Nurses for Safe Renewable Power

Looking for a healthy environment for everyone

Turbine noise and health effects: it’s just this simple

The literature abounds on the health impacts of environmental noise (and no, we won’t quote Florence today—but we could) and seem to be well understood when we’re talking about noise from traffic, airports, and other forms of transportation, or other sources like construction, etc.

But somehow, when it comes to the environmental noise and vibration (sound pressure, infrasound, low frequency noise) the government and industry turn a deaf ear. They are no longer saying it doesn’t exist, but they persist in blaming the victims of exposure to such noise, or demeaning their complaints, or in the case of the flavour-of-the-month wind power apologists Knopper and Ollson, it’s an acceptable trade-off if a few people get ill when the larger result is that many lives are saved from air pollution by use of wind power.

OK, here’s the deal, put in terms that perhaps more people can understand.

To do this, we have had to consult a series of books known as “Scaredy Squirrel” written for children. In Scaredy Squirrel at Night the squirrel character becomes afraid of nightmares and so vows not to sleep. His decision results in some health problems.

Scaredy Squirrel 1

These health effects occurred after only a night or two of no sleep; imagine what you would feel like after months—years!—of no sleep or disturbed sleep.

Horrible.

Not well.

Direct or indirect, it doesn’t matter: the health effects from environmental noise, no matter what the cause, are real. It is inhumane of the Ontario government and the wind power development business to ignore them.

 

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