Industrial Wind Turbines Shatter Environmental Guidelines

Grey Highlands, Ontario

New scientific measurements reveal that industrial wind turbines (IWTs) in Ontario routinely exceed acceptable noise limits set by Ministry of Environment (MOE) guidelines.

Five typical sites in central Ontario were independently monitored using precision sound recording instruments.   Two sites provided background sound levels with no exposure to wind turbines. Three other sites were adjacent to turbines with distances ranging from .6 to 1.4 kilometres between the IWTs and the measuring instruments. These are distances beyond the 550m distance set by MOE.

The data shows that when wind turbines are present, the associated sound pressure levels are repeatedly higher than government guidelines permit during the day, evenings and late at night.  The study results suggest that the model used by the MOE to predict sound pressure levels substantially under-estimates levels of industrial wind turbine noise. This implies the problem is generalized and not merely confined to each test site under study.

The analysis reaffirms hundreds of subjective reports from residents living near wind turbine installations about daily disturbances.   Two policy aspects are key for investigation; the location of turbines relative to dwellings (i.e. their relative setback), and the validity of current MOE noise guidelines. Both policies influence citizen well-being and require review.

Click to read full report:   Grey_Highlands_Plateau_Noise_20130131-5

Contact:

Nicholas Kouwen

kouwen@uwaterloo.ca

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