Clean Power

Published on August 7th, 2014 | by Sandy Dechert


Siemens & AWEA Focus On “Sounds of the Wind” (Videos)

August 7th, 2014 by  

Iowa wind advances with Siemens turbines (

David Ward has posted some really cool videos about wind advances on the American Wind Energy Association’s Into the Wind blog this week.

First, Siemens produced a quickie a few days ago called the “Sounds of Wind.” In December 2013, the company announced its largest onshore wind power order to date. It will supply 448 wind turbines in Iowa that will generate power for around 317,000 Iowan households. Start listening to the video, and you’ll begin to recognize the song that the wind and Siemens turbines are playing over images of Iowa, the #1 state in the nation for wind power. Clean, affordable, homegrown wind energy supplies the state with over a quarter (27%) of its electricity as well as thousands of new jobs. More stats on wind advances in the video and the AWEA website.

The second video is actually a playlist trio. It links the views of a small 12-year wind energy contractor with thank-you messages from AWEA about Iowa’s bipartisan wind advances, made possible by Republican wind hero Sen. Chuck Grassley and Democratic Congressman Bruce Braley. Part three sees wind power in Colorado through another local contractor’s eyes, with thanks to Sen. Mark Udall, the incumbent in a tight race there this fall. These are also available on YouTube. Ward also links to a few other new wind spots.

And don’t forget the conclusion of a Department of Energy report earlier this year. It showed that consumers in the states that use the most wind energy have done much better over five years than consumers in states that use less wind energy. People in the top wind energy–producing states (Texas, Wyoming, Oregon, Oklahoma, Idaho, Colorado, Kansas, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Iowa) have seen their electricity prices actually decrease over the last five years, while all other states have seen electricity prices zoom upward by almost 8%.

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About the Author

covers environmental, health, renewable and conventional energy, and climate change news. She's currently on the climate beat for Important Media, having attended last year's COP20 in Lima Peru. Sandy has also worked for groundbreaking environmental consultants and a Fortune 100 health care firm. She writes for several weblogs and attributes her modest success to an "indelible habit of poking around to satisfy my own curiosity."

  • Eagle Siting

    Bull shit. I live in MN. My residential electrical rates are up 58%; my neighbor’s business rates are up 300% since MN mandated wind in 2007. ND sued Xcel and calculated that the MN wind mandate costs Xcel constomers $92 million more per year than our rates would be with no wind mandate. Over $70 million per year lost for rural rate payers (MREA) just for wind electricity bought high and dumped on the MISO market at negative pricing because it it produced primarily when it is not needed.

  • mijanko

    The problem I have with these is our governance are siting them too close to people. I used to know this third and second hand. But awhile after a project started up 4km from our home, my ears started ringing and so have my child’s. I respectfully submit to you there is an issue, most likely with infrasound which science either hasn’t understood or refuses to. My vocation is Electronics Engineering and I know enough to know that our authorities and scientists are often not including infrasonic frequencies in their tests when monitoring an installed IWT and if they did, they would not have a mature plan to consider existing conditions and characteristics. Of course here in Canada we have only 550m setbacks. Lots of people complaining about the same issues I am having and much worse. It has been only 2 months the project has been operating near me and now another larger one being built on the other side of me. Lots of government not fulfilling their mandate to protect people here and many invested financially in IWTs.

    Further and secondarily, electricity generated by Industrial Wind Turbines is not cheaper than conventional methods. It is approx. 3 times more expensive than hydroelectric in my area. If the electricity rates in the top wind producing states are lower, it certainly isn’t due to wind power.

    I still hope our leaders will realize what they have done to many families who can no longer live in their homes and act in accordance with their mandate – or get out of the way.

    • Bob_Wallace

      You are trying to compare existing (paid off) hydro to new wind. That’s an apples:onions comparison.

      The price of hydro from a newly build dam would be considerably higher than from a newly built wind farm. The cost of power from a paid off hydro facility would be somewhat cheaper than from a paid off wind farm, but the amount is so small that it is insignificant.

      Furthermore, we are limited in locations for new dams. We have vast amounts of wind waiting to be harvested.

