Wind turbines and health problems

May 1, 2011 by  
Filed under Wind and Solar

Windmills may be an environmentally friendly alternative energy source but they also cause debilitating health problems, say people who live near them. Wind turbines are popping up in rural communities around the world, including Canada, in the hope that they will reduce reliance on coal and other sources for power. Currently, there are about 1500 turbines across Canada and there are plans to build another 1000 to 1500 in the next year. But some residents who live near wind farms complain the turbines cause a number of adverse health effects, such as crippling headaches, nose bleeds and a constant ringing in the ears. Helen and Bill Fraser initially supported the nearby wind farm in Melancthon, Ont. One turbine sat close to the Fraser’s kitchen window. “We thought, more green energy, this is great,” Helen told CTV News.However, Helen says she developed headaches, body aches and she had trouble sleeping. The dog began wetting the floor at night. www.windaction.org

The Effect of Wind Turbines on Humans

August 24, 2009 by  
Filed under Wind And Solar Energy Tips

Wind turbines and farms are becoming an evermore familiar sight on the landscape, and while generally accepted as a useful resource for electricity generation, they have not been without their critics.

One of the major criticisms of wind farms is that they are damaging to the humans who live near them. This effect is both psychological and physical, though there is more evidence for the former. The issue of physical health problems caused by living near a wind farm are a matter of much debate in the medical community.

The psychological problems are more basic. Many of those living near a wind farm find it difficult to sleep due to the noise of the turbines. While the noise is not excessive (it equates roughly to the noise of medium-level traffic, which most of us ignore without thinking) it can be annoying for those in rural areas. As wind farms are more likely to be erected in rural areas – where the general noise level is much lower than cities – there have been complaints over the noise generated. The problem, however, is not considered to be substantial.

The physical health concerns are far more rare, and generally centre around the low-threshold noise produced by wind turbines. Continued exposure to very low noise can upset the inner ear and cause problems such as headaches, but there is no reputable study that has proven wind farms are the cause of this.

When wind turbines are erected, they do pose a minor danger to those living near by. If a brake on a turbine fails, the turbine can have blades spin loose and scatter. For this reason, turbines are constantly monitored and if one appears to be in trouble, all efforts will be made to close it down before a problem occurs.