Doctors concerned about planned wind turbines' proximity to residential neighborhoods
A number of doctors are worried about plans to build wind turbines close to residential neighborhoods, they said to the Telegraaf. They've asked an independent epidemiologist to study a number of reports from public health institute RIVM on how close these turbines can be placed to homes. The results are expected in eight weeks.
While the epidemiologist's analysis is not done yet, the doctors - united under the name Windwiki - believe that wind turbines' proximity to residential neighborhoods could impact locals' health, child psychiatrist Simone Brands said tot he newspaper. According to Windwiki, the current standards for noise and distance related to wind farms are too flexible and that could result in serious health effects like insomnia and long-term stress.
"In 2019 and 2020, reassuring RIVM reports were published about nuisance from wind turbines," said Brand, speaking on behalf of Windwiki. "On the basis of these recommendations, municipalities and GGDs assume that placement very close to habitation will not be a problem. However, there are many indications that this is unjustified." The newspaper did not specify what indications.
Plans for wind farm construction could count on resistance from local residents in various places in the Netherlands. In March, for example, Amsterdam scrapped pans to build wind turbines in IJburg due to protests. The city still plans to build a number of wind turbines and is currently looking at locations.
Last week the Council of State ruled that the caretaker cabinet must adjust the national rules for the construction of wind turbines. Based on a ruling by the European Court of Justice about a Belgium wind farm last year, the highest administrative court ruled that the environmental effects of the wind turbines on their surroundings must also be assessed in order to comply to European law.
The ruling was about a wind farm in Delfzijl, but also applies to other planned wind farms in the Netherlands. The Council of State said that city councils may also set environmental standards that builders must adhere to. So they do not have to wait for the caretaker cabinet to come up with new national standards.