News & Politics

Grassley Calls Trump's Claim that Wind Turbines Cause Cancer 'Idiotic'

Grassley Calls Trump's Claim that Wind Turbines Cause Cancer 'Idiotic'
Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, speaks during a Senate Judiciary Committee markup meeting on Capitol Hill, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2018, in Washington. .(AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley was piqued by Donald Trump’s comment at a fundraiser that wind turbines cause cancer. He said the president’s claim was “idiotic.”

The senator took it personally. In 1993, Grassley authored the Wind Energy Incentives Act of 1993, which provided wind energy tax credits. So, as the father of the wind energy industry, he would naturally feel slighted by the president’s statement.


President Donald Trump’s recent claim that noise from wind turbines causes cancer was “idiotic,” Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, said Wednesday.

Speaking at a fundraiser for Republicans in Washington Tuesday, Trump took aim at wind turbines — which he called windmills — and what he labeled the inadequacy of wind energy, saying at one point that “they say the noise (from wind turbines) causes cancer.” Scientific studies have not identified any human health risk from wind turbines.

Well, CNN, that’s not entirely accurate either. A study published last year found adverse health effects experienced by those who live near wind farms.

Heartland Institute:

A recent report by GateHouse Media examines reports of health-related problems by residents and landowners from Oregon to Massachusetts and concludes they are caused by the turbines.

The report, “In the Shadow of Wind Farms,” is an in-depth investigation of the wind industry’s effect on predominantly rural communities where turbines have been erected. During the course of the six-month investigation, the authors interviewed more than 70 families living near three-dozen proposed or current wind installations. They also spoke with 10 state and local lawmakers, examined hundreds of pages of public-service-commission records about wind-energy projects, reviewed court filings in seven wind-related lawsuits, and inspected lease agreements for at least eight wind facilities on private land.

The authors also combed public documents and media reports to identify 400 families living near industrial wind installations who have publicly complained about shadow flicker, noise, health problems, and misleading statements by wind companies soliciting agreements to place turbines on private land.

Yes, but cancer? Perhaps a better question would be is there anything these days that doesn’t cause cancer?

In truth, Grassley is right. It’s an idiotic, uninformed, unscientific thing to say. But Grassley is hardly the person to call Trump out for anything. The only reason wind supplies any percentage of energy in the U.S. is that it’s subsidized by you and me — the American taxpayer. Without that subsidy, wind energy couldn’t come close to competing with energy from fossil fuels.

There is a real benefit to be had from the turbines in that energy generated from the wind is clean and non-polluting. But in reality, it’s just not worth it.

Wind power is a young industry, and there are certain parts of the country where it might make sense to tap into wind power for some of our energy needs. As wind turbines become more efficient, the price of getting energy from them will go down. Perhaps some day it will be cheaper to get our electricity from the wind than oil or gas.

Until that time, stop the subsidies and let the market decide the fate of the industry. We know the 200,000 birds who are mashed up by wind turbine props every year will be grateful.