Meeting: Industrial Wind Turbines & Health Affected Residents of Huron County to Board of Health

HuronCoastTurbinesArea-Wide Concerned Residents of Huron County
We are pleased to announce that we are scheduled to make a presentation in front of the Huron County Board of Health on Industrial Wind Turbines and Health Affected Residents of Huron County. As a member of the public, you are cordially invited to attend. The meeting will be held at 9 am., March 3, 2016, Huron County Health Unit, 77722B London Road, Clinton, Ontario.

One of the challenges facing the residents of Huron County, which impacts our community in a significant way, is families living near industrial wind turbine projects and experiencing negative health effects. More experts are recognizing that the negative health concerns will have to be addressed. See: Recognizing health concerns in wind energy development a key recommendation in new study Jan. 26, 2016 http://phys.org/news/2016-01-health-energy-key.html Dr. Janice Owens, Acting Huron County Medical Officer of Health, cited the following article in her February monthly report: Systematic Review 2013: Association between Wind Turbines and Human Distress by Ian Arra , Hazel Lynn, Kimberley Barker, Chiebere Ogbuneke, Sophie Regalado. The review concluded, “The peer-reviewed studies we reviewed provide reasonable evidence (Levels Four and Five) that an association exists between wind turbines and distress in humans.” http://docs.wind-watch.org/Arra-Lynn-Review.pdf

To date, there is nowhere affected citizens can turn for help. The Province of Ontario directs residents to the MOECC. The MOECC has failed to act even when their own employees found wind turbines to be out of compliance. Plus, the MOECC does not handle health issues. The failure by the province to address health concerns has caused many small grass root groups to be formed. However, small groups are easily ignored. Our group is trying to bring these small groups together in Huron County to make one voice. Our group has two goals: 1) to improve the quality of life of residents in our county whose health has been adversely affected by wind turbines. 2) to educate the public on the health effects caused by misplaced wind turbines. We have recently reached out to groups in Bruce County.

As more wind turbine projects come on-line, more citizens are having negative health effects. These residents should be able to live in their homes without having to experience ill health effects caused by misplaced wind turbines. The people were promised safe green energy when wind turbines were proposed. Waiting years for the Health Canada study is not an option when people are suffering now. Solutions, not more studies, are needed. The affected residents need politicians and people to start caring.

Regards

Area-Wide Concerned Residents of Huron County
Gerry Ryan – Huron East
Jeanne Melady – Former Huron East
Mike Stachura – Ashfield-Colburne-Wawanosh
Pauli Sommer – Ashfield-Colburne-Wawanosh
Patti Kellar – Bluewater

13 thoughts on “Meeting: Industrial Wind Turbines & Health Affected Residents of Huron County to Board of Health

  1. This is absolute madness, and just compounds an already disastrous situation.

    The studies have shown that no wildlife exist near turbines. Even the earthworms move away. When science is ignored because it does not agree with a political agenda, the politicians involved need to be charged with endangering the public, and the environment.

    Looking at the various studies around the World, it is quite evident that wind turbines, operating at less than 20kms from human habitation, is a health hazard. And that is just if we ignore wildlife, which we have no right to do. We are stewards of our environment. We have to preserve it for future generations, of all life forms.

    Besides being criminally responsible for acts that harm the environment, a government that ignores the will of the people, and disregards the advice of experts in the field, needs to be removed, and criminally charged.

  2. I live near recently installed turbines that where turned on a couple weeks ago on Danceland Road and Hwy 21 and since they started spinning I have noticed a popped ear drum kind of feeling and not sleeping like I use to. When I leave the area my ears come clear but when in get home they go back to a muffled popped feeling again and its very disturbing. I will be at the meeting

  3. The Ontario law, the Ontario Health Protection and Promotion Act EXISTS, and was not / is not diminished in any way by the Green Energy & Economy Act of 2009, nor by any of the regulatory regimes that were in place when some of these Ontario IWT projects were developed before the GEEA of 2009.

    The Ontario Health Protection and Promotion Act (“HPPA”), in Part III, Community Health Protection, at section 11, mandates a responsibility for a medical officer of health to “investigate” “complaints” regarding “health hazards related to occupational or environmental health,” and “to determine whether the health hazard exists or does not exist.”

