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Multi-story farm buildings, grain silos, and trees look small compared to the two multimegawatt wind turbines.
This is an excerpt from the Fourth Quarter 2013 edition of the Wind Program R&D Newsletter.

The U.S. Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and the University of Connecticut analyzed more than 122,000 home sales near 26 wind facilities (more than 1,500 of which were located within a mile of operating turbines) in the densely populated State of Massachusetts but found no evidence of impacts to home property values.

"This is the third of three major studies we have conducted on this topic (the first was published in 2009 and the second in August 2013), and in all studies (using three different datasets), we found no statistical evidence that operating wind turbines have had any measureable impact on home sales prices," said Ben Hoen, co-author of Relationship between Wind Turbines and Residential Property Values in Massachusetts and researcher in the Environmental Energy Technologies Division of Berkeley Lab.

One of the unique contributions of this most recent study is that it not only investigated the impacts from turbines but also a suite of other environmental amenities and disamenities. The study found strong evidence that highways, major roads, electricity transmission lines, open space, and beaches impact property values, but no similar evidence was uncovered for turbines.

"When we find our model so accurately predicts impacts from other amenities and disamenities, we are considerably more confident of our findings for turbines," said Carol Atkinson-Palombo, the report's lead author and assistant professor in the Department of Geography at the University of Connecticut.

This study, the most comprehensive to date in terms of the number of transactions, builds on the Berkeley Lab study released in August 2013, which investigated more than 50,000 home sales near 67 wind facilities in 27 counties across 9 states. That study, as well as a number of other academic and published U.S. studies, generally found no measureable impacts near operating turbines.

"Although there have been claims of significant property value impacts near operating wind turbines that regularly surface in the press or in local communities, strong evidence to support those claims has consistently failed to materialize in all of the major U.S. studies conducted thus far," said Hoen.

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