The European Union's utopian scheme of transforming itself into a green energy powerhouse is faltering as its fantasy plan is colliding with reality. As the EU's economic and financial crisis deepens and unemployment continues to rise, what used to be an almost all-embracing green consensus is beginning to disintegrate.
Nevertheless, the Scottish Government is right to try to take some of the heat out of the debate and grant a measure of protection to some of Scotland's most remote and beautiful landscape. Wind may be a precious national resource but so is the Scottish countryside.
Scottish and Southern Energy (SSE) claims its proposed wind farm development at Stronelairg above Fort Augustus wiill not impact on deep peat. However, the company admits in its environmental statement that a quarter of the site is on peat deeper than one and a half metres, with nearly a further quarter more than one metre.
Last week, we also lost two more of our major coal-fired power stations, forced to close down by an EU pollution directive - leading the head of our second-largest power company, SSE, to warn our generating capacity is being cut back so far that major blackouts may soon be inevitable.
There is some good news, however. As we report today, government sources have said that wind power subsidies are to be cut again. This is a move in the right direction and we very much welcome it.
When E.O. Wilson said "people would rather believe than know", he perfectly summed up the state of modern environmentalism; the movement which has been radicalised to the extent that its policies are now characterised by senseless agendas better described as anti-science, anti-business and even anti-human; rather than pro-environment.
Around lunchtime last Monday National Grid was showing that all our 4,300 wind turbines put together were providing barely a thousandth of the power we were using, a paltry 31MW ...successive governments have fallen for the delusion that we can depend for nearly a third of our future power on those useless and unreliable windmills.
Apart from being ugly, noisy, expensive, inefficient, destructive to wildlife and incapable of doing the one thing that notionally they're supposed to do - "reduce CO2" - they are also BLOODY DANGEROUS.
Harnessing the wind ...Yet more bad news. Miliband (again) presided over the issuing of contracts for the building of offshore windmills so biased in favour of the profiteers that even Labour's Margret Hodge, chairman of the Public Accounts Committee, calls them a licence to print money ...that will cost taxpayers seventeen billions pounds in exchange for pathetic amounts of electricity.
The perfect news to greet a freezing Britain today - energy bills are set to take another hike thanks to a series of dodgy wind energy contracts. According to today's Telegraph, a ‘shocking series of errors' has resulted in deals worth £17 billion stacked in the favour of turbine manufacturers. It appears the excessive costs of these contracts could be handed down to families, placing an extra strain on households at a time when family incomes are being pushed to the limit.
Official figures have revealed a catastrophic decline in Scottish tourism last year ...VisitScotland chairman Mike Cantlay has blamed the poor weather. Since when do tourists come to Scotland for the weather? ...This is the same tourism chief who claimed a few weeks ago that giant industrial wind turbines which now scar some of our most beautiful hills and glens are not a deterrent to tourists.
The subsidies paid to operate offshore wind turbines - the most expensive form of energy ever devised - will rise 16-fold to an annual £4.2 billion. The hated onshore turbines will also get huge new subsidies, at least doubling their number to about 6,500.
Even this underestimates the Bill's full burden, which is closer to £110 billion.
Another week and another war of words is being waged over our green and pleasant land. Last Thursday, Prince Charles told the Oxford Farming Conference that the countryside is "as precious as an ancient cathedral". Former poet laureate Andrew Motion, railed against the government's relaxation of planning rules that is threatening "our spiritual connection to woodland and wilderness".
Nowhere is this battle more heated than over the subject of wind turbines.
Why is the public not more aware of this carnage? First, because the wind industry (with the shameful complicity of some ornithological organisations) has gone to great trouble to cover it up - to the extent of burying the corpses of victims. Second, because the ongoing obsession with climate change means that many environmentalists are turning a blind eye to the ecological costs of renewable energy.
No more would I trade in blood diamonds or child pornography than I would accept money in any shape or form from Big Wind. The time is long since past when anyone complicit in this vile, corrupt, mendacious industry - not the lawyers, not the engineers, not the land agents, not the investors - could be unaware of the damage it does: to the landscape, to rural communities, to wildlife, to people's health, to the economy generally.
Openness and transparency were among the founding principles of the Scottish Parliament - yet Holyrood has been found wanting.
It emerged almost by accident that last month the First Minister misinformed MSPs about the number of jobs created by his renewable energy drive.
Mr Salmond insists it was an accidental slip ...But that clandestine corrections procedure gives as much cause for the concern as the First Minister's somewhat shaky grasp of basic facts and figures.
Inquiries by The Spectator have revealed a scam known as ‘de-rating'. Green businesses are modifying large turbines to make them less productive, because perverse government subsidies reward machines that produce less energy at nearly double the rate of more efficient ones.
The reason the industry is so corrupt is quite simply that without the lies it tells as a matter of course and without the cosy stitch-ups it arranges with regulators and politicians at taxpayers' expense, it simply would not exist.
The economic inefficiency of subsidies compounds the electrical inefficiency of wind farms. The U.K. should end its 200-percent subsidies for offshore wind farms, too - and the U.S. should follow suit by ending its own wind-power boondoggles.
I have been following this extraordinary story for ten years ever since, in 2002, I first began looking carefully at what really lay behind this deceptive obsession with the charms of wind power. It didn't take me long, talking to experts and reading up on the technical facts, to see that the fashionable enthusiasm for wind energy was based on a colossal illusion.