State of Mass. pronounces Wind Turbine Syndrome [expletive deleted]

Jan 17, 2012

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There is no evidence for a set of health effects, from exposure to wind turbines[,] that could be characterized as a ‘Wind Turbine Syndrome.’ *

—“Wind Turbine Health Impact Study:  Report of Independent Expert Panel,” Mass. Dept. of Environmental Protection and Mass. Dept. of Public Health (Jan. 2012), p. ES-7.

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* Editor’s note:  The self-styled “expert panel” didn’t interview a single Falmouth, MA, “Wind Turbine Syndrome” victim.  No kidding!

Nor did it speak to Dr. Pierpont or Dr. Sarah Laurie (Australia) or Dr. Robert McMurtry (Canada) or Dr. Amanda Harry (UK) or to any of the peer reviewers for Dr. Pierpont’s book.

Really, no kidding!

Best we can tell, they did a (cherry-picked) “literature search.”  Then they subjected that literature (which included Pierpont’s book) to a set of “scientific” criteria which rendered the evidence for WTS … null and void.  “Where the complex equation equals zero” (Rilke).

Hence, all you people who have abandoned your homes or been forced to sell them to the rapacious wind developers, and all you people who are still at home and suffering—your symptoms and experience are, by all canonical “whistles & bells” of science and medicine, meaningless.  What you are experiencing is unintelligible & inscrutable to real science and medicine.

I repeat, your symptoms cannot be “measured” or otherwise “properly” documented and “proven.”  Or, at a minimum, your symptoms have not been hereto properly measured or documented, and hence they remain unproven.  (And quite possibly, unprovable, given the manner whereby science and medicine slice and dice “evidence.”  By the way, forget about Pierpont’s book; it’s nothing more than journalism.)

In sum, real, honest-to-god science & clinical medicine have no place for you lost souls.  You are ghosts, self-created phantoms, conjured up through your own fervid imaginations.  You are living a self-inflicted … conjecture.  A conjecture which, in your hysteria, translates into self-torture.

As far as Big Brother Science is concerned, all of you are a self-fabricated, irrelevant, and noisy anecdote.  A case study in NIMBYism taken to extreme, yet bogus, clinical lengths.

End of story.

Sigh.  Ruminating on this report, I think of A.E. Housman’s remark, “Nature, not content with denying Mr. X the faculty of thinking, has endowed him with the faculty of writing”—in this instance, 164 pp. of it.

  1. Comment by Marsh Rosenthal on 01/17/2012 at 9:53 pm

    This fight must be taken to the International Court of Justice.

  2. Comment by sue Hobart on 01/17/2012 at 9:54 pm

    Tilt… I will be long gone and these assholes will still be denying the facts.
    .
    horseshit
    .
    This is the same as the tobacco industry… kill em and apologize later.

    I have never had a more hateful day in my life than this one…

    I can’t get out of this place fast enough. Gov. Patrick Duvall and his green monsters and all their green-pocket-lined cohorts can all go to hell… and I hope it is BRIMMING with great big noisy fucking turbines and goes on forever and forever and forever and forever and forever…. tosses ice and leaks hydraulic fluid all over them and scars them permanently, as well…

    Unfortunately that seems to be the life these assholes are already inflicting on me… I wonder what I ever did to deserve this shit…? The damage is becoming unrecoverable, now… my health, sanity, home, marriage, business and life are all in ruins… but hey, it’s just an “annoyance”…

  3. Comment by neil andersen (Falmouth, MA) on 01/17/2012 at 10:35 pm

    After 2-1/2 months of a enjoying a break from the incessant pounding from Wind 1, tonight I have been driven back down into my basement again, as Wind 1 is on for “noise testing.” Betsy, my wife, is sleeping in the back bedroom tonight—all drugged up with sleeping pills. She won’t hear the turbine, but she will have a headache all day tomorrow. It is windy tonight, and the turbine is “loud” and creating havoc.

    I have been down here for about 15 minutes, now, yet I still feel shaky and uncomfortable, with an intense pressure in my chest. I try to not grind my teeth. I had been upstairs in the family room watching hockey on TV, and I found myself repeatedly being distracted by the thumping sounds of the turbine. Pressing the mute button on the remote, there is only silence. I step outside on the porch to hear the thunderous jet noises from the turbine. God that thing is loud! Coming back inside, I again sense the sound from the turbine and press the mute button. Again, no noise. Over the span of the first two periods (40 minutes), I must have hit the mute button 10 times. I couldn’t hear anything. Then it occurred to me that it was not the audible noise at all, but the all too familiar pressure pulses that were causing this incredible stress inside my body. The low frequency pulses that I couldn’t hear, are back! Oh yeah, now I remember! This distressing feeling (that my dear friend, Sue Hobart, feels all the time, now), is terrible! And, yes, it is very real. Yet our pathetic and cowardly Department of Public Health and Department of Environmental Protection agencies say it ain’t so. Shameful! Political agendas more important than public health.