      • mijanko

        That’s not true, you’ve assumed. There is only one proper way to consider the total cost of owning and operating an asset and that is the total costs to design, procure, build and operate the asset over its complete lifecycle including decommissioning and conveyed as a cost per unit of value it produces. This is difficult to state down for wind due to its relatively recent propagation at Industrial sizes and variable production which many in Europe have criticized, but be certain to include the costs of Environmental Review Tribunals, Judicial Reviews/Charter Challenges and whatever else may come for Industrial Wind. Also include the significant Feed In Tariffs which are guaranteed rates for 20 years. (I’ve seen between $20,000-50,000 CAD annually for each IWT hosted.)

        But first and foremost are the health issues. It is the “I” in “IWT” and them being placed too close to people which needs to be addressed immediately. We need more attention from the scientific community to assign more resources to advance our existing knowledge.

        Dams are not the only solution. In our current state, I’d prefer more solar to wind.

        • Bob_Wallace

          The utility sector does not use lifetime costs.

          You are correct that dams generally have a much longer productive life which takes their lifetime cost below that of wind. But do remember that refurbishing a wind farm after 30, 40 years of operation will be considerably less expensive than constructing a new wind farm.

          • mijanko

            Bob, are you aware of legitimate sites specifying plans and costs to refurbish wind farms?

            I have not read enough about that and had thought their lifecycle to be 10-20 years. (Perhaps this refers to the operating parts and not structural.)

            Each turbine construction consists of 800 tonnes of cement for support, approximately 250 tonnes of unrecyclable materials, 700 litres of hydraulic fuel and, 600 kilograms of rare earth metals. Multiply these numbers by 6736 and Ontario is facing a potential ecological conundrum.

            The are no bonds posted to ensure these turbines will be dismantled at the end of their life cycle. It is estimated that a turbine, depending on size, will cost $400,000 to $1,000,000 to dismantle.

            Given that wind companies are predominantly foreign, change ownership or, go bankrupt, it is quite realistic to expect 100′s or 1,000′s of dead turbines in 20 years and left standing.

            This is happening already. Wind Companies usually don’t fix or dismantle broken turbines and, Ontario already has many non-functioning turbines. If companies won’t dismantle a couple of turbines now; what about the future ones?.

            Per my knowledge, our government here have no plans as to where these materials end up, nor have indicated that wind companies will be responsible for the costs of disposal.

            Our plans in Canada is that the hosting land owner is responsible for dealing with the IWT after 20 years which would seem to be cause for concern.

          • Bob_Wallace

            Altamont Pass is now being refurbished after 30 years of operation. With what we’ve learned about turbine construction over the intervening 30 years it would be reasonable to assume current technology to last considerably longer. Just consider the way we are now able to monitor conditions with sensors. And how we can predict abrupt changes in wind speed and adjust blade pitch in order to minimize loading stress.

            I don’t have costs, but consider the work for a wind farm that has to be done only once. Land acquisition, permitting, road development, transmission lines.

            We know that the scrap value of the old turbines more than covers the cost of removal. If foundations need to be replaced the old concrete can be crushed and used for road fill. Hydraulic fluid is oil and oil is reusable. Rare earth metals are recoverable and reusable.

            “Given that wind companies are predominantly foreign, change ownership or, go bankrupt, it is quite realistic to expect 100′s or 1,000′s of dead turbines in 20 years and left standing.”

            That’s foolish. What company is going to walk away from an asset that still has value?

            “Our plans in Canada is that the hosting land owner is responsible for dealing with the IWT after 20 years which would seem to be cause for concern.”

            Any land owner who would sign a contract that left them responsible for site cleanup is a fool.

            You’re working very hard to attack wind. Are you a supporter of coal, nuclear or both?

          • mijanko

            That is encouraging that there is value is them. That should motivate. I want to be clear about the differences between “can do” and “has done/does do”, have any been completely decommissioned yet? Have heard there are some non-operating in Ontario, but have not substantiated. I would think these plans need to be committed to prior to us getting there.

            As for energy camps, I am not a supporter of any technology yet, rather cite a couple as promising. Nuclear seems clear and efficient, but while the probability of an event is very low, the consequences can be very high and I note the fact our climate is changing as a relative unknown. Coal, have read Germany is interested in cleaner methods and I know we have alot of it, but this has proven to be damaging to people’s lungs, albeit over decades. If coal is to be clean, it needs to be proven to me. Industrial Wind Power seems to cause issues with people in some project arrangements. I myself and my daughter are experiencing a blatant ringing in our ears which begun a few weeks after a project with Vestas V100 1.8 MW IWTs started operation. Oddly, my daughter and I are similar in many ways, one being we have better hearing than most people and even can hear a little higher frequencies than most people – definitely including 17 kHz. (I matched a tone from an insect repellent device we could both hear most people could not to a 17 kHz tone from my function generator.)

