Category Archives: Noise

Cuba Mystery- Was it a Sonic Attack that made diplomats ill?

“And it’s not impossible that infrasound could explain some of what diplomats thought they heard.

Though infrasound is usually inaudible, some people can detect it if the waves are powerful enough. For example, individuals living near infrasound-generating wind turbines have described pulsating hums that have left them dizzy, nauseous or with interrupted sleep. Such effects have prompted fierce scientific debate.”

Cuba Attacks Medical Mystery

National Post September 16, 2017

Cuba mystery: What theories US investigators are pursuing

WASHINGTON — There must be an answer.

Whatever is harming U.S. diplomats in Havana, it’s eluded the doctors, scientists and intelligence analysts scouring for answers. Investigators have chased many theories, including a sonic attack, electromagnetic weapon or flawed spying device.

Each explanation seems to fit parts of what’s happened, conflicting with others.

The United States doesn’t even know what to call it. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson used the phrase “health attacks.” The State Department prefers “incidents.”

READ REST OF ARTICLE

Neighbours at odds over noisy wind project

summerbreeze“We want to be able to be outside of our home when it’s calm,” Huffman told commissioners at a hearing in Palmerston North on Wednesday.

“We want to be able to open our windows and not hear the whine… or the roar.

“We want to be able to open our windows at night.”

On a still day in the countryside, there could be “whining, roaring and grinding so intrusive that we don’t want to be outside”.

The first time Huffman heard the Te Rere Hau farm, it woke her up. She wondered what her husband Graham Devey was doing. “What was he doing in the barn that was causing such a racket?”

Neighbour of Te Rere Hau wind project located in New Zealand

READ  FULL ARTICLE

 

The Definition Of ‘Nuisance’

Words and their meanings have powers that can impact our very well- being.  Judge Cornelius J. Moriarty II, of the Justice of the Superior Court ordered the cessation of the operations of the wind turbines in Falmouth, Massachusetts.  In giving his judgement he discusses findings and reasons while interpreting and applying the meanings of the words injurious and nuisance.

“Despite the Town’s insistence that Barry Funfar is hypersensitive to sound, it is clear that he is no lone voice crying in the wilderness.  Other residents of the neighbouring area have registered similar complaints which was the very reason the Town commissioned the HMMH study in the first place.”

falmouth_vermont-1473171761-2525

The Falmouth Enterprise  August 11, 2017

A neighbor of the town’s turbines e-mailed us last week to say that we have been misleading the public by stating in recent stories that Judge Moriarty ruled that the turbines were a nuisance to the Funfar property. A nuisance, he wrote, is generally thought of as a neighbor mowing the lawn on a Sunday morning, whereas Judge Moriarty defined nuisance not only as an inconvenience but also a danger. He attached a copy of the judge’s decision for our reference.

In fact, Judge Moriarty went into a good deal of detail in a five-page discussion of his findings and decision.

First, he pointed out that the Zoning Board of Appeals’ decision that the turbines constituted a nuisance could not be overturned, as the board would have had to have been unreasonable or on legally untenable grounds. The appeals board found that the turbines were a nuisance to the Funfars’ property because, based on a DEP sound study, they directly affected the health and well-being of the Funfars. “The decision here was hardly arbitraray and capricious,” Judge Moriarty wrote.

But the issue here, of course, is the definition of nuisance. Judge Moriarty pointed out that nuisance is difficult to define and, as much testimony as there was about sound levels, none of it applies to the definition because there are no numerical standards. “The issue is,” he wrote, “whether, on the facts found, the operation of the wind turbines was offensive because of injurious or obnoxious noise or vibration, a nuisance in violation of the by-law.”

He pointed out that, while the town argued that Mr. Funfar was hypersensitive to sound, “it is clear that he is no lone voice crying in the wilderness. Other residents of the neighboring area have registered similar complaints…”

The judge discussed the definition of “injurious,” at some length and concluded that “the physical effects of the turbine-generated sound upon Mr. Funfar have been certainly harmful and have tended to injure him.”barry funfar

There should be no mistake among the residents of Falmouth; when the appeals board and Judge Moriarty called the town turbines a “nuisance,” they did not mean it in the way of ants at a picnic or a dog barking in the night.

