is being measured. Move into the twenty first century Suncor and realize you cannot dump crap on your neighbours any longer.

  7. Some articles that mention the nocebo effect.

    The Star, May 11, 2009
    ‘Noise protestors howling about windfarms’

    http://www.thestar.com/search.html?q=Tyler+hamilton&pagenum=381

    ————————————————–
    The Star Mar.16, 2013
    “Windturbine sickness may be all in your head: study

    ————————————————————-
    Corporate Knights, Nov.6, 2014
    ‘No evidence of wind sickness: Health Canada’

    http://www.corporateknights.com/channels/health-and-lifestyle/evidence-wind-sickness-health-canada

    Some issues do have a published history.

  8. ” And he suggested it would be difficult to measure low-level noise. Scott says there are instruments to measure the lower limits of infrasound as Plympton-Wyoming’s bylaw suggests, but “they are not typically available…and should be struck from the bylaw.”

    The acousticians who won the RFP by the Ontario government to produce a report on ILFN (HGC) was measuring low level noise years ago…and finding problems…so whats the problem Suncor? They also reported a non-trivial number of residents would be impacted.
    Consult with the Ontario government Suncor.Call Brian Howe. A wealth of knowledge right here right now in Ontario! Shocking!

  9. Wind power firm regrets shooting to death of teen
    By MACHARIA MWANGI | Daily Nation | February 25, 2015 | http://www.nation.co.ke ~~
    Kenya

    ‘[excerpt] The company putting up a wind-power plant in Nyandarua has expressed its regrets over the death of a teenager following protests over the implementation of the Sh13 billion project.
    Kinangop Wind Park chief Executive officer James Wakaba termed the shooting as regrettable adding that they were monitoring the situation and would make their position clear after today’s meeting between the local leaders.
    The teenager was reportedly shot as protesters stormed Magumu Police Post in an attempt to free nine of their colleagues who were arrested on Tuesday morning by the police on incitement charges.
    Mr Wakaba said it was “in the company’s best interest” to undertake the project in a peaceful atmosphere, devoid of any protests by the community and the Persons affected by the Project.
    “After the meeting by the local politicians and the community representatives we will advise the investor accordingly,” said the CEO.
    He said the firm had carried out a comprehensive sensitisation campaign and addressed major concerns by the public, before deciding to go ahead with the implementation programme.
    HEALTH HAZARD
    Mr Wakaba dispelled fears that the project was a health hazard, saying they had adopted “world accepted standards,” when coming up with the project.
    “The fears expressed by the residents are unwarranted. This is the cleanest form of energy,” he added.
    Meanwhile, a family whose land the firm will set up a turbine has claimed that they had not been party to the talks, despite being among those affected by the project.
    “One of the turbines is set to be erected on our farm, but we have never been approached by anyone,” claimed the family members.
    The family called for thorough vetting of all claimants alleging that some of those listed as affected persons were actually “masqueraders” adding that it had delayed compensation of all affected persons.’
    https://www.wind-watch.org/news/2015/02/25/wind-power-firm-regrets-shooting-to-death-of-teen/

  10. Scumtothecore can’t afford those sound
    Measuring thingys…. Their only multi billionairs!

    Riiiight!

    Gee could it be dear Scottie knows that there may be proof had if the wind industry actually had to monitor their beasts? That sure would suck eh!

    Let’s see to whom they call to run and rewrite some laws shall we. We all know
    this is their pattern.

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