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Cross-party MPs’ group formed to fight wind farm expansion  

Credit:  By Christopher Hope, Senior Political Correspondent, The Telegraph, www.telegraph.co.uk 22 January 2012 ~~

A new cross party group of MPs has been formed to fight the spread of wind farms.

Energy Secretary Chris Huhne wants a major expansion of onshore wind farm development to help Britain meet green targets.

However there is increasing opposition to the form of green energy, with critics claiming that they are inefficient, expensive and a major blight on the landscape.

The new All Party Parliamentary Group has been set up by Chris Heaton-Harris, a Conservative MP.

He said: “Ministers need to look at this policy again. It is an inefficient technology, it adds to the bills of consumers, it harms the balance of the National Grid, it is the wrong renew¬able for the UK. We need a change of policy.”

There are about 3,000 onshore wind turbines with a few hundred dotted around off the coast of Britain.

They generate less than two per cent of the nation’s power and only produce energy around 30 per cent of the time. When the wind is not blowing – or even blowing too fast as in the recent storms – other sources of electricity have to be used, mostly gas and coal.

A pledge to cut emissions, written into law in the Climate Change Act, requires a major expansion of wind farm development.

Official figures suggest up to 32,000 more wind turbines could be erected in the next 20 years, of which 6,000 would be onshore sites. Forecasts have suggested that the requirement for more wind energy will add £280 to average energy bills by 2020.

A study in the Netherlands recently found that turning back-up gas power stations on and off to cover spells when there is little wind actually produces more carbon than a steady supply of energy from an efficient modern gas station.

The research was cited in a new report by the Civitas think tank which warnd that Britain is in danger of producing more carbon dioxide (CO2) than necessary if the grid relies too much on wind.

Source:  By Christopher Hope, Senior Political Correspondent, The Telegraph, www.telegraph.co.uk 22 January 2012

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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