Judgement Town of Falmouth vs Falmouth Zoning Board of Appeals et al

Living beside a Windfarm today in Ireland Co Wicklow

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Child negatively impacted by noise emitted by an industrial wind turbine located 800 metres away from the home in Ballinvalley, Ireland

Eugene Clune who lives in Ballinvalley shared his family’s trauma and said that if he had the chance now he would approach things very differently.

‘My house is situated 800 metres from an industrial turbine and my four-year-old has slept, maybe two nights since last winter.

‘She would ask us why her granddad is outside on the digger in the middle of the night – because that is what it sounds like,’ he said.

Source: Crouck Substation Action Group

Published July 29, 2017: Independent IE

Extensive Noise Survey of Wind Projects Wexford County 2016

Friday, 14th July 2017  Wexford County, Ireland

Map of windfarms

In-depth, extensive noise survey

On foot of a number of complaints from the public of noise nuisance from wind farms in north Wexford, Wexford Co Co commissioned RPS Engineering in early 2016 to carry out an in-depth, extensive noise survey of the sound emitting from adjacent wind farms and their wind turbines.

The wind farms included in the noise survey were;

1.    Gibbet Hill, planning ref: 2009 0266 – view Gibbet report (PDF,  8.84MB)
2.    Knocknalour, planning ref 2011 0504 – view Knocknalour report (PDF,  24.7MB)
3.    Ballycadden, planning ref 2009 1730 – view Ballycadden report (PDF,  12.8MB)
4.    Ballynancoran, planning ref 2003 3444 – view Ballynancoran report (PDF,  24.6MB)

Map of the four wind turbines and the position of the individual turbines

The Survey

The scope of noise survey carried out, exceeded the requirements of the DEHLG noise guidance for wind farms and the requirements of most countries with well developed wind legislation. It involved inter-alia the continuous simultaneous acoustic monitoring at 4 wind farm sites, and eventually involved 13 noise meters being simultaneously deployed. In addition to noise meters a number of rain gauges and 10 metre high wind speed masts were also utilised to gather weather data.

The extended duration of this noise survey, 8 weeks at 8 sites and over 6 months at 3 sites, and the wide extent of noise parameter measurements and meteorological parameters carried out, ensured that account was made of practically all environmental and meteorological conditions experienced at the sites during the noise survey, such as differing wind speeds, directions, air temperature and particular meteorological conditions as experienced at the sites. This included the measurement of noise during periods of winter time cold temperatures with little or no wind (temperature inversions) so as to measure the noise impact during possible worst case scenarios.

Noise Survey Parameters

The survey required the following measurements to be carried out at the 13 measurement sites,

  1. L(A)Eq, L(A)Min, L(A)Max, L(A)Peak, L(C)Eq, L(C)Min, L(C)Max, L(C)Peak, L(Z)Eq, L(Z)Min, L(Z)Max, L(Z)Peak.
  2. L1, L5, L10, L50, L90, L95 and L99,
  3. All of 1 and 2 above to be carried out at Fast time weighing,
  4. 1/3 Octave measurements from 6 Hz to 20 KHz,
  5. Narrow Band Fast Fourier Transform (FFT) analysis extending from 0 Hz to 200 Hz,
  6. Analysis for amplitude modulation,
  7. Both 5 and 6 analysis above are to be carried out at one or two measurement sites at each wind farm for a minimum period of 2 hours, during the noise survey with environmental conditions suspected to result in tonal elements or amplitude modulation,
  8. Wind speed and direction at 10 metres is to be recorded during the survey,
  9. Rainfall occurrences, time and date and amounts and at each wind farm are to be recorded,

Audio was also recorded at each site at a number of occasions at a sufficient sampling and bit rate to allow further analysis, eg FFT and amplitude modulation.

