I feel sorry for the residents of Milton-on-Stour because I think they could very well have quite a fight on their hands.
They seem to be most worried about the visual effect of their turbines but, believe you me, that is only one worry of many.
I remember some time ago I went to repair two buses at Cambourne, in Cornwall.
I fixed the first one only to find the other one was in Truro, so I decided to drive the first one over to Truro to see it.
On the way, I suddenly heard what I can only describe as a great “whooshing” noise. I quickly pulled into a layby only to discover the noise was coming from a wind farm half to one mile away.
That the noise was heard above the noise of a double-decker bus engine will tell you just how bad it was!
I note that Ecotricity says that it will power 9,000 homes. It won’t. More like 2,000 would be nearer the mark.
Wind turbines, on average, give about 20 per cent of their maximum power over any a three-month period.
Don’t take my word for it, look at the Danish website www.windpower.org. It shows graphs which indicate average power output.
Have you also noticed how shy these windpower companies are about giving actual output? The truth is, if they did, it would paint a very depressing picture.
An average turbine gives a maximum power output of about1MW. That is one million watts of power. Hinkley Point gives out a reliable 1220MW of power 24 hours a day.
Therefore, even if the turbines gave out their maximum power all the time, you would need 1,220 turbines just to replace Hinkley Point.
However, as turbines give out on average only one-fifth of their maximum you would need about 6,000 turbines to replace Hinkley!
To replace a Drax coal-powered station, you would need 24,000 turbines. Hence the shyness of wind-power companies.
I am aware that there are now some monster turbines that will give out 3MW but it is still pretty pathetic.
Also, of course, no conventional power stations could be closed as they would be required to give power when there is no wind.
28 February 2008
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