Victim: Berni Janssen

Berni JanssenSTT would like you to meet Berni Janssen who lives at the end of a valley that funnels the impact of 30 wind turbines from Waubra Wind Farm towards her home. There is audible noise from the turbines in certain weather conditions, but it is how she feels when the turbines are operating that has severely impacted on her sleep and ability to work as a project manager and a writer. Bernie also discusses the injustice of having to complain about wind farm annoyance to the wind farm company, who do nothing and argues that there needs to be an independent body established. Berni’s reasons for sharing her story: to limit the expansion of the Waubra wind farm and to alert unsuspecting rural people of what they can be in for if a wind farm is coming to a place near them (3.16).


Meet Berni Janssen a writer and project manager who lives near the Waubra Wind farm in Victoria.

We’re basically at the end of a valley. There’s 30 turbines in total that sort of angle towards us. We started off completely supervisor. Our whole lifestyle, everything that we have done is about minimising our footprint on the planet. I’ve been doing that for 30 years. This is going to be good for the community. It will be good for the farmers who are in the middle of the drought. It was a horrible time. I believed everything that I was told. I did not question one thing.

I lived in Inner City Melbourne, and trains, trams, all of that could go past and it wouldn’t wake me up. But what is more distinctive than the actual noise that you hear, it’s what you feel. It’s the feeling that your body vibrates, your chest vibrates. Your ears, you have pressure in your ears. You get head pressure. It has been absolute havoc with my work life because brain never reliably works anymore. I’m woken at night, so the next day, very lacklustre. I just wonder around in a great big fog.

I could handle large scale simultaneous events, organise. I’m talking about international conferences, large scale community projects. I could organise and write articles, write poetry, do it all at once. I think people don’t realise the emotional impact when you just don’t function in the way that you were used to functioning.

People do not like complaining. They don’t necessarily complain. They just think that it’s going to end up being more trouble than it’s worth. And anyway, why complain, because nobody listens to you. There needs to be an independent body, because there’s no doubt that the wind companies, what do they do? You ring them up, you say there’s a problem. They tick the box. They say, “Ah yes, we have had a complaint.” Tick. That’s all they have to do: tick a box. There’s been a complaint. We have rung them up. We have given them a complaint reference number. They don’t have to actually doing anything about it. Now it seems to me that there’s an incredible injustice here that a company is self-regulatory and they just don’t have to do anything.

There’s several reasons. One is that there was another wind farm. The extension was coming, and if we had an extension, it was not going to be possible to live here anymore. The other one that there was no way known that I wanted anyone else to experience what we have been experiencing.

You can experience more stories of people’s lives next to wind turbines here.

About stopthesethings

We are a group of citizens concerned about the rapid spread of industrial wind power generation installations across Australia.


  1. former green voter says:

    All praise to Bernie and other stout-hearted victims of the wind industry for their courage in speaking out. Your ‘strength in adversity’ is inspirational. Bernie’s description of the ‘complaints’ process highlights the complicity of government regulators to enable this abuse of power by corporate wind. It is a complicity that extends to EPAs, industry acousticians and elected representatives (with some notable exceptions).

    It is well past the time that the medical studies of impacted people adjacent industrial wind factories should have been done. It ought to be a wake up call to any fair minded citizen (including journalists) with little background in this issue to ask the question “Why haven’t there been any such independent medical-acoustic studies anywhere in the world?” What has the industry got to hide? What are they afraid of? The independant unbiased research and analysis of medical clinicians and acoustic scientists? Their profits? Liability? The truth?

    Let’s keep the Coalition to their promise of medical studies. Let’s do the science! We know that it is absolutely the right and fair thing to do because the industry both nationally and internationally has continued to resist truly independent medical and acoustic scrutiny so strenuously for so hard and so long! The industry and Greens are more interested in propaganda than proper research, as their recent Canberra grandstanding attests.

    And all praise to those politicians who had to courage to front the STT rally in Canberra. Well done, you have our vote. The sooner the election the better!

  2. It is bl**dy cruel, what the wind companies & the Governments are doing to the people that are suffering from these industrial wind turbines. The companys & the politicians that are allowing these turbines to operate, & giving the tick for new ones, should be thrown into the cooler for a few years, to see how they like their life style upset.

    If you did something like the above to an animal, you would be fined & a possibly receive a jail sentence.

    The greens & Labor are corrupt to allow this stupidity to carry on.


  3. Berni Janssen – Thank you for speaking out, on the down side of Wind Turbines. We have been trying to tell people for nearly 3 years now, as we have the same ill-effects that you are experiencing, as soon as the 37 Turbines came on-line in Waterloo, South Australia – and no one wants to listen.
    NOT GREEN, NOT CHEAP, NOT RELIABLE, and affect people and the environment badly.

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