Entries in Iberdrola (2)
NOTE: The World Health Organization has set 35 dbA as the decibel level for healthy sleep. Each increase of 10 decibels doubles the noise output.
From New York State
NOISE FROM HERKIMER CO. WIND TURBINES TO BE STUDIED AGAIN
By BRYON ACKERMAN,
October 3, 2011
For the second time this year, a study will be conducted to address concerns about sound levels at the Hardscrabble Wind Farm.
After 37 turbines began operating on Jan. 31 in the Herkimer County towns of Fairfield and Norway, some residents started complaining about the turbines producing too much noise.
A study conducted earlier this year found that the noise level in some instances went above the 50-decibel level required in the permits for the turbines, Fairfield town Supervisor Richard Souza said.
Another, more extensive study will be conducted starting in late October or early November, Souza said.
“We’ll have a better idea of what the noise level is, and we’ll be able to sit down with the company and get it corrected,” he said.
The wind project developer Iberdrola Renewables paid for the first study to be conducted earlier this year at the request of town officials and landowners. The second study also will be paid for by the developer, town and company officials said.
A noise level of 50 decibels is often compared to the sound from a refrigerator motor running. The decibel level of a “normal conversation” is about 60 decibels, according to information provided by Iberdrola.
The first study showed noise levels reaching 60 to 65 decibels in some instances, and the permits restrict the decibel level from going above 50 – including the turbines and background noise combined, Souza said.
But the instances in the study when the noise levels were higher than 50 decibels were primarily when there were extreme wind speeds, Iberdrola spokesman Paul Copleman said. The sounds were largely due to other factors from the wind speed such as the rustling of leaves, he said.
“We didn’t consider that to be attributable to the wind farm,” he said.
That means the developers believe they’re not in violation of the wind ordinances, but the issue does warrant further studying, Copleman said.
Fairfield resident Jimmy Salamone, who lives near turbines on Davis Road in Fairfield, said the noise level has become an ongoing problem for many people in the area.
“The noise is really bad on Davis Road – very hard to live with,” Salamone said. “It’s way too loud, and it gets louder at night for some reason.”
But Salamone thinks that instead of conducting another study, something should be done to address the noise levels found in the other study earlier this year, he said.
Donald Dixon, 75, who has two wind turbines on his property at Route 170 in Fairfield, said he doesn’t believe a noise study is necessary.
“To be honest with you, I don’t even notice them,” Dixon said.
Dixon believes the people complaining about noise are the same people who complained before the turbines were put up and that they just want to continue with their complaints, he said.
Souza said he has dealt with “quite a few” complaints scattered throughout the town. It should take about three weeks to complete the study once it begins, he said. The angle and speed of the turbine blades could potentially be altered in response to the results if necessary, he said.
The first study looked at three sites in Fairfield and one in Norway, Souza said. The new study will review five sites in Fairfield and one in Norway, while also looking into more details about the time of the day and factors in the noise levels, he said.
3/16/11 Wind turbine collapse AND Wind Developers Behaving Badly Chapter 7,324: When local government is the last to know
ROTOR CRASHES AT IBERDROLA WIND FARM IN NORTH DAKOTA
SOURCE: North American Wind Power
March 16, 2011
NAW has learned that a rotor came crashing to the ground at the 149.1 MW Rugby Wind Power Project, located near Rugby, N.D. The wind farm, owned and operated by Iberdrola Renewables, consists of 71 2.1 MW wind turbines, which were manufactured by Suzlon Wind Energy Corp.
According to a local resident, the incident occurred around 2:30 p.m. local time on Monday. There were no reported injuries.
Dan Smith, a local commercial photographer who has photographed the wind project from its early stages, says the wind farm's technicians told him that the incident may have stemmed from a failed braking mechanism.
"It looks like the braking mechanism failed, and the rotor gained speed, flexed and hit the tower and sheared off the mounting plate at the hub where it connects with the nacelle," Smith explains.
He adds that the rotor appeared to scrape the tower on its way to the ground, which could require the tower to be replaced as well.
CLICK ON THE IMAGE BELOW TO WATCH A SIMILAR ROTOR COLLAPSE AFTER WIND TURBINE BRAKES FAIL
WIND FARM PLAN SHOCKS BOARD
16 March 2011
BY DAVID GIULIANI,
MORRISON – Some Whiteside County Board members are upset that they hadn’t been informed about the possibility of wind energy development in the county.
A couple of weeks ago, a county official told a board committee about a company’s plans for wind turbines north of the village of Deer Grove and extending west of state Route 40.
Deer Grove, 11 miles south of Rock Falls, has a population of about 50.
Apparently, some board members didn’t know of the proposed project until they read about it in the newspaper.
At the board’s monthly meeting Tuesday, member Bill Milby, whose district includes Deer Grove, said a number of people have contacted him expressing their concerns about the proposed wind farm.
Milby said he wished he would learn of such developments from the county, rather than the newspaper.
Stuart Richter, the county’s planning and zoning administrator, emphasized that the county hadn’t received an application from the company, Ireland-based Mainstream Renewable Energy. He said he expected to receive the application in September.
“It’s not a big secret,” he said, adding that he hadn’t seen the layout of the proposed wind farm.
Board member Jim Duffy asked whether the wind farm would be rushed through the board at the last minute.
“I certainly hope not,” Richter responded. “This is all new to us, but we won’t be reinventing the wheel.”
Board member Jon Hinton suggested the county put a hold on all permits for a while, adding that he hadn’t known about the proposed wind farm until recently.
Members asked what would happen when companies abandoned their turbines.
Richter responded that the county would enter into separate agreements for such issues. He said some counties require companies to post money to be put in escrow to cover the costs of the eventual decommissioning of their turbines.
During the public comment portion of the meeting, Sterling resident Amanda Norris, head of the local Sauk Valley Tea Party, said she and her husband recently bought land near Prophetstown and planned it to use for recreational purposes.
“This leaves us very concerned about protecting our property rights,” she said. “Having a turbine only a few hundred feet from our property would make it worthless to us. How does Whiteside County intend to protect the rights of property owners such as me and my husband?”
Whiteside County doesn’t have any wind turbines, but Lee and Bureau counties have had them for years. Those counties have been embroiled in bitter debates because many residents find the turbines noisy and unsightly, and say they cause health issues.
Mainstream is planning 190 turbines for the local project, which would include Bureau, Lee and Whiteside counties. Most of the turbines would be in Lee County, but company representatives wouldn’t say how many would be in each county.
The representatives confirmed that they planned to apply for permits in the three counties in the coming months.