Ottawa tweaks methods for study on possible health effects of wind farms
Daniel d'Entremont stands outside his house next to a 17-turbine wind farm after his family had to move out because of noise, in Lower West Pubnico, N.S., Thursday, May 11, 2006. (Andrew Vaughan / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
The Canadian Press
Published Sunday, February 10, 2013 3:07PM EST
Last Updated Monday, February 11, 2013 10:37AM EST
OTTAWA -- Health Canada says it has tweaked its methods for a study on the possible link between wind farms and the adverse health effects reported by those living near them.
Ottawa announced last summer it would conduct the study, a decision that was lauded by opponents of the towering turbines.
The department says revisions to the plan were informed by more than 950 comments submitted by residents during a public consultation.
It says changes were made to the assessment of infrasound and a questionnaire to be administered by Statistics Canada.
Turbine opponents contend that exposure to low-frequency noise and vibrations from wind turbines -- in particular, inaudible infrasound -- can lead to sleep disorders, headaches, depression, anxiety and even blood pressure changes.
The $1.8-million study will initially focus on residents in 2,000 dwellings near eight to 12 wind-turbine installations.
There are about 140 such land-based wind farms in Canada, most of them in Ontario and Quebec.
The study is being conducted by a team of more than 25 experts in acoustics, health assessment and medicine, including four international advisers.
Results are expected in late 2014.