Steven Cooper’s Cape Bridgewater Wind Farm Study the Beginning of the End for the Wind Industry

Posted: February 2, 2015 by tallbloke in solar system dynamics

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The serious health issues around wind turbines are finally being uncovered.

STOP THESE THINGS

atomic-bomb-e1355417893840 There’s the ‘bang’, but it’s what follows that really does the damage.

Earlier this week, a small, but very effective, nuclear device was detonated at Cape Bridewater, which – before Union Super Funds backed Pacific Hydro destroyed it – was a pristine, coastal idyll in South-Western Victoria.

The bomb that went off was a study carried out by one of Australia’s crack acoustic specialists, Steven Cooper – and some typically solid journalism from The Australian’s Graham Lloyd – that put the Pac Hydro initiated pyrotechnics in the International spotlight.

Over the next few posts, STT will analyse just what the detonation, its aftermath and fallout means for an industry which, in Australia, is already on the ropes.

And we’ll look at what it means to the thousands of wind farm victims here – and around the world.

We’ll kick off with the front page story that has sent the wind…

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Comments
  1. […] to Tallbloke for the report. The report can be found […]

  2. M Simon says:

    The study is small. It will not carry much weight.

  3. E.M.Smith says:

    I first ran into “infrasound” issues in some Domestic (US) vehicles. While their design resonance is supposedly somewhere around 25 Hz, I didn’t actually hear anything, but would feel what I called a “wobble” in my head. Mostly GM and Ford larger cars and vans. After long enough, it would advance to a generally disoriented or ill feeling. Sometimes ending up at a mild headache.

    So when buying a car, we’d take it for a test drive, and once you know what “sensation” to watch for, it’s really fast to know if it is there, or not. Generally, Japanese and German cars don’t have any issue for me.

    Years later I ran into a description of the design point for resonance in vehicles and that US makers had a different design point than German and Japanese…

    Since first discovering this, some decades back, I’ve gotten better at identifying the feeling of infrasound / low frequency sound before it makes me ill, and getting out of wherever it is.

    Once you start getting ill, it takes less and less to set of the response (since things are already disturbed / irritated) and it takes a longer time “away” to recover.

    Oh, and it has nothing at all to do with ‘hearing’ the sound. It is the physical movement of tissues that matters. Not a hearing, but a feeling.

    I’m just glad I’m not anywhere near a turbine farm, as I’m pretty sure it would send me around the bend. It seems that different folks have different sensitivities, likely in part due to individual resonances of various body cavities or whole body resonant frequencies.

    This effect of sound is well known, and the US Army has even made some kinds of sound weapons that disrupt folks and drives them away.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sonic_weapon

    I found this one particularly interesting:

    The possibility of a device that produces frequency that causes vibration of the eyeballs — and therefore distortion of vision — was apparently confirmed by the work of engineer Vic Tandy[4][5] while attempting to demystify a “haunting” in his laboratory in Coventry. This “spook” was characterised by a feeling of unease and vague glimpses of a grey apparition. Some detective work implicated a newly installed extractor fan that, Tandy found, was generating infrasound of 18.9 Hz, 0.3 Hz, and 9 Hz.

    Gee… a smaller fan than wind turbines causing unease and visual disturbance… from infrasound…

    IMHO, this kind of sound effect is also likely part of why some folks can sense a coming major storm, and / or get headaches and body pains from it; or just dread them…

  4. tallbloke says:

    EM: Thanks for that.

    M Simon: The study was small because the wind farm company set the terms and wouldn’t allow it to be larger. So now we need a larger official study with statutary powers to force the secretive and obstructive wind industry to comply. Problem is, up until now, governments have been colluding with the secretive and obstructive wind industry to be secretive and obstructive.

  5. oldbrew says:

    From Talkshop post: ‘Danish University Fires Professor Who Criticised Wind Turbines’

    ‘Ireland’s deputy chief medical officer warned in March that people who live near wind turbines risk having their health and psychological well-being compromised by the infrasound emissions, in a condition she called ‘wind turbine syndrome’.’

    https://tallbloke.wordpress.com/2014/08/06/danish-university-fires-professor-who-criticised-wind-turbines/

  6. tallbloke says:

    Court cases for wrongful dismissal and health damage can’t be far off now.

