A Free-Market Energy Blog

Industrial Wind Turbines: Negative Health Effects (more evidence)

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- January 19, 2022

“The weight of evidence indicates occurrences of adverse health effects (AHEs) from living and working near industrial wind turbines (IWTs).”

“Based on our analysis of clinical, biological, and experimental evidence and its concordance with the nine [Bradford Hill] criteria, we conclude that there is a high probability that emissions from IWTs, including infrasound and [Low Frequency Noise], result in serious harm to health in susceptible individuals living and/or working in their proximity.”

A recent issue of Environmental Disease provides more evidence of the negative health effects of industrial wind turbines. It is common sense: audible noise and infrasound, vibrations, and flicker light are unwanted intrusions for those who live remotely to get away from industrialization.

Professional environmentalists must look the other way given that they have little supply-side strategy otherwise against consumer-preferred, taxpayer-neutral mineral energies. But at the grassroots, some farmers can get paid off, but friends are few. Which leads to the question: why aren’t real environmentalists against industrial wind (and solar-slabs) increasingly taking over the landscape?

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Here are the major findings of Anne Dumbrille, Robert Y. McMurtry, Carmen Marie Krogh, “Wind turbines and adverse health effects: Applying Bradford Hill’s criteria for causation” (December 10, 2021).

ABSTRACT

The weight of evidence indicates occurrences of adverse health effects (AHEs) from living and working near industrial wind turbines (IWTs). Descriptions of the AHEs being reported by those living or working near the turbines are similar. While these occurrences have been associated with exposure to audible and inaudible noise annoyance, the causation of reported wind turbine‑associated health effects remains controversial. 

Establishing an argument of causation of adverse health outcomes has important clinical, scientific, and societal implications. Bradford Hill (BH) criteria have been widely used to establish causality between an environmental agent and risk of disease or disability, but have not previously been used to evaluate the relationship between IWTs and AHEs. The objective was to apply the BH criteria to evaluate the relationship between IWTs and AHEs.

The nine criteria include the strength of the association, consistency, specificity, temporal sequence, biological gradient, plausibility, coherence, experimental evidence, and analogous evidence. These nine criteria have been applied to IWT exposure and reported AHEs using peer‑reviewed and other published literature that describes clinical, animal, and laboratory studies, testimony and reported experiences, and internet sources. Applying the BH criteria to the IWT‑related clinical, biological, and experimental data demonstrates that the exposure to IWTs is associated with an increased risk of AHEs. 

This analysis concludes that living or working near IWTs can result in AHEs in both people and animals. Our findings provide compelling evidence that the risk of AHEs should be considered before the approval of wind energy projects and during the assessment of setback distances of proposed and operational projects.

CONCLUSION

Incontrovertible proof of causation has tended to be an elusive goal. The debate of determining causality associated with placing IWTs near family homes is similar to past controversies around the debate of causality from the use of tobacco products and from worker exposures to asbestos and coal. The “best available evidence” is the current standard, and it is our contention that the Bradford Hill criteria are that standard.

Based on our analysis of clinical, biological, and experimental evidence and its concordance with the nine BH criteria, we conclude that there is a high probability that emissions from IWTs, including infrasound and LFN, result in serious harm to health in susceptible individuals living and/or working in their proximity. These effects can be attributed to IWT‑related events such as recurring sleep disturbance, anxiety and stress, and likely others. 

With the growing weight of evidence  indicating this causation and the rapid proliferation of IWT installations globally, preventative actions should be taken, and policies implemented that are more cautiously protective of public health, safety, and welfare rather than wait for absolute certainty. More stringent regulation is needed to recognize, monitor, analyze, and document effects on the health of local residents and animals. Of concern is the lack of determination of the safe exposure cumulative dose of noise, including LFN and infrasound, for adults, the elderly, and particularly for fetuses and young children. There are no evidence‑based guidelines for setbacks of IWT; rather regulations have a wide variance across jurisdictions.

The concern is compounded by the lack of centralized vigilance monitoring for those who have constant, long‑term exposure while living in their homes. Our findings provide compelling evidence that there is a pressing need for risk assessment before deployment of IWT into rural community settings that consider more effective and precautionary setback distances. A margin of safety sufficient to prevent pathogenic LFN from being detected by the human vestibular system is paramount before proceeding with political or economic policies. 

As written by Hill: “All scientific work is incomplete— whether it be observations or experimental. All scientific work is liable to be upset or modified by advancing knowledge. That does not confer upon us a freedom to ignore the knowledge we already have, or to postpone the action that it appears to demand at a given time.”[2]

2 Comments


  1. Ruby Mekker  

    Governments around the world know of the harm of IWTs. Doug Ford and his party campaigned on “Help is on the way”. He met, spoke with, shook the hands of people he promised to help. Here is yet another scientific report proving the adverse health effects of industrial wind turbines.

    Where is Doug Ford, where is Christine Elliott, where is Dr. Kieran Moore? They all knew they were telling people to “isolate” during Covid in homes known to harm and did nothing. The turbines could have and should have been shut down during Ontario’s State of Emergency. Why weren’t they? When will all political parties recognize the science proving the harm of industrial wind turbines?

    Reply

  2. sherri lange  

    The evidence is documented by so many scientists, lay people, victims, around the world. I like to reference the Shirley Wind Farm causative evidence:

    https://www.wind-watch.org/news/2014/10/16/duke-energys-shirley-wind-turbines-declared-a-human-health-hazard/

    DENMARK, WI – At the October 14, 2014 Brown County Board of Health meeting, a motion was unanimously approved declaring the Shirley Wind turbines a “Human Health Hazard”. The text of the unanimously approved motion reads:

    “To declare the Industrial Wind Turbines at Shirley Wind Project in the Town of Glenmore, Brown County, WI, a Human Health Hazard for all people (residents, workers, visitors, and sensitive passersby) who are exposed to Infrasound/Low Frequency Noise and other emissions potentially harmful to human health.”

    Dr Mariana Alves Pereira shows conclusively the impacts of ILFN (from other sources) in her many presentations. Dr Sarah Laurie (Waubra Foundation) documented clearly the evidence of turbine generated ill health, and Dr. Pierpont is stellar in her scientific and compassionate approach to Wind Turbine Syndrome victims.

    https://www.wind-watch.org/documents/statement-of-sarah-elisabeth-laurie-re-bull-creek-wind-project/

    No amount of wind energy generated propaganda can outweigh the personal testimonies and physical evidence of the relation between wind projects and certain people, many, having ill health.

    The suggestion in the conclusion of the article seems to be that we need ” more studies, or more proof.”

    From the article: “Our findings provide compelling evidence that there is a pressing need for risk assessment before deployment of IWT into rural community settings that consider more effective and precautionary setback distances.”

    The evidence is overwhelming: this is the last thing we need: we need it to all collapse, like the junk heap it is. Let’s remember, industrial wind produces net zero, point two of one percent, of the world’s “power.” It’s completely an exercise in profiteering. Inexcusable.

    As Steven Cooper tells us: put the monkey on the back of the industry. Let them PROVE their machines are safe!

    We should at this juncture not be calling for risk assessments, and helping a decrepit industry prepare new setbacks. The evidence of harm is overwhelming, even at 20 km.

    Reply

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