Monday, October 31, 2011

Shale Gas

A good article by David Rose in the Daily Mail here:

This is a quote from the article, about a shale gas plant costing £500 million, at Hoo St Werburgh in Kent, that will produce 1000MW, enough to power a quarter of the homes in London. It is compared to the 217 turbines of the London Array, the world's biggest offshore wind farm.

"Covering 90 square miles, this too will have the capacity to generate 1GW (one billion watts). The turbines’ construction has been priced at £2 billion, four times as much as the Kentish gas plant, although this does not include the cost – perhaps a further £500 million – of connecting them to the National Grid, via 300 miles of undersea high-voltage cables.

Without the labyrinthine system of ‘green’ taxes and Government subsidies known as the Renewables Obligation, which is already adding an estimated £100 to the cost of every British household’s electricity bill, and an average 20 per cent to the charges paid by businesses, the wind farm could never be built, because it would be hopelessly uneconomic.

As well as being more expensive, the turbines will not last nearly as long: about 20 years, half the time of the gas-fired power station. A gas plant, moreover, will produce electricity 24 hours day; the turbines won’t. British windmills can be expected to generate power only 27 per cent of the time. That figure falls to just ten per cent in the calm conditions of a bitter Arctic high, such as that which covered the entire UK, causing record low temperatures, for several weeks last December."

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Fullabrook Noise

This photograph was taken earlier this week, on a calm day.

Martin Hesp has spoken to people on Fullabrook and this is his article:

Here is a quote from Martin's article:

"Sue Pike's bungalow is just 600 metres from one of the 110-metre turbines at the new wind-farm and she says: "It is dreadful – the main sound is like a huge great cement mixer going around – then you get the loud whoosh and also whistles and hums."

On the day that I took the photograph above, there was very little wind. It was possible to stand near the turbines, and hear the birds singing. You could hear the turbines as they turned - slowly - and the person who was with me said he could understand how the noise could become irritating, despite the fact that it wasn't loud. But I am happy to state that on this day, when there was very little wind, the turbines were not very noisy. In fact, later, I spoke to several people who live on these hills, and they each said what a relief it was that the turbines were quiet that day.

As in this article, those who support the wind industry often say that they have stood near turbines and heard nothing. What is sad is that when they say this, they are betraying their ignorance of the subject.

I can understand why the Wind Industry doesn't want to admit that there is such a thing as wind-turbine syndrome, but it is hard to understand why members of our local Green party seem to close their minds to this problem, especially when Green activists in other parts of the world such as Denmark and the USA are facing danger and arrest as they protest against the environmental damage caused by "Big Wind."

Monday, October 24, 2011

Green heroes

According to the article by Ken Picard, on the Seven Days website, (link to this seen on one of the protesters on the mountain said:

For me, coming up here is connected to [Occupy] Wall Street,” she says, “the push to buy the Nelsons out, then threatening to sue. We need to stand against that.”

And her son agreed, saying “It’s the big corporation pushing the little guy around.”

Friday, October 21, 2011

Npower appeal

Npower have appealed against
North Devon District Council's decision on Batsworthy Cross.

At the fanatastically supported meeting at Bishops Nympton last May,
NDDC unanimously refused planning permission for npowers proposal
to build 9 x 103m tall wind turbines at Batsworthy Cross.

Npower have now challenged this decision.
This means there will be a Public Inquiry as there was for Bickham Moor and Three Moors.

And just in the last twenty four hours, on BBC Spotlight, Merlin Hyman said there wouldn't be more large onshore wind farms in the region. What does "large" mean, then?

Fullabrook Noise on BBC Spotlight

There is a clip at the beginning, more later on in the programme (timings will be posted shortly)

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Support This Demonstration

Press release by: Windfarm Action Group

To publicise the planned demonstration on 22nd October at 12.30pm at Eden Court Theatre Inverness to show the Scottish National Party the strength of public feeling against windfarm development.

For information on the demonstration please contact Lyndsey Ward on 01463 782997 or 07899 035135

For information on the technical content of this press release please contact Stuart Young on 01847 851813 or 07717 295235


QUESTION: Why demonstrate?

ANSWER: Because nobody is listening!

1. People are becoming aware that wind energy is already costly and this cost will grow as more and more turbines are constructed. This affects every single person in the land whether they can afford it or not. The cost of the Renewables Obligation which is funded through consumer’s electricity bills is an even more universal burden than Maggie Thatcher’s Poll Tax.

2. The Renewables Obligation puts about 5.5p on to the bill for a unit of wind generated electricity before the cost of the actual electricity is added, and before adding the cost of major transmission upgrades which are necessary to allow the use of wind generation. The Beauly to Denny transmission upgrade is currently estimated to cost £600M (an almost 100% increase and it has only just started) and the cost of all the other transmission upgrades needed to take our surplus wind generation across the Scotland-England Border and beyond to undefined markets in England or continental Europe has yet to be calculated. And there is no guarantee that England or Europe will need or want our surplus power when it is windy here.

