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Het gevaar van laagfrequent geluid voor onze gezondheid. 


Hieronder een artikel uit het gezaghebbende medische tijdschrift The British Medical Journal, waarin wordt ingegaan op de relatie tussen laagfrequent geluid en gezondheidsklachten. 









Wind turbine noise

BMJ 2012; 344 doi: (Published 08 March 2012)

Cite this as: BMJ 2012;344:e1527


Christopher D Hanning, honorary consultant in sleep medicine1, Alun Evans, professor emeritus2

Author affiliations

Seems to affect health adversely and an independent review of evidence is needed


The evidence for adequate sleep as a prerequisite for human health, particularly child health, is overwhelming. Governments have recently paid much attention to the effects of environmental noise on sleep duration and quality, and to how to reduce such noise.1 However, governments have also imposed noise from industrial wind turbines on large swathes of peaceful countryside.


The impact of road, rail, and aircraft noise on sleep and daytime functioning (sleepiness and cognitive function) is well established.1 Shortly after wind turbines began to be erected close to housing, complaints emerged of adverse effects on health. Sleep disturbance was the main complaint.2 Such reports have been dismissed as being subjective and anecdotal, but experts contend that the quantity, consistency, and ubiquity of the complaints constitute epidemiological evidence of a strong link between wind turbine noise, ill health, and disruption of sleep.3


The noise emitted by a typical onshore 2.5 MW wind turbine has two main components. A dynamo mounted on an 80 m tower is driven through a gear train by blades as long as 45 m, and this generates both gear train noise and aerodynamic noise as the blades pass through the air, causing vortices to be shed from the edges. Wind constantly changes its velocity and direction, which means that the inflowing airstream is rarely stable. In addition, wind velocity increases with height (wind shear), especially at night, and there may be inflow turbulence from nearby structures—in particular, other turbines. This results in an impulsive noise, which is variously described as “swishing” and “thumping,” and which is much more annoying than other sources of environmental noise and is poorly masked by ambient noise. 



















Permitted external noise levels and setback distances vary between countries. UK guidance, ETSU-R-97, published in 1997 and not reviewed since, permits a night time noise level of 42 dBA, or 5 dBA above ambient noise level, whichever is the greater. This means that turbines must be set back by a minimum distance of 350-500 m, depending on the terrain and the turbines, from human habitation.


The aerodynamic noise generated by wind turbines has a large low frequency and infrasound component that is attenuated less with distance than higher frequency noise. Current noise measurement techniques and metrics tend to obscure the contribution of impulsive low frequency noise and infrasound.6 A laboratory study has shown that low frequency noise is considerably more annoying than higher frequency noise and is harmful to health—it can cause nausea, headaches, disturbed sleep, and cognitive and psychological impairment.7 A cochlear mechanism has been proposed that outlines how infrasound, previously disregarded because it is below the auditory threshold, could affect humans and contribute to adverse effects.8


Sixteen per cent of surveyed respondents who lived where calculated outdoor turbine noise exposures exceeded 35 dB LAeq (LAeq, the constant sound level that, in a given time period, would convey the same sound energy as the actual time varying sound level, weighted to approximate the response of the human ear) reported disturbed sleep.4 A questionnaire survey concluded that turbine noise was more annoying at night, and that interrupted sleep and difficulty in returning to sleep increased with calculated noise level.9 Even at the lowest noise levels, 20% of respondents reported disturbed sleep at least one night a month. In a meta-analysis of three European datasets (n=1764),10 sleep disturbance clearly increased with higher calculated noise levels in two of the three studies.


In a survey of people residing in the vicinity of two US wind farms, those living within 375-1400 m reported worse sleep and more daytime sleepiness, in addition to having lower summary scores on the mental component of the short form 36 health survey than those who lived 3-6.6 km from a turbine. Modelled dose-response curves of both sleep and health scores against distance from nearest turbine were significantly related after controlling for sex, age, and household clustering, with a sharp increase in effects between 1 km and 2 km.11 A New Zealand survey showed lower health related quality of life, especially sleep disturbance, in people who lived less than 2 km from turbines.12


A large body of evidence now exists to suggest that wind turbines disturb sleep and impair health at distances and external noise levels that are permitted in most jurisdictions, including the United Kingdom. Sleep disturbance may be a particular problem in children,1 and it may have important implications for public health. When seeking to generate renewable energy through wind, governments must ensure that the public will not suffer harm from additional ambient noise. Robust independent research into the health effects of existing wind farms is long overdue, as is an independent review of existing evidence and guidance on acceptable noise levels.





















