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News from Christopher Booker

Revealed: the Guardian Wind farm advert that tried to pull the wool over our eyes
By Christopher Booker | The Telegraph | 23 Nov 2014 | www.telegraph.co.uk
On November 7, Guardian readers were excited by a huge two-page advertisement from the wind farm company Ecotricity, hailing what it described as “a historic event”. This, it explained, was on Sunday October 19, following the Didcot power station fire, when several other major power plants were also, for various reasons, offline. But millions of homes across Britain, we were told, would never have noticed. Our lights stayed on solely because wind farms had come to the rescue, contributing a . . . Complete article »

Global warming: Can Owen Paterson save us from an unimaginable energy disaster?
By Christopher Booker | The Telegraph | 11 Oct 2014 | www.telegraph.co.uk
It is safe to predict that no speech made by a British politician this week will be more surprising or significant than that to be delivered by a senior Conservative, who was sacked from the Cabinet last July for being too good at his job. On Wednesday, as reported on our front page, Owen Paterson, our former environment secretary, will give the Global Warming Policy Foundation’s annual lecture. It’s entitled “Keeping the lights on”, and is focused on Britain’s energy . . . Complete article »

Giant wind farm will cost millions and ruin Brighton view
By Christopher Booker | The Telegraph | 19 Jul 2014 | www.telegraph.co.uk
Over the next four years, visitors to Brighton and the Sussex coast are in for a shock. Visible all the way from Beachy Head to the Isle of Wight, they will see 100 or more colossal wind turbines rising up to 700ft into the sky, nearly 200ft higher than Blackpool Tower. These will form one of the world’s largest wind farms, covering more than 60sq miles of the English Channel. If they wonder what purpose is served by this vast . . . Complete article »

An expensive way to boil a kettle
By Christopher Booker | The Telegraph | 05 Jul 2014 | www.telegraph.co.uk
Driving recently over the Mendips where I live in Somerset, I saw a new wind turbine poking up over the treetops. I was naturally intrigued because a decade ago I chaired a campaign protesting in vain, despite the unanimous support of our local council, against a giant 2 megawatt turbine that now spins 330 feet above the nearby countryside. A closer look revealed that this new windmill was a Canadian-made Endeavor E3120. I was surprised to see that, despite being . . . Complete article »

The cost of wind-farms will dwarf that of HS2
By Christopher Booker | The Telegraph | 03 May 2014 | www.telegraph.co.uk
Much attention was paid to the vote by a huge majority of MPs for the HS2 project, the main objections to which are that it will cost a staggering £50 billion and cause immense environmental damage, to much less useful purpose than is claimed for it. But no one seems to have noticed that the same is true for another of the Government’s projects: its bid to meet our agreed EU target that, within six years, we must treble the . . . Complete article »

Why does Ed Davey want to keep us in the dark?
By Christopher Booker | The Telegraph | 26 Apr 2014 | www.telegraph.co.uk
We may think we are so used to politicians trying to pull the wool over our eyes that we accept that this is just what politicians do. But we are still right to think that deliberately trying to deceive people is wrong – on some occasions more than others. Two examples of this last week again brought home just what a dishonest and disastrous mess Britain’s leaders are making of our national energy policy. The first was the announcement by . . . Complete article »

We could soon be paying billions for this wind back-up
By Christopher Booker | The Telegraph | 3 August 2013 | www.telegraph.co.uk
Occasionally, one comes across a story so mind-blowingly unexpected and out-of-left-field that it seems hard for readers to take on board that it is true. Such is the story I first reported here last month, under the heading, “Our lights will stay on, but it’ll cost us a fortune”, about the scheme being devised by the National Grid to solve what has long been the most intractable problem created by the Government’s plan to see the best part of £110 . . . Complete article »

Wind farms are Chris Huhne’s greatest crime
By Christopher Booker | The Telegraph | 12 March 2013 | www.telegraph.co.uk
Chris Huhne’s plan to cover Britain’s countryside and seas with 32,000 hugely expensive and useless windmills continues under his successor, Ed Davey Almost wherever we look at the words and actions of our Coalition ministers, as my colleague Richard North observes on his EU Referendum blog, it is as if we see “dead men walking”. For all the acres of newsprint devoted to the downfall of Chris Huhne, it may one day seem that his greatest crime was his plan . . . Complete article »

One day, turning off the lights won’t be up to you
By Christopher Booker | The Telegraph | 23 February 2013 | www.telegraph.co.uk
Readers of this column might have been astonished by the media response last week to that warning by Alistair Buchanan, retiring head of the energy regulator Ofgem, that next month we will see the closure of five major coal-fired power stations that between them contribute nearly a sixth of the UK’s average electricity needs. Over the next few years, Mr Buchanan feared, we will be dangerously close to not having enough power in the grid to keep Britain’s lights on. . . . Complete article »