    We know the truth. We know the physical harm and distress caused by these turbines. This sham of a health report just makes me dig in deeper and fight harder.

  4. Comment by BARRY FUNFAR (Falmouth, MA) on 01/18/2012 at 2:15 am

    After the past year of seeming progress over our plight with Falmouth’s wind turbines, I had begun to think that democracy was possible in Massachusetts. Today’s release of the DEP/DPH wind science panel report has erased those positive feelings. Even though I had expected the report to reflect strongly, and to promote, Governor Patrick’s wind power fantasy, I did not expect it would be as worthless an effort as is plainly evident. In a word, it is SICKENING.

    I am inclined to pack-up and leave this town of ball-less town officials. We citizens are protected here about as well as the yellow duckies in a shooting gallery. I am totally disgusted with our town and state government.

    Sincerely,

    BARRY FUNFAR

  5. Comment by BARRY FUNFAR on 01/18/2012 at 2:35 am

    Hopefully, the courts will have more reasoning power the the state’s so-called “expert” science panel.

    We all knew of the panel’s bias from the start. Secret meetings kept closed by a special case use of the state’s open meeting law. They ignored the thousands of pages of submitted testimony and snuggled up to pro-wind “peer reviewed” literature. Each of them should be subjected to a severe tongue lashing by Sue Hobart. She knows more about the detrimental effects of industrial wind turbines than all those “experts,” combined. This report could just as well have been published and released by the turbine manufacturer, Vestas.

    The “occupy” crowd at Falmouth’s Village Green best make room for the coming Tent City. (And I just put my camping equipment away.)

    Falmouth’s Wind I was turned on this afternoon to get us primed for the release of the report.

    How low can they make us feel…

    BARRY FUNFAR

  6. Comment by Hube (France) on 01/18/2012 at 4:42 am

    State of Massachusetts: Killers, that’s what it is! My God, it’s a war!

    How come I’m not surprised?

    What I don’t understand is why those “independent” experts keep measuring turbine noise in dB(A). If they measured the presence of low frequency sounds/infrasound (dBC or D, if I remember well), they’d find them everywhere, miles around the turbines. And then, the symptoms would fit in. But they know, of course, that if they looked for these low frequencies or infrasound, they’d find them. So, let’s not look for them.

    End of story. (Yes, Calvin, we’re facing a WALL).

    As all of you, now, and especially the people of Massachusetts, I’m devastated by this report. The wind industry will now use the report to go on developing in other US States and in other countries like mine (France). If it were the other way round—a report acknowledging WTS—they know they’d have big problems worldwide, because such a report would be used to stop them all over the world, just the same.

    The battle is globalized. One crack in their wall, somewhere, and the whole construction collapses everywhere around the planet. That’s why, I think, the battle is so harsh, so unfair, so tricky on their part. That’s why nothing will stop them.
    For now.

    Marsh is right, “This fight must be taken to the International Court of Justice.” At planet level.

    Besides the WTS victims, I’m also thinking of Nina, Calvin, Sarah (Laurie), Lilly (Green)—all the good people fighting for us: You’ve just been crashed down, too. Not even seriously referred to in this damn report, for God’s sake! Swept aside, flicked off like a speck of dust.

    At least, the report had to allude to the victims (!), but treating you and you work like that?

    Hey, my dear friends, you’ve been with us since the beginning, you’ve been sensing our problems, suffering with us, giving your time and energy to defend us. You’ve been so helpful.

    So I’m thinking of you, now. I can feel the vicious blow you’ve just received.
    Thousands of people like me around the world are thinking of you right now, more than ever: you do exist, your cause is just, your fight is right and we love you.

    Hubert

    Réponse du rédacteur: Hubert, vous êtes bon et vous êtes réfléchies. Nina & J’apprécie profondément vos mots. Je sais que toutes les autres personnes que vous mentionnez—et plus, à part eux—plus nombreuses qui travaillent dur à cela, les médecins et les non-médecins—d’apprécier ce que vous dites à leur sujet.

    Bien sûr, il blessures. Ça fait mal. Mais nous ne sommes pas des personnes souffrant de la WTS. Leur plaie est monumentale, et avec ce rapport, il continue. Ou les gens qui vont bientôt WTS des turbines, dont ce rapport est maintenant autorisé. (Effectivement, il a déclaré: «full steam ahead avec les éoliennes!»)

    Nous n’abandonnons pas. Nous pensons à vous, en France, et silencieusement je me répète une ligne de Walt Whitman «Feuilles d’herbe». «Je suis l’homme. J’ai souffert. J’étais là.» Nous sommes là avec vous, mon ami, et aussi longtemps que vous souffrez—nous aussi.