    Here is s. 11 from the HPPA:

    “PART III COMMUNITY HEALTH PROTECTION
    Complaint re health hazard related to occupational or environmental health
    11. (1) Where a complaint is made to a board of health or a medical officer of health that a health hazard related to occupational or environmental health exists in the health unit served by the board of health or the medical officer of health, the medical officer of health shall notify the ministry of the Government of Ontario that has primary responsibility in the matter and, in consultation with the ministry, the medical officer of health shall investigate the complaint to determine whether the health hazard exists or does not exist.”

    Here is the definition of “Health Hazard” contained in the HPPA:

    “HEALTH HAZARD, as defined in s.1(1) of the Health Protection and Promotion Act, means “(a) a condition of a premises, (b) a substance, thing, plant or animal other than man, or (c) a solid, liquid, gas or combination of any of them, that is likely to have an adverse effect on the health of any person.”

    Complaints were made to the Medical Officer of Health in the health unit served by this board of health.

    So, did the medical officer of health “investigate”? (Yes or no?)

    And what was the medical officer of health’s determination: did she determine that health hazards exist, or that health hazards do not exist?

  4. The HPPA also mandates the duty of the board of health (s.61), and makes it clear that the medical officer of health “reports directly to the board of health” (s.67):

    Here are sections 61 and 67 of the HPPA:

    Duty of board of health
    61. Every board of health shall superintend and ensure the carrying out of Parts II, III and IV and the regulations relating to those Parts in the health unit served by the board of health.

    Medical officer of health
    67. (1) The medical officer of health of a board of health reports directly to the board of health on issues relating to public health concerns and to public health programs and services under this or any other Act.

    The HPPA also states that the board of health is NOT relieved of liability for negligence:

    Here is section 95 of the HPPA:

    Board of health not relieved of liability
    95. (3) Subsection (1) does not relieve a board of health from liability for damage caused by negligence of or action without authority by a person referred to in subsection (1), and a board of health is liable for such damage in the same manner as if subsection (1) had not been enacted.

  5. The Ontario Public Health Standards (OPHA) define expectations for public health.

    For example, regarding the function of Health Hazard Prevention and Management, the OPHS states the goal:

    “To prevent or reduce the burden of illness from health hazards in the physical environment.”

    toward the “Societal Outcomes,” such as:

    “The public and community partners are aware of health hazard incidents and risks in a timely manner.”

    IMO, this is a measuring stick that can be used to assess whether the local public health officers have fulfilled their mandates. Select a public and/or community partner, for example, Ms. Tanya Christidis with the RETH group at the University of Waterloo, and evaluate whether she is/was “aware” of the health hazard incidents and risks “in a timely manner.”

    • Correction: The acronym for the Ontario Public Health Standards s/b “OPHS”

  6. The provincial government and the wind industry have a pattern of diminishing health concerns. However, at least 20% of the population can have negative health effects from wind turbines, especially when the wind turbines are within 1 km of a home. I personally know several families having real health issues because K2 was allowed to place several wind turbines within 1 km of their homes. It is important that as many people as possible show up to this meeting to show that it is unacceptable to allow one-fifth of the population to be negatively affected. I will definitely attend.

  7. For those of us in the hinterlands who can’t attend, our thoughts are with you. You’ve always been courageous to blaze a trail. Others will be following in your footsteps. Best.

  8. Here’s a doc who’s worth his weight!

    This letter written by William Hallstein, MD, a practicing psychiatrist with over 40 years of experience, was delivered to the Falmouth Zoning Board of Appeals. Dr. Hallstein is also a resident of Falmouth Massachusetts. In his letter he explains the very real impact the Falmouth turbines on human health.

    14 January 2016
    To: Zoning Board of Appeals, Falmouth, MA
    From: William Hallstein, MD
    Subject: Wind turbine permitting

    Dear members of the Zoning Board of Appeals,

    I am submitting this letter for your consideration as you contemplate the matter of whether or not to issue a permit for the wind turbines. In way of introduction I am a psychiatric physician and Falmouth resident since 1970. This year I will have been practicing medical psychiatry for 49(forty nine) years. Consultation/liaison psychiatry has been my focus. This means sorting out diagnostic questions about intertwined medical/psychiatric illnesses, the most difficult diagnostic questions in medicine, whether in a general hospital, locked psychiatric unit or maximum security prison. I will be brief and to the point as I explain why I urge you to deny a permit for the Falmouth wind turbines.

