World Sleep Day – Time to Stop the Abuse of Children from Environmental Noise Pollution

World Sleep Day – 14th March, 2014



Today is “world sleep day”.


As Australian Sleep researcher Dr Sarah Biggs has said as part of the Australian Sleep Health Foundation’s event this year which is targeted at children “you need a good night’s sleep if you want to grow strong, think clearly and feel good”.


Yet for an increasing number of children especially in rural areas, environmental noise pollution, especially low frequency noise, is intruding into their homes and bedrooms and making a good night’s sleep impossible for them, as well as their parents.


The Waubra Foundation is aware of children severely adversely impacted by penetrating low frequency noise from CSG compressors up at the Tara Gas field in Queensland, children affected by the noise from gas fired power station turbines in NSW and Victoria, open cut and underground mining noise and vibration in the Upper Hunter, near Orange, and in Western Australia, coal train noise in the Hunter Valley, and wind turbine noise at multiple wind developments in South Eastern Australia particularly.


When this noise occurs at night, in quiet rural environments, and involves a significant proportion of infrasound and low frequency noise, the industrial noise sources significantly disturb the children’s sleep and may cause a physiological stress reaction.




Where the parents of these children affected by noise have signed “good neighbour agreements” or have chosen to host wind turbines, the agreements prohibit the parents from complaining about the environmental noise and their child’s environmental sleep disorder if their child or children are adversely impacted.


For the families whose children are adversely impacted, there is nothing they can do to protect their children from this penetrating sound and vibration energy, except move away. Headphones do not protect their ears or stop their brains from perceiving the inaudible sound energy.


For some rural residents it is financially impossible to move away, so the family is then trapped in an acoustically toxic home, which their bank’s valuer then tells them is unsaleable. If they still have a mortgage, the family psychological stress levels then increase even more, especially if one or both parents become so unwell they are unable to work.


Environmental nighttime noise pollution is a form of child abuse, and shatters family lives as well as children’s health and learning.It needs to stop, so that children and families can get a good night’s sleep.


Read Sophie Hartke’s story, and that of her family, forced to leave their home because of the impact of wind turbine noise on the children. There are many more Sophie’s around the world, including in Australia.


Sophie’s story, written by her father:


Sophie’s story, written and illustrated by herself:


Professor Arline Bronzaft’s article on wind turbine noise and children:


Statement by a pro wind School Superintendent in the USA:


Details of adverse impacts on children with respect to learning, cognition and sleep by Paediatrician Dr Nina Pierpont:




Contact:CEO Sarah Laurie  0474 050 463 [email protected]

 Download the Media Release →