Health & wellbeing

the effects of turbines on health & wellbeing

 

When we express our opposition to the local siting of large turbines it is not uncommon for pro-wind advocates to trot out the hackneyed accusation of 'NIMBY"!

 

Of course anyone who finds themselves directly affected by wind farm proposals will have done a little more research than most and will know about the invasive effects turbines can have on the health and wellbeing of those living nearby. This is not trivial and neither is it a gentile form of aesthetic 'nimbyism'. The validated evidence of harm is growing – and it is, of course, unlikely that you will hear the Scottish Government, wind farm developers, land owners or even local Environmental Health officers talking about it! (Hmmm – why?)

 

If you are interested or concerned you might like to look at this presentation.

 

Stop These Things have developed this really interesting timeline. It sets out a chronology of what the wind industry knew (and when); what the wind industry did in response to this knowledge and how the wind industry is still manouevering  to ensure that this knowledge is marginalised in the interests of minimising opposition to the proliferation of large turbines. Meanwhile it is increasingly apparent that turbines can have significant, negative effects on the health and well-being of people living next door to wind farms. Click here to see the presentation.

 

So when someone wants to accuse you of being a climate change skeptik, a middle class aesthete, a privileged country dweller or a NIMBY – tell them about the validated harmful effects on people who live near wind farms and who are seen as irritants to be overcome by the Government and the industry.

 

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At the October 14, 2014 Brown County Board of Health meeting, a motion was unanimously approved declaring the Shirley Wind turbines a "Human Health Hazard".  The text of the unanimously approved motion reads:

 

"To declare the Industrial Wind Turbines at Shirley Wind Project in the Town of Glenmore, Brown County, WI. A Human Health Hazard for all people (residents, workers, visitors, and sensitive passersby) who are exposed to Infrasound/Low Frequency Noise and other emissions potentially harmful to human health."

 

Visit BBCRWE wesbite for more info.

Please send any expressions of support and, if applicable, your expereinces to:  BOHsupport@bccrwe.com   

The Shetlands are threatened with a 103 turbine wind farm in the heart of the Shetlands – constructed on a site of 32,000 acres. It is a mind boggling development. What is particularly distressing is that there were 2722 objections from individuals and objections from the John Muir Trust, RSPB and the government's own agency and statutory consultee Scottish Natural Heritage.

 

Yet Energy Minister Fergus Ewing still thought it appropriate to approve this wind farm.

 

Sustainable Shetland have decided to challenge this decision through the courts and have launched a judicial review.

 

They need funds – it's as simple as that. They have been granted a protective costs order and will only be liable for £5000 of costs. They still have to fund their own experts and legal fees.

 

If you would like to make a donation to their fighting fund please follow the links on

 

http://www.sustainableshetland.org/index.htm

 

Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/TurbineWatch312?ref=hl#!/groups/111070719185/?fref=ts

 

 

Reasons for objection – click here

 

Open for comments until Thursday 14th February 2013

Ministers from the UK and Ireland are set to sign a deal which will see Ireland buiding 180m (600ft) turines on land with the power being exported across the Irish Sea to Wales.

 

This is supposedly set to save the UK money as onshore wind will prove cheaper than off shore.  Wonder if the transmission losses, impacts of nearby residents health and environmental damage has been included in the costs?

 

Best of all though is the reason for the turbines being so tall:-

 

Because the bog lands are relatively windless, the company behind the scheme says they will need to stretch high into the sky to catch sufficient wind to generate power.

 

Obviously, not the wrong place for a wind development then?

 

To read BBC Report click here

 

 

Hello again and Happy New Year!

 

A new report has been released which measured infrasound and low frequency noise at a wind farm in Shirley, America.

 

What is unusual about this report is that tests were carried out by 4 different acousticians – 2 who work for the wind industry and 2 who are independent.

 

The final report contains a body of text which all 4 acousticaims have signed and 4 seperate appendix reports from each individual.  Here is an important statement from the main body of the report agreed and signed off by all four.

 

The four investigating firms are of the opinion that enough evidence and hypotheses have been given herein to classify LFN and infrasound as a serious issue, possibly affecting the future of the industry. It should be addressed beyond the present practice of showing that wind turbine levels are magnitudes below the threshold of hearing at low frequencies.“ 

 

Click here to read more about the report

 

 

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas!

 

 

Credit:   The Galloway Gazette     (15/12/12)

 

"An anti-wind farm protester who used her own land to display signs protesting against turbines near her home had a rude surprise this week.

 

Liz Glarke had placed the signs and posters on the boundary fence between her land near Barrachan and that of a family member who sold his to EDF Energy Renewables to allow for the Airriequhillart wind turbines plan.

 

Now Liz says she won’t let the bullyboy behaviour grind her down and is in the process of making new signs to replace the removed ones."

 

Click here to read more

 

To visit the website  http://www.airriequhillartwindfarmprotest.com/   

 

A scoping application for a possible 15 x 137m turbines on Mochrum Fell has been submitted to D & G  council by Coriolis on behalf of Falck Renewables.

