Confidentiality Clause

Here is a sample Confidentiality Clause in a contract between wind developer and lessee.  The astonishing thing is that people are signing that they acknowledge that their land can be damaged, and that noise and shadow flicker can inconvenience or damage!

“The Rent, in respect of the Specified Location, and the Losses of Payment set out above represent compensation in full for severance, nuisance, noise, signal interference, weed control, casting of shadows and other inconveniences or damage done to Said Lands or incurred by Lessor from the acts or omissions of Lessee.”

This is acknowledgment by the proponent that that nuisance, noise and casting of shadows can cause inconveniences or damage the land or Lessor.

The Lessor is compensated for the associated damage but the non participating neighbour receives no compensation even though the nuisance, noise and casting of shadows do not respect boundaries.

WOULD YOU SIGN THIS?? Would $ 5-8 thousand per year suffice for your family suffering from any of these recorded effects?  What does “other inconveniences or damages” mean?

  • Dead zone around the turbine, even earthworms, frogs and snakes disappear
  • Possible headaches, tinnitus, earaches, cardiac abnormalities, see below for a list from Carmen Krogh,  Canadian expert in research on victims of wind
  • Those with the following pre-existing medical conditions could be affected: migraine syndrome and inner ear problems where the balance can be affected by moving blades, the shadow flicker, noise / vibration leading to dizziness / tinnitus (ringing in the ears).[1]
  • Based on health studies to date, the causes seem to be related to: noise that you can hear (dBA / intermittent swooshing) which disrupts sleep and which the human ear does not tolerate well. Noise that you can’t hear (low frequency / infrasound). Shadow flicker which can distribute fairly far. Electrical pollution (stray voltage) and substation noise (low frequency noise.). See appendix and references below.
  • Sleep deprivation is not trivial and can lead to serious medical conditions.

‘Wind energy will undoubtedly create noise, which increases stress, which in turn increase the risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer.’ [2]

‘.may actually be more disturbed by the noise inside their homes than they would be outside.’[3]

‘This mode of observation is particularly significant at low frequencies, below the threshold of normal hearing.’[4]

‘.the military has been aware of the way a combination of persistent low-frequency noise, infrasound and visual strobing can destabilise the human body.’[5]

Low frequency and infrasound disrupts inner ear; that what you can’t hear can harm you.[6]

Please see our section on birds, bats, fish.  Their health and habitat suffers, too!

[1] Wind Turbine Syndrome, A Natural Experiment, Dr. Nina Pierpont

[2] The National Institutes of Health, Environmental Health Perspectives, volume 116, pg A237 – 238, 2008  (USA)

[3] NASA technical paper Wind Turbine Acoustics

[4] ibid

[5] Location, Location, Location An investigation into wind farms and noise, UK Noise Association 2006

[6] Tuning and sensitivity of the human vestibular system to low-frequency vibration, Neil P. McAngus Todd et al, Neuroscience Letter 444 (2008) 36-41

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