This study also includes an assessment report for each wind farm addressing their compliance regarding noise emissions under the following headings:

  1. Compliance with planning conditions on the Wind Farms being tested and or predicted sound levels at noise sensitive locations as per the planning application submitted EIS,
  2. Compliance with the Dept of Environment, Community and Local Government, Wind Energy Development Guidelines 2006, in so far as they relate to noise standards,
  3. Comment on the sound with regard to noise standards in
    – UK and other countries with well developed wind energy infrastructure and regulations
    – WHO noise limits for night-time noise
    – Presence of tones, low frequencies, amplitude modulation
    – On the likelihood of noise nuisance as per Section 108 of the EPA Act No 7 of 1992.

The survey was carried out in accordance with best international practice and in accordance with the most up to date Institute of Acoustics guidance for noise measurements of wind turbines/wind farms. This also included the anticipated recommendations of the Institute of Acoustics guidance document on Amplitude Modulation (IOA Noise Working Group (Wind Turbine Noise) Amplitude Modulation Working Group, Final Report, A Method for Rating Amplitude Modulation in Wind Turbine Noise), which was published in August 2016, during the noise survey, and included reference measurement methodologies, instrument placement, signal analysis, etc.

Public access to raw data

All of the raw the acoustic and audio data utilised in the analysis of these reports is available to the public on request.  Due to the attendant problems the public may encounter with downloading online, very large data files associated with the raw data, Wexford County Council will be making the data available via portable hard drives. So as to protect both Wexford County Council and the end user from computer viruses etc, ensure IT security and to prevent corruption of the data, Wexford Co Co will copy the raw data from the Wexford County Councils master copy on to a new portable 250 GB hard drive, which will be supplied at the purchase cost of the hard drive.

The Software to access the raw data files is available to download from the following websites:

Raw Noise Data Files
Bruel & Kjaer Measurement Partner Suite 

Raw Weather Data
NRG Systems Symphonie Data Retriever Software

Re-Use of Public Sector Information

Re-use of Public Sector Information Regulations 2005 (SI 279 of 2005)

All of the information featured on this website and the raw data is copyright of Wexford County Council unless otherwise indicated. Wexford County Council complies with the regulations on the Re-use of Public Sector Information, and we encourage the re-use of the information that we produce.

You may re-use the information on this website and the raw data free of charge in any format. Re-use includes copying, issuing copies to the public, publishing, broadcasting and translating into other languages. It also covers non-commercial research and study.

Re-use is subject to the following conditions:
•    the source and copyright must be acknowledged in cases where the information is supplied to others
•    the information must be reproduced accurately and fully
•    the information must not be used in a misleading way
•    the information must not be used for the principal purpose of advertising or promoting a particular product or service
•    the information must not be used for, or in support of, illegal, immoral, fraudulent, or dishonest purposes
•    the information must not be used in a manner that would imply endorsement by Wexford County Council or in a manner likely to mislead others
•    any Wexford County Council crest, logo or mark must not be reproduced except where such crest, logo or mark forms an integral part of the document being re-used
•    Wexford County Council is not liable for any loss or liability associated with the re-use of information and does not certify that the information is up-to-date or error free
•    Wexford County Council does not authorise any user to have exclusive rights to the re-use of its information
For more details on information held on our website, please contact out FOI officer.

Next Step

Copies of the reports have been sent to the complainants and the wind farm operators. Wexford County Council is currently assessing the contents of the reports and following evaluation of the results Wexford County Council will issue further updates in due course.

Further Information

For further information please contact brendan.cooney@wexfordcoco.ie , Senior Executive Scientist.

Source: Wexford County Council

Grey Highlands 2012 Wind Turbine Noise Study

Author: Kouwen, Nicholas Kouwen, Nicholas

These are the results of nearly six months of continuous sound measurements away from and near industrial wind turbines (IWT’s) at five locations in Grey Highlands, ON, Canada. The measurement protocol was designed to allow for corrections to account for wind induced noise resulting in findings that are directly comparable to the MOE tables. The results indicate that for three IWT sites studied, the recorded sound pressure levels (SPL’s) exceeded MOE’s noise limits a majority of the time for non‐participating receptors outside the minimum distance of 550 m and outside the 40 dBA SPL contours calculated by consultants engaged by the wind developers. The other two sites were used to measure background noise levels.

