Category Archives: Adverse Health Effects

Legal battle over Ontario wind turbine farm may redefine ‘harm’

The right to be free from chronic annoyance is at the heart of a legal challenge that could shake Ontario’s multibillion wind-energy business, and limit other industrial development in rural areas.

Wind turbines spin at a wind farm on November 17, 2014 near Brieselang, Germany. Ontario has 62 separate wind farms approved or proposed, under rules that allow them to be built 550 metres from homes, and at a noise level of up to 40 decibels in rural areas – the level at which the adverse health effects of annoyance set in, according to the World Health Organization. (Sean Gallup/Getty Images)
Wind turbines spin at a wind farm on November 17, 2014 near Brieselang, Germany. Ontario has 62 separate wind farms approved or proposed, under rules that allow them to be built 550 metres from homes, and at a noise level of up to 40 decibels in rural areas – the level at which the adverse health effects of annoyance set in, according to the World Health Organization.
(Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

It pits a family whose farming history goes back a century in Southwestern Ontario against the provincial government, and a consortium known as the K2 Wind Power Project, which includes global companies such as Samsung Renewable Energy Inc.

No evidence shows wind turbines directly harm human health.

But “community annoyance” lasting a year or more and associated with nearby turbines has been linked to headaches, sleep problems, dizziness and high blood pressure, in a study whose summary was released by Health Canada early this month. Continue reading Legal battle over Ontario wind turbine farm may redefine ‘harm’

Wind turbines like ‘nightmare neighbours’ but law ‘rigged,’ court told

The Canadian Press - Shawn Drennan, part of a four-family fight against Ontario's wind-turbine legislation, is seen outside court in London, Ont., on Monday, Nov. 17, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Colin Perkel
The Canadian Press – Shawn Drennan, part of a four-family fight against Ontario’s wind-turbine legislation, is seen outside court in London, Ont., on Monday, Nov. 17, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Colin Perkel

The Canadian Press – Shawn Drennan, part of a four-family fight against Ontario’s wind-turbine legislation, is seen outside court in London, Ont., on Monday, Nov. 17, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Colin PerkelWind turbines are like new neighbours who might drive you to distraction and out of your home because you have no legal way to deal with the situation, a packed Ontario court heard Monday.

In submissions to Divisional Court, a lawyer for four families fighting large-scale wind-energy projects compared the turbines to a neighbour who is always noisy and in your face.

“This neighbour never once ruptured your eardrums but that neighbour slowly drives you crazy,” Julian Falconer told the court.

“These turbines are those nightmare neighbours.”

The families are trying to get the court to declare provincial legislation related to the approvals of large-scale wind farms unconstitutional.

In essence, they argue, the legislation makes it impossible to scuttle a project on the basis of potential health impacts.

“The priority is to get the turbines up come hell or high water and that’s what they do,” Falconer said.

read more: By Colin Perkel, The Canadian Press | The Canadian Press, Nov 17 2014

Ontario’s wind farm approval process faces constitutional challenge

Governments love windmills, people who live near them hate them. The result is a beautiful recipe for lawyers.

ulian Falconer, no stranger to public interest cases, represents families challenging the development of three wind farms near Lake Huron
ulian Falconer, no stranger to public interest cases, represents families challenging the development of three wind farms near Lake Huron

Mr. Falconer is one of the country’s top constitutional and human rights lawyers. He represented the Smith family in a lawsuit into the death of Ashley Smith in custody. He worked on the Ipperwash Inquiry. He represented Maher Arar in a suit against the federal government over his rendition and torture in Syria. The list goes on. Point is, Mr. Falconer takes a special interest in holding government to account.

On Monday he’ll be taking on windmills. He wants Ontario’s Divisional Court to overturn the regulatory approvals of three projects, the St. Columban Wind and K2 Wind Energy project in Huron County, and the SP Armow Wind project near Kincardine, Ont.

His clients, who live near the projects, fear the noise and vibration of the wind turbines will trigger a host of serious health problems. Mr. Falconer will argue in court that Ontario’s process for approving wind farms violates the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Provincial legislation says anyone challenging a wind farm project before Ontario’s Environmental Review Tribunal must prove “serious harm” to human health. Mr. Falconer says that threshold is unfair because it is too high.

“The effects of wind turbines are felt in the most private and personal areas of residents’ lives, in their homes and beds, where the state has its lowest interest in intrusion,” Mr. Falconer submits in his written argument.

The Charter argument is a fairly new wrinkle in the fight against wind farms. But litigation itself isn’t. When the Divisional Court rules on the appeal, its decision will join the more than 30 Canadian reported court cases that have dealt with wind turbines — a number that shoots to nearly 100 when you include hearings before Canadian regulatory tribunals.

 

Read MORE: Financial Post, Drew Hasselback | November 17, 2014 |

Wind turbines are like the “nightmare neighbours”

More than 70 anti-wind supporters show up at London courthouse for first constitutional appeal

A farm stands in the foreground as some of the 45 wind turbines at the Bornish Wind Energy Centre stand in the distance near Parkhill. (Free Press file photo)
A farm stands in the foreground as some of the 45 wind turbines at the Bornish Wind Energy Centre stand in the distance near Parkhill. (Free Press file photo)

Wind turbines are like the “nightmare neighbours” that are “constantly noisy, constantly in your face,” says a lawyer looking to change the rules that govern turbine approvals.

Julian Falconer told a divisional court of appeal that the nuisances might not be enough to burst eardrums, “but that neighbour slowly drives you crazy.”

It’s the first constitutional appeal that’s made it to divisional court about the province’s Green Energy Act process to approve the controversial turbines Continue reading Wind turbines are like the “nightmare neighbours”

MAWT Inc. Supports Negative Critiques of the Health Canada Study.

MAWT Inc. would like to go on record and say that we have read and support the Denise Wolfe/Dr. McMurtry critiques of the Health Canada study as well as Carmen Krogh’s. 

DENISE WOLFE’S SUMMARY ON HEALTH CANADA,

 DR. ROBERT Y. MCMURTRY STATEMENT RELATED TO HEALTH CANADA STUDY AND DENISE WOLFE SYNOPSIS

Following Canada’s Wind Technology Roadmap and Health Canada’s Wind Turbine Noise and Health Study Carmen Krogh,BScPharm Brett Horner, BA CMA