At today’s count there are 105 Members of Parliament who have joined the ranks of the many millions of people who realise that the construction of wind turbines throughout Britain does little or nothing to support the cause of renewable energy.
In addition there are ministers who while unable to sign the letter have stated that they support its aims.
It is now clear to any but the most bigoted of their supporters that these industrial developments are inefficient, intermittent and totally out of place in the environment. They increases the price of energy bills to every home and business in the country through consumer subsidies and are one of the factors in the increase in fuel poverty among those least able to afford it.
For the year 2010 to 2011 the average efficiency of wind farms throughout the UK was less than 25 per cent and this includes all of those in the windiest parts of the UK and offshore where wind is stronger and less intermittent than onshore. It is almost certain that the average efficiency of onshore wind farms in England would be well below 20 per cent. Yet even this pathetic rate will produce subsidies alone in the region of £250,000 per turbine on top of the inflated price paid for the electricity produced and the proceeds from a share of the carbon tax payback to renewable sources.
The cold spell of last week will have once again emphasised that, because of the lack of wind in these situations, wind farms have contributed practically nothing to the production of power at the precise point when it is most needed.
There is now growing evidence that at such times because of the need to keep permanent back up power on line to fill such gaps in production and bring it up to speed quickly they are actually a cause of increasing CO2 emissions.
As far as our local wind farm proposed at Pilrow, off the A38 at Rooksbridge, is concerned I learn from one of the residents attending the trip to a working windfarm at Low Spinney that a representative of Broadview, the developer, stated: “Broadview agreed that if Brent Knoll was not there, the site would probably not have been chosen as the accelerated prevailing winds enhances the suitability of the site”.
This is scientific and factual nonsense. A glance at the actual Met Office (NOABL) average yearly wind speeds of 6 metres/second for the area will show no difference at all between the Pilrow site and the surrounding countryside. It is generally accepted that a yearly average of 8 metres/second is the minimum required to produce efficiently. There is a slight increase in average wind speed but this is only over the Knoll itself as one would expect. However this is the sort of misinformation that is constantly being put forward by turbine proponents.
What the Knoll does do is produce “dirty” wind as it is known in the industry – that is wind that gusts far more than normal and produces intermittent and constantly changing wind speeds.
When considering a site to erect turbines it is always emphasised that there is a need to avoid this very situation. Even when looking into a small home turbine there will be warnings to avoid areas that are surrounded by structures, trees, etc.
The facts are that wind farms do not farm wind – they farm profits for financial institutions that have jumped on another gravy train to move money out of the pockets of ordinary citizens and into the pockets of these institutions . They have been able to do this by the obscene profits provided by subsidies paid by all of us.
At last there are people’s representatives who are voicing real concerns on this point. Hopefully this will be taken up by the ministers who can alter the situation.
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