    1. The human nervous system is the most sensitive instrument available to date for evaluating the impact of the Falmouth wind turbines on residents who live close to them. The ONLY experts in the discussion are the people who are sensing the sound, vibrations, pressure waves, etc emitted by the turbines. There is no one more “expert” than these people. No so called expert has either equipment nor information more accurate and sensitive than the affected residents’ nervous systems. NO instruments more sensitive than people have been invented! Others who claim to be experts are peddling smoke and mirrors in an effort to invalidate and discredit the affected residents. Also, other turbines in other places are not the issue, since local topography must be considered. The impact of the Falmouth wind turbines on Falmouth residents who live nearby is all that is relevant. I believe they are definitely hurting people living near them and encourage you to NOT permit the turbines, now, long after they were constructed illegally.

    Over the past few years I have spent significant amounts of time in the vicinity of the turbines in an effort to understand what the affected residents are describing. My findings were unanticipated and surprised me. I was not prepared for the intensity and intrusiveness of both sound and vibration felt consistently and repeatedly throughout the years of my studying the phenomena on location. I recall my introduction to the sound of “low flying jet airplanes” overhead loud enough to interrupt conversation; and, of course, the “planes” kept coming one after another in endless sequence with each rotation of a turbine blade!!! I was searching the sky looking for the aircraft when my eye caught the turbine blades , and then it all made sense, of course; no aircraft in sight, only Wind I blades. Later on, as I leaned against one of the houses in the neighborhood, I felt an unusual sensation best described as compression, coupled with a rhythmic vibration felt through my feet. Anyone who discredits, demeans and calls the affected turbine neighbors “crazy” hasn’t done his or her homework, in addition to being mean spirited. The homework is not difficult: stand in the turbine neighborhood for as long as I have and feel what happens to you.

    The sensations are real and disturbing. It is totally clear to me that I could not live within the radius of influence of the turbines, and I have no idea how the neighbors who are in the turbine area can sustain a healthy quality of life. Against the backdrop of what I have learned from personal experience with the effect of the turbines I see the Town of Falmouth trying to crush the residents impacted by the turbines.

    2. Let’s move on to sleep disturbance and sleep deprivation which is the bedrock of the area of medicine in which I have worked for 49 years! Sleep disturbance is not a trivial matter, even though it has been trivialized by the Falmouth Board of Health. Children with inadequate sleep perform poorly academically, emotionally and physically(they present a higher than normal incidence of physical illnesses). For ANYONE (athletes, truck drivers, ship operators, aircraft pilots, lawyers and physicians, et al) sleep deprived and fatigued, errors in judgement increase, accident rates increase, in addition to physical and emotional symptoms and cognitive impairment. In the world of medical observation all varieties of illnesses are destabilized secondary to inadequate sleep: diabetic blood sugars become labile and erratic, cardiac rhythms become irregular, migraines erupt and increase in intensity, tissue healing is retarded, to list a few across the entire range of physical illnesses. Psychiatric problems intensify as the sleep deprived brain decompensates; mood disorders become more extreme and psychotic signs and symptoms more severe.

    People with no previously identified psychiatric illness are destabilized by sleep deprivation. Sleep deprivation experiments have repeatedly been terminated because test subjects become psychotic; they begin to hallucinate auditory and visual phenomena. They develop paranoid delusions. This all happens in the “normal” brain. Sleep deprivation has been used as an effective means of torture and a technique for extracting confessions.

    I could work my way through 49 years of observing sleep disturbances and deprivation, but that is more than the scope of this letter. I am writing because I have witnessed Town of Falmouth officials and members of other boards trivialize symptom reports from people who are stalwart residents of the Town of Falmouth. I have witnessed attempts by town officials and other board members to discredit people whom I believe the wind turbines are hurting. Furthermore, all the Wind I neighbors I have examined are passionate about the need for sustainable energy in an effort to reduce fossil fuel dependence.

    I see no honest way for the ZBA to issue a permit for the Falmouth wind turbines. Basically, as I see it, the town installed commercial wind generating power plants in a residential neighborhood. Inappropriately permitting the illegally sited turbines will continue to impair the development of well designed and properly sited wind turbines which are vitally needed.

    Sincerely,
    William Hallstein, MD

  9. “Dr Laurie addresses Falmouth Wind Turbine Demonstration”

    Sarah Laurie, CEO of the Waubra Foundation in Australia, delivered this powerful speech before the Falmouth wind turbine demonstration held in Falmouth, MA on February 27, 2016.

