- website of the Acoustic Ecology Institute
News/IssuesCommunityResourcesSoundscapesAbout UsJoin Us

Search Results

Recent psychological papers may impact participation in Ontario wind farm survey

April 4, 2013

A surge of widely-publicized papers purporting to show that those complaining about wind farm noise are being unduly influenced by expectations of harm, or have personalities that are easily upset, may be fostering distrust among residents of Ontario who are randomly selected to participate in an upcoming large-scale survey funded by the provincial government and […]

Ontario wind farm resistance hits court, election

September 23, 2011

Ontario is definitely at the heart of current controversies over wind farm siting.  While an environmental tribunal ruled against a health-based appeal in July, allowing the 8-turbine Kent Breeze Wind Farm to continue operating, many of the same issues will soon be argued in court.  A local family that lives just over 1.1km (just under three […]

Ontario wind farm buys 4 homes from residents unable to live with the noise

May 2, 2011

Suncor and Acciona Energy recently purchased four homes near the 38-turbine Ripley Wind Power Project, buying out several neighbors who had been pushing the companies to deal with noise issues at their homes. According to The Kincardine News: The Ripley-area residents had approached municipal council in 2009 about a rash of health problems, “including high […]

Ontario wind farm law court challenge to be heard today

January 24, 2011

Today in Toronto, an Ontario Superior Court will begin hearing a challenge to wind farm siting provisions of the province’s new Green Energy Act, which set a minimum distance from wind turbines to homes at 550 meters. The Ottawa Citizen has a good, detailed article about the legal challenge, which you can read here. UPDATE: […]

Community health/disruptions section omitted from Ontario wind farm health report

June 5, 2010

As noted in a previous post, a recent report by the Chief Medical Officer of Health (CMOH) in Ontario focused on the narrow question of whether there is a “direct causal link between wind turbine noise and adverse health effects” experienced by some wind farm neighbors.  Based on a review of published research, the answer […]

Ontario wind tech and health research chair named–background is solid in tech, weak on health

February 23, 2010

Electrical engineer Siva Sivoththaman has been named to the newly-created Ontario provincial Research Chair in Renewable Energy Technologies and Health.  Local activist groups that have raised concerns about the effects of wind farm noise on neighbors had hoped that this position, created as part of Ontario’s new Green Energy Act, would take the lead in formally […]

Ontario Wind Projects Lack Independent Environmental Analysis

September 9, 2009

While the province of Ontario appears to be onto something promising with its new Green Energy Act (see recent AEInews post), local wind skeptics point out that in recent years, the province has taken wind developers’ environmental assessments at face value.  Citizens can request that the province conduct a full-scale independent assessment, and indeed, such […]

Ontario Wind Push Triggers Residents AND Industry

September 1, 2009

A great short piece in Canada’s esteemed Maclean’s magazine from early August highlights the aggressive push being made by provincial minister of energy to open up the province for wind power.  George Smitherman, the self-styled “Mr. Wind,” may be on to something, because his initiatives are stirring up both anti-wind activists concerned about noise and […]

Ontario Wind Developers Buy 6 Unlivable Homes and Gag Sellers?

August 25, 2009

An Ontario group that compiles reports of troubles with wind farms has claimed that wind power companies have spent $1.75 million to buy six homes in Dufferin County.  According to the report, these six families had found their homes unlivable after wind farms began operations, and all were required to sign gag orders as part […]

Ontario towns flock to declare themselves “unwilling hosts” for wind farms

October 8, 2013

In the wake of several years of heated wind farm resistance in Ontario, premier Kathleen Wynne said several months ago that the province would aim to site new projects in “willing communities.”  In response, 71 southern Ontario communities have formally passed resolutions declaring their towns “unwilling” (red on map; interactive version here) and another 33 […]

CBC documentary addresses wind farm noise in Ontario

February 20, 2013

A new documentary from the CBC’s Doczone series, titled Windrush, takes a look at the widespread resistance to wind power in Ontario, which is largely based on noise and health impacts.  While the CBC video is only viewable in Canada, a regional organization opposing industrial wind has posted a version on YouTube (it’s 42 minutes long and […]

5-yr wind farm health study begins in Ontario

March 5, 2012

Researchers from the University of Waterloo are planning to begin canvassing several Ontario counties this spring, marking the beginning of a multi-year effort to assess health-related changes in the vicinity of wind farms.  The research program in Renewable Energy Technologies and Health will include a wide array of scientific, technological, and health-related topics surrounding wind, solar, […]