Cite this as: BMJ 2012;344:e1527



Competing interests: Both authors have completed the ICMJE uniform disclosure form at (available on request from the corresponding author) and declare: no support from any organisation for the submitted work; no financial relationships with any organisations that might have an interest in the submitted work in the previous three years; CDH has given expert evidence on the effects of wind turbine noise on sleep and health at wind farm planning inquiries in the UK and Canada but has derived no personal benefit; he is a member of the board of the Society for Wind Vigilance; AE has written letters of objection on health grounds to wind farm planning applications in Ireland.


Provenance and peer review: Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.



↵WHO. Burden of disease from environmental noise. 2011.

↵Krogh C, Gillis L, Kouwen N, Aramini J. WindVOiCe, a self-reporting survey: adverse health effects, industrial wind turbines, and the need for vigilance monitoring. Bull Sci Tech Soc2011;31:334-9.CrossRef

↵Phillips C. Properly interpreting the epidemiologic evidence about the health effects of industrial wind turbines on nearby residents. Bull Sci Tech Soc2011;31:303-8.CrossRef

↵Pedersen E, Persson Waye K. Perception and annoyance due to wind turbine noise—a dose-response relationship. J Acoust Soc Am2004;116:3460-70.CrossRefMedlineWeb of Science

↵Pedersen E, van den Berg F, Bakker R, Bouma J. Can road traffic mask sound from wind turbines? Response to wind turbine sound at different levels of road traffic sound. Energy Policy2010;38:2520-7.CrossRefWeb of Science

↵Bray W, James R. Dynamic measurements of wind turbine acoustic signals, employing sound quality engineering methods considering the time and frequency sensitivities of human perception. Proceedings of Noise-Con 2011, Portland, Oregon, 25-27 July 2011. Curran Associates, 2011.

↵Møller M, Pedersen C. Low frequency noise from large wind turbines. J Acoust Soc Am2010;129:3727-44.Web of Science

↵Salt A, Kaltenbach J. Infrasound from wind turbines could affect humans. Bull Sci Tech Soc2011;31:296-303.CrossRef

↵Van den Berg G, Pedersen E, Bouma J, Bakker R. Project WINDFARMperception. Visual and acoustic impact of wind turbine farms on residents. FP6-2005-Science-and-Society-20. Specific support action project no 044628, 2008.

↵Pedersen E. Effects of wind turbine noise on humans. Proceedings of the Third International Meeting on Wind Turbine Noise, Aalborg Denmark 17-19 June 2009.

↵Nissenbaum M, Aramini J, Hanning C. Adverse health effects of industrial wind turbines: a preliminary report. Proceedings of 10th International Congress on Noise as a Public Health Problem (ICBEN), 2011, London, UK. Curran Associates, 2011.

↵Shepherd D, McBride D, Welch D, Dirks K, Hill E. Evaluating the impact of wind turbine noise on health related quality of life. Noise Health2011;13:333-9.CrossRefMedlineWeb of Science




Hier een link naar een site over Wind Turbine Syndrome

















































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Maak dan een bijdrage over op ING Bank rekening no: NL66 INGB 0006 5906 61. 
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Industrial Wind Turbines Pose Public Health and Safety Concerns

By Thomas A. Jones, BSME, MSM



Industrial wind turbine development is being strongly supported by private interests due largely to government subsidies and artificial financial incentives, making wind turbine development possible, whereas otherwise it would fail on financial grounds alone. 


Neither the Commonwealth of Massachusetts nor the Federal Government has performed a comprehensive assessment of the public health and safety concerns associated with the design and operation of industrial wind turbines. 

Yet both continue to support wind turbine development through tax subsidies and other monetary incentives.  There are currently no government regulations affecting placement of industrial wind turbines (setback) in Massachusetts. 

