Wind farms: criminal charges for torture?
Public Statement from the Waubra Foundation:
Public Officials At Risk of Criminal Charges for Torture, by Ignoring Prolonged Sleep Deprivation from Environmental Noise
All public officials involved in the investigation, assessment and regulation of environmental noise, or in giving authoritative advice on that matter, are at personal risk of being charged with a serious criminal offence under Australian law, based on international human rights covenants and conventions, if their actions and decisions lead to, or are complicit in, prolonged sleep deprivation for residents in excessive noise impacted communities. (1)
[Our comment: it goes without saying that this applies not only to Australian public officials, but to those of other countries that have adopted international human rights covenants and conventions.]
Prolonged Sleep Deprivation Confirmed As A Method Of Torture
The UN Committee Against Torture (UN CAT) has explicitly identified prolonged sleep deprivation as a method of torture. The Committee had this to say about the impact of prolonged sleep deprivation:
“The Committee against Torture (CAT) has noted that sleep deprivation used for prolonged periods constitutes a breach of the CAT, and is primarily used to break down the will of the detainee. Sleep deprivation can cause impaired memory and cognitive functioning, decreased short term memory, speech impairment, hallucinations, psychosis, lowered immunity, headaches, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, stress, anxiety and depression. (2)
The Physicians for Human Rights also consider sleep deprivation as well as sensory bombardment with noise to be methods of torture, and list the clinical evidence of the harm to physical and mental health, and the legal precedents to support this opinion in their document “Leave No Marks”. (3)
We therefore bring to the attention of all public officials, including elected officials and public servants, that if they are complicit in allowing torture and cruel inhuman and degrading treatment to occur, or to continue, this behaviour is punishable with criminal offences, under the provisions of the UN Convention Against Torture, to which Australia is a signatory.
Article 4 of the UN Convention Against Torture and Cruel, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment states:
- “Each State Party shall ensure that all acts of torture are offences under its criminal law. The same shall apply to an attempt to commit torture and to an act by any person which constitutes complicity or participation in torture.
- Each State Party shall make these offences punishable by appropriate penalties which take into account their grave nature. (18)”
[Our comment: most countries have enacted international human rights covenants and conventions. It behooves everyone concerned by sleep disruption issues at wind farms to check the applicable legislation in their respective countries regarding human rights and torture, and complain to the public officials involved in the approval of wind farms which are known to cause this form of torture. And no, the word is not too strong. We know a number of windfarm neighbours who have contemplated suicide and may some day act upon it. Others, no doubt, already have, but this is something their families may not be willing to speak about.]
There is no legal excuse for any public official to allow torture to occur, not even “following orders”.
[Our comment: this point is really important, and windfarm victims should consult it with their lawyers.]
[The Waubra Foundation concludes:]
Legal action may be initiated at any time in the future against individuals who have authorized, participated in or advised activities constituting torture.
[Our comment: viewed from another angle, windfarm victims are being experimented upon without their informed consent, which is against the provisions of the Nuremberg code. Curt Devlin gave a powerful talk at Falmouth about this: VIDEO: experimenting on windfarm neighbours .]
1) – (1) Information about the variety of sources of environmental night time noise including coal mines, gas fired power stations, gas fired power stations, CSG field compressors and wind turbines is detailed here: http://waubrafoundation.org.au/resources/environmental-noise-sleep-deprivation-torture-september-2014/
2) – http://waubrafoundation.org.au/resources/un-convention-against-torture/
Original source for this quote is at: http://thejusticecampaign.org/?page_id=273#T2
3) – http://waubrafoundation.org.au/resources/physicians-for-human-rights-leave-no-marks/
This document can also be sourced from the Physicians for Human Rights website library at: http://physiciansforhumanrights.org/library/reports/leave-no-marks-report-2007.html
18) – http://waubrafoundation.org.au/resources/un-convention-against-torture/
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