            The potential for my support best looks to Solar and Small Wind. I would like to learn more about the performance and future roadmap of solar and small wind. I know our power grids are not yet designed to handle decentralized production, but with IWTs some of the groundwork is being laid. Right now, IWTs are causing too many issues with people – in a matter of months, not years, for me to include on my list. When it comes to my children’s health and well being, our Ministry of Environment is working with largely ineffective guidelines not considering infrasound and not investigating any complaint further than 1,500 m from the nearest IWT. Contrary to our provincial government, I think a rural setting is a good place to raise children, having lived in and come from a city recently.

          • Bob_Wallace

            Germany (and perhaps some other European countries with limited land for onshore) has been taking down short/small turbines and replacing them with taller/larger. Long before they are worn out. The turbines are being refurbished and sold on to countries with less capital and more wind ‘real estate’.

            The additional output justifies the cost of swapping out.

            Altamont Pass is the oldest (AFAIK) wind farm and at age ~30 maintenance costs were starting to rise. That, along with the limited area (just east of San Francisco), led to the decision to take down the shorter/smaller and replace with taller/larger. Modern turbines are very much more efficient than what we put into play three decades ago.

            Smaller wind simply isn’t cost effective. If you look at the wind industry you’ll notice that there has been a constant movement to taller and larger. Just more bang for the buck. Onshore size may be topping out, not because larger isn’t better, but due to the logistics problems of getting a large turbine and its blades to the farm. Offshore is getting huge. Right now there is a 6 MW turbine being tested with plans for turbines as large as 10 MW.

            Nuclear is simply too expensive to consider. The LCOE (calculated by Citigroup) for the two new Vogtle plants is 11 cents/kWh and that is a subsidized price. Non-subsidized onshore wind in the US is now around 3.5 cents. Non-subsidized PV solar will soon be dropping below 5 cents. A mix of wind, solar and storage is cheaper than subsidized nuclear.

            New coal is even more expensive than new nuclear. And that’s before one adds in the external costs.

            When you use the term “Industrial wind” it’s a signal that you have been getting your information from anti-wind organizations. Look behind anti-wind organizations and you’re probably going to find the coal industry providing support, if not outright participation. Best to make sure you read a wide range of opinion and build a base of facts.

          • mijanko

            You’ve made a couple of assumptions about me again. I have been looking into IWTs for 2.5 years and I started with manufacturers and moved to companies managing projects before I looked at Anti-wind. I have an engineering background and have contributed to the design of vehicles so can appreciate manufacturer’s specifications and tolerances. I submit that I am viewing a wide range of facts, including pro and anti wind. (Hence being on this site.) I appreciate this dialog with you.

            When I raised small wind as a potential, I did not intend a 1 for 1 swap from IWT to small wind. As you know, small wind does not require a large setback and if you were to draw a map of an area with possible locations, we could have far more small wind power generators than we can Industrial Wind. Further, we would not be creating uninhabitable zones as we are with IWTs. I do admit that the cost may rise with small wind, but they don’t have the negative impacts. In Canada, the cost may be lower with less or no subsidies. If it were attractive just for me to decrease my won bill – I would do it. (The grid is full in my area.)

            It is clear to me that the industry is going larger, to 500+ foot models on shore, though it was new to me about the sizes under development onshore vs. off, thanks for that.

            I have accepted the term Industrial Wind as a description of non-personal Wind Turbines of great size.

            I can see that wind could become lower cost, but only if they produce as forecasted and not with the guaranteed 20 year feed in tariffs which are fact in Ontario. Nuclear is approx. 6.8 c/kWh (High confidence) where wind is 11-14 c/kWh (Lower confidence) in Ontario. A 100 MW Wind Farm if having a 30% efficiency rating would thus be really a 30 MW Wind Farm. In Ontario, wherever we plan for Industrial Wind, we also plan for a gas electric plant to back it up, as we cannot depend on wind 24/7. These costs and factors must be considered along with Wind.

