A Vermont home abandoned due to noise from local wind turbines is being turned into a research center to study the negative impacts of industrial-scale wind power projects.
The Therrien family property in Sheffield has been the epicenter of a debate regarding the adverse effects of wind turbines. Now it will become a dedicated research hub to study the noise, vibrations and environmental impacts of 16 418-foot-tall nearby turbines known as Vermont Wind.
“We are going to solicit universities and research institutes to conduct studies, and we are going to make the property available to them,” said Mark Whitworth, board president of Energize Vermont, an environmental group that advocates for small-scale renewable applications.
The Therriens abandoned their home in 2014 after living there for two decades because they said the sound and vibrations from the power plant were causing sleepless nights and health problems. When the property recently went up for tax sale, Energize Vermont seized the opportunity to pay off the family’s back taxes and made an agreement to use the property for research purposes.