Here's a letter to the editor of the Simcoe Reformer. It's responding to a previous letter to the editor calling for a health study, not literature reviews. Local health studies are useful, of course, but reviewing health studies performed in other jurisdictions are also very valuable. As we've shown in another post, over 15 reviews have been conducted of studies published in peer reviewed, respected journals; as well as the "gray" literature. They all say the same thing - turbines are safe although some individuals' attitudes toward turbines may cause them annoyance.
February 21, 2012
Chris Forrest, Letter to the Editor
Re: Do real health study, not review – Feb. 14, Simcoe Reformer
Wind is playing a growing role in helping Ontario build a stronger, cleaner, and more sustainable energy system. Ontario, as Canada’s leader in developing wind energy, has seen dozens of communities realize significant new economic benefits in the process. While polling indicates that wind energy enjoys the support of a strong majority of Ontarians, the industry will not take that support for granted.
The balance of scientific and medical information from around the world has concluded that sounds or vibrations emitted from wind turbines have no adverse effect on human health. This was backed in Ontario by the findings of Chief Medical Officer of Health in a May 2010 report. A recent Environmental Review Tribunal also found no evidence of direct health impacts from wind turbines. The ERT ruling did address the need for ongoing research into this subject, and CanWEA has committed to monitoring all new information on this subject as it is made available.
A January 2012 comprehensive review of public health studies conducted near wind turbines in the United States and Europe, recently released in Massachusetts, demonstrates wind turbines are safe and the health-related claims are unsubstantiated. That study involved a panel of independent academic experts with backgrounds in public health, epidemiology, toxicology, neurology and sleep medicine, neuroscience, and mechanical engineering. The report can be found at: http://www.mass.gov/dep/energy/wind/impactstudy.htm
Today, around the world, more than 100,000 wind turbines operate and the vast majority of people living in and around wind turbines have a positive and productive experience. The industry continues to actively engage international experts in medicine and acoustics to ensure that all new and credible information on this subject continues to be reviewed.
For more information on wind energy development in Canada, please see: www.canwea.ca
Vice-President of Communications