Library from UK
According to the Daily Mail, government advisers believe the environmental cost of making, transporting and installing domestic turbines usually outweighs their benefits in built-up areas. They say that wind speeds in towns and cities are simply too low to produce enough energy to justify their installation. It is the latest finding to show how apparently "green" lifestyles can be less environmentally friendly than they seem. The latest finding comes from the Building Research Establishment Trust, which advises the Government and the private sector on energy efficiency.
Shetland holds almost half of Britain's breeding red-throated divers. A survey of breeding red-throated divers in Shetland, carried out in 1994, found only 389 breeding pairs, a 40 per cent decline since the previous full survey in 1983. Shetland holds approximately1.5 per cent of the British breeding population of merlins, approximately 20 pairs. Consultation is on going to reduce the impact of the development especially on the breeding red-throated divers, which are considered to be particularly liable to collision with wind turbines. ...In the words of the RSPB: "The RSPB views climate change as the most serious threat to birds and their habitats, and sees renewable energy as one way to alleviate this threat. However, it would be entirely self defeating to advocate building wind farms right in the middle of our most important wildlife areas." ...Anybody that thinks developments like this are acceptable obviously don't care less about the wildlife and natural environment around them.
Paterson said although alternative energies would undoubtedly become very important in years to come, there was "little clarity" in the sector at the moment. Many fundamental questions remain about how to best capture and transmit energy from natural sources, making it difficult to assess the potential effectiveness of new innovations. However, Paterson said the biggest barrier was the fact that the sector is heavily regulated and influenced by government. Much of the current interest in alternative energies is being driven by strong support from Europe, the UK and the Scottish Government. "But from an investor's point of view, we have got to think about the long term," Paterson said. "What happens if the government changes, or priorities shift?"
'A Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors study suggests local house prices drop by around 20 per cent when a wind farm application is submitted. If a house in the vicinity was once worth Pounds 350,000, it will now be worth Pounds 50,000 to Pounds 70,000 less,' he says. Mr Barlow is one of the leaders of the Stop Wadlow Wind Farm campaign, a group of 300 local residents opposing plans for what he describes as '13 vast, noisy turbines, each one taller than Big Ben, and visible over an area of more than 300 square miles'. ...While some estate agents claim turbines have a negative impact on prices, many others see them as an inevitable feature of the future landscape. And farmers, on whose land the turbines are often built, can certainly profit from wind.
Environment minister Mike Russell has denied that Scottish Natural Heritage caved in to political pressure to withdraw its objection to a wind farm in west Caithness. The rebuttal came as a prominent local ornithologist claimed that an internationally important flock of geese would be endangered if the 21-turbine development on farmland near Westfield got the go-ahead. The controversial application lodged by Baillie Wind Farm Limited is the subject of a special Highland Council planning hearing in Halkirk on Tuesday. Mr Russell was challenged about the surprise removal of SNH's long-standing objection. ..."SNH have a stack of reports done by Stan of the area covered by the wind farm but none of that material appears to have been used to base their decision to withdraw its objection," Mr Craig said. "This is independent data verified over the years by an expert and they have chosen to ignore it - I think that is appalling."
Remember that the threat to birds is a very small (but highly significant) part of the whole Shetland windfarm issue. If we include the negative effects on tourism, house prices, visibility, noise, quality of life, peat disturbance, run-off, environmental quality, Shetland's wilderness - as well as debatable CO2 savings, the need for 90 per cent fossil fuel back up due to intermittence and the doubling of the price of electricity (Denmark experience) it is hard to understand how the project has got past first base. Last week at PM questions, an English MP succinctly summed up the situation with windfarms. He said 'windfarms are being opposed by local people but being imposed on them by the authorities'. This is exactly what is happening in Shetland. It has to be stopped.
Councillors in Conwy have voted to refuse planning permission for the development of a windfarm near Cerrigydrudion. Mwdwl Eithin, situated in the heart of the countryside, was the proposed site of a 12 turbine wind farm by developer Nuon, but at the last planning meeting county councillors decided not to grant the application. Their decision went against the recommendation of local authority planning officers, but represented the views of the majority of local residents. ..."Wind farms should only be developed when they are supported by local communities. "Everyone would agree for the need for more sustainable and renewable energy and wind power certainly has a role to play, but there must be sensitivity to the effects of wind farms on local communities and their impact on the countryside, particularly in relation to tourism."
"The Ministry of Defence expresses its strongest possible opposition to this proposal. "The one and only basis of its opposition is that this proposal will have a serious adverse effect on the operation and effectiveness of the Air Defence Radar System of the United Kingdom through its effect upon the radar at Brizlee Wood." The Ministry of Defence also submitted a condition to the inquiry, that, should the wind farm proposal be approved by inspector Alan Novitzky, the ultimate decision on the erection of the wind farm should lie with the Air Officer of Battleship movement, who is described as the "person best capable of making the judgement as to the effect upon the efficacy on the air defence system caused by the proposed development".
