Only those in complete self-denial would dispute that the wind power industry suffers from overcapacity, a legacy of the pre-crisis turbine construction boom when oil and gas prices were at near-record levels and few had yet appreciated the competitive challenge of shale gas.
In the fat years, wind and solar power companies were tempted into extravagant investments that exploited their soaring equity prices.
The attractions of the "anti-wind" letter are emphasised by the apparent difficulty in organising a counter-demonstration of support. Heaton-Harris took just three days to collect his signatures; weeks later, nobody has got an equal number of MPs to sign support for onshore wind - although a group of pro-renewable interests is mustering backing from more predictable interests, including renewable companies and environmental campaigners.
This powerful piece written by Maurice Newman, former chairman of Deutsche Bank, the Australian Securities Exchange and, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation is a must read by anyone involved in the wind energy debate.
Energy produced at a horrendous cost that drains the budgets of households and depresses spending elsewhere is neither a rational energy gain nor a "stimulus boost". It is edifice economics, founded on sleight of hand taxation and powered by a gale of hope. We are going to need more than this to have a hope of keeping the lights on.
The impact on the people and the beautiful countryside of Mid Wales and Shropshire will be devastating. 800 of these structures in the area proposed is completely and wholly out of proportion. If localism means anything at all, the ruination of the hills should be taken by bodies accountable locally. The macro-economic alleged advantages are, as KPMG point out, a total illusion.
No one would build wind turbines unless they were guaranteed a huge government subsidy paid for through household bills. If the 10,000 wind turbines, as promised by the government are built, then customers can expect their bills to rise by hundreds of pounds. Of course the government and the power companies will ensure that these "green taxes" are not detailed on the bills. What will we be left with when the subsidies run out?
History — of the U.S., Europe, the U.K. and its former dominions — repeatedly shows that environmental protection is a luxury good. ...This all splatters to a halt when economies go south. And the crash can be especially jarring if greenness is one of the causes. Thanks in no small part to the debacle in Europe, in a very few recent weeks, we have witnessed the great green crack-up.
Taxpayers face higher electricity bills and an economy that is damaged because its costs have been artificially inflated by the decision to use wind as a principal source of power. It is a ludicrous situation. ...the commitment to wind power is based on dogma, not evidence. But the truth is that you can't meet a country's energy needs from dogma - as ministers will discover soon enough.
Alas, despite all the practical evidence to show why wind power is one of the greatest follies of our age, those who rule our lives, from our own politicians and officials here in Britain to those above them in Brussels, seem quite impervious to the facts.
Unsurprisingly, planning officers and their committees have taken an increasingly sceptical view of applications. Too often, energy companies have held back key information. They have used bullying tactics, and regularly characterise those who have raised concerns about effects on human lives, the impact on landscape and wildlife, as selfish and trivial-minded.
The policy on which our national energy strategy is now centred is a ludicrously expensive, self-defeating joke, says Christopher Booker.
Apart from anything else, by 2020 our Government expects us to pay £100 billion for a further 10,000 useless, subsidised windmills, plus £40 billion to connect them to the National Grid. These costs alone would almost double our present electricity bills.
Welcome to the neo-medieval world of Britain's energy policy. It is a world in which Highland glens are buzzing with bulldozers damming streams for miniature hydro plants, in which the Dogger Bank is to be dotted with windmills at Brobdingnagian expense, in which Heathrow is to burn wood trucked ...We are going back to using the landscape to generate our energy. Bad news for the landscape.
Mr Davies described how the problem is not only the turbines, but the need for two vast substations and 100 miles of steel pylons, up to 150ft high, to carry the electricity into Shropshire to connect with the National Grid. But although he may have spoken eloquently about the visual and social impact of this project, he failed to spell out its nonsensical economic implications.
The wind industry has traditionally claimed that turbines have an average capacity of around 30 per cent, but the research shows this is much closer to 20 per cent. Even more disturbing, data shows that between November 2008 and December 2010 turbines operated below 20% their capacity more than half of the time and below 10% for more than a third of the time.
The renewable energy industry is delighted when politicians set ambitious targets. It knows promises later have to be backed up with the regulatory, planning and pricing regimes that ensure they're kept. How realistic is 100% of electricity from renewable sources?
The John Muir Trust is a wild land conservation charity. SNH statistics show that the percentage of Scotland's natural landscape visually unaffected by built development dropped from 41% in 2002 to 28% in 2009.
This was mostly due to industrial-scale wind developments and infra-structure.
Nothing illustrates the distance between the political culture and reality in modern governments so much as the billions invested in wind power. Presumably the purpose of such investments is to a) reduce greenhouse emissions and b) reduce dependence on fossil fuels. The plain fact that it increases both seems not to have bothered anyone.
While appropriately sited wind farms have a contribution to make both to our energy security and to our low carbon goals as part of a mix of renewable sources, they should not be imposed on unwilling communities outside of a full and proper democratic process.
Despite the bullish statements, the wind industry remains vulnerable on Government kindness, in the shape of feed-in tariffs (FITs). If consumers' desire for cheap energy was allowed to be met by the market, it would lift millions of poor people out of fuel poverty.