 

The site lies adjacent and northeast of the Benshinnie site which may have up to 24 turbines if developed.  Both of these proposals will be close to the consented Blackcraig and with Knockman Hill, Loch Hill and Margree still awaiting a decision it looks like the Glenkens could be completely changed for the next 25 years!

 

Click here for the Galloway News article

 

Planning News

 

Planning applications

 

12/P/2/0341   Knockendurrick (IRELANDTON)    1 x 80m met mast

12/P/2/0340   Culdoach, Tongland 1 x 77m + 40m mast

12/P/2/0317   Guffogland, Dalbeattie   1 x 55m

12/P/1/0361   Airyhemming Farm, Glenluce   3 x 38m

 

Scoping Applications

 

12/E/2/0047   Mochrum fell   15 x 137m

12/E/2/0046   Upper Porterbelly Farm, Kirkgunzeon   1 x 44.9m

 

Decisions

 

11/P/2/0478   Mayfield, Rhonehouse   6 x 130m   REFUSED

12/P/2/0241   Rattra, Borgue   1 x 27m   APPROVED

12/P/2/0293   Torrories Farm, Kirkbean 2 x 20m   WITHDRAWN

 Mayfield was unanimously refused

 

Well done to everyone who spoke at the meeting and our thanks to those who came to support us!

 

Galloway News Report

 

 

…like a gathering army ready to wreak the most toxic disturbance of rural life in Scotland since the Highland Clearances. Unless you follow the micro-practices of Government and Local Authority planning you may well not know what is about to happen to the countryside and community life in Scotland. The map shows existing and proposed turbines in Dumfries and Galloway (special thanks to Keith Mycock for creating and maintaining it).

Map Key:

  • Yellow: 0-20m
  • Green: 20-50m
  • Orange: 50-80m
  • Blue: 80+m

There is no distinction shown between turbines already built and those proposed – unless indicated in the information associated with specific turbine markers.


View Turbines in a larger map

Please note: turbines under 80m and outwith planning area 2 (The Stewartry) are not shown (there are so many – we cannot keep pace). In addition there are a few wind farms not yet included because we are awaiting information about the turbine layout.

 

As cracks appear in the UK Government over the issue of wind farms it seems Alex Salmond is taking a different stance.

 

On the day dissent emerged within the Coalition government, Alex Salmond was addressing a renewable energy conference in Glasgow.  What he said should be a warning to all rural communities across Scotland:-

 

"When I became First Minister in 2007, I inherited a target for 50 per cent of Scotland’s electricity to be produced by renewable sources by 2020.

 

We now know that we can achieve much more than that, more quickly – having already exceeded our 2011 target.

 

In the light of that progress, I can announce that we have set a new interim target. By 2015, the equivalent of 50 per cent of Scotland’s electricity demand will be met by renewable sources."

 

Which in a nutshell means more wind turbine planning applications being submitted for inappropriate locationss, more division in more rural communities, more pressure put on our councils, more over-riding of local democracy, more decisions being referred to the Scottish Government for decisions, more people condemned to noise nuisance and health impacts from more turbines placed closer to homes.

 

To read more:-

 

Left swinging in the wind

 

Energy secretary slaps down minister who called for end to wind farm sprawl

 

 

 

 

 

Alex Salmond has defended onshore windfarms, saying they do not spoil the countryside and actually make Scotland more attractive Read more here

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                  The Clyde wind farm photos courtesy of Olive Repton

In our October newsletter I stated that CATS were organising the Perth Wind Farm Protest which is incorrect.  Apologies to the people who have worked so hard to make this happen – please see details below.  The march will start at 11am.

 

If you are interested in joining us at the demo please contact Alan Keith alan@airds.com ASAP

 

PROTEST AGAINST SNP WIND POLICY, PERTH OCT 20th

 

Much as CATS would like to take the credit for originating and organising this important protest, which we wholeheartedly support, CATS has not organised it.

 

It was the idea of a number of people, including Lyndsey Ward, Mary Young, Linda Holt and Graham Lang, and it has been developed in conjunction with a local Perthshire group (GASPS) fighting an Ecotricity wind farm in the Strathearn Valley (see http://www.gasps.info/blog/).

 

For further information, questions etc about the protest, please don't contact CATS/Kim but use one of the following instead:

 

·      visit our facebook page Protest against SNP Wind Policy
·      email: war.on.wind@btinternet.com
·      or call 07590 994690

 

 

Credit:     James Delingpole,     The Telegraph,     (19/09/12)

 

 

 

 

"….And there’s no direct evidence that they affect house prices, in fact the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors says they don’t…."

 

This is a quote – a genuine quote: not one devised by his enemies to satirise the outrageous absurdity of the wind industry's specious claims – from Maf Smith, Deputy Chief of the wind industry propaganda arm RenewableUK.

 

I suppose how far it qualifies as a lie depends on how you construe that weasel phrase "direct evidence.

