Alex White! How? What? Why?

Alex White - Oyster

Despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary, as described here and here and here (and more where that came from), the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, Alex White, when asked about public concerns over wind farms, today told the Irish public on national radio that “There is no evidence to suggest there are adverse effects of a health nature” (Alex White 13.15hrs RTE Radio 1   29.11.2015).

Minister White is a barrister, not a doctor, and therefore clearly he is not basing this conclusion on personal research. He relies on his staff to properly brief him before he makes media appearances, so who briefed him and with what?

It is unsettling to think that national policy might be based on misinformation and out-of-date / biased / untrustworthy research, but this certainly seems to be the case.

About Neil van Dokkum

Neil van Dokkum (B. SocSc; LLB; LLM; PGC Con.Lit) Neil is a law lecturer and has been so since arriving in Ireland from South Africa in 2002. Prior to that Neil worked in a leading firm of solicitors from 1987-1992, before being admitted as an Advocate of the Supreme Court of South Africa (a barrister) in 1992. He published three books in South Africa on employment law and unfair dismissal, as well as being published in numerous national and international peer-reviewed journals. Neil currently specialises in employment law, medical negligence law, family law and child protection law. He dabbles in EU law (procurement and energy). Neil retired from full-time practice in 2002 to take up a lecturing post. He has published three books since then, “Nursing Law for Irish Students (2005); “Evidence” (2007); and “Nursing Law for Students in Ireland” (2011). His current interest is the area of disability as a politico-economic construct. Neil is very happily married to Fiona, and they have two sons, Rory and Ian.
This entry was posted in Paudie Coffey; series compensation; Fine Gael; Alan Kelly; Alex White, Wind Turbine Syndrome; Professor Alun Evans and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Alex White! How? What? Why?

  1. fclauson says:

    In the battle of Copenhagen 1801 history records that Horatio Nelson is quoted as saying – having placed the telescope in front of his non functioning eye – “I see no ships” (or some say “I see no signal”) because he had the belief that he knew better than the his fleet commander with the moves he was making (which ended up with him winning the battle). Had he followed orders Nelson’s ships would have been forced to retreat across the line of fire from a still-active section of the Danish difference which might have caused him some casualties.

    Is Minister Alex White doing the same thing – plugging on with the wind farm program and ignoring the signals because to not do so would get him in the cross fire of the EU fines for failing to meet some barmy renewable target.

    Some say Nelson was reckless – and some say he was courageous – his gamble paid off.

    What of Minister Whites gamble with people’s health – will it pay off or will he flounder?

    In a letter dated 11-Nov-2015 from Mister White wrote to Senator Paul Coghlan from which I quote

    Regarding the concerns voiced by Mr. De Haas, it should be noted that existing noise control. practices for wind farms in Ireland are in conformity to the relevant international standards. Also, wind turbines are among the quieter large scale power generation technologies and wind farm projects, executed according to current industry standards and guidance, maintain the quiet environment at nearby residences that is required by national and European environmental noise regulations. Finally, recent international medical studies have indicated no adverse health effects from wind turbine noise.

    as you can imagine I was very unhappy at this given the vast amount of information about health issues and wind farms. Importantly because neither the DCNER nor the DoE have consulted the Dept of Health on any issues to do with wind farms and health (this was recently repeated and confirmed in a parliamentary question)

    So I raised an AIE which reads for which I should have a response by Christmas.

    Could you please provide:
    1. copies or references (web links etc) to the aforementioned medical studies
    2. The analysis and notes made by any Irish Government Medically Qualified Official concerning the validity of these studies
    3. Copies of the findings and report provided to the Irish Government on which it made the assessment that these studies indicated “no adverse health effects”

    Minister White is either acting like Nelson or he is ill informed by his civil servants or worse …..

    To say “There is no evidence to suggest there are adverse effects of a health nature” is factually wrong.

    To quote the dictionary
    Evidence = “ground for belief or disbelief; data on which to base proof or to establish truth or falsehood”

    There is a raft of evidence – some believable some not so believable – but to say there is “no evidence to suggest” moves fact from the truthful honest kind to the rather more unbelievable kind

    I await the response to my AIE request.

  2. Neil van Dokkum says:

    Good analogy Francis. At least Nelson had the brains to know he was blind in that eye. Alex seems to be using his blind eye unwittingly in all his decision making! Well done on the FOI request, I look forward to hearing the result.

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