The “windfarm invasion” is dividing more than the communities they come to, but political parties, too.
Sir Peter Tapsell MP has pledged to help campaigners at “every stage” in their fight against eight 105-metre high turbines in Tetney.
As reported, renewable energy giant, ASC, want to erect the Newton Marsh Windfarm Extension on land at Bishopthorpe Farm, in Tetney.
Sir Peter made his views on the “ghastly things” clear to 250 locals at the recent public meeting at Tetney Village Hall, chaired by East Lindsey district councillor Tony Bridges.
He spoke out against his own party policy to ensure 15 per cent of UK electricity comes from renewable sources by the year 2020.
He told his constituents: “I can be very brief on this matter. I am completely opposed to this proposal here. I will do everything I can at every stage to help you and I will do anything I can to prevent it happening.”
The coalition Government has invested heavily in offshore wind and marine energy and have drawn up proposals that will see the business rates generated by windfarms go into the local authorities bank.
If implemented, East Lindsey District Council, the planning authority, stand to get £250,000 a year for the 25-year project from the Newton Marsh farm alone – and there are a further five smaller applications earmarked for the district.
Not only does the Newton Marsh farm tick target boxes for green energy – claiming to produce enough power for 11,770 homes – ASC has pledged to use all local firms for construction, buying into the Conservatives’ approach of putting jobs, growth and value for money at the centre of their green agenda.
But Sir Peter – a global warming sceptic who favours nuclear power – has branded the turbines inefficient and too expensive for the many of his constituents who are living in fuel poverty.
He now wants a change in planning policy that will give greater weight to public opinion, which currently cannot be used in an argument against a planning application. He continued: “Windpower, in my view, is economically and technologically extremely inefficient. As we all know, if the wind doesn’t blow the turbines don’t go round; if it blows too hard they have to be turned off.
“The experts admit that even if all these projects in Lincolnshire come off – there are about 60 for the whole of Lincolnshire – and some of them are fantastically large – it would never contribute more than five per cent of the energy requirement in 20 years’ time.
“Everyone agrees if we had windpower, not only would it be inadequate but it would be more expensive. Everyone is worried about their heating bills. There are many people in my constituency that have to live in one room because they can’t afford to heat the house. It is a cause of great anxiety for the future.
“We have an energy problem but I don’t think it can be solved by these wind turbines. Public opinion is overwhelmingly against them and it must be listened to.”
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