Letter - Call a halt to wind turbines

The Regional

July 21, 2010

Halidmand must join with the 58 municipalities throughout Ontario demanding a halt to industrial wind turbine developments until Queens Park states there is absolutely no link between wind turbines and adverse health effects among people who live near them.

Debilitating health problems, ranging from sleep deprivation to heart palpitations, can arise from the audible noise and vibrations produced by the spinning blades of the wind turbine. Such health claims are being denied by the wind turbine companies who argue that it is psychosomatic.

This appears to contradict what some British scientists have already concluded and that is the swishing sound caused by wind turbines can "annoy" some people, keeping them awake at night and even causing psychological problems because of stress. If a person is laying in bed unable to escape listening to an unwanted noise, night after night, at the very least I would describe that as distressing and loss of sleep leads to a host of other illnesses.

Last October, Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound MPP Bill Murdock called for a province-wide moratorium on wind turbine projects which would have forced the provincial medical and environmental experts to conduct proper epidemiological investigations of the full impact on human health. Mr. Murdock explained "The Liberal government moved quickly with the Green Energy agenda. Bill 150 was passed into law within a very short time, and as a result very many things got over looked."

Although unsuccessful he did solicit a curious response from Dr. Arlene King, Ontario Chief Medical Officer of Health. The following statements are found in the hand outs provided by Samsung at the July 8 Open House. In collaboration with Dr. Ray Copes, from the Ontario Agency for Health Protection and Promotion, Dr. King stated "The literature review revealed that while there are anecdotal reports of symptoms such as sleep disturbance, headaches, dizziness, anxiety, concentration and learning problems, and tinnitus, there is no scientific evidence, to date, to demonstrate a casual association between wind turbine noise and adverse health effects."

Hello! Dictionary definition of anecdotal: "a brief account of any fact or happening." To date, Dr. King. whether or not you have scientific proof does not make these symptoms any less real.

The comment from Dr. Copes, who presented a scientific review of the potential health hazards of wind turbines in a "webinar", is best described as irresponsible. He said "The review concluded that there is no evidence of noise-induced health effects emitted by wind turbines: sound produced by the turbines is sometimes found to be annoying to some people which may result in stress which may result in stress and sleep disturbance." Dictionary definition of annoying: "to injure; disturb continually; to torment."

Some people! I suggest one person would be too many. Your agency has a mandate to protect us, not minimize ill health effects and by doing so you have set a poor example.

Samsung is required to undertake an environmental assessment of the potential impacts of wind turbines on human health and ecosystems; a draft copy was made available for the public. Of the eight project-specific issues that were identified Public Health and Safety was at the bottom of the list and this indicates to me the lack of meaningful initiative for research into the potential risks of living in an industrial wind factory.

Ray, come out from behind your computer and take Arlene for a drive to experience, first hand with us receptors, the heart pounding effect of turbine "blade thump." Stantec definition of receptor: "a person on the receiving end." Bring the Haldimand Health and Family Services Medical Officer with you

William Colterman

South Cayuga