Wind farms are an expensive waste of taxpayers’ money, says North Shropshire MP Owen Paterson, who feels the push to the alternative power source is misguided.
He said it is not possible to run a serious country on wind power, and feels the huge amount of money being invested is a total waste.
The sum of £32billion is being spent on wind power up to 2027.
“Instead, we could make enormous efficiency gains on insulation or water power which would work, and has worked, for centuries,” said Mr Paterson.
“These also work for 24 hours a day, whereas wind is totally unreliable.
“It’s only really windy here for two or three months a year so wind power needs a conventional back-up, and it is incredibly difficult to blend wind power into the national grid.
“Wind power causes huge environmental damage, vast concrete bases have to be installed and there are complicated chemicals in the towers which are an eyesore.”
He said wind farms damage the value of houses nearby and are a danger to helicopters.
He feels the massive subsidy from the Government is due to its desire to please the wind lobby, and says planning changes hare being brought in to force through planning applications for wind farms.
Mr Paterson has asked the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform a series of questions about the costs and the energy that will be going into schemes before they are up and running.
He has asked for an estimate of the quantity of steel and concrete required to build sufficient wind turbines needed to supply the energy needed to meet targets.
He has also requested estimates of the quantity of steel and concrete needed to build and develop the infrastructure, including access roads, to service wind turbines, and for the number of full-time equivalent jobs needed to build the farms.
Mr Paterson also asked what would be the cost of decommissioning wind turbines and restoring sites to their original conditions.
He also wants to know what assessment has been made of the impact of wind farms on tourism, and has asked for an estimate of the number of days annually on which wind speed is insufficient to provide any usable power from wind generation in each area where wind farms are located.
By Gill Broad
3 January 2008
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