The assessment method for noise at wind farm development sites compares the predicted level of noise from the turbines with the existing background noise in the area at those locations that are closest to the proposed turbines. Background noise monitoring locations will be chosen in consultation with Durham District Council to be representative of the lower background noise environment at residential dwellings near to the proposed site.
The table below shows the sound of a working wind farm is actually less than normal road traffic or an office. Even when wind speed increases, it is difficult to detect any increase in turbine sound above the increase in normal background sound, such as the noise the wind itself makes and the rustling of trees.
Indicative table of noise levels from everyday activities
|Source/Activity||Indicative noise level dB (A)|
|Threshold of hearing||0|
|Rural night-time background||20-40|
|Wind farm at 350m distance||35-45|
|Car at 40mph at 100m distance||55|
|Busy general office||60|
|Truck at 30mph at 100m distance||65|
|Pneumatic drill at 7m distance||90|
|Jet aircraft at 250m distance||105|
|Threshold of pain||140|
Information taken from The Scottish Office, Environment Department, Planning Advice Note, PAN 45, Annes A: Wind Power, A.27. Renewable Energy Technologies, August 1994