1165.03 FINDINGS.
   (a)   Wind energy is a potential renewable and non-polluting energy resource of the Village, and its conversion to electricity may reduce dependence on nonrenewable, conventional energy sources and decrease the pollution that results therefrom. However, wind energy facilities should be sited in a way that protect the health and safety needs of the residents living near a large wind turbine.
   (b)   The regulation of the siting and installation of a large wind energy turbine system is necessary to protect the health, safety and welfare of the residents of the village and the general public. Adverse health and safety issues are likely to arise if appropriate standards and setbacks are not followed in the siting and installation of large wind turbines.
   (c)   Over 500 wind turbine accidents have occurred involving ice throws, blade disintegration, fire and tower failure in the world since 1999.
   (d)   Heavy equipment used for the construction of large wind turbines can damage local roads.
   (e)   (1)   Large wind turbines are significant sources of noise, which if improperly sited, can negatively impact the health of residents, particularly in areas of low ambient noise levels. Large wind turbines emit two types of noise: a) Aerodynamic noise from the blades passing through the air; and b) mechanical noise from the interaction of the turbine components. Noise is an annoyance that can negatively impact health, producing negative effects such as sleep disturbance and deprivation, stress, anxiety, headaches, depression, pain and stiffness, decreased cognitive ability, tinnitus, hypertension and fatigue. While some people are unaffected by wind turbine noise, others may develop adverse health effects from the same noise. At low frequencies wind turbine noise may not be heard, but rather felt as a vibration.
      (2)   Few people are disturbed in their sleep with noise that is measured at less than 35 dB(A), however some are disturbed by a change in as little as 5 dB over the original noise level. Studies show that prolonged exposure to wind turbine noise results in adverse health effects at noise levels lower than ordinary noise created by traffic, urban, industrial or commercial noise. Living in a rural environment, in comparison with a suburban area, increases the risk of residents being impacted by noise from nearby large wind turbines because of the low ambient noise in the rural area. The international Standards Organization recommended community noise limits for rural area be set at a SPL of 35 dB(A) during the day, 30 dB(A) during the evening hours and 25 dB(A) at night. Audible sound limits should be limited to 20 dB(A) above the ambient level, with an absolute maximum level of 35-40 dB(A).
      (3)   Because Ohio R.C. 4906.20 contains no maximum noise level set as a standard for a wind turbine system, the Village will set its own maximum noise level at 35 dB(A).
   (f)   Adverse health effects from wind turbine noise can be exacerbated by the rotating blades and shadows from the wind turbines. As the wind turbine blades rotate in sunny condition, they cast strobe- like shadows on the windows of nearby homes and buildings and nearby streets and roads causing shadow flicker that can not be avoided. Shadow flicker can cause some people to become dizzy, nauseated or lose their balance. The shadow flicker can produce headaches or even seizures in photosensitive individuals.
   (g)   Wind turbines have been known to throw ice and debris from the turbine blades. Ice throws from large wind turbines can reach distances up to 1,750 feet and blade throws can reach 2,500 feet.
(Ord. 1636. Passed 4-19-10.)