The Irish Department of Health’s deputy chief medical officer has warned that people who live near wind turbines risk having their health and psychological well being compromised.
The Irish Examiner reports that, following a review of research on the effects of wind turbine noise on human health, the deputy CMO said, “There is a consistent cluster of symptoms related to wind turbine syndrome which occurs in a number of people in the vicinity of industrial wind turbines.”
‘Wind turbine syndrome’ is a condition suffered by people living within earshot of the noise made by wind turbine blades as they spin round. The blades are known to make infrasounds, vibrations that we cannot consciously “hear”, yet still have an effect on the inner ear.
Symptoms include fatigue, dizziness, headache, difficulty concentrating, and insomnia.
“There are specific risk factors for this syndrome and people with these risk factors experience symptoms. These people must be treated appropriately and sensitively as these symptoms can be very debilitating,” the deputy CMO added.
The Irish Department of the Environment looks set to ignore the advice, however. It has dismissed the deputy CMO’s findings as “a preliminary literature review and not a recommendation of the Department of Health.”
The Department of Health is also choosing to downplay the warning, saying that it was “general overview of the literature in this area” that “did not constitute expert advice.”