Ten years too late, it’s good riddance to wind farms – one of the most dangerous delusions of our age
By Christopher Booker | Daily Mail | 30 October 2012 | www.dailymail.co.uk
The significance of yesterday’s shock announce-ment by our Energy Minister John Hayes that the Government plans to put a firm limit on the building of any more onshore windfarms is hard to exaggerate. On the face of it, this promises to be the beginning of an end to one of the greatest and most dangerous political delusions of our time. For years now, the plan to cover hundreds of square miles of the British countryside with ever more wind turbines . . . Complete article »

It is wind power that will send our bills sky-high
By Christopher Booker | The Telegraph | 20 October 2012 | www.telegraph.co.uk
Last week, I returned from a visit to India – which last July suffered the most extensive power cut in history, affecting 600 million people – to find our own energy policy in a worse shambles than ever. Provoked by soaring energy bills, which have recently risen by a further 13 per cent, David Cameron again displayed his astonishing naivety in such matters by promising to force energy companies to charge only the lowest prices for their gas and electricity . . . Complete article »

Germany’s wind power chaos should be a warning to the UK
By Christopher Booker | The Telegraph | www.telegraph.co.uk 22 September 2012
On Friday, September 14, just before 10am, Britain’s 3,500 wind turbines broke all records by briefly supplying just over four gigawatts (GW) of electricity to the national grid. Three hours later, in Germany, that country’s 23,000 wind turbines and millions of solar panels similarly achieved an unprecedented output of 31GW. But the responses to these events in the two countries could not have been in starker contrast. In Britain, the wind industry proclaimed a triumph. Maria McCaffery, the CEO of . . . Complete article »

The great wind delusion has hijacked our energy policy
By Christopher Booker | The Telegraph | www.telegraph.co.uk 11 August 2012
Anyone impressed by the efficient way in which Britain has organised the Olympic Games might consider the stark contrast provided by the shambles of our national energy policy – wholly focused as it is on the belief that we can somehow keep our lights on by building tens of thousands more wind turbines within eight years. At one point last week, Britain’s 3,500 turbines were contributing 12 megawatts (MW) to the 38,000MW of electricity we were using. (The Neta website, . . . Complete article »

How much profit will a turbine turn?
By Christopher Booker, The Telegraph, www.telegraph.co.uk 3 March 2012
Developers of wind farms offer ‘sweeteners’ to local communities, but they may be tiny compared to the revenues. Scarcely a week goes by when I am not asked by a local campaign group to publicise their fight against some scheme to build one of those increasingly hated wind farms. So many developers are now piling in on the subsidy bonanza that, according to a survey by the Western Morning News, in Cornwall and Devon alone no fewer than 600 such . . . Complete article »

Alex Salmond plans to cheat the English of billions in a green power swap
By Christopher Booker, The Telegraph, www.telegraph.co.uk 21 January 2012
In all the flood of questions unleashed by Alex Salmond’s desire to see Scotland withdraw from the United Kingdom – what about the Armed Forces, the flag, the Queen, the £11 billion given to the Scots annually by English taxpayers? – one issue has gone unnoticed. Last year, Mr Salmond hubristically pledged that 100 per cent of Scotland’s “gross electricity consumption” will come from renewable sources by 2020, supplied mainly by the thousands of wind turbines he wishes to see . . . Complete article »

Wind farms: the monuments to lunacy that will be left to blot the landscape
By Christopher Booker, The Telegraph, www.telegraph.co.uk 10 September 2011
Three separate news items on the same day last week reflected three different aspects of what is fast becoming a full-scale disaster bearing down on Britain. The first item was a picture in The Daily Telegraph showing two little children forlornly holding a banner reading “E.On Hands Off Winwick”. This concerned a battle to prevent a tiny Northamptonshire village from being dwarfed by seven 410-foot wind turbines, each higher than Salisbury Cathedral, to be built nearby by a giant German-owned . . . Complete article »

The lights may go out in Germany even sooner than in Britain
By Christopher Booker, The Telegraph, www.telegraph.co.uk 3 September 2011
It is some years since this column first warned that we may soon face major blackouts due to the impending closure of 14 nuclear and coal-fired power stations which currently supply nearly 40 per cent of our peak electricity needs. This disaster, I suggested, would be unique in Europe, because of the blindness of successive governments’ energy policy. But it now seems that Germany may get there before us, following its government’s decision, in the wake of Fukushima, to shut . . . Complete article »

