in News Departments > New & Noteworthy
print the content item

A new clinical study from the University of Sydney finds that so-called "wind turbine sickness" may actually be caused by the suggestion from anti-wind groups that turbines make people sick.

According to the Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA), the new study found that 31, or 63%, of Australia's 49 wind farms have never been the subject of any health complaint from nearby residents. It also found that 68% of the 120 complaints that have been made came from residents living near wind farms heavily targeted by the anti-wind farm lobby and that ''the advent of anti-wind farm groups beginning to foment concerns about health (from around 2009) was also strongly correlated with actual complaints being made."

Study lead Simon Chapman, professor of public health at Sydney University, has said the results suggest that health problems attributed to wind energy are a ''communicated disease'' - or a sickness spread by the suggestion that something is likely to make a person sick, CanWEA notes.

The study says that this is caused by the ''nocebo effect'' - the opposite of the placebo effect - in which the belief that something can cause an illness creates the perception of illness. CanWEA adds that Chapman found a much greater connection between negative attitudes toward wind turbines and reports of health effects than any ''objective measures of actual exposure.''

“We review all credible information on the subject of wind turbines and human health as it is made available, and it is clear that the balance of scientific evidence shows that wind turbines do not have an impact on human health,” says Robert Hornung, president of CanWEA, noting that the majority of complaints against Canadian wind farms have been made by anti-wind individuals and groups, not by residents.

“We believe Canadians should base their decisions about energy on facts grounded in the best scientific evidence,” Hornung adds. “The fact remains that wind energy is one of the safest forms of electricity generation for both humans and wildlife.”

The full study is available here.




Trachte Inc._id1770
Latest Top Stories

Kansas Renewables Mandate Survives Yet Another Attack, But Is It Too Early To Celebrate?

Over the past three years, some legislators have tried to either weaken or repeal the state's renewable portfolio standard, which requires Kansas utilities to reach 20% renewables by 2020.


AWEA Highlights U.S. Wind Success Stories Of 2013

Despite a 92% drop in new capacity last year, the sector still has myriad reasons to celebrate, according to a new report from the American Wind Energy Association.


Feds List New Bird Species As Threatened - Should Wind Developers Be Worried?

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is designating the lesser prairie-chicken as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. An expert explains how this might affect the wind industry.


Senate Committee Passes Bill With Two-Year PTC Extension

The Senate Finance Committee has voted on a tax extenders package, which includes both the production tax credit (PTC) and investment tax credit, and sent it to the floor.


Five Common Gearbox Failures And How To Identify Them

Wind turbine gearbox failures are a major source of unplanned maintenance costs. An expert explains the most frequent failure modes and offers prevention tips.

Acciona_id1907
JLG_id1900
WomenofWind_id
UEA_id1896
AWEA_id1886
bonfiglioli_id1913