Evaluating Impact of Wind Turbine Noise on Health Related Quality of Life, Shepherd et al

Daniel Shepherd, David McBride, David Welch, Kim N. Dirks, Erin M. Hill
Noise & Health, International Journal, Sept-Oct 2011

We report a cross-sectional study comparing the health-related quality of life (HRQOL) of individuals residing in the proximity of a wind farm to those residing in a demographically matched area sufficiently displaced from wind turbines.

The study employed a nonequivalent comparison group posttest-only design. Self-administered questionnaires, which included the brief version of the World Health Organization quality of life scale, were delivered to residents in two adjacent areas in semirural New Zealand. Participants were also asked to identify annoying noises, indicate their degree of noise sensitivity, and rate amenity. Statistically significant differences were noted in some HRQOL domain scores, with residents living within 2 km of a turbine installation reporting lower overall quality of life, physical quality of life, and environmental quality of life. Those exposed to turbine noise also reported significantly lower sleep quality, and rated their environment as less restful.

Our data suggest that wind farm noise can negatively impact facets of HRQOL.

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