RenewableUK says media speculation that wind farms can affect people’s hearing is incorrect and irresponsible.
Several national newspapers wrongly claimed this week that research published in the journal Royal Society Open Science showed a possible link between wind turbines and deafness.
The expert who wrote the paper, Dr Markus Drexl from the University of Munich, told RenewableUK that the media had misrepresented his work, saying: “It is certainly misleading and an over-interpretation of our results to state that living close to wind farms may cause hearing impairment or deafness. Our research did not include any work at wind farms.”
RenewableUK’s director of policy, Dr Gordon Edge, said: “Unfortunately, some reporters got it wrong – this is a classic case of Bad Science. When you actually read the scientific paper, it doesn’t make any mention of wind farms whatsoever. That’s because the level of low frequency noise that the scientists used in their tests was significantly higher than anything that anyone living near a wind farm could possibly experience.
“The Australian government published some excellent research on this last year which stated that the modest level of low frequency sound from wind turbines is actually insignificant. It’s well understood by acoustics experts that low frequency sound doesn’t pose any health risk to communities around wind farms and frankly it’s irresponsible scaremongering to suggest otherwise.”