3. Wind energy is the only energy source which can be completely absent at any point in time in the future and we have no control over it. At midday on 14th September, the 3696MW installed wind capacity which National Grid meters ( 2327MW Scottish onshore, 90MW Scottish offshore, 1279MW English offshore) was generating 2102MW. At midday on 15th September, the same 3696MW was generating 23MW, effectively zero. If any other fuel was delivered so sporadically, we would go to war to protect our supplies.

4. Thirteen Scottish wind farms have so far been paid compensation of just under £9.5M to stop generating when wind was high and demand was low because there was no available market for it. £5M was paid in September alone. The £9.5M was paid in compensation for actual losses of £2.4M, such was the bargaining power of the wind generators. These costs, and the inevitably greater future costs, will filter through to our electricity bills.

5. There is now no Legislation or Planning Guidance which specifically protects a person’s residential amenity. Whole communities have lived for years under the threat of wind farm development and seen the robust Planning Protections which once existed to support them being eroded to the point that now bats and geese have more worth than people.

6. Most wind farms that have been consented have applied for an extension, and the general planning view is that if a place is already trashed, then a bit more trashing will be neither here nor there. And the misery starts all over again. Only the Scottish Government can restore the wellbeing of Scotland’s people to its rightful place in the Planning Hierarchy

7. Five and a half million homes are now estimated to be in fuel poverty. Our Governments can do little about the base cost of fuel, but to ease the burden, Westminster can abolish the Renewables Obligation and Holyrood can abandon its “ambitious” targets for generation by Renewables (which, and it is doubtful if they are remotely achievable, would be delivered mostly by windpower ).

QUESTION: In the face of the above, should we continue to allow the devastation wind farm development has on communities, people’s lives and their health, their shrinking finances, the environment and wildlife, or should we pause, reflect, and think again.

ANSWER: Pause, Reflect, and Think Again

Monday, October 17, 2011

The poverty of Britain's energy debate

Fraser Nelson

A must read:

Here is how it starts:

"How big does Shale have to get before our policymakers wake up to its implications? There is an Energy Summit in No.10 today where Chris Huhne wants to focus on the need “to help consumers save money on their gas and electricity bills”. A preview interview on the Today programme underlined the dire situation. First, Huhne was not asked about how his own green regulations have massively contributed to the problem. Then, the managing director of British Gas was invited on to say that “unless someone discovers huge amounts of gas and imports it into the UK…”. And, bafflingly, no-one mentioned the small fact that one of BG’s rivals recently discovered 200 trillion cubic feet of gas near Blackpool. As Matt Ridley says in this week’s Spectator, that’s enough to keep the entire British economy going for many decades. And it doesn’t even need importing."

Do read the article, including the quotes from Matt Ridley's article as well.

It isn't just our policy makers, though, what about the BBC? On Friday they had Will Self "In praise of wind turbines" on Sunday Countryfile, which was about as biased as it could possibly be in favour of wind, and the Today Programme was no better.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Paul Bloomer

We are pleased to announce a new page on the Artists Against Wind Farms website.
Paul Bloomer is an artist who lives in the Shetlands, and on his page you can see his Windfarm Series of woodcuts and read the words he has written to express his feelings about the 127 giant wind turbines that threaten to destroy the beauty and tranquility of the island on which he lives.
There are also links to an Exhibition at the Vaila Fine Art Gallery, in Lerwick, where his work was on show with work by a number of other artists who shared his feelings about the proposed wind farm.
This is his page:

Friday, October 7, 2011

Living in a Power Station

Video highlighting the problems caused when Wind Power Plants are constructed to close to residential homes.
This video was found originally on

It was made by David Baldwin, who lives approximately 950 metres away from the nearest turbine at Hadyard Hill (Ayrshire).
He had been in favour of the wind turbines before the wind farm was built and he experienced the noise and shadow flicker.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

National Trust Petition

Please sign the National Trust petition, before October 12th, if you are concerned about the proposed changes to the planning system.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Properties reducing in value

Ontario wind power bringing down property values

By John Nicol and Dave Seglins, CBC News.

Here is an excerpt about the Power Company buying up properties and then selling them on at a loss:

"Canadian Hydro Developers bought out four different owners for $500,000, $350,000, $305,000 and $302,670. The company then resold each property, respectively, for $288,400, $175,000, $278,000 and $215,000.

In total, Canadian Hydro absorbed just over half a million dollars in losses on those four properties.

The new buyers were required to sign agreements acknowledging that the wind turbine facilities may affect the buyer’s “living environment” and that the power company will not be responsible for or liable from any of the buyer’s “complaints, claims, demands, suits, actions or causes of action of every kind known or unknown which may arise directly or indirectly from the Transferee’s wind turbine facilities.”"

We found the link to this article on