Effect of Wind Farm Noise on Local Residents' Decision to Adopt Mitigation Measures

Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2017 Jul 11;14(7):753. doi: 10.3390/ijerph14070753.


Wind turbines' noise is frequently pointed out as the reason for local communities' objection to the installation of wind farms. The literature suggests that local residents feel annoyed by such noise and that, in many instances, this is significant enough to make them adopt noise-abatement interventions on their homes. Aiming at characterizing the relationship between wind turbine noise, annoyance, and mitigating actions, we propose a novel conceptual framework. The proposed framework posits that actual sound pressure levels of wind turbines determine individual homes' noise-abatement decisions; in addition, the framework analyzes the role that self-reported annoyance, and perception of noise levels, plays on the relationship between actual noise pressure levels and those decisions. The application of this framework to a particular case study shows that noise perception and annoyance constitutes a link between the two. Importantly, however, noise also directly affects people's decision to adopt mitigating measures, independently of the reported annoyance.

Keywords: environmental impacts; mitigation measures; noise annoyance; sound pressure levels; wind farms.

MeSH terms

  • Energy-Generating Resources*
  • Environmental Policy*
  • Housing*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Noise*
  • Wind