However, many concerns have been expressed by medical doctors around the world regarding the harmful effects to humans of operating industrial wind turbines.



Recently published peer reviewed comprehensive information prepared by medical doctors, pathologists and engineers strongly warn of major physiological consequences of living too close to industrial wind turbines. 


These have been classified into two categories according to two different phenomena associated with wind turbine noise.  One is Wind Turbine Syndrome (WTS), Reference (1), which produces several symptoms related to the vestibular system’s (balance) organs:  disturbed sleep, headaches, tinnitus (ear ringing), and sense of quivering or vibration, nervousness, rapid heartbeat, nausea, difficulty with concentration, memory loss, irritability and anger.


The other is Vibroacoustic Disease (VAD), Reference (2), which causes direct tissue or organ damage. 

WTS symptoms discontinue when the person moves away from the source; however, VAD symptoms continue long after the source of infrasound is turned off. 

Both WTS and VAD can be very harmful and debilitating and possibly deadly.




























              Effects of industrial wind turbine noise on sleep and health


Michael A. Nissenbaum, Jeffery J. Aramini1, Christopher D. Hanning2

Northern Maine Medical Center, Fort Kent, Maine, USA, 1Intelligent Health Solutions, Guelph, Ontario, Canada, 2University Hospitals of

Leicester NHS Trust, Leicester, UK




Industrial wind turbines (IWTs) are a new source of noise in previously quiet rural environments.

Environmental noise is a public health concern, of which sleep disruption is a major factor.

To compare sleep and general health outcomes between participants living close to IWTs and those living further away from them, participants living between 375 and 1400 m (n= 38) and 3.3 and 6.6 km (n = 41) from IWTs were enrolled in a stratified cross-sectional study involving two rural sites.


Validated questionnaires were used to collect information on sleep quality (Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index — PSQI), daytime

sleepiness (Epworth Sleepiness Score — ESS), and general health (SF36v2), together with psychiatric disorders, attitude, and

demographics. Descriptive and multivariate analyses were performed to investigate the effect of the main exposure variable

of interest (distance to the nearest IWT) on various health outcome measures.

Participants living within 1.4 km of an IWT had worse sleep, were sleepier during the day, and had worse SF36 Mental Component Scores compared to those living further than 1.4 km away.

Significant dose-response relationships between PSQI, ESS, SF36 Mental Component Score, and log-distance to the nearest IWT were identified after controlling for gender, age, and household clustering.

The adverse eventreports of sleep disturbance and ill health by those living close to IWTs are supported.



































































      Dr. Enbom, H. MD Adverse health effects of industrial wind turbines




Letter to the Australian Medical Association

Dear Sir

It has come to my knowledge that you have released a position paper about the effects of low frequency noise and infrasound from wind power.

I would like to draw your attention to my recently published article about migraine and infrasound in the Swedish Medical Journal “Läkartidningen” which is available below.

As you well know, migraine is a polygenetic inherited disease with occasional episodes of headache. It is also well known that people with migraine are more sensitive to sound and light than the normal population, especially during an attack of migraine headache. Futhermore it is a well known fact that pulsating sound and flickering light are strong triggers to elicit an attack of migraine.

Migraine is a very common condition in the population with a 15% prevalence for migraine headache. It is quite obvious that the genetic predisposition is much higher – everyone with a genetic disposition will not suffer from migraine headaches. You may well live with the genetic predisposition and never suffer from migraine headache in all your life.

Recent studies have found that these genetic changes affect among others the Ca-channels. This channelopathie increases the cellular depolarisation and as a result the nerve cells are more sensitive to stimulation – less stimulus is needed to trigger a nerve-potential. The main triggers for migraine are – as we all know – all kinds of sensory stimulation, food containing biogenic amines such as tyramine, glutamine, histamine etc., and increased levels or fluctuating levels of estrogen.

Thus sound is a trigger. Loud noise of varying amplitude is a strong trigger that will increase the neural sensitivity in persons with migraine. For example a teacher with a genetic tendency to migraine in a noisy classroom. After a while all senses will become more sensitive (more sensitive to sound, more sensitive to light, more sensitive to vestibular stimuli for example). Hyperacusis makes the situation in the classroom worse and eventually an attack of migraine headache will appear.