    “Thank you for the opportunity to contribute to your rally.

    I first wish to pay tribute to the long suffering residents of Falmouth USA, who lived or are still living near the wind turbines owned by the town. These people have made an incredible contribution to our knowledge of wind turbine acoustics, wind turbine adverse health impacts, and have shown true human courage and compassion for others in a similar situation – both in their own country and further afield. We owe them, their acoustics and health professionals, and their supporters, a great debt of gratitude.” […]

    “Other acoustic investigators have followed, and made other significant contributions.

    But where are the medical and public health investigators? They seem to be in hiding; either ignoring important research evidence in the case of Australia’s National Health and Medical Research Council “expert panel” with members who had documented conflicts of interest, or in the case of Health Canada, deliberately choosing study designs which do not directly investigate the problems in the best possible way.

    For example any doctor knows that you do not make clinical judgements about someone’s blood pressure with a single once off measurement, yet that is what this Health Canada team did – with no concurrent measurement of the acoustic exposure at the time. You must repeat the measurement.

    This is junk science, and Health Canada know it, and are trying to hide it by dribbling the study results out slowly and in small “bites”, restricting access to the raw data and other results, making it very difficult for others to critically evaluate their results.

    I applaud Falmouth Psychiatrist Dr William Hallstein for his professional integrity, courage, and honesty – advocating so strongly for his patients, to whom he owes a professional and ethical duty of care, which he clearly takes seriously. Others need to follow his example.

    I also applaud Dr Nina Pierpont for her research, and her courage and integrity, and her work with Falmouth residents, helping them expose their stories to the public.

    But where are their colleagues? Why the silence?

    The silence of too many professionals, or indeed even active collusion with noise polluters to hide or ignore the evidence of serious harm, has allowed this serious abuse of the legal and human rights of residents in Falmouth, and indeed all over the world, to occur, and to continue.

    But why are the public servants responsible for environmental health, planning and noise pollution regulation, seemingly so complicit with the harmful abuse of the rights of citizens?

    Is it ignorance or incompetence?
    Is it pure corruption?
    Is it regulatory capture?
    Is it ideological zealotry – an attitude that leads to the concept that people who are noise impacted from wind turbine noise are somehow acceptable “collateral damage”?
    Is it fear of being ridiculed or ostracized by colleagues?” […]

    http://www.windaction.org/posts/44430-dr-laurie-addresses-falmouth-wind-turbine-demonstration

    • Thanks for posting this speech in it entirety. I encourage everyone to click on the link so that you will be able to access the speech as it was originally published. Dr. Laurie has referenced many sources that are filled with information to back up every point she made in this speech.
      Dr. Laurie has offered to work with our Huron County Health Unit ((if they arrange a conference call) to help to find ways as quickly as possible to make the necessary changes on behalf of all of the people who are experiencing adverse impacts. Reading her speech and taking an honest look at all of the information she has referenced in this speech is a start.

    • At UNEP Finance Initiative/UNEPFI, check out the list of Australian financial institutions who have pledged to invest in renewable energy in Australia.

      Also can check the UNEP list for any Australian NGOs.

  10. Local Boards of Health in Ontario are liable if negligence.

    Here are more excerpts from the
    Ontario Public Health Standards, 2008 (Revised May 1, 2014):

    Population Health Assessment and Surveillance Protocol

    Purpose: […] This protocol is intended to contribute to the maintenance and improvement of health and well-being of the population, including the reduction of health inequities.

    Operational Roles and Responsibilities:
    h) The board of health shall identify priority populations to address the determinants of health, by considering those with health inequities including: increased burden of illness; or increased risk for adverse health outcome(s); and/or those who may experience barriers in accessing public health or other health services or who would benefit from public health action.

    Health inequalities and inequities: Health inequalities can be defined as differences in health status or in the distribution of health determinants between different population groups. For example, differences in mobility between elderly people and younger populations or differences in mortality rates between people from different social classes. It is important to distinguish between inequality in health and inequity. Some health inequalities are attributable to biological variations or free choice, and others are attributable to the external environment and conditions mainly outside the control of the individuals concerned. In the first case it may be impossible or ethically or ideologically unacceptable to change the health determinants, and so the health inequalities are unavoidable. In the second, the uneven distribution may be unnecessary and avoidable as well as unjust and unfair, so that the resulting health inequalities also lead to inequity in health.

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