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BP Additional Impacts for Cape Vincent Wind Complex

BP Additional Impacts for Cape Vincent Wind Complex

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List of Additional Impacts identified for Cape Vincent Wind Complex
List of Additional Impacts identified for Cape Vincent Wind Complex

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Published by: pandorasboxofrocks on Jan 23, 2013
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01/23/2013

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Town of Cape Vincent Review January 20, 2013
Additional Potential Adverse Environmental Impacts & Other Recommended Studies & Issues
BP Article 10 Cape Vincent Wind Farm Proposal – 2012 I. Health, Safety and General Welfare
1.
COMPREHENSIVE PLAN –
Article 10 rules state, “A statementas to whether the municipality has an adopted comprehensiveplan and whether the proposed land use (wind project) isconsistent with such comprehensive plan.” BP's 124-turbineproject proposal is strikingly incompatible with the 2003and 2012 Joint Comprehensive Plan for the Town and Villageof Cape Vincent. BP should provide an explanation as towhy they are proposing a project so counter to the valuesespoused by the Town and Village's Joint Comprehensive Plan.
2.
SLEEP DEPRIVATION –
Sleep deprivation is now a wellestablished health risk associated with the noise producedby industrial wind turbines (B. Berglund et.al. 1999, C.Hanning & Evans 2012, M. Nissenbaum et.al. 2012, E.Pedersen et.a.l 2007, Pedersen & Waye 2004, N. Pierpont2009, D. Shepherd et.a. 2011 and G. van den Berg et.al.2008). BP should provide a comprehensive analysis of thescientific literature, including the aforementioned papers,to describe the negative health impacts associated withsleep disturbance regardless of the cause, and then to alsoassess the potential for sleep disruptions, and otherdirect and indirect health effects, with BP's proposed 124-turbine project. Assessing the potential for sleepdisruption in Cape Vincent from industrial wind developmentshould be keyed to BP's predicted sound levels. Therestrictions imposed in Cape Vincent's zoning law wereformulated with the expressed purpose of minimizing healthimpacts, such as sleep deprivation. Alignment with thoserestrictions should help ensure BP that potential adversehealth effects from their proposed development will beminimized.
3.
 WIND TURBINE NOISE
– Among all the issues related toindustrial wind development, turbine noise is likely theissue that has the greatest potential for annoyance andadverse health impacts on Cape Vincent's population. Aftera careful review by knowledgeable acoustic professionals,including Town's engineering consultants, Cape Vincent
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Town of Cape Vincent Review January 20, 2013adopted a zoning law that limits nighttime industrial noiseto no more than 35 dBA, 40 dBA and 45 dBA; and 55 dBC, 58dBC and 63 dBC, for night, evening and daytime periods,respectively. Predictive modeling should furnish octaveband sound pressure levels, basing these predictions on awind turbine model that reflects worst case noise impacts.Modeling should provide an appropriate adjustment for modeland turbine variability and with Gs= 0, Gm= 0, and Gr= 0.9.In the preparation of maps to describe potential noiseimpacts, property lines should be clearly defined so thatland owners, those with leases and good neighbor agreementsas well as non-participants, can examine noise impacts ontheir property. In addition, the predictive analysisshould include a tabled format of sound levels for allresidences keyed to the the sound level map. The tabledprojections should provide predicted A-Weighted and C-Weighted sound levels at each residence and somedesignation as to whether the resident is a participant,either lessee or good neighbor, or non-participant. Thenoise impact analysis should include three operationalscenarios: 1) noise levels at cut-in speeds, 2) noiselevels at ½ power output and 3) noise levels at full outputof the wind turbine. Finally, a summary tally should becompleted to estimate the number of Cape Vincent propertieswhere turbine noise levels will exceed 35 dBA.
4.
INFRASOUND & LOW FREQUENCY NOISE (LFN)
– The WisconsinPublic Service Commission just recently released and postedon their website
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a ground-breaking study of wind turbineinfrasound noise impacts at the Shirley Wind project, BrownCounty, Wisconsin. The study, authored by four independentacoustic consulting firms with experience in assessing windturbine noise impacts, concluded: “
The four investigating firms are of the opinion that enough evidence and hypotheses have been given herein to classify LFN and infrasound as a serious issue, possibly affecting thefuture of the industry.” 
Because infrasound levels wereinaudible, but nevertheless problematic for some residentsof the Shirley Wind project, the acoustical engineers alsorecommended conducting a follow-up study:
A Threshold of Perception test with participating and non-participating Shirley residents
.” Until the perception study iscompleted a conservative recommendation in their report waswind turbine noise levels should not exceed 33.5 dBA.
1
A Cooperative Measurement Survey and Analysis of Low Frequency and Infrasound at the Shirley Wind Farm inBrown County, Wisconsin [Wisc. PSC Report Number 122412-1 Issued: December 24, 2012]
.
2
 
Town of Cape Vincent Review January 20, 2013Section 1001.19 (k) of the Article 10 rules outline issuesto evaluate that may have “potential community noiseimpacts.” Included in the list to evaluate are “industrialor medical activities that are sensitive to vibration orinfrasound.” The Town wants the following evaluation addedto industrial and medical activities referenced in therules: residences, schools and other facilities wherepeople live, gather or congregate. In addition, BP shallprovide an evaluation of low frequency noise annoyance andepidemiological evidence that low frequency sound generatedby the turbine model selected for the proposed project isnot, and will not be associated with the advent of adversehealth effects such as sleep and mood disorders, inabilityto concentrate, tinnitus, vestibular problems andhypertension in residents living within or in closeproximity to the project. Again, the criterion should be33.5 dBA, as suggested from the Wisconsin PSC report. Thepredicted levels of infrasound shall then be compared withthose referenced in the recent Wisconsin PSC study.
5.
TURBINE FAILURE
- “
By far the biggest number of incidents(turbine accidents) found was due to blade failure. Bladefailure can arise from a number of possible sources, and results in either whole blades or pieces of blade being thrown from the turbine.
2
Pieces of blade have beendocumented as traveling up to one mile. For this reasonsome municipalities have adopted setbacks for wind turbinesto account for the risk of fragments thrown from the rotorrather than arbitrarily adopting a wind industry standarddeveloped for optimizing a project layout. The windturbine setbacks described in Cape Vincent's zoning lawwere designed for safety and are six times (6X) the totalheight of a turbine from property lines of non-participants, homes, roads and project boundaries. BPshould provide a comprehensive assessment of rotor failureand debris scatter for modern industrial scale wind turbinefailures as well as a well reasoned explanation forsetbacks they may use that are not compliant with the CapeVincent zoning law. In the Article 10 rules (Exhibit 31)they note, “
Setbacks requirements would have to beconsidered on a case by case basis by looking at the purpose for their establishment and the circumstances of aspecific site or case
[p.78].” Furthermore, also in theArticle 10 rules (Exhibit 18)
“...setback considerationsfor facility components which may present hazards to public
2
http://www.caithnesswindfarms.co.uk/accidents.pdf 
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