Response to noise from modern wind farms in The Netherlands

Halmstad University and University of Gothenburg, Halmstad University, Halmstad, Sweden.
The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America (Impact Factor: 1.5). 09/2009; 126(2):634-43. DOI: 10.1121/1.3160293
Source: PubMed


The increasing number and size of wind farms call for more data on human response to wind turbine noise, so that a generalized dose-response relationship can be modeled and possible adverse health effects avoided. This paper reports the results of a 2007 field study in The Netherlands with 725 respondents. A dose-response relationship between calculated A-weighted sound pressure levels and reported perception and annoyance was found. Wind turbine noise was more annoying than transportation noise or industrial noise at comparable levels, possibly due to specific sound properties such as a "swishing" quality, temporal variability, and lack of nighttime abatement. High turbine visibility enhances negative response, and having wind turbines visible from the dwelling significantly increased the risk of annoyance. Annoyance was strongly correlated with a negative attitude toward the visual impact of wind turbines on the landscape. The study further demonstrates that people who benefit economically from wind turbines have a significantly decreased risk of annoyance, despite exposure to similar sound levels. Response to wind turbine noise was similar to that found in Sweden so the dose-response relationship should be generalizable.

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Available from: Eja Pedersen, Dec 17, 2013
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    • "Fig. 6 -Proportion of respondents in each sound immission interval who noticed sound from wind turbines outside their dwelling (A) or were annoyed by it (B). Comparison between respondents who benefited economically and those who did not [22]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Sin dai tempi antichi l'uomo ha costruito macchine che, sfruttando l'energia del vento, lo hanno aiutato a nutrire se stesso, la terra e a svolgere lavorazioni complesse. Con la scoperta dell'elettricità la funzione di queste macchine è cambiata radicalmente. Negli ultimi venti anni, politiche d'incentivazione hanno portato allo sviluppo di impianti eolici ed alla loro diffusione sul territorio, determinando una interazione sempre più intensa fra turbine eoliche, ambiente circostante ed uomo. Questo articolo presentata una rassegna dei principali fattori che determinano o modificano la percezione dell'impatto che queste macchine hanno sull'uomo e sull'ambiente circostante. ----- Since ancient times the man has built machines which exploiting the energy of the wind have helped to feed himself, the land and carry out complex operations. With the discovery of electricity the function of these machines is changed radically. In the last twenty years, incentive policies have led to the development of wind farms and their diffusion over the territory, resulting in a more intense interaction between wind turbines, environment and man. This article presents a review of the main factors that determine or affect the perception of the impact that these machines have on humans and the surrounding environment. Parole chiave: turbine eoliche; impatto ambientale; disturbo da rumore, visione, moderatori
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    • "One article was excluded because it explored the effects of road traffic noise using data from a study included in the review (Pedersen et al., 2010) and another two because they did not distinguish subjects by distance from WTGs or SPLs (Harry, 2007; Morris, 2012). Two articles (Nissenbaum et al., 2011; Pedersen et al., 2009) were excluded because more complete versions of their reports were included in the review. Thus eight studies (Bakker et al., 2012; Krogh et al., 2011; Magari et al., 2014; Nissenbaum et al., 2012; Pawlaczyk-Łuszczyńska et al., 2014; Pedersen and Persson Waye, 2004, 2007; Shepherd et al., 2011) with a total of 2433 participants were included in the review. "
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    ABSTRACT: Noise generated by wind turbines has been reported to affect sleep and quality of life (QOL), but the relationship is unclear. Our objective was to explore the association between wind turbine noise, sleep disturbance and quality of life, using data from published observational studies. We searched Medline, Embase, Global Health and Google Scholar databases. No language restrictions were imposed. Hand searches of bibliography of retrieved full texts were also conducted. The reporting quality of included studies was assessed using the STROBE guidelines. Two reviewers independently determined the eligibility of studies, assessed the quality of included studies, and extracted the data. We included eight studies with a total of 2433 participants. All studies were cross-sectional, and the overall reporting quality was moderate. Meta-analysis of six studies (n=2364) revealed that the odds of being annoyed is significantly increased by wind turbine noise (OR: 4.08; 95% CI: 2.37 to 7.04; p<0.00001). The odds of sleep disturbance was also significantly increased with greater exposure to wind turbine noise (OR: 2.94; 95% CI: 1.98 to 4.37; p<0.00001). Four studies reported that wind turbine noise significantly interfered with QOL. Further, visual perception of wind turbine generators was associated with greater frequency of reported negative health effects. In conclusion, there is some evidence that exposure to wind turbine noise is associated with increased odds of annoyance and sleep problems. Individual attitudes could influence the type of response to noise from wind turbines. Experimental and observational studies investigating the relationship between wind turbine noise and health are warranted. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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    • "Finally, evidence suggests ancillary economic and social factors are associated with interpretations of or reactions to wind turbine sound. Respondents that economically benefitted from wind turbine rents reported significantly less annoyance (Pedersen et al., 2009). Moreover, in another study, despite both noticing the sound more frequently and experiencing augmented sound levels , respondents that economically benefitted from nearby wind turbines reported significantly less annoyance compared to respondents that did not (Bakker et al., 2012). "
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