Wind farm furore blows on
There have been some loud responses to a new report on the negative effects of wind farms.
The clean energy sector has taken up arms against anti-wind lobbyists and even the participants in the study themselves.
It comes after a study undertaken by The Acoustic Group made the front page of News Corp’s The Australian, claiming “groundbreaking” findings that “people living near wind farms face a greater risk of suffering health complaints caused by the low-frequency noise generated by turbines.”
The research project was commissioned by Pacific Hydro, the owner and developer of the Cape Bridgwater wind farm in Victoria.
Pacific Hydro has been slammed for enlisting of acoustician Steven Cooper to conduct the study, as he has been involved in anti-wind farm studies put together by lobby groups.
Most of the opposition to wind farms is on the grounds of infrasound vibrations, and the notion that they can cause illness.
Mr Cooper involved just six participants in the study, who lived between just three households and who had reported ‘symptoms’ of wind turbine-based illness before.
The clean energy industry and the academic community have pointed out that the sample set was both statistically insignificant and pre-biased.
The Clean Energy Council says the vast weight of domestic and overseas research failed to find any evidence of wind farms having an impact on human health.
Extensive legal precedent in Australia has come to similar conclusions.
“In Australia, multiple reviews into the operation of wind farms have been carried out in the last three years, which have all given the wind industry a clean bill of health,” Clean Energy Council policy director Russell Marsh said.
“Many of the issues relating to wind farms and health have already been tested in court cases across the country, all of which have concluded in favour of wind energy.”