Library filed under Transmission from Europe
A controversial giant windfarm which has finally been given approval will not be built unless a 200 mile sub-sea connection links Shetland to the mainland, according to the industry.
Werner Dietrich, mayor of Grossenlüder, said his tolerance was running out. During the information meeting in his town, he drew on a traditional German expression to explain his frustration with the stream of energy projects. “Every few years we are chasing another pig through the village,” Mr. Dietrich said, to resounding applause.
The UK government's plan to build thousands of new off-shore wind turbines along the British coast are in doubt after energy regulators announced that wind farm companies do not have the right to force their way onto people's land to lay cables.
Fresh calls are being made for parts of the Brechfa Connection wind farm power lines route to be placed under ground on the outskirts of Carmarthen. Town councillors said the wooden H-frames proposed to cross the River Towy, near Abergwili Bridge, will be a blight on the landscape and affect the Towy Valley.
‘The falling value of land, farms and homes; loss of earnings in agriculture and tourism; health implications; the destruction of natural beauty spots; the conservation of local heritage – these are all very real fears that local communities now have.’
Councillors backed their current stance to oppose the plans vehemently on the grounds that communities across the area will still be affected. National Grid announced it plans to bury eight of the 33 miles of 400 kv line that will be needed if windfarm developers win permission to build a network of sites across north Powys through the Meifod valley between Welshpool and Oswestry.
But renewable companies argue that this system was brought in before many wind farms were built, and was designed to encourage generators to site fossil fuel power stations within reasonable distances of towns and cities. This option is not generally available to windfarms, which are often better sited on hills and offshore.
Opponents to the scheme, which is due for completion next year, say it will further industrialise the local landscape and encourage yet more wind farm projects in a region they claim to be already saturated. "If this goes through, the whole area is going to be industrialised."
Renewables already added a 47 percent surcharge to electric bills at the beginning of this year. Now we're going to see something worse. The big, power-consuming manufacturers have been exempted from these charges so they can stay competitive with the rest of the world, but everyone else is going to bear the brunt.
Germany considers itself the environmental conscience of the world: with its nuclear phase-out and its green energy transition, the federal government wanted to give the world a model to follow. However, blinded by its own halo Germany overlooked that others have to pay for this green image boost and are suffering as a result.
Insurers are increasingly concerned about the mounting number of expensive cable-installation claims in offshore wind projects, with the large number of incidents put down to a complex mix of human factors and technical issues.
Sudden fluctuations in Germany's power grid are causing major damage to a number of industrial companies. While many of them have responded by getting their own power generators and regulators to help minimize the risks, they warn that companies might be forced to leave if the government doesn't deal with the issues fast.
The scheme is part of a £200billion programme to switch to ‘green' energy and build nuclear power stations to meet targets to cut carbon emissions. This wider scheme will also be funded by higher bills for families and businesses. The network of pylons is expected to trigger disputes amid fears that beautiful views will be destroyed.
Germany's revolutionary switch to renewable energies is stalling and the country's new environment minister has now admitted as much by casting doubt on the ambitious goals set last year. Media commentators say that he and the rest of Chancellor Merkel's government must do more.
A spokesman for RWE Innogy--the company's renewable energies unit--said that the company has been notified by grid operators TenneT TSO GmbH that there will be additional, unquantified, delays, and that its planned Nordsee Ost wind farm now faces delays of considerably over 12 months.
Germany's energy revolution has hardly begun, but it's already running out of steam. There is a lack of political decisiveness and companies are complaining of a dearth of incentives to invest billions in necessary infrastructure. Progress or no progress, taxpayers continue footing the bill.
Grid operators are not given sufficient financial incentives to connect wind farms to the grid. There is a lack of co-ordination among the authorities as to who is responsible for what. ..."I'm pessimistic for the time after 2015 if nothing changes. No one will go on investing if the grid link is as uncertain as it is now, neither E.on nor others."
Long new lines would carry wind power across the nation to industrial and population centers along the Rhine River from existing wind power farms in the former East Germany and proposed offshore wind turbine clusters. Other direct-current (DC) connections may run under the North Sea.
Germany's dream of converting to renewable power generation requires the construction of unsightly new overland power lines carried by masts 80 meters tall. Citizens' groups and local authorities are resisting the projects in a campaign that poses risks for Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives.
Europe's energy consumers must pay 20 cents per kWh generated, plus an additional 5 cents per kWh for transmission costs. They must pay this regardless of whether they need the electricity at the moment, and despite the fact that a kWh of wind electricity is worth less than 3 cents on the Leipzig Power Exchange, due to the intermittent and highly variable nature of wind.