The BBC steadfastly avoids the facts about the wind farm scam
By Christopher Booker, The Telegraph, www.telegraph.co.uk 20 August 2011
David Shukman’s reports on energy policy for the BBC failed to explain the true lunacy of the Government’s plans. What is the maddest thing going on in Britain today? There may be many competitors for that title, but a front-runner must be what the Government has made the centrepiece of its energy policy, to ensure that our lights stay on and that our now largely computer-dependent economy remains functioning. Last week, the BBC ran a series of reports by its . . . Complete article »

Proof that the Government is tilting at windmills
By Christopher Booker, The Telegraph, www.telegraph.co.uk 2 July 2011
In the week when it was reported that 20 per cent of the EU’s fast-soaring, trillion-euro budget may soon be spent on “fighting climate change”, it was timely that Britain’s energy companies should have met with the Department of Energy and Climate Change to raise one of the best-hidden secrets of our Government’s obsession with wind power. Centrica and other energy companies last week told DECC that, if Britain is to spend £100 billion on building thousands of wind turbines, . . . Complete article »

Why should we pay Ireland for its wind?
By Christopher Booker, The Telegraph, www.telegraph.co.uk 25 June 2011
Just when you think our Government’s obsession with wind power could reach no further heights of absurdity, we learn that it now plans for us all to shovel billions of pounds into the pockets of the Irish wind industry. The idea proposed by Chris Huhne and Charles Hendry, our energy ministers, is that the Irish should build thousands more onshore and offshore windmills, heavily subsidised by British electricity users, to help us to meet our EU commitment that, within nine . . . Complete article »

Wales in revolt over mammoth wind farm scheme
By Christopher Booker, The Telegraph, www.telegraph.co.uk 21 May 2011
On Tuesday the Welsh Assembly in Cardiff will see the biggest demonstration so far in Britain against the disaster now being set in train across the land by the Government’s infatuation with wind power. Nowhere is this more obvious than in mid-Wales, where the Assembly wishes to see the hills covered with up to 800 giant wind turbines, up to 415ft high, visible over hundreds of square miles. Recently In Parliament, Glyn Davies, the Tory MP for Montgomeryshire, spoke about . . . Complete article »

Transport Secretary Philip Hammond reveals his ignorance of wind power
By Christopher Booker, The Telegraph, www.telegraph.co.uk 5 March 2011
Talking on the BBC last week about wind turbines, which are at the centre of our Government’s energy policy, the Transport Secretary, Philip Hammond, said “onshore wind doesn’t need subsidy any more, onshore wind can pay its way”. This was so laughably untrue that one has to wonder whether Mr Hammond was being deliberately untruthful or whether, which is almost worse, he is so ignorant that he actually believed what he said. The fact is that no one would dream . . . Complete article »

Why the £250bn wind power industry could be the greatest scam of our age – and here are the three ‘lies’ that prove it
By Christopher Booker on 28th February 2011 dailymail.co.uk
Scarcely a day goes by without more evidence to show why the Government’s obsession with wind turbines, now at the centre of our national energy policy, is one of the greatest political blunders of our time. Under a target agreed with the EU, Britain is committed within ten years – at astronomic expense – to generating nearly a third of its electricity from renewable sources, mainly through building thousands more wind turbines. But the penny is finally dropping for almost everyone – except . . . Complete article »

£250bn wind power industry is a scam
By Christopher Booker, www.thisismoney.co.uk 28 February 2011
Scarcely a day goes by without more evidence to show why the Government’s obsession with wind turbines, now at the centre of our national energy policy, is one of the greatest political blunders of our time. Under a target agreed with the EU, Britain is committed within ten years – at astronomic expense – to generating nearly a third of its electricity from renewable sources, mainly through building thousands more wind turbines. But the penny is finally dropping for almost everyone – except . . . Complete article »

Renewables will add £880 a year to bills
By Christopher Booker, Telegraph, www.telegraph.co.uk 16 October 2010
Is there any subject on which more nonsense is talked and written than the mindblowing proposals being bandied about by the Government for meeting our EU target of generating, within 10 years, 30 per cent of our electricity from renewable sources? (That is roughly six times the current total, meaning that we have by far the most challenging target of any country in Europe.) For instance, the industry regulator, Ofgem, recently announced that by 2020 we will need to have . . . Complete article »

The Thanet wind farm will milk us of billions
By Christopher Booker, Telegraph, www.telegraph.co.uk 25 September 2010
In all the publicity given to the opening of “the world’s largest wind farm” off the Kent coast last week, by far the most important and shocking aspect of this vast project was completely overlooked. Over the coming years we will be giving the wind farm’s Swedish owners a total of £1.2 billion in subsidies. That same sum, invested now in a single nuclear power station, could yield a staggering 13 times more electricity, with much greater reliability. The first . . . Complete article »

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