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  • Emmet County 2 April 2013 Document No. MA1583-RPAC-001

    Wind Energy Systems Zoning Ordinance Acoustic Review

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    Wind Energy Systems Zoning Ordinance Acoustic Review

    Prepared for

    Emmet County

    Prepared by AECOM Australia Pty Ltd Level 9, 8 Exhibition Street, Melbourne VIC 3000, Australia T +61 3 9653 1234 F +61 3 9654 7117 www.aecom.com ABN 20 093 846 925

    2 April 2013

    AECOM in Australia and New Zealand is certified to the latest version of ISO9001 and ISO14001.

    AECOM Australia Pty Ltd (AECOM). All rights reserved.

    AECOM has prepared this document for the sole use of the Client and for a specific purpose, each as expressly stated in the document. No other party should rely on this document without the prior written consent of AECOM. AECOM undertakes no duty, nor accepts any responsibility, to any third party who may rely upon or use this document. This document has been prepared based on the Clients description of its requirements and AECOMs experience, having regard to assumptions that AECOM can reasonably be expected to make in accordance with sound professional principles. AECOM may also have relied upon information provided by the Client and other third parties to prepare this document, some of which may not have been verified. Subject to the above conditions, this document may be transmitted, reproduced or disseminated only in its entirety.

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    Quality Information Document Wind Energy Systems Zoning Ordinance

    Ref

    Date 2 April 2013

    Prepared by Andrew Mitchell and Simon Moore

    Reviewed by David Peoples

    Revision History

    Revision Revision Date Details Authorised

    Name/Position Signature

    0 Internal Draft

    1 02-Apr-2013 For Issue to Emmet County Andrew Mitchell Principal Acoustics Engineer

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    Table of Contents Executive Summary i 1.0 Introduction 1

    1.1 Background 1 1.2 Scope of Review 1

    2.0 Guidelines, Standards, and Literature 2 2.1 World Health Organization 2

    2.1.1 Night Noise Guidelines for Europe, 2009 2 2.1.2 Guidelines for Community Noise, 1999 2

    2.2 Michigan State 3 2.3 International Standards 4

    2.3.1 New Zealand Standard 6808:1998 4 2.3.2 New Zealand Standard 6808:2010 4 2.3.3 South Australian Wind Farms Environmental Noise Guidelines 5 2.3.4 Other International Criteria 6

    3.0 Letters, Comments, and Submissions 7 3.1 Review of Submissions Received by Emmet County 7 3.2 Michigan State University Extension Recommendation 7 3.3 The Potential Health Impact of Wind Turbines 8

    4.0 Review of Proposed WES Zoning Ordinance 9 5.0 Summary of Recommendations 16

    5.1 Noise Limits 16 5.2 Measurement and Assessment Methodology 16

    Appendix A Nomenclature A

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    i

    Executive Summary AECOM has been commissioned by Emmet County to undertake an acoustic review of proposed changes to the Wind Energy Systems (WES) section of the Emmet County Zoning Ordinance.

    A number of documents were reviewed as part of the work, including:

    - the existing and proposed noise sections of the Emmet County Zoning Ordinance

    - World Health Organization documents relating to night-time noise and community noise

    - Michigan State wind energy systems noise guidelines

    - International Standards and wind energy systems guidelines and regulations

    - recommendations by Michigan State University Extension Land Use Educator Kurt Schindler, and the study referenced in his recommendations

    - representations by Emmet County community to the proposed changes to the noise section of the zoning ordinance.

    In summary, the following is recommended:

    The recommendations for the noise limits are:

    - proceed with the proposed limit change to 40 dB(A)

    - consider the implementation of a high amenity 35 dB(A) criterion for low background noise areas or particularly noise sensitive areas

    - define the Maximum Noise Level as a 10-minute Equivalent Continuous Sound Pressure Level (Leq,10min)

    - remove the sentence This sound pressure level shall not be exceeded for more than three consecutive minutes during any hour of the day

    - consider nominating the assessment location to be within 100 feet of a noise sensitive building or place rather than the property line or lease unit boundary of the WES site in question.

    - define the measurement and assessment methodology for determining the ambient noise levels, and the operational WES noise levels.

    The recommendations for the measurement assessment and methodology are:

    - adopt the method to determine the ambient noise levels as defined in the South Australian Wind Farms Environmental Noise Guidelines (SA guidelines)

    - adopt the method to determine the wind energy systems noise levels as defined in the SA guidelines

    - adopt the method to assess the wind energy systems noise levels as defined in the SA guidelines

    - provide further guidance regarding seasonal variation and when to measure

    - include a requirement under the Maximum Noise Levels that the noise levels from the wind energy systems shall be free of special audible characteristics, when assessed in accordance with Appendix B of New Zealand Standard NZS 6808:2010.

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    1

    1.0 Introduction AECOM has been commissioned by Emmet County to undertake an acoustic review of the Wind Energy Systems (WES) section of the Emmet County Zoning Ordinance.

    1.1 Background The current requirements for WESs relating to noise as outlined in Section 2102-16 of the Emmet County Zoning Ordinance can be summarized as follows:

    - 35 dB(A) maximum noise level when measured at the property lines of the site in question. This is applicable for all classes of WES defined in the ordinance (i.e. WESs under 60 feet, WESs over 60 feet, and Utility Grid WESs).

    - WESs under 60 feet require a manufacturers specification sheet or similar documenting noise emission levels.

    - WESs over 60 feet require a noise report to be submitted with any application for a WES.

    - Utility Grid WESs require a noise report to be submitted with any application for a WES, which is prepared by a qualified professional and includes:

    a description and map of the projects noise-producing features including the range of expected noise levels, and the basis of expectation

    a description and map of the noise sensitive environment, within 2 miles of the proposed facility

    a survey and report that analyzes the pre-existing ambient noise (including seasonal variation) and the sensitive receptors located within 2 miles of the proposed site. Potential sensitive receptors at less windy or quieter locations than the project shall be emphasized and any problem areas identified

    a description and map of the cumulative noise impacts with any problem areas identified

    a description of the projects proposed noise control features and specific measures proposed to mitigate noise impacts for sensitive receptors

    The changes proposed by Emmet County are summarized as follows:

    - Inclusion of the definition of a Qualified Acoustics Professional

    - For all classes of WESs, increase the maximum noise level to the greater of:

    40 dB(A); or

    the ambient L90 sound pressure level plus 5 dB(A) between the hours of 6 am and 10 pm, and the ambient L90 sound pressure level between the hours of 10 pm and 6 am.

    - The maximum noise level for all classes of WESs shall not be exceeded for any more than three consecutive minutes in any one hour period.

    1.2 Scope of Review The scope of this review is as follows:

    - Review, analyse and make recommendations regarding Emmet Countys Wind Energy System portion of the Emmet County Zoning Ordinance.

    - Include scientific evidence and analyses supporting AECOMs recommendations.

    - Consider the documents, letters and comments that were provided to the Planning Commission in the review.

    - Consider recommendations provided by Michigan State University Extension Land Use Educator Kurt Schindlers recommendation and the study he referenced (The Potential Health Impact of Wind Turbines).

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    2.0 Guidelines, Standards, and Literature

    2.1 World Health Organization 2.1.1 Night Noise Guidelines for Europe, 2009

    In 2009 the World Health Organization (WHO) published the Night Noise Guidelines for Europe (NNG) as a result of research undertaken by a working group of experts in Europe to provide scientific advice for the d