Rising high above the water, the two gleaming white structures look like an outsize art installation. But they have a more practical purpose: Each is a giant wind turbine, part of a British project that could prove a breakthrough for wind power around the globe. Among the dwindling oil and gas fields of the North Sea, Britain has built the world's biggest wind turbines -- each has blades longer than a football field -- in the Moray Firth, a large inlet off the rugged east coast of Scotland. What's unusual about the effort is its dimensions: While existing offshore wind projects tend to be in shallow waters close to the coast, the Moray Firth venture is expected to culminate in the first offshore wind farm in deep water (150 feet) far from land (15 miles). ...So far, even in Scotland, offshore wind is in its infancy. There are only 1,200 megawatts of offshore wind-power capacity installed globally, with Denmark, the world leader, accounting for about a third of that. Britain, with 400 megawatts, is in second place, but has big ambitions.
Objectors have pledged to "vigorously oppose" the planned £75 million 20turbine Davidstow community wind farm plan - despite major changes to the scheme aimed at appeasing protestors.Community Windpower Ltd says it has now redesigned the wind farm proposals planned for Davidstow Woods as a result of earlier consultation with the community. ..."Our initial reaction is that these revisions would reduce neither the proliferation of wind turbines in North Cornwall, nor the adverse effect which these huge machines would have on the local landscape and wildlife."
We've been inundated with letters and emails about the plans to site eight 125 metre high wind turbines near Baumber. Here's some of the letters we couldn't fit in this week's paper.
A controversial wind farm proposal for the Outer Hebrides should be further scaled down until it contains one-fifth of the turbines originally proposed, planning officials have recommended. A report to be put to councillors next week urges the proposed £200m development on the Pairc Estate on Lewis should contain 26 turbines. In June, Scottish and Southern Energy announced it was scaling down the number of turbines from 125 to 57 but that they would be bigger than those originally planned. ...In total, 31 turbines are being recommended for deletion, leaving a remainder of 26 turbines, which would produce 93.6 megawatts of electricity.
Councillor David Markinson put forward a motion to the council asking it to oppose any proposed wind farms in the district, because he claims there are doubts about the efficiency and environmental benefits. ...Mr Markinson's motion to the council said: "In light of the increasing doubts about the efficiency and environmental effects of onshore wind farms, this council resolves to oppose any further proposals in west Norfolk until further substantial evidence becomes available."
Work on a controversial £50m wind farm has been delayed after builders discovered they had the wrong size bolts. ...A set of blades was due to be fitted to one of the controversial Blackpool Tower-sized turbines at Scout Moor near Rochdale. But construction was held up when workers found that some of the bolts sent to the site were not the right size. ...In total, there will be 26 turbines - each one 518ft - in a development which has provoked angry protests from residents.
A PUBLIC meeting has been called to discuss controversial proposals to erect 13 wind turbines across a swathe of Fenland countryside. Peterborough City Council planning chiefs are currently assessing applications for two separate schemes on neighbouring strips of land abutting the Cambridgeshire border. ...Mr Potts said: "We respectfully ask that any application for wind turbines is taken after the findings of Defra's investigation. We do not want the Fens to become a dumping ground for these inefficient systems."
Residents are raging over plans for a huge wind farm. Around 10 turbines nearly as big as Blackpool Tower have been planned for a site near Marton. ...residents oppose the plans. They claim, ..."The desire to build wind farms is not based on local needs but is driven by the profit motives of the companies and by the greed and selfishness of the landowners involved.
Derek Gilpin, who owns a shop on Arlecdon Road, said villagers would be rallying around to get more information about the effects of windfarms and what they can do to oppose the plans. He said: “Everyone who I spoke to was 100 per cent against it. I have not found anyone for it. They are a blot on the landscape and they don’t work for the small amount they put in. “Everyone is against them here. If they go up they are likely to be on the crest of the hill at Moresby Moss. We will be able to see them from our house. It will be about three- quarters of a mile away. “The meeting was the company’s way of trying to sell them to people. Local people have been meeting with scientists to get more information.”
Villagers who have already fought plans to build three wind farms near their homes are preparing for another battle. Protesters in Gedney Hill are holding a public meeting today to discuss the possibility of another wind farm application near their homes. Spanish firm IBERDROLA UK has sent a scoping report to South Holland District Council to find out about the viability of building up to ten turbines at Langary Gate, near Gedney Hill.
NINE appeals have been made against Meridian Energy's resource consent application to build 176 wind turbines on the Lammermoor range. Environment Court case manager Chris Jordan said more appeals could be lodged but it seemed most appellants had received hearing results on or before November 1. ...Contact Energy wants a condition in the consents to guarantee Otago's transmission lines can handle output from the development before the turbines start generating.
A COMPANY planning a wind farm on a Northumberland moor has been accused of exaggerating the scheme's benefits. Renewable energy expert Dr John Constable argued npower renewables had overstated the generation potential of 18 turbines at Middlemoor, near Alnwick. Dr Constable, director of policy and research for the Renewable Energy Foundation, said the 125-metre turbines near South Charlton would not be able to supply 27,600 homes as stated by the company. A more realistic figure, he told a public inquiry at Alnwick's Northumberland Hall, would be less than a third of that - 7,200 homes.