Download original document: “Grey Highlands 2012 Wind Turbine Noise Survey

Grey-Highlands-fig1

 

Source: National Wind Watch

Wind Turbine Testing Creating A Stir

unifor-WIND-TURBINE-570
The saga continues for some residents over acoustic testing of the UNIFOR wind turbine in Port Elgin.

Port Elgin | by John Divinski

Saugeen Shores Deputy Mayor Luke Charbonneau says if a province-set deadline date has been missed then the turbine should be shut down by the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change.

But that hasn’t happened suggesting the “Ministry isn’t super keen on sorting it out.”

Charbonneau says many residents have complained multiple times but acoustic testing isn’t being done from where complaints have been filed.

He says one resident complained some 20-times during the period when testing was taking place but no testing was done in that affected area.

Charbonneau says residents are being left in “limbo.”

He says, “People are being bothered by the noise and yet we can’t ever get an ccoustic audit that meets the criteria to determine whether their complaints are justified.”

Charbonneau says the current testing has been going on for the past 6 to 8 weeks but apparently they don’t have enough data to do a proper acoustic audit.

He says, “It’s been plenty windy enough to be annoying people in the neighbourhood around the turbine.”

The deputy mayor says most of the testing has been done on the south side of County Road 25 where there haven’t been a lot of complaints.

unifor wind turbine a
Unifor’s Enercon industrial wind turbine generating noise complaints

Noise from wind turbines may cancel a Sale

good neigboursParis – The noise of new wind turbines may justify the cancellation of the purchase of a house if the buyer claims it.

The purchaser, faced with this nuisance, may in fact invoke his own misjudgment which has vitiated his consent, especially if he has been preoccupied with the environment before buying, judges the Court of Cassation.

Although no one is at fault, the error of one of the parties leads to a defect in his consent which justifies the handing over of things to their former state, that is to say the reciprocal restitution of the house and its price, Admit the judges.

Since the construction of wind turbines is not a question of town planning, it may not be reported as such to the future purchaser, To inform the city council on urbanism projects, observes the judges.

This future purchaser can not therefore complain that it has not been reported to him. It would have been necessary to ask precisely the question of a project of installation of wind turbines. But in any case, even informed of the project, the seller could make a mistake as to the significance of its consequences.

In short, the seller, purchaser, notary and administrations are excusable because, knowing the project, nobody could imagine the magnitude of the nuisance. It was only when they appeared that the purchaser could see that if he had known, he would not have bought. 

(Cass Civ 3, 29.6.2017, Z 16-19.337)

This future purchaser can not therefore complain that it has not been reported to him. It would have been necessary to ask precisely the question of a project of installation of wind turbines. But in any case, even informed of the project, the seller could make a mistake as to the significance of its consequences. In short, the seller, purchaser, notary and administrations are excusable because, knowing the project, nobody could imagine the magnitude of the nuisances. It was only when they appeared that the purchaser could see that if he had known, he would not have bought. (Cass Civ 3, 29.6.2017, Z 16-19.337). (© AFP / 07 July 2017 09h55)

Installation of wind turbines. But in any case, even informed of the project, the seller could make a mistake as to the significance of its consequences. In short, the seller, purchaser, notary and administrations are excusable because, knowing the project, nobody could imagine the magnitude of the nuisances. It was only when they appeared that the purchaser could see that if he had known, he would not have bought. (Cass Civ 3, 29.6.2017, Z 16-19.337). (© AFP / 07 July 2017 09h55)

While knowing the project, no one could imagine the extent of the nuisances. It was only when they appeared that the purchaser could see that if he had known, he would not have bought. (Cass Civ 3, 29.6.2017, Z 16-19.337). (© AFP / 07 July 2017 09h55)

Google translate Original text in French:

Link to Court Decision

Le bruit des éoliennes peut annuler une vente  

french wind project
Installation of wind turbines in France

Noise as a Public Health Problem

icben

Sound emitted by wind turbines has been dogged by ongoing world wide reports of associated adverse health resulting from exposure due to industrial wind turbine acoustic emissions. Health effects that can be severe enough people are forced to abandoned their homes. Seeking relief, respite and to protect their health from further negative impacts due to exposure to noise pollution.  The 12th International Commission on Biological Effects of Noise Congress on Noise as a Public Health Problem was held in Zurich on 18–22 of June 2017.  The proceeding received multiple papers on the subject of wind turbine noise and health.