            The main issue I have with IWTs is that the health issues a proportion of people around some projects report are largely ignored and muted. Despite consistent complaints, science has not proven a link yet, so we’ll build them bigger with the same set backs and place them around your families. This is what our government is doing now and is reminiscent of prior to the 50’s when smoking was thought of as good for us.

            Prior to have a Wind Generation project around my family, I was not certain what to think about the complaints I found about negative health impacts on people. But now with my ears ringing fairly consistently and more importantly, my daughter’s, I have less regard for the work done to ensure IWTs are safe. Now that I’ve researched the guidelines our ministry of Environment &CC has been given to enforce, I find them grossly inadequate in not considering anything to do with infrasound and limited to 1,500 M.

            With IWTs, our provincial government has enacted legislation in the form of the Green Energy Act which not only usurps power from our elected municipal government as to where they can be cited, but it also supercedes 21 pieces of legislation, clearing the way for IWTs to be forced upon people close to their homes. I don’t need anyone to debate or prove it to me because it happened in my community and now my family are starting to feel the same consequences others have reported. I taked to 2 families whose homes were bought, but only after much suffering and I read accounts of many more. Do you say these accounts are false?

            And the issue flies under the radar largely to the point people would never think IWTs cause their issues because they are far away and can be caused by infrasound rattling ear drums. (And for other reasons)

            I talked to a nurse one day and asked her what she thought about the project in our area. She said “I think they’re just fine. I look out my window and see them spinning and it is fine with me.” I asked her “What do you say about what people who lived near them have claimed IWTs did to them?” She was not aware of any complaints and when I told her a few of the symptoms reported were sleep deprivation, ringing in ears, she stopped me and said “Now that you mention it, I hear a sound at night which keeps me awake and I usually sleep right through the night. The sound is like a fan being on, but there is no fan. (She made a noise whoosh, whoosh just like so many others describe in interviews) She then asked me to send her more information.

            There are much information on both sides of this debate, but pro-wind information is largely authored by people paid to during their work days. The anti-wind material is largely authored by people after their work day is done for free.

            I continue to have an open mind with IWTs, but I know noth else changed around our home in early June other than the Wind project starting up and since both myself and my daughter have ringing in our ears sometimes. Also, I start to suspect a “fix” is on with senior government officials invested in Wind. Our minister of E-Health Ontario sits on the boards of 2 Wind power Corporations and several host IWTs.

            I am doing the best I can for both sides – people – maintaining a wellness log with date stamps and reporting every occurrence to our MoE and Wind Power company. I hope you will be part of discovering any issues and helping with solutions, but first, admit there are issues and put into practice the precautionary principle which states the burden of proof should be with the one making the change.

            It is my hope, collectively, we will find the best way forward for civilization to live comfortable lives at minimal risk. I am not convinced Industrial Wind is there, in fact I have become more skeptical since our local project began operation with good reason. Thank you.

          • Regarding your conversation with the nurse, you might be interested to know that you have been a vector of what’s referred to as a psychogenic disease. You suggested to the nurse that she would be able to hear it and it would be a problem. Then she started to dwell on it. The power of suggestion to create health fears and stress is well understood. Two studies have specifically been done on this in New Zealand by Fiona Crichton and her team. They created test groups and split them into study and control groups. They had the study group watch videos from anti-wind groups saying that infrasound from wind farms would give them symptoms. They showed the control group neutral videos unrelated to the subject. They then split the groups further and exposed half of each to infrasound, with the other half being told that they were being exposed to infrasound without actually being exposed.

            The people who had watched the anti-wind videos about infrasound reported many more symptoms and a greater severity of them whether they were exposed to infrasound or not. It’s the suggestion which causes the problem, not the infrasound.

            Please stop suggesting to people that wind farms will make them sick from infrasound. You are making people unwell unintentionally by trying to do the right thing. And do tell people you have shared information with that you were wrong and that infrasound is harmless. Crichton’s further study shows that disrupting the suggestion can reduce the harm, but letting it build can make things worse and worse.


          • mijanko

            I have seen this information over the years. I suspect your statements and the theory backing them are pure propaganda with intent to make it all go away sufficiently enough to allow the conspiracy to continue.

            The nurse I spoke to did not have a chance to “dwell on the topic”, she simply made a connection to her experience in an instant. I was there and saw her eyes, her body language and the whole conversation. She knew it had happened, but did not know why. Now she has a possibility to further research on her own.

