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Wind subsidies disaster

Recent comment on wind farm subsidies has exposed the disastrous way in which the Westminster government has been supporting renewable energy development. Millions of pounds of subsidy is pouring into the coffers of multi-national energy companies while grave doubts remain on how much renewable energy is actually being produced and how best it can be fed into the national grid.

No account is being taken of the damage being done to the finest wild landscapes of western Europe, the consequences for Scottish tourism or the impact on local communities.

This issue should be put before anyone hoping to be elected at the next general election. The existing financial support regime for wind power needs to be replaced with a scheme which encourages future large-scale wind power developments to be located offshore, with subsea grid connections to England and other countries.

Local communities and the landscape should be the main beneficiaries of wind power generation, not the energy companies.

Ramblers’ Association Scotland

As a retired chartered engineer, I have great sympathy with any non-technical member of the public trying to make sense of all the arguments put for or against wind farms which include references to installed capacity, load factor, efficiency, renewables etc.

All the public need to know is that when all these factors are assessed impartially by those with the necessary knowledge, the simplified conclusion is wind farm power stations are not worth the spaces allocated to them on our mountain ranges and moorlands.

Unfortunately, the political manipulation involved with wind farm power stations means most public comment comes from politically motivated organisations. Comment from all political pressure groups and single-issue lobbyists needs to be regarded as unreliable unless confirmed from other more responsible sources.

Easter Currie Place

The Scotsman

3 September 2007