  7. Comment by Anonymous on 01/18/2012 at 5:44 am

    Perhaps a more focused demonstrative approach has become necessary, as technologically challenged as that may be, a repetitive pre-recorded turbine emission experience, projected from a public way, into the residences of the nay sayers within this auspicious group.

    As with the Nuremberg trials, those who “just did the Fuhrer’s bidding” do need to be held accountable for these tortures…

  8. Comment by Mauri Johansson, MD on 01/18/2012 at 6:23 am

    Bad news indeed for all of us. But as Hube states: “The battle is globalized. One crack in their wall, somewhere, and the whole construction collapses everywhere around the planet. That’s why, I think, the battle is so harsh, so unfair, so tricky on their part. That’s why nothing will stop them.”

    We must work more as professionals, based on our mental strength, not money.

    Best,

    Mauri Johansson, MD
    Denmark

  9. Comment by Anonymous on 01/18/2012 at 7:03 am

    How I wished these “experts” or one of their family members or close friends lived in such close proximity as many are now forced to do. I would bet their position would be different.

  10. Comment by Marsh Rosenthal on 01/18/2012 at 10:52 am

    BLOWBACK at windpower

    To all my brothers and sisters in every nation and land, let today, a day of infamy and disgrace committed by the state of Massachusetts, at the behest of its deceitful Governor Deval Patrick, be the day that we come together in the common resolve to end the torture and dismissal of the suffering of the victims of the onslaught of Industrial Wind Turbines.

    You who live in the shadow of these monsters, are the evidence. You will not be found in the closely vetted scientific journals that are edited by academic fascists in order to safely skew the so-called “facts” to promote a conspiracy driven by power and greed. They know the Ceasar to whom they are beholden for their grant monies.

    We must now consider our real options. I have called for the outlandish bringing of our case before the International Court of Justice. I am driven to do this because it is clear to me that no other peaceful recourse is open to us. Industrial Wind Power relies for its perpetuation on projecting a repeated lie to the proportions of a “green” religion upon the world consciousness.

    We can pick this lie apart, piece by piece, as the Big Wind perpetrators would like us to do, OR WE CAN CHALLENGE THEM FOR THE WORLD CRIMINALS AGAINST HUMANITY THAT THEY ARE.

    We Jews, learned the mantra “Never Again” after the Nazi Holocaust. Now, a new holocaust assaults the world. The enemy his been very canny in marginalizing its victims. We are seen as cranks, complainers, and such, not to be taken seriously. In their private meetings we are considered as so much collateral damage, political roadkill, to be ignored and swept aside as so much garbage, just like the six million of us Jews were gased and burned up in that other Nazi nightmare.

    I am their worst nightmare! I am of the generation that survived their efforts of extermination! I am the evidence of humanity that reaches out with arms of love to every victim, to every person who has or will be made to pay with their wellbeing for the profit grubbing combine of corporate industry and cowardly state liers that comprise the rotten fascist cloth of industrial windpower.

    Let us stand up now. Let us find the ways to build the international case against these criminals against humanity. Let us hold EACH of them accountable for the harm that they have done. Let us tell them and the whole world NEVER AGAIN!

  11. Comment by Bill Heller (New Jersey) on 01/18/2012 at 11:49 am

    This report will be used against all of us who fight the wind industry Goliaths. I know it will be thrown in my face. I expected as much, but after reading the article on the Mass DEP website I’m raging with anger. I can’t bring myself to read the actual report yet. I think we all need to take a moment to catch our collective breaths, but then begin to figure out if an effective challenge to this report can be mounted.

    As I’m fighting to stop a turbine that’s sitting in a warehouse nearby from being trucked in and built, I have never experienced WTS. However, I’ve been in touch with many of you who have and there’s no doubt in my mind that it’s very real and not some psychosomatic response to seeing a wind turbine near your homes, as these misled scientists and wind industry lackeys claim in the report.

    I’ve traveled to hear what a wind turbine sounds like, and what I heard would be hell to live with every day. Even if the issue was just annoyance, what damn right do these heartless profiteers have to subject us all to that much audible noise and shadows—and reach into our pockets and steal a good chunk of the equity in our homes?

    These scientists would never tolerate a guy running a jackhammer 24/7 near their homes, yet they refuse to honestly consider what constant, annoying noise does to someone.

    As Anonymous suggested, a few of these “experts” need to spend a week in an abutter’s home in Falmouth and experience it for themselves. At the very least, they should have spent time doing field research in those towns with the people most affected.

    Now it’s up to the scientists on our side to mount a challenge to this report and play that out in the press. And if that can happen, we all need to support them in every way we can.