            Certainly I am aware that people who review anti-Wind materials are more likely to report issues because they are educated as to what to look for. I cannot audibly hear any noise from IWTs at my home and did not expect any issues, yet we have the ear ringing which started shortly after IWT operation and has never been encountered before in myself or my daughter like this. Thanks to both sides of the debate out there, I had shared experiences, journals and peer reviewed papers to look at.

            The ringing I hear in my ears is not a borderline, not a “ah now I hear it” level, it is of sufficient level as to command my attention (from the very first time) and could not possibly have been missed previously. I suppose this is the silver lining if this incident to me – given I am experiencing it – as an open minded individual, it gives me the strength to refute your studied manipulation attempts.

            We are now starting to see nurses and doctors standing up for people who have suffered from IWTs.

            I don’t think we can create a situation on demand where IWTs will cause harm because our knowledge is insufficient. This is one reason our federal government is spending millions studying them – we do not know.

            I suggest you open your mind enough to consider my experiences. I am accomplished as well, having travelled to most continents in my profession and am in full control of my faculties and mental discipline. The symptoms are no more “in my head” than they are a conjuring in the heads of the other people I have spoken to. I appreciate the dialog and materials, but please keep searching. The experts in the Wind Industry are some of the best possible to help people. If only they would not start off with the mandate to prove IWTs are OK in the face of a significant number of people stating to the contrary.

          • Please see my extensive comment on your other response for how highly I will rate your subjective experience compared to the extraordinary weight of evidence that it is unrelated to wind farms and infrasound.

          • Bob_Wallace

            Nuclear at 6.8 c/kWh? That, is obviously, from a reactor built sometime in the past. In fact, that sounds like the operating cost of a paid off inefficient reactor.

            I assume you know the offer Ontario received for a new reactor and why Ontario walked away. The cost of new nuclear energy was more in the 15c to 20c range.

            Are you going to turn out to be a dishonest troll? I’m not making that assumption. Yet.

          • mijanko

            I will admit I took the information from a source and did not look into the details, nor was I aware of offer for a new reactor. I do not understand why the energy industry would not utilize a complete lifecycle/value cost model. I will look further into this.

            Troll, no my nose is much smaller and I am much taller.


          • Eagle Siting

            The GE1.5s installed all over southern MN fail at a rate of about 10% within the first three years of operation. Gear box failure and blade failure on this “most popular” and common modern turbine model is normal. Newer, bigger…just as crappy.

          • Bob_Wallace

            The 1.5s series did have a bothersome failure rate. Not so with the 1.5sle series.


          • Eagle Siting

            Bob, Are the Grand Meadow, Nobels, and Wapsipinicon 1.5 MW GE turbines ‘1.5s’ or ‘1.5sle’? These three projects and others installed in 2009 to 2012 are having premature gearbox failures in the first three years and all three of the neamed projects had major electrical line problems in the first 6 months of operation. Earlier GE turbines such as the Chanarambie wind project built in 2003 can’t get new parts when their turbine burned up from a mouse fire. Chanerambie said these 2003 turbines GE 1.5MW turbines are considered “obsolete”. Wind developers commonly testify that their turbines last 20-30 years. As Xcel Energy stated in their public filings to the MPUC – wind turbines produce less and cost more to maintain than what we were told; and the high gear box failure rate is common. (paraphrasing)

          • Bob_Wallace

            Don’t know.

          • Bob_Wallace

            After reading your tale of woe I decided to do a little digging to see how badly those wind farms were performing. Here are the CF numbers I found for the last two years of public record….

            Grand Meadow 34.6%
            Wapsipinicon Wind Project 35.5%
            Noble 31.0%
            Chanarambie 35.0%
            MN average 32.5%

            Grand Meadow 35.3%
            Wapsipinicon Wind Project 36.4%
            Noble 36.7%
            Chanarambie 35.7
            MN average 34.9 %

            There might be a parts problem, but it looks to me that you’ve got three adequately performing wind farms. In most cases they are producing more power, based on percentage of nameplate, than the average MN wind farm.

            Mid-thirties is typical of wind farms built a few years back. Numbers are now moving into the mid-forties.

