A NATIONAL Health and Medical Research Council recommendation for caution when considering wind-farm developments was appropriate pending a thorough investigation of possible adverse effects of turbines on residents, the chairman of a NHMRC review has said.
Bruce Armstrong, professor of public health and medical foundation fellow at the University of Sydney, said his reference group would consider a wide range of research including peer-reviewed and “grey” literature.
If necessary, he said, the review would recommend an update to the NHMRC’s rapid review statement issued in 2010.
The existing NHMRC statement on wind farms and health has been widely quoted as giving the turbines a clean bill of health.
“There is currently no published scientific evidence to positively link wind turbines with adverse health effects,” it says.
“While there is currently no evidence linking these phenomena with adverse health effects, the evidence is limited. Therefore it is recommended that relevant authorities take a precautionary approach and continue to monitor research outcomes.”
Professor Armstrong, appointed this week, said the NHMRC’s full review would go well beyond what had been considered previously.
“The rapid review essentially covered the literature that has been published in the peer reviewed literature,” he said.
“We will cover any new evidence or literature of that kind since the rapid review was done.
“It will also cover all the grey literature we can put our hands on that may contain research findings.”
Professor Armstrong said he had had no involvement in the issue of wind turbines and health up to now.
Hmm… trouble is loonies pack gray literature: “Ooh, I feel ever so poorly since they put that turbine there…” and similar anecdotal “evidence” do nothing for evaluating facts and should not be considered. Not an impressive start.