 

Click here to read more

 

 

 

 

A new ‘good practice guide’ has been developed as part of a Scottish Government-led project, containing tips about how to overcome opposition to wind farm schemes. Ministers say the guidance is designed to ‘make planning applications for wind energy developments run more smoothly’. (Michael Blackley,   Scottish Daily Mail)

 

The new guidelines can be read here, but I quickly looked up the guidance on noise which states:-

 

AVOIDING, MINIMISING AND MANAGING NOISE IMPACTS OF GENERAL RECOMMENDATIONS
 

 Reviewing continually the methodology, standards and policy for wind farm design and noise thresholds.

Applying up to date methodology, standards, policy as well as technology is key to minimising the noise impacts of the wind farms.

 

This so called 'Good Practice Guidance' has failed before it's even published because the specific advice for this recommendation is to follow the findings of the;-

 

"Report from the Working Group on Noise from Wind Turbines -UK
This Report (England) provides guidelines on the measurement on noise from wind farms and indicative noise levels to protect neighbours while not unduly restricting the development of wind farms."

 

These are the ETSU-R-97 guidelines produced in 1996 when turbines were just 50-60m to tip on average.  Turbines are now over double that height and the guidelines are longer overdue the review that was recommended in the document.

Residents close to the intended Barcloy Hill development were given a kick in the teeth on Monday when representatives from REG Windpower called to give them the devastating news that a scoping application has been submitted for 4 x 107m turbines nearby.

 

The proposal is sited on land belonging to Hartburn Farm and Realforests Group and some of the turbines appear to be located approx 500-600m from nearby houses.  Four house will have all 4 turbines within approx 1km.

There appears to be a problem with the name of the wind farm at present as the leaflets call it Sypland Wind Farm but the development will not be on Sypland land which is owned  by someone else.  Once REG decide on its proper name we'll let you know!

 

With plans for 5 x 115m turbines at Barcloy Hill, 4 x 107m at Hartburn, 1 x 84m Little Sypland and 6 x 130m at Mayfield there will be a string of 16 turbines across 5km of beautiful countryside in landscape character types identified in the Interim Planning Policy (IPP) as unsuitable for large typologies (over 80m).

 

No account is taken of the impact all this is having on people's health and the communities which are divided by these proposals.  The uncertainty of what will happen with all of these developments also means anyone in the area wanting to move faces an almost impossible task in selling their home or having to reduce the price drastically and lose money that they have worked hard for over the years.

 

Distressed and angry?  Damn right we are!

 

A sad day for D & G with news yesterday that RES's appeal to the Scottish Government against the council's original refusal of the Glenchamber application was successful.

 

Read more here on this story

 

 

 

Credit:     Stuart Gillespie     The Galloway News    (05/07/12)

 

Windfarm number 12 is in the pipeline for the Glenkens.

 

Fife-based Burcote Wind has revealed it is aiming to build 36 turbines at Longburn between Carsphairn and Moniaive in a £130 million scheme.

 

If the proposal and the other 11 developments currently being worked on are given the go ahead it would take the number of Glenkens turbines to well over 300.

 

The plans have come under fire from local pressure group Turbine Watch 312 (TW312).

 

The organisation’s Keith Mycock said: “It is a matter of great concern that more and more windfarm developments are being announced almost weekly.

 

“There are more than 1,000 large turbines already proposed for Dumfries and Galloway, which will make it one of the regions with the highest number of turbines in the UK.

 

 

 

Credit:   Jackie Grant     Dumfries Standard     (29/06/12)

 

Buddhist monks are selling their spiritual retreat in the forest of Ae because they can’t live near a windfarm.

 

Scottish Power, which has lodged plans to extend the Harestanes development with a further 19, 125-foot turbines, said it was close to finalising a buy-out deal with the Tharpaland monks.

 

Concerned monks submitted evidence to a Scottish parliamentary inquiry into the government’s renewable energy plans, claiming they suffered serious side effects when they were praying within five miles of a windfarm.

 

They say these included: pain in the head and chest, heart palpitations, dizziness, dry retching, anger, heightened emotions and crying.

 

 

 

An article in The Buteman quotes Conservative MEP Struan Stevenson talking about the potential health impacts from living near wind turbines.  The application discussed is for 3 turbines on the isle of Bute, but it is the first time we have seen/heard politicians start to acknowledge the possible impacts on the health of local residents.

 

“If constructed, the turbines will intrude on many of Bute’s tourist attractions, but the potentially hazardous impacts of the turbines on local residents’ health are most worrying. The health impact of wind farms has recently become a hot topic in the media and independent biomedical experts have shown that living close to a turbine can cause headaches, dizziness, sleep deprivation, unsteadiness, nausea, exhaustion, mood-swings and the inability to concentrate.

 

“The low-frequency noise emitted by a turbine travels easily and varies according to the wind. This constitutes a permanent risk to people exposed to it. There is even military weaponry that relies on low-frequency sound for crowd control purposes.

 

“At high intensities it creates discrepancies in the brain, producing disorientation in the body and resulting in what is called ‘simulated sickness’. The Israeli army uses this technology to cause instability, nausea and headaches. It is great for crowd control as it has no adverse effects…unless you are exposed to it for hours, as you would be if you lived beside a turbine."

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