SHEFFIELD, Vt. — An independent study of noise generated by a Sheffield wind project commissioned by the Vermont Department of Public Service found that noise levels from the turbines were below state limits outside the home of a family that felt their health was threatened.
The report said it was also unable to obtain adequate background noise readings at the Sheffield wind facility, owned by the company First Wind.
Nevertheless, the report “strongly suggests” that the facility was working within the limits placed on it by its state permit, known as a certificate of public good, said a letter to the Public Service Board by Christopher Recchia, the commissioner of the Department of Public Service.
Sheffield residents Steven and Luann Therrien, and their two pre-school-aged children, had argued the noise from the turbines was hurting their health.
The department said the testing by an independent consultant was warranted after receiving complaints last summer about the noise from the turbines.
The testing was done from Dec. 19 to 21.
The Caledonian Record reports the Therriens felt the noise wasn’t as bad during the testing and the consultant recommended that testing be done over a longer period of time.
The 16-turbine Sheffield operation went online in the fall of 2011.