Low frequency noise or infrasound noise is no exception. Even if the sound is not heard the sound pressure will exert the same force on the eardrum as audible sound. The sound waves will be transmitted to the inner ear and hair cells are then stimulated. Even if the stimulation is not recognized as sound it will affect brainstem centres and elicit other sensations.

Infrasound is normally not possible to hear, you more likely will feel it as a vibration. Low frequency sound is possible to hear if the volume (sound pressure in dB) is strong enough. But it is a known fact that there are persons who can hear low frequency sound and infrasound at sound pressure levels of 40 db or less. If you have migraine and have developed hyperacusis it is most likely that you are as sensitive to low frequency sound as to normal sound.

Infrasound from wind turbines has properties that differ from other types of infrasound such as infrasound emanating from natural sources (eg wind, rivers) and from artificial sources including road traffic. Infrasound from road traffic (as well as the other examples) has a continuous, constant character – a kind of constant background noise. Infrasound from wind turbines has a fluctuating character with varying amplitude. Infrasound from wind turbines also has three distinct frequencies with higher amplitude than the average infrasound pressure (blade pass frequencies).

A third issue is that the sound pressure for infrasound and low frequency sound is much stronger than the sound pressure for the sound you can hear (for audible sound). If the measured sound pressure at a given distance is 40 dB for audible sound, then the sound pressure for infrasound is 60–80 dB at the same measuring point. Additionally infrasound is amplified inside buildings by resonance effects.

Thus the conclusion is that low frequency sound and infrasound from wind power has the qualities to trigger increased sensitivity and eventually migraine headache or other migraine-symptoms – such as vertigo or tinnitus (without headache).As migraine is so common in the population, this is a relationship that you can not avoid considering.

Futhermore there is increasing knowledge that continuous stimulation of triggers eventually will create a central sensitisation in the brain with a chronic extremely increased sensitivity to sensory stimulation.

I hope that you will take these facts in consideration and advocate for further studies and work for a safe distance for wind power from homes and workplaces that will protect the public health.

Kindest regards

Håkan Enbom M.D. Ph.D

Danish High Court Orders Compensation for Wind Turbine Noise Victims


In Denmark struggling fan maker Vestas is synonymous with the Danish wind industry.

In Australia, and elsewhere, Vestas went on a propaganda rampage last year with its “Act-on-Facts” campaign aimed at counteracting known and obvious facts (to anyone with half-a-brain – that is) with crackers such as the wind is NOT intermittent; families with young children can’t wait to have a swag of V112s go up in their back yard to help their young ones sleep; power consumers are delighted with paying 4 times the cost of conventional power for wind power; and are even happier to be paying $2,000 per MW/h and over the Moon to be paying $12,500 per MW/h for peaking power when wind power goes AWOL 100s of times each year – instead of the usual $40.


One other “fact” trotted out to excuse the criminal harm caused by Vestas and Co is that wind turbines are quieter than a fridge at 500m.  In the Clean Energy Council version – the furphy asserts that the noise measured at ANY distance from a turbine is the same as that being measured at a distance of 500m FROM an operating refrigerator.  Here’s Matt Warren – formerly of Wind Energy Australia (aka the Clean Energy Council) making it very clear he’s comparing the noise of a giant industrial wind turbine at ANY distance with the noise FROM a fridge at 500m. For a comparison with a fridge at 500m – see our post here.

It seems that Vestas pulls back on the spin in its home territory and claims that the noise from a turbine at a distance of 500m is the same as a fridge (presumably with measurements taken right next to the fridge) (see our post here).

It seems that Danish fridges must be powered by industrial diesel engines, as the Danish High Court has just slammed Vesta’s ludicrous claims about the noise generated by its turbines matching kitchen appliances, in a case brought by affected neighbours.


The Danish High Court ordered that Vesta’s victims were entitled to Dkr 500,000 (A$93,439) in compensation for the substantial reduction in the value of their home, caused by incessant turbine noise: smashing another well-worn wind industry myth that turbines don’t impact on property values.