  7. oldbrew says:

    Court cases don’t have any record of success so far, with one minor exception.

    http://www.energyandpolicy.org/overview-of-wind-health-court-cases

    Funny how the burden of proving harm is on the individual re wind turbines, but when it comes to gas drilling it’s on the companies to prove a negative i.e. no harm.

  8. tchannon says:

    I spent a good portion of my working life in professional audio. This did not directly involve actual sound but was wide ranging. My interest in sound is lifelong.

    A key mistake in society has been allowing government and industry to hide behind inappropriate standards. None of the wind turbine fuss is the slightest surprise, it is simply a continuation of a fight which is very old.

    The key fact which is visible in the technical report is the usage a dBA, which is A-weighted. More appropriate is as near to no weighting as feasible and certainly dbC.

    dBA has a basis in human actual audibility under specific conditions.

    It is used to do with actual damage to hearing from long term exposure and things like that. Often more about justifying inaction.

    The reason if there is one for an insistence on dBA is the exclusion of sound from large processes, railways, aircraft, military, commerce and so on where large low frequency sources are common, and suppression at source would be troublesome and expensive.

    We are dealing here with far field. Sound in general attenuates with distance to a frequency characteristic. The lower it is in frequency the further it travels.

    A problem you all know is how a low frequency sound excites a building, a room if the frequency hits a resonance mode of the room.

    Another one you know is how inaudible sound becomes audible through parasitic resonance, a simple case being a window which audibly vibrates to some external stimulation.

    The sound we are dealing with is better described as vibration and is not usually audible to a human.

    There are known medical effects right through to death. There is nothing new in eg. a frequency exciting a resonance frequency of the human body or presumably other animals. It can move your gut.

    I think most motor cyclists are all too aware of the effect of sustained buffeting.

    I guess that the answer will not be the one many here want. There will be changes to suppress the injurious emission and the wind farms will be even more prevalent.

    Every day you and I are hammered by aircraft noise we cannot directly hear, a low level hubbub and it does affect us. This is why there is once a year when I am relaxed, Christmas night when aircraft and railway trains stop. The effect is a little like the hush of falling snow.

    A lot of work has gone into altering aircraft noise…not stopping them.

  9. p.g.sharrow says:

    This is Old news from a New study. IIRC the federal government funded Sandia and Lawrence Labs to study the effects of Very Large Wind Machines back in the 1980s. No matter the placement in the wind stream, the blades caused a very strong pop or bump in the air stream. This caused very low frequency flexing of the blades and pylon to the damage or destruction of them. EMSmith and Tim Cannon are correct that people can be troubled by sub audible low frequency waves to the point of panic and pain without an definite way to determine its’ origin through normal senses. pg

  10. oldbrew says:

    From the Danish professor who got the elbow from his job (see above):

    ‘Low-frequency noise from large wind turbines’

    http://www.windturbinesyndrome.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/JASMAN12963727_1.pdf

    Paper: ‘It is thus beyond any doubt that the low-frequency part of the spectrum plays an important role in the noise at the neighbors. Indoor levels of low-frequency noise in neighbor distances vary with turbine, sound insulation of the room, and position in the room.’

  11. Kon Dealer says:

    Oh do let this report be the start of the end for the bat bangers, bird-shedders and plug-ugly, useless, wind-powered subsidy farms.

  12. clive says:

    Isn’t it funny that all things connected with Globull Warming,are usually run by Crooks.

  13. tchannon says:

    Clive, what field is not run by crooks?

    Dross rises to the top. That said, capitalism as it is called is about letting sharks control sharks, which is why it kind of works. The alternative is sharks. No-where have the honest been able to prevent the bad getting control.

  14. Richard111 says:

    Dumb layman comment; this response to low frequency noise, is it genetic? Like dinosaur rumblings might make you want to leave the area.🙂

  15. BoyfromTottenham says:

    Hi from Oz. Good work Steven! Here is a very interesting link to articles from the Washington University Cochlear fluids lab: http://oto2.wustl.edu/cochlea/wind.html for a medical view on hearing and infrasound. They seem pretty sure that sub-audible frequencies (infrasound – as from wind turbines) can both damage the hearing and cause adverse health effects, even though the person may not “hear” the turbine noise. But the EPA wind turbine noise standards require the use of a sound level meter (that by its specification cannot measure such low frequencies) to determine the “noise level” caused by wind turbines. Go figure. BTW I don’t know if Steven Cooper is familiar with their work. Maybe someone should tell him?