The following shares some of the papers presented.

12th ICBEN Congress on Noise as a Public Health Problem

Selected papers from the 12th International Commission on Biological Effects of Noise Congress on Noise as a Public Health Problem, Zurich, 18–22 June 2017:

Recent progress in the field of non-auditory health effects of noise – trends and research needsby Yvonne de Kluizenaar and Toshihito Matsui – The Netherlands and Japan
… A wealth of new research on non-auditory health effects of noise has been published over the last 3 years. …

Health Effects of Low Frequency Noise and Infrasound from Wind Farms: Results from an Independent Collective Expertise in Franceby Philippe Lepoutre, Paul Avan, Anthony Cadene, David Ecotière, Anne-Sophie Evrard, Frédérique Moati, and Esko Topilla – France
… Recent results on the physiology of cochleo-vestibular system have revealed several pathways of physiological effects mechanisms that could be activated in response to exposure to ILFN. This sensory system has a particular sensitivity to these frequencies, superior to that of other parts of the human body. Available data suggest the hypothesis that sounds of frequencies too low or levels too low to be clearly audible could have effects mediated by receptors of the cochleo-vestibular system. …

Noise Annoyance Caused by Large Wind Turbines – A Dose-Response Relationshipby Valtteri Hongisto and David Oliva – Finland
The purpose was to determine a dose-response-relationship of large wind turbines with nominal power of 3-5 MW. A cross-sectional survey was conducted around three wind power areas in Finland. The sample involved all households within 2km from the nearest turbine. Altogether 400 households out of 753 reported the annoyance indoors. The dose-response relationship was determined between the predicted noise exposure, LAeq, outdoors and the percentage of highly annoyed by wind turbine noise indoors. The percentage of highly annoyed, %HA, was less than 3%, and relatively even below 40dB LAeq. %HA started to increase when the level exceeded 40dB. …

Hearing Beyond the Limit: Measurement, Perception and Impact of Infrasound and Ultrasonic Noiseby Christian Koch – Germany
In our daily lives, many sources emit infrasound due to their functions or as a side effect. At the other end of the hearing frequency range, airborne ultrasound is applied in many technical and medical processes and has also increasingly moved into everyday life. There are numerous indicators that sound at these frequencies can be perceived and can influence human beings. However, the precise mechanisms of this perception are unknown at present and this lack of understanding is reflected by the unsatisfactory status of the existing regulations and standards. …

A Review of the Human Exposure-Response to Amplitude-Modulated Wind Turbine Noise: Health Effects, Influences on Community Annoyance, Methods of Control and Mitigationby Michael J. B. Lotinga, Richard A. Perkins, Bernard Berry, Colin J. Grimwood, and Stephen A. Stansfeld – U.K.
… The conclusions of most reviews of the research on the effects of WTN on health, including those carried out on behalf of Government agencies, confirm that annoyance is caused by WTN, and that AM appears to increase annoyance. The association of WTN with sleep disturbance appears to be considerably more complex. … All of the field studies outlined so far have focussed on the responses to time-averaged WTN exposure levels. In a study of noise emissions from 1.8 MW turbines, it was argued that noise annoyance expressed by residents at 500-1900m distances might be exacerbated by AM, increased levels and low-frequency content occurring in the late evening and night-time. These phenomena were attributed to the stable night-time atmosphere causing high wind shear, and the coincidence of AM patterns from the turbines. … On the basis of the review and studies considered above, a control for AM has been proposed for use in planning windfarm developments. This control takes as its basis the principle that AM increases annoyance caused by WTN, and that this increase can be characterised by adding a penalty value to the overall WTN level, to equalise it with subjective judgement of a negligible-AM WTN sound. The results of ref 58 suggest that fluctuation in broadband WTN-like sounds will almost certainly be sensed by most people with normal hearing at approximately 3dB ΔLAeq,100ms(BP) which forms the proposed onset for the penalty. … The possible influence of increased low-frequency content in the AM is addressed by the design of the metric used to rate the magnitude, which employs frequency filtering to ensure the signal is evaluated for the range that produces the maximum AM rating. …

