Board of Health Report, February 22, 2013
On September 21, 2012 the Board of Health heard presentations from several groups of residents who were living near wind turbine developments and experiencing various symptoms. The Board requested that a review of the literature be done and reported to them. Dr. Ian Arra (research co-ordinator at the University of Western Ontario) volunteered to do the systematic literature review.
Null Hypothesis (investigation will disprove or fail to disprove, never prove):
There is no association between wind turbines induced-noise and human distress.
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- Studies exploring association between wind turbine noise and distress
- Studies published in peer-reviewed journals (14 different journals from 6 Countries were included)
- English language
- Studies involving humans
- Interim analysis
- Duplicate reports
- Cost effectiveness and economic studies
Variables Examined in the Studies:
- Annoyance (sensitivity to noise)
- Dose response
- Economic benefit
- Infrasound/road traffic/rural environment
- Sleep disturbance
- Visual impact
- Well being/Quality of life
- All studies rejected the Null Hypothesis – in other words, evidence of association was found in all included studies.
- Evidence is weak – level 4 and 5
- Three studies showed dose-response relationship
- The criteria for causality has not been met, but the consistency of this association would warrant further research with different designs and investigation of multiple hypothesis.