  12. Comment by Dave Hopkins on 01/18/2012 at 9:06 pm

    Was wondering about this panel of experts, so I did a bit of quiet research online and found the following:

    Kimberly A. Sullivan: Has done some good work on Gulf War Syndrome and other illnesses associated with pesticide exposure. Public Health is her field.

    Marc G. Weisskopf: Similarly, his recent work is related to organochlorine exposure and Parkinson’s Disease.

    Dora Anne Mills: An MD. She is probably the best informed member of the panel on the issues they were investigating. As the Chief Health Officer of Maine and the director of the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention, she was unambiguously in favor of wind power development. Mohegan Wind in Maine links to two of her articles on the subject. She seems to draw heavily on Geof Leventhall’s wind-industry-funded study on low-frequency noise. (Leventhall is an acoustician who now works extensively for the wind industry as a consultant.) So she was a natural choice for the panel by the Patrick administration, hoping for a pro-wind conclusion.

    James F. Manwell and Sheryl Grace are both engineers with an expertise in wind turbines. An obvious choice for a pro-wind panel, but perhaps not one focusing on health effects.

    Jeffrey M. Ellenbogen is a neurologist and sleep specialist and he has done studies on sleep and noise (audible). So one can see how he might be selected, but Ellenbogen is not an expert on infrasound or the vestibular system. He is best known in his field for his studies on sleep and memory.

    So no one on the panel is an “expert” really on infrasound or acoustical effects on health or the vestibular system of the inner ear. It’s amazing how the media trumpets this as a definitive statement from on high on the health effects of industrial-scale wind turbines. Evidently we all need to shut up and eat our peas (or our sound pressure waves)! The “experts” have spoken!

  13. Comment by Dave Hopkins on 01/18/2012 at 9:20 pm

    Forgot to mention Wendy J. Heiger-Bernays. She recently did a study on the remediation of contaminated soils. Again, not an “expert” on the issue being investigated by a long shot.

  14. Comment by Hube (France) on 01/19/2012 at 3:05 am

    Cher Calvin,

    Thank you for your Editor’s note en français! This is so nice of you!

    International, this site certainly was already, but it seems to be more and more and this is good!

    I noticed the article in German. I can’t read German, but I think it’s nice for my neighbors here in Europe that an article is published in their language.

    Again, a sign of your kind courtesy towards the rest of the world!

    Mille mercis, mon ami !
    A bientôt !
    Hubert

    (I’ve just noticed that posting a reply to a specific comment puts it right underneath it. Yes: I have WTS, sorry! I’ve just decided not to sleep a night more at home, starting tonight.)

    Editor’s reply: Thank you for your kind words. My response to you in French was courtesy of “Google Translate.” I did it, not to be pretentious, but as a courtesy to you. Thanks to Google Translate, I can reply to you in just about any language under the sun. It may not be grammatically elegant, but it shows you—whatever your mother tongue—that I respect your cultural heritage and will address you in your own language (sort of).

  15. Comment by Brian on 05/22/2012 at 2:42 pm

    Hello Doctor Pierpont,

    My name is brian and I work for an electric company. (to avoid any conflicts with my work, I fear I cannot disclose and specific information about my company). Recently, we have been in the works for putting up a small wind turbine nearby, which we will put right onto the grid to aleviate transmission costs, on top of producing some green power. Many factors are in our favor for getting this project underway, and I was about to move on to the financial aspect of the project. This was, of course, until I heard about the citizens involved in the Falmouth, MA incident. Since then, I have spent many hours researching your work, and other testimonies from concerned citizens who have been affected by Wind Turbine Syndrome, and now I have concerns of my own for being a part of this project.
    The one question I would like to ask of you is if you have any information that relates the size of the turbines to the health affects it has on nearby residents? So far, my research has told me that it is utility-scale turbines that cause negative health affects (meaning those with a hub height over 200ft). Do you (or anybody else who can see this) know of any information or complaints which can prove that a smaller turbine has had negative health affects on its neighbors? I mind you that this design also has virtually no mechanical noise due to its lack of a gear box, so it is the low frequency noises which I fear.

    Sincerely,
    another concerned citizen

    Editor’s reply: Brian, if you check the Personal Accounts category (within the Article Archive) on our site, you will see several stories of people being affected by non-industrial-sized turbines.

  16. Comment by Anne O. Nimus on 08/28/2012 at 5:30 pm

    Does anyone know whether Wendy J. Heiger-Bernays might be a relative of Edward Bernays….. the double nephew of Freud, and the father of propaganda around the time of WWI ? He died in 1995 in Cambridge, MA, at the age of 103…..He worked with convincing the masses of things, without their knowing that this was being done to them. Sound familiar ? Worth looking into.

  17. Comment by Anne O. Nimus on 08/28/2012 at 5:32 pm

    Public health officials are currently citing the cooked, junk-science MA study as credible….. how can this be ????

The comments are closed.