Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Help Support EcoWatch

Trump Falsely Claims Noise From Wind Turbines Causes Cancer

Popular
President Donald Trump boards Air Force One in 2017. BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI / AFP / Getty Images

At a National Republican Congressional Committee event Tuesday night, President Donald Trump took his war on wind power to the next level.


"If you have a windmill anywhere near your house, congratulations, your house just went down 75 per cent in value," Trump said, as The Independent reported. "And they say the noise causes cancer. You tell me that one, okay? Rerrrr rerrrr!"

Watch the clip below:


The cancer claim, as Jonathan Chait pointed out in New York Magazine, is not true. There has been opposition to wind turbines on the basis of long-standing beliefs that low-frequency sound can disturb sleep, trigger anxiety and cause nausea and other health problems, The Atlantic explained. but no scientific experiments have verified these claims.

"Cancer is not caused by noises of any kind," Chait wrote.

Social media was quick to counter Trump's remarks, The Huffington Post reported. Wired columnist Maryn McKenna took the opportunity to link to a study published in March that found no connection between wind turbine noise and heart attack or stroke. Researchers had conducted the study because of claims that wind turbine noise was more annoying than noise from traffic.

During his remarks Tuesday, Trump repeated claims he has made about wind turbines before, that they reduce property values and harm birds.

"And of course, it's like a graveyard for birds," he said Tuesday, as The Washington Post reported. "If you love birds, you'd never want to walk under a windmill."

Wind turbines do kill birds, but at a much lesser rate than other forms of power. A 2009 study cited by Chait found that fossil-fuel plants killed nearly 15 times the number of birds as wind turbines. So why does Trump hate wind turbines so much?

The Washington Post's Philip Bump wrote that it dated back to Trump's fight against a wind farm that had been scheduled to go up off the coast of Aberdeenshire in Scotland, where he had bought land to start a gulf course in 2006. Trump sued to stop the farm, but was not successful. He also initiated a public relations campaign against Scottish politicians backing the project and against wind power itself, tweeting any negative coverage he could find. As part of that blitz, he did retweet a story in 2012 claiming that wind power had negative health impacts, though no such impacts have been confirmed by scientists. Tuesday likely marks the first time he has claimed wind power causes cancer, Bump said.

Chait observed that Trump is selective in his health concerns when it comes to energy.

A power source that does cause many health problems, including cancer, is coal, an extremely dirty fuel Trump loves and has attempted to bolster, with almost no success. Aside from costing more to produce than other sources of power, and in addition to enormous air pollution side effects, coal also emits greenhouse gases in large amounts. Though this, of course, is another aspect of science Trump rejects.

Bump also noted that Trump's anti-wind stance dovetailed neatly with Republican policy.

"As climate change became a sharply polarized issue, Trump was prepared for the fight thanks to his battle over that wind farm near his golf course in Scotland," Bump wrote.

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

A man pushes his mother in a wheelchair down Ocean Drive in South Beach, Miami on May 19, 2020, amid the novel coronavirus pandemic. CHANDAN KHANNA / AFP via Getty Images

The U.S. reported more than 55,000 new coronavirus cases on Thursday, in a sign that the outbreak is not letting up as the Fourth of July weekend kicks off.

Read More Show Less
To better understand how people influence the overall health of dolphins, Oklahoma State University's Unmanned Systems Research Institute is developing a drone to collect samples from the spray that comes from their blowholes. Ken Y. / CC by 2.0

By Jason Bruck

Human actions have taken a steep toll on whales and dolphins. Some studies estimate that small whale abundance, which includes dolphins, has fallen 87% since 1980 and thousands of whales die from rope entanglement annually. But humans also cause less obvious harm. Researchers have found changes in the stress levels, reproductive health and respiratory health of these animals, but this valuable data is extremely hard to collect.

Read More Show Less

Sunscreen pollution is accelerating the demise of coral reefs globally by causing permanent DNA damage to coral. gonzalo martinez / iStock / Getty Images Plus

On July 29, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed into law a controversial bill prohibiting local governments from banning certain types of sunscreens.

Read More Show Less
Oat milk is popping up at coffee shops and grocery stores alike, quickly becoming one of the trendiest plant-based milks. jacqueline / CC by 2.0

By Kelli McGrane

Oat milk is popping up at coffee shops and grocery stores alike, quickly becoming one of the trendiest plant-based milks.

Read More Show Less

"Emissions from pyrotechnic displays are composed of numerous organic compounds as well as metals," a new study reports. Nodar Chernishev / EyeEm / Getty Images

Fireworks have taken a lot of heat recently. In South Dakota, fire experts have said President Trump's plan to hold a fireworks show is dangerous and public health experts have criticized the lack of plans to enforce mask wearing or social distancing. Now, a new study shows that shooting off fireworks at home may expose you and your family to dangerous levels of lead, copper and other toxins.

Read More Show Less
Billions worth of valuable metals such as gold, silver and copper were dumped or burned last year as electronic waste produced globally jumped to a record 53.6 million tons. Curtis Palmer / CC by 2.0

By Ashutosh Pandey

Billions worth of valuable metals such as gold, silver and copper were dumped or burned last year as electronic waste produced globally jumped to a record 53.6 million tons (Mt), or 7.3 kilogram per person, a UN report showed on Thursday.

Read More Show Less

Trending

A women walks with COVID-19 care kits distributed by Boston's Office of Neighborhood Services in Boston, Massachusetts on May 28, 2020. The pandemic has led to a rise in single-use plastic items, but reusable bags and cloth masks can be two ways to reduce waste. JOSEPH PREZIOSO / AFP via Getty Images

This month is Plastic Free July, the 31 days every year when millions of people pledge to give up single-use plastics.

Read More Show Less