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Claire Mack, the CEO of Scottish Renewables, was quick out of the blocks lobbying for more onshore wind development for the paying members of her trade association, just as her predecessor did before her (Letters, December 20). Sadly times don’t change with new leadership and the same old spin and propaganda flies out across the media just as it always has with not one compassionate word about the people who actually have to live in the shadow of these industrial monsters.
The displaced carbon figures she quotes are wildly exaggerated as pollution overseas for turbine materials and the often-destructive grid connection are not factored in to the calculations.
I would dearly love to see a complete breakdown of those 7,500 jobs in onshore wind she enthuses about. I suspect many are short-lived and I suspect many are not Scottish workers as I know of, and have spoken to, workers from overseas who are bought in during the construction phase. After that where are the jobs?
Scotland is full to bursting as far as onshore wind is concerned. Too many precious landscapes and communities have been devastated by development already. Constraint payments in Scotland are off the acceptable scale, with hundreds of millions of pounds being paid out to operators to switch off and more turbines will mean more UK consumer costs and more fuel poverty.
Who are these 74 per cent who support more onshore wind? Not those in affected communities because they are never asked what they want. There is no community veto in Scotland like there is in England because, I suspect, the Scottish Government and its energy “advisors” Scottish Renewables know most wind proposals would be kicked into touch before they hit our beleaguered planning departments if there was.
If Ms Mack truly cared about rural residents she would lobby her friends in government for the fair community veto. That way future development would only proceed where it is wanted and not foisted on communities that are sick and tired of being ignored and having their voices dismissed as irrelevant in the wind biased planning process she so admires.
Darach Brae, Beauly.
IT is worth noting once again the miserable failure of renewables technology to actually provide power when we need it.
On reading Claire Mack’s letter at 16.03 pm today (December 20) UK-wide wind, pumped storage, hydro and solar were generating 3.98 per cent,1.17 per cent,1.75 per cent, and 0.18 per cent of our needs. A total of 7.08 per cent.
Gas and recently restarted UK coal stations were having to produce 54 per cent and 17.5 per cent of our needs. Power imports from Europe were virtually zero.
This unavoidable and permanently required back-up is where the real cost of renewables generation lies and not in the falling bid prices for future wind generation.
The renewables lobby totally and consistently ignores this reality.
In addition, the continuing and increasing back-up required from these old fossil stations renders them more essential with every planning consent to increase wind penetration and many are approaching decrepitude.
We continue to pursue renewable technologies that will not consistently work at the macro power grid level and for many serious technical reasons in addition to intermittency.
We had better change this, and soon.
Saviskaill, Langdales Avenue, Cumbernauld.
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