High Court rules on compensation for noise from wind turbines
International Law Office
Søren Stenderup Jensen
1 September 2014

Legal Denmark


The judgment is significant as it granted compensation after the erection of the wind turbines. This is contrary to the main rule in the Promoting Renewable Energy Act; however, both the city court and the high court found sufficient legal authority under the act to admit the claim after the erection of the wind turbines.


Depending on their location, wind turbines can cause noise, visual interference and light reflections.

These issues are governed by public and private law, including neighbour law. The main rules regarding noise from wind turbines can be found in Executive Order 1284 of December 15 2011 on wind turbine noise, issued pursuant to the Environmental Protection Act. To some extent, the order safeguards neighbours from noise inconvenience by establishing maximum noise levels from wind turbines in outdoor areas. The noise limit varies depending on the surroundings.

Wind turbines may also cause visual interference which may negatively affect the value of surrounding properties. Thus, the location of wind turbines on land has proved a difficult political issue for years. Every municipality supports the idea of more wind turbines – just not within its own borders.


In order to promote local support for wind energy projects, the Parliament passed the Promoting Renewable Energy Act, which establishes a compensation scheme for neighbours of wind turbines. Under the scheme, those who build one or more wind turbines are obliged to compensate their neighbours for any reduction in property value that the wind turbines may cause, regardless of whether the wind turbines accord with the necessary permits.

The compensation scheme departs from the court-based neighbour law in that it does not operate with a tolerance limit which the neighbour must prove has been exceeded.

The starting point is that the issue of compensation must be settled before the wind turbines are built. However, the Promoting Renewable Energy Act does allow neighbours to claim compensation in certain circumstances thereafter. The competent authority to deal with claims for compensation is the assessment authority set up by the act.

Compensation granted to neighbours under the act has been relatively low so far.




In a recent case before the High Court for Western Denmark the plaintiffs had been awarded Dkr250,000 in compensation for the erection of eight wind turbines by the assessment authority. They brought the matter before the courts seeking higher compensation.

Before the erection of the wind turbines, an environmental study had concluded that the noise level at their property would amount to 38.8 decibels at wind speeds of 12 knots and 40.9 decibels at wind speeds of 16 knots.

Before the city court, a court-appointed expert stated that the reduction in the value of the property amounted to between Dkr600,000 and Dkr800,000. The city court also arranged a visit to the property.


Where the assessment authority found that the plaintiffs’ property would be subject to limited noise pollution, the city court found the level to be more significant. The court further ruled that the plaintiffs had documented their loss of value at Dkr600,000 and thus awarded them an additional Dkr350,000.

Finally, the court held that the plaintiffs had suffered no other economic loss covered by the Promoting Renewable Energy Act. In particular, the court held that the fact that the wind turbines had been erected with all necessary permits prevented the plaintiffs from claiming compensation under neighbour rules.


The High Court for Western Denmark upheld the city court’s judgment, but fixed the compensation at Dkr500,000 because, among other things, there were certain deficiencies in the masonry of the house. However, the court also considered the findings of the court-appointed expert witness who had seen the plaintiffs’ house after the erection of the wind turbines – which the assessment authority had not done – as well as the city court’s own observation of the property. Finally, the court ruled that the Promoting Renewable Energy Act does not restrict the courts’ competence to review decisions from the assessment authority.




The judgment is significant as it granted compensation after the erection of the wind turbines. This is contrary to the main rule in the Promoting Renewable Energy Act; however, both the city court and the high court found sufficient legal authority under the act to admit the claim after the erection of the wind turbines.

Moreover, both courts paid considerable attention to the evaluation of the court-appointed expert. While this is quite normal in Danish case law, it is unusual in cases where an authority such as the assessment authority has previously dealt with the matter.


Finally, the high court paid attention to the city court’s own observations of the property. It is quite unusual to see such a reference to the observations of a lower court in a higher court’s grounds of judgment.

The judgment gives cause for optimism to those who intend to challenge decisions of the assessment authority under the Promoting Renewable Energy Act. From a procedural point of view, it seems to be important for the court to see the property at issue to form its own opinion of the level of noise pollution caused by wind turbines.

International Law Office

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