          • Eagle Siting

            Thanks. Bob. Now if they could just produce electricity when there is a demand for it on the grid, then wind wouldn’t be such a parasitic energy source. What we’re seeing in MN is that in order to fulfill the State’s wind mandate, utilities were forced to sign high cost 20 year contracts. The turbines produce the most when the demand is lowest – in the middle of the night in the spring and fall. Utilities buy high and then dump the unwanted, unneeded electricity on the MISO market at a loss. In 2011 this buy-high and sell at a loss represented a $70 million dallar loss to rural rate payers; total 2011 wind income in the state was $13 million. ND sued Xcel Erergy for spreading the cost of the MN wind mandate to non-MN consumers. In the settlement, ND says it was $6million/year more for ND Xcel customers – in a state with $5million/year in wind income (according to AWEA). The total in the 6 state region was $92 million/year over what customers would have paid with no wind mandate. But since Xcel says it saves $3million/year in fuel costs due to wind, I guess costomers are only over paying by $89 million. No cause for celebration.

          • Bob_Wallace

            US taxpayers spend between $140 billion to $242 billion a year to pay for the external costs of burning coal.


            That’s $380 million to $660 million we spend every single day because we burn coal to make electricity. It’s money we don’t pay ‘at the meter’ but with our tax and health insurance premium bills.

            It’s foolish to keep spending that money when we have alternatives, don’t you think?

            Now, like any new technology, the alternatives don’t spring forth full grown. Wind first came on line about 30 years ago at about $0.30/kWh. It’s now down to under $0.04/kWh. It’s taken a few billion dollars of support and “forcing wind down people’s throats” via “forced contracts” to get the price down.

            Wind does not produce 24/365. That’s a fact. But wind farms connected over a moderately modest distance ( a couple hundred miles) will produce reliable electricity 85% of the time, about the same as a coal plant.

            Solar tends to produce more when the wind blows least. Solar is now well under 10 cents per kWh and on its way to under 5 cents, perhaps down to about 2 cents. Between wind and solar we can get most of the electricity we need for a very reasonable price.

            There will be hours when neither are producing sufficient to match demand. For those hours we will use other sources such as hydro and storage.

            We’ll end up with electricity about the same price as coal and nuclear without the high external costs of coal.

            Your $70 million here and $30 million there one time costs are hugely outweighed by the $380 million to $660 million we spend every single day. Best we don’t be penny wise and pound foolish.

    • Infrasound produced by wind farms is harmless; humans evolved with infrasound and wind farms produce less than waves on a beach, yet beach front property is in major demand. The attached link summarizes all of the basics of infrasound, generation of infrasound from wind farms and the claims related to infrasound from those opposed to wind energy.

      The South Australian EPA specifically assessed infrasound near wind farms and found it was lower in homes near wind farms than in any of the other environments that they tested.

      The symptoms that people complain about related to wind turbines appear to be just as commonly found with the same severity away from wind turbines. It’s human nature to blame the big new thing for complaints, but they aren’t the cause, just the lightning rod.

      Regarding price, the Ontario government is doing what governments around the world have done to establish market conditions for wind and solar: it put in a feed-in-tariff with guaranteed rates and a regular reset of those rates for new projects. And it worked. Ontario developed wind and solar rapidly. And the feed-in-tariffs for new projects have dropped immensely, as has happened around the world. This is a successful use of the FIT policy approach.

      Mijanko, please understand that Ontario has one of the two best organized oppositions to wind energy in the world. Wind Concerns Ontario and the Society for Wind Vigilance have been very effective in creating a pretence of validity for their disinformation, but they are spreading anti-wind propaganda, not fact. The setbacks in Ontario under Regulation 359/09 are aligned with setbacks around the world, are scientifically based and accurate. Please view statements against wind energy more skeptically.

      • mijanko

        Hi Mike, I have seen this information and you speak with a magnitude of certainty which is not earned by the methods and guidelines I have witnessed in practice for measuring and enforcing emissions on behalf of the wellness of people.

        Beach front property is an example of an environment where infrasound is prevalent, but it is far from disqualification of what experienced people keep telling us. There is more to the issue than sheer amplitude, there are characteristics, frequency and repetition. Infrasound from IWTs differ largely from that of waves.

        This type of thinking is perhaps why a link has not been found to date. I suggest thorough study of the characteristics of the people who suffer vs. don’t and all possible characteristics where they lived. (Note the past tense) Did the Aussie EPA measure infrasound in homes where people reported the symptoms we are familiar with hearing? Did they use parameters to discard certain information and are they transparent about it?

