Media release

More time and money wasted on wind farm investigations

Wind advocates and medical professionals have labelled as futile the awarding of millions of dollars of health funding to investigate wind farms.

The Federal Government’s National Health and Medical Research Council has announced today that it will hand over $3.3 million to two studies investigating whether wind farms influence health.

Australian Wind Alliance national co-ordinator Andrew Bray says it’s a waste of time and limited research funding.

“THE NHMRC’s own review[1] failed to find reliable evidence that wind farms have a negative impact on health,” Mr Bray said.

“Literally hundreds of thousands of wind turbines operate around the world with almost no complaints, many of these turbines are much closer to residents than is allowed in Australia.

“Many of our members live and work close to turbines everyday and they have no problems at all.”

Mr Bray says exhaustive international studies have also failed to find links between health and wind farms, including a $2.1m study by Health Canada[2] that studied 1,200 households and measured 4,000 hours of wind turbine noise to calculate indoor and outdoor noise levels at different homes in the study.

Doctors for the Environment’s Dr John Iser has questioned why the wind farm research has received funding ahead of other applications.

“While we always welcome good quality research, the proposed studies are far removed from a real-life setting,” Dr Iser said.

“We live in a world with many pressing health concerns, it’s worrying that research on these issues will go begging while studies on wind farms receive millions of dollars. Only about 15 per cent of all grant applications receive NHMRC funding.

“Tackling climate change is the biggest opportunity to safeguarding our health, and this includes the urgent deployment of more wind farms to help reduce fossil fuel emissions.”