Water company bosses have been challenged to show the public that their £6 million wind turbine scheme is more than just hot air.
At a meeting, Yorkshire Water bosses were told people would be “cynical” and “sceptical” about their giant turbine plan because so many others were lying idle.
The company wants to replace its four ageing turbines at Chelker, near Addingham, with two 400ft-high ones.
During a presentation to Addingham Parish Council, Coun Alan Jerome said the company would have to convince the public the turbines would actually be working much of the time.
Richard Sears, corporate affairs manager for Yorkshire Water, said: “I don’t think Yorkshire Water would have committed £6 million of customers’ money to these without having a certain degree of confidence that they will do what they want them to do.”
Yorkshire Water project manager Mike Ward said: “Having invested £6 million, our expectation is that these turbines will run, given the wind. Down-time is going to cost Yorkshire Water money.”
Yorkshire Water also made a presentation at Draughton Parish Council.
Jane Markham, clerk of Draughton Parish Council, said: “We want to make sure that the two turbines would do the job they are meant to.”
The four current turbines are 42 metres tall with a total capacity of 1.2 megawatts and were designed to supply electricity to Chelker pumping station. The plan is to replace them with two 125-metre-high turbines with a capacity of 2.5 megawatts each.
Catherine Leigh, who lives less than 500 metres from the site of the planned turbines, said: “We feel as if we are being walked over. If it was in their back garden, how would they like it?”
By Paul Langan
30 May 2008
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