        You should know that I have an infrasound measuring device and am collecting higher samples on windy days. I myself and my daughter have had ringing start in our ears and I will tell you without a shred of doubt that this is not from “dwelling on it” – it is an unmistakable, sudden and unique occurrence. I am a logical individual in control of my faculties and mind. I suspect the person who engineered this response intends to incite emotion from people, but I am not prone to this.

        Regarding the symptoms people have been reporting being more common away from IWTs – for the people who report them – they were non-existent prior to the IWT operation. That is an infinite increase and cause for concern which ought to be investigated tirelessly prior to mass propagation, not smoothed over as no cause for concern using statistics of unknown parameters.

        Speaking of prices, the real reason it has spread successfully in Ontario is because no one was given a choice. Our provincial government removed any siting authority from the municipalities and the result is our electrical rates are on par with the highest in North America – this alone has caused us to lose some industry and I have seen this first hand. Some people have been bought using tax dollars to host IWTs with FITs and many have turned against them. (I have not.) Several communities resisted with sufficient ferocity as to have their municipal politicians declare their communities unwilling hosts, yet, every ERT has been lost and the rules give Wind Company lawyers all the time to shoot down argumentation while providing appellants minimal time to prepare – and they must use their own money to defend themselves which with paying lawyers and experts can easily amount to $70,000 CAD which is not possible to group together because each community project is on its own schedule and the rules of hearing are tied to the project schedules. Effectively what I see are caring people being divided and conquered. But they are trying.

        With regard to being organized, it is a tough task for any person outside of their full time career to compete with paid employees of big business whose primary stated aim is to make money.

        The setbacks in Ontario are far less than in some countries, parts of the US and Australia as examples. I have seen peer reviewed papers which conclude there is certainly an elevated level of “aggravation” within 4km of some wind projects and the first of that is sleep deprivation which we know leads to several health and wellness detriments.

        I suggest you spend less time using phrases such as “its human nature” etc. to discard the real experiences of people who did in fact live near Industrial Wind Turbines and know they suffered from them and more time directing your considerable capabilities toward the common good – listening, learning, understanding and improving.

        If not, then I challenge you to live with your family in one of the several homes which was purchased by a Wind Power corporation from occupants who were suffering. 24 months should do it. It is what you are asking people such as myself with my young family to do.

        • First off, the odds of an amateur accurately measuring infrasound is low. Professionals use specific, expensive equipment, carefully set up to avoid accidental over measuring of infrasound. The wind blowing past a microphone overwhelms any background infrasound most of the time. You’ll understand if I don’t lend your measurements any particular credence.

          Two, since you dislike a credible study which clearly shows wind farms don’t create unusual amounts of infrasound in homes, how about this one? The South Australian EPA did a ten week study near the Waterloo wind farm, specifically in and around homes where people were complaining. It included infrasound and audible sound measurements. It included a requirement for the participants to diarize their symptoms. It included on-off testing. The study found a very large percentage of diarized incidents which occurred when wind turbines were turned off. There was no correlation to wind farm noise, either infrasound or audible noise. It’s pretty clear from credible studies that people’s subjective experiences near wind farms have little relationship to the wind farm’s actual operation.

          Regarding setbacks, once again Ontario’s are pretty mainstream. There is one state in Australia which has a draft regulation which requires wind farm developers to get agreement from everyone within two kilometres of a proposed wind turbine. That draft regulation has not been implemented or enforced, and is currently being challenged. Nowhere in the USA that I’m aware of outside of a couple of small towns which have been given authority that they shouldn’t have for wind farm siting are the setbacks further than Ontario. 99% of the USA has setbacks less than Ontario’s. Denmark is the only country with formal regulations which in some cases require minimum setbacks greater than Ontario; one provision is four times turbine height, which in some cases will exceed Ontario’s minimum of 550 meters. Please understand, I’ve looked at setback regulations around the world and actually do know what I’m talking about.