Ontario farmers group says wind farms are tearing communities apart

January 24, 2012

The Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA), the province’s largest farm organization, has called for a moratorium on wind power development.  In a statement, the OFA says that “we are hearing very clearly from our members that the wind turbines situation is coming to a head – seriously dividing rural communities and even jeopardizing farm succession planning.” […]

Wind farm noise, health issues continue to grow—and get jumbled—in Ontario

October 10, 2011

AEI Commentary The wild and turbulent public debate about wind farm noise issues continues to generate steady new eruptions in Ontario.  And while what’s coming out could be extremely valuable information for others struggling to support a more cautionary approach to wind farm siting, media reports are contributing to an increasingly jumbled public perception about […]

Ontario enviro officer recommended lower wind farm noise limits

August 15, 2011

This is very interesting, though may get blown out of proportion: in April 2010 a District Environmental Officer submitted a memo to his Ontario Ministry of Environment superiors that offered detailed comments about the field realities he observed, in relation to the proposed Provincial wind farm siting regulations. These regulations currently guide Ontario siting, and […]

Ontario court dismisses challenge to wind farm setback standards

March 10, 2011

An Ontario Superior Court has dismissed a legal challenge to the province’s wind farm siting standards, which call for 550 meter (1800 foot) setbacks in most cases. The Court ruled that it could only judge whether the process of coming up with the regulations followed proper protocols, including public consultation and the use of science-based evidence […]

Ontario health, environment officials agree: on-the-ground sound measurement is needed near wind farms

May 28, 2010

Over the past week or so, two reports from Ontario have spurred a fair amount of notice and comment among those following wind development issues.  First, the provincial health office responded to the public’s concerns about health problems reported by some wind farm neighbors, framing its answer carefully and narrowly:  “According to the scientific evidence, […]

Ontario assessment board cuts house value in half due to nearby wind farm transformer noise

January 12, 2010

In what could be a precedent-setting move, the Ontario Assessment Review Board (ARB) has slashed the taxable value of a house because of noise from a transformer station across the street.  The transformer, which site 360 meters (about 1200 feet) from Paul Thompson’s home, produces a constant hum of about 40dB in Thompson’s home.  In […]

Excellent 3-part series on wind turbine noise in Ontario

December 1, 2009

In Dufferin County, Ontario, the Orangeville Banner recently ran a very well-written and balanced three-part series on that region’s ongoing controversies over noise from wind farms.  The piece makes very clear both the extent of noise-related disruption felt by some residents (including the first official acknowledgement I’ve seen that the wind farm developer did indeed […]

UK, Ontario, Wisconsin Latest Battlegrounds on Wind Turbine Siting, Noise, Health

October 20, 2009

A lawsuit in Ontario, an EIS in Wisconsin, and a gauntlet thrown down at an industry confab in England are the latest fronts in a global debate over the noise impacts of wind farms sited close to residences.  Most dramatic was the opening plenary at the British Wind Energy Association (BWEA) annual conference, where John […]

Ontario Study to Probe Health Effects of New Wind Farm

July 8, 2009

For the first time, researchers have designed and initiated a broad-scale study that will provide enough data to begin to answer one of the key questions looming over wind energy development: do turbines close to residences create negative health effects?  The researchers sent health surveys to 1000 residents near a proposed wind farm; between 150 […]

New paper quantifies sleep, mental health effects near wind farms

November 6, 2012

AEI lay summary:Nissenbaum, Aramini, Hanning. Effects of industrial wind turbine noise on sleep and health.  Noise & Health, September-October 2012, Volume 14:60, 237-43  Online access A paper recently published in the journal Noise & Health is getting a fair amount of notice in the media; this article from The Telegraph is perhaps the most detailed coverage, […]

60 neighbors sue NY wind farm operators for negligence, nuisance, liability

October 30, 2012

Sixty people who live within a mile of the Hardscrabble Wind Farm in Herkimer County, NY, have sued the operators of a 37-turbine wind farm that began operating in early 2011.  Initial press reports suggest that the suit does not aim to shut the wind farm down, but to receive damages payments based on a […]

Health effects of wind farms: summary of recent research

April 3, 2012

Here we go again!  As in AEI’s similarly long recap of 2011 research on low frequency noise and infrasound published in December, I’ve tackled a similar task with close to a dozen papers published in 2011 on health effects of living near wind farms.  Rather than publish the entire thing as a blog post, I’ve […]

Another week, another wind farm noise and health report

January 24, 2012

Driven by the rising public clamor about health effects reported by people living near wind farms, officials across the nation and around the world have been called on to assess the veracity of these claims.  This week’s contribution to the rapidly expanding genre of “wind farms and health” literature comes from the Massachusetts Departments of […]