Review of Research on the Effects of Noise on Sleep Over the Last 3 Yearsby Sarah McGuire and Gunn Marit Aasvang – U.S. and Norway
… Among
the new actigraphy and polysomnographic field studies are the first studies on wind turbine noise which have used objective measures of sleep, as well as a study examining the potential benefit of nighttime air-traffic curfews. Also there have been new epidemiological studies which have added to the knowledge on the effects of noise on self-reported sleep disturbance. …

The Inadequacy of the A-Frequency Weighting for the Assessment of Adverse Effects on Human Populationsby Bruce Rapley, Mariana Alves-Pereira, and Huub Bakker – New Zealand and Portugal

Case Report: Cross-Sensitisation to Infrasound and Low Frequency Noiseby Bruce Rapley, Huub Bakker, Mariana Alves-Pereira, and Rachel Summers – New Zealand
This Case Report describes an episode experienced by two noise-sensitised individuals during a field trip. Exposed to residential infrasound and low frequency noise due coal mining activities, the subjects reacted suddenly, strongly and unexpectedly to pressure pulses generated by a wind farm located at a different town, approximately 160km by road from their residence. Simultaneous physiological data obtained in one subject and subjective sensations occurring during the episode are reported. Acoustical evaluations of the location of the episode are also reported. The possibility of a nocebo effect as an etiological factor for their bodily reactions is cogently eliminated. …

Evaluation of Wind Turbine Noise in Japanby Akira Shimada and Mimi Nameki – Japan
In order to tackle with wind turbine noise (WTN) related complaints, Ministry of the Environment of Japan (MOEJ) set up an expert committee in 2013. In November 2016, the committee published a report on investigation, prediction and evaluation methods of WTN. The report compiles recent scientific findings on WTN, including the results of nationwide field measurements in Japan and the results of review of the scientific literature related to health effects of WTN. The report sets out methodology for investigation, prediction and evaluation as well as case examples of countermeasures. A noise guideline for wind turbine, which suggests WTN should not be more than 5dB above the residual noise where residual noise levels are above 35-40dB, is also presented in the report. MOEJ is developing a WTN noise guideline and a technical manual for WTN investigation based on the report. Both documents will be finalized in the fast half of 2017.

Wind Turbine Noise Effects on Sleep: The WiTNES Studyby Michael Smith, Mikael Ögren, Pontus Thorsson, Laith Hussain-Alkhateeb, Eja Pedersen, Jens Forssén, Julia Ageborg Morsing, and Kerstin Persson Waye – Sweden
Onshore wind turbines are becoming increasingly widespread globally, with the associated net effect that a greater number of people will be exposed to wind turbine noise (WTN). Sleep disturbance by WTN has been suggested to be of particular importance with regards to a potential impact on human health. … Almost all measures of self-reported sleep were negatively impacted following nights with wind turbine noise. The WTN nights lead to increased sleep disturbance, reduced sleep quality, increased tiredness, increased irritation, awakenings, increased difficulty to sleep, sleeping worse than usual, and decreased mood. Subjects dwelling close to wind turbines, and consequently potentially exposed to WTN at home, repeatedly scored their sleep and restoration lower than the reference group following the WTN nights.

Frequency Weighting for the Evaluation of Human Response to Low-Frequency Noise Based on the Physiological Evidence of the Vestibular Systemby Junta Tagusari, Shou Satou, and Toshihito Matsui – Japan
Several studies were found regarding adverse health effects due to low-frequency noise emitted by industrial machines including wind turbines. However, the causal chain between low-frequency noise and health effects still remains unclear. Meanwhile, from the physiological viewpoint, low-frequency noise stimulate hair cells in the vestibular system, which could cause dizziness, vertigo, headache and nausea. The stimulating process is different from the hearing process in the cochlea, which implies that the A-weighting is not appropriate for evaluating the risk of low-frequency noise and that an alternative method is required. …

 

Source: National Wind Watch

child & noise