          In your comment there are two accurate statements. Ontario did put remove planning approval authority from local communities in regard to wind farms. This is the same as is done for highways, transmission lines, pipelines and every other form of major, strategic infrastructure. Rural communities don’t have the expertise or money to adequately establish, test or enforce regulations around any of those types of infrastructure. Look at Walkerton if you want a sense of why giving municipalities authority that should be given to provincial or federal bodies is a good idea. Provincial electrical supply is a provincial accountability, not a rural municipality accountability. The Act required community consultation processes, and those were performed for the most part with diligence and care by the developers.

          The second accurate statement is that there is opposition to wind farms. They are losing rightly, because they don’t have any evidence despite attempts. You really should read this material on the sixteen anti-wind ‘expert’ witnesses who have had their expertise rejected or their evidence rejected. It’s eye-opening.

          Having read all — yes, all — of the literature on wind farms and health, having a technical and public health background, and having discussed these points with deep experts around the world, I can assure you that your subjective experience is fairly immaterial to the reality of what is going on. Your anecdote doesn’t trump my evidence; that’s not the way science or public health discussions work.

          • mijanko

            I did not specify what equipment I am using, yet you’ve made a conclusion upon it and thought yourself warranted to instruct me regarding a very basic issue of wind blowing past the transducer. Hasty.

            Actually, I am using a logging device which is used by professionals (Which I will define loosely as people with the training and experience to calibrate, set up and operate the equipment properly and who do so as part of their profession) and I have taken proper steps to abate noise by wind on transducer.

            With that, yes I can understand your not lending my measurements any particular credence.

            But I do not take these measurements with intent to satisfy critics who openly state people who suffered are wrong without giving them the benefit of doubt or credibility.

            Credible studies? Yes, great effort, yet people are still having issues. Go back. Do it again. Perhaps as I have typed prior, it is not just the amount. Could it be the characteristic of the infrasound? Characteristic of an alarm clock? What’s the job of an alarm clock? Has the study been conducted over a sufficiently long time period covering the range of wind speeds and directions a family would encounter over an 18 month period? As to the symptoms not lining up with on/off – do we know what dosage is required to produce the symptoms and after which time period of removing the infrasound it stops? We do not. Further people react differently, even in my home. I submit to you, having reviewed not just the studies but having requested parameters I am not satisfied we have looked carefully and consistently enough.

            I am interested in the science, but prior to concluding beyond a doubt, which takes science a long time and many bloody noses, a scientist forms a hypothesis. The scientist then sets out to prove or disprove. Contributions similar to mine are part of the scientific life cycle, but early in it. We cannot always criticise experiences as unscientific, but our confidence rises as possibilities are discovered and pursued. We have not pursued all possibilities, yet you speak not for yourself, but in definite terms and for all humanity. You’re no more qualified than I am to do that.

            Based upon my own personal experience and that of my young daughter – I currently believe science has missed a link which I suspect does exist. I suspect one day science will find it. All I ask is that science keep looking and we should abide by the precautionary principle until such time as we have complete information which no study does. (There are studies which do find a correlation between IWT placement and issues with human health.)

            I am not here to change your minds, I am here to tell you what I think at this time.

            I will now depart this forum. I do appreciate the dialog and thank you for taking the time to share with me the materials and experience you have.

        • Eagle Siting

          Look at the results from the Shirley Wind project in Wisconsin. 4 firms (2 wind industry and 2 neutral/citizen employed) tested in 3 abandoned homes. All found measurable infrasound caused by the turbines. All agreed more study is needed. This relatively small 9 turbine project caused three home abandonments in the first year of operation. You may also wish to look at the California wind project in east central Illinois – more home abandonments. You may also wish to look at the medical research on the issue done in Portugal demonstating and explaining the cause and effect between wind turbine LFN and medical problems in people. Mike Barnard is correct about one thing: “…The odds of an amateur accurately measuring infrasound is low.” Maybe Mr. Bardard can ask Next Era why their lobbyist walked into the Alabama Senate hearing this past spring with a hand held decibel meter and starting explaining to the State Senators how loud the sounds in the room were and how this was “noisier than a wind turbine” (Which has exactly nothing to do with LFN). I guess Next Error was was relying upon the Senators being gullible and easily impressed by sciency looking gadgets in the hands of political lobbyists.

  • Kevin McKinney

    The linked “DOE” report isn’t–the link goes a piece from AWEA. While the AWEA release is informative enough, the misattribution should be fixed. (Or else the underlying citation should be linked–though it appears the AWEA brochure draws on more than one source, including a 2012 DOE report.)

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