Topics to be covered
Topics we will be covering at our April 28th event
What happens when Wind Turbines are hit by lightning
Lightning strikes occur more often in areas where wind turbines are sited.
Existing protection systems on the turbines do not always protect.
Lightning will travel down a line of wind turbines
Lightning strike dangers increase with turbine height
Fires will occur when lightning strikes a wind turbine
Fires will occur when a turbine overheats and explodes
Wind Turbines and their relationship with birds
Risks of bird-turbine impacts depends on a variety of factors, including turbine location, turbine design and turbine height.
Bird-turbine collisions increase when turbines are located near migratory routes.
Bird-turbine collisions increase when the towers are located near ridge lines, streams or large bodies of water.
Increase in turbine height (especially 450-650 feet) increases impacts because the blades increase in size and reach into “flight zones” of nocturnal migrating birds.
Shorter towers increase incidence of collisions among birds moving around locally or migrating during the day.
Over 200 species of birds have been documents as killed by bird-turbine collisions.
These include songbirds, hawks, falcons and eagles.
Wind Turbines and their contribution to Stray Energy
Livestock become ill
Cows produce less milk
Chickens lay less eggs
Crop growth can be affected
Wind Turbines and Shadow Flickering
Health – Increased risk of depression and stress
Safety – Can cause vehicle driver distraction
Recommended shadow flicker setbacks for current wind turbine designs are 10 rotational diameters, which translates to approximately 1000 meters.
Noise and visual borders produced
Visual impacts can adversely affect human health
Potential to induce photosensitive epilepsy if flicker is more than 3 per second
Protection from wind turbine shadow flicker exposure must be engineered into the design of the wind turbine facility during the planning stage.
Wind Turbines and Sleep Disturbances
This wind farm noise study will for the first time use direct sleep recordings of brain waves and cardiovascular measurements to assess the impact of different noises.
A house is more effective at block out high frequency and mid-frequency noise (typical traffic noise) than it is with low frequency noise emitted by wind farms.
Wind Turbine Setbacks
Setbacks are determined by the height of the turbine. The average is one and one-half (1-1/2) times the height of the turbine.
The farther away from a structure, the less the impact of harmful noise, infrasound, stray energy and flickering will have on humans and animal life.
Yates County is imposing 3-4 times the turbine height setback from a structure
Allegany County is imposing a 2500-foot setback from a structure
Town of Bethany is imposing a 3150-foot setback from a structure
Many other areas require even larger setbacks from structures
Impact of Wind Turbines on Property
One could lose as much as 40% of the value of their home at time of sale due to the following factors connected to wind turbines:
ruin the panoramic view ,noise ,inability to get restful sleep , possible times of disorientation , internet, cell phone, television and other electrical devices experiencing interruptions
A study done by others published in the August 2012 issue of “Land Economics” determined that property values in 2 of 3 counties in northern New York State showed that property values were reduced. Over 11, 331 properties were studied over 9 years.
The article states that “These results indicate that existing compensation to local homeowners/communities may not be sufficient to prevent a loss of property values.”
“Whoosh” noise from the turbines keep people awake at night, cause bouts of disorientation, disrupt cell phone service and internet connectivity, affects digital TV signals and decreases property resale values.
At least one resident complained that his loss of cell phone service caused his work productivity to decrease 10-20% because he required cell phone connectivity in his work.
Wind Turbines and EMS Helicopters
Residents in Fond du Lac County received a memo that Flight for Life emergency medical helicopters will no longer be landing there.
Ray Slavak has flown for 20 years, including 2 years as an EMS pilot in Buffalo, New York
Ray Slavak stated that EMS helicopters will most likely not land in any county where wind turbines are located. He also stated that normally helicopters are three-quarters (3/4) on the way to a scene of an emergency before Sheriff’s Department or other authorities arrive on the scene.
Time is an important issue in emergencies and that is why helicopters are important as EMS resources.
Pilots need to fly 500 feet over known objects and they are limited by a variety of changing flight conditions such as visibility.
Wind turbines can also affect helicopter lift via the overhead rotor and steering via the tail rotor. Turbulence can cause loss of control.
Wind turbines stand approximately 400 feet high with a wingspan of 270 feet
Visibility of wind turbines at night or under bad weather is limited
Wind turbines can create vortices equal to turbulence created by a 747 aircraft
Wind Turbine Syndrome (WTS)
Wind Turbine Syndrome (WTS) identified as a new “health risk”
This is the disruption or abnormal stimulation of the inner ear’s vestibular system by turbine infrasound and low frequency noise.
Acousticians’ use of 1930’s methodology in measuring noise is shown to be limited based on new evidence by Dr. Pierpont and scientists at Manchester University, Prince of Wales Clinical School and Medical Research Institute in Sydney, Australia.
The scientists showed that the normal human vestibular system has a fish or frog-like sensitivity to low frequency vibration. At the heart of Dr. Pierpont’s finding is that humans are effected by low frequency noise and vibrations from wind turbines through their ear bones, rather like fish.
The clinical research done by Dr. Pierpont shows that the infrasonic to ultrasonic noise and vibrations emitted by wind turbines cause the symptoms of 12 different health problems that range from tachycardia, sleep disturbances, headaches and tinnitus to nausea, visual blurring, panic attacks and general irritability, to name a few.
Not everyone is effected and it is found that those that are effected have their problems go away if they move away from the turbines.
Dr. Pierpont, who has funded all of her research herself and is independent of any organization, recommends a 2 km setback distance between the wind turbines and people’s homes.
Vibration and noise with frequency – What is felt and heard and how often?
Infrasound – Low sound waves not audible by human ear and has to be measured by an instrument
Health risks increase when a person is closer to a wind turbine
Self-funded research by Dr. Pierpont shows that there are about 12 different health problems associated with WTS caused by the infrasonic to ultrasonic noise and vibrations emitted by wind turbines.
Dr. Pierpont recommends at least a 2 km (6,562 ft or 1.24 mile) setback distance between wind turbines and people’s homes.