Monday, 30 May 2011


There are times when we here at Wind of Change struggle to keep up with the lies, fanaticism and chronic inconsistency of the anti-windpower movement.

Take Frieda Hughes, famous only for being the daughter of a poet laureate, and her fatuous piece in one of the Murdoch rags the other week. Quoting a couple of ignorant workmen who visited her home, Hughes was happy to conclude that windfarms don't really work and are only there as subsidy-magnets erected by huge corporations.

The subsidy argument is probably one of the most tiresome of those advanced by the witless drones of the nimby lobby. That they continue to do so just goes to show that they are either incapable or unwilling to get their heads round the basic facts of the Renewables Obligation Certificates.

Unlike nuclear, which has always received colossal subsidies from governments (why don't the nimbies complain about that???), the renewables industry only receives subsidies on the amounts of renewable electricity that are actually generated.

The nimbies - being fundamentally fraudulent and dishonest - like to pretend that the government is throwing cash at electricity companies to put up turbines where they won't generate electricity. That is an argument of stupendous mindlessness, because turbines which don't generate electricity don't receive subsidies.

Let's be honest, hunh? Any electricity firm that was only interested in government subsidies would not bother with renewables, which tend to be delayed by red-faced nimby liars for as long as the courts will allow. No - they'd go nuclear, where the real subsidies are.

But twits like Frieda Hughes refuse to recognise this. And so do all the other swivel-eyed nimbies who voted for Thatcher and the privatisation of the utilities and who now go all frothy-mouthed and weird at the thought of privatised electricity companies making money.



Frieda Hughes also claims to have "reams" of information which "proves" that windfarms don't work. Surprisingly, she ignored all that in order to quote some bloke who did a bit of work at her house. Less surprisingly, this mass of misleading information comes from those propagandists who call themselves the Renewable Energy Foundation.

The BBC documentary "Windfarm Wars" recently let on that one poor chap who didn't quite understand the noise issue relating to turbines was elbowed into taking legal action by the REF. And then, lo and behold, the same bewildered individual met a couple who had resorted to the usual phoney arguments in order to oppose a couple of turbines in Norfolk. And guess what? After years of nimby campaigning, one half of the said couple had become a director of REF!!!

So when nitwits like Frieda Hughes quote the Renewable Energy Foundation as a "reliable" source of information they conveniently overlook the fact that REF was set up by, funded by and continues to employ passionate (i.e. self-serving) anti-windfarm goons!

Another usual suspect featured in the BBC documentary was self-styled acoustics expert, Mike Stigwood. He spends most of his time getting money from moronic nimby groups to try a stop windfarms which might be visible from some directions, and he has pioneered one or two unorthodox ways of quantifying the noise which windfarms don't make.

Sadly, Wychavon District Council were tricked by our local nimby nutters into hiring Mike Stigwood, with the result that wholly inaccurate claims were made about noise, much to the satisfaction of the loonies in VVASP and very much to the detriment of everyone's best interests.

For a brief moment, then, the BBC "Windfarm Wars" documentary showed the greatest obstacles towards an intelligent, harmless and sustainable energy future in England - a handful of warped nimbies and their pet noise "expert".

So it is with no small pleasure and delight that we report on the latest news from Germany. Currently, about 23% of Germany's electricity is produced by non-renewable, massively unreliable and breathtakingly dangerous nuclear power stations.

All of those nuclear power stations - ALL of them - will be phased out in Germany by 2022. The Germans have finally recognised that we have a collective responsibility to wise up and not create enormous everlasting timebombs of hazardous waste. Click here for more:

Looks like Germany will be going renewable. Just like Scotland, which has pledged to be 100% renewable by 2020.

So where does that leave Little England? Probably all grovelling about in the REF dirt with Frieda Hughes and the rest of the bottom-feeders.

1 comment:

  1. People who use the subsidy argument fail to see it in the context of the alternatives (much as with the visual aspect and load factor arguments):

    1) The other major generation types do, or have, received subsidies in one way or another

    2) We live in a capitalist society with a privatised energy sector. It'd be great if environmental motivations took precedence over economic ones, but that's not possible at the moment. So somehow we need to make renewable energy work in our current market and so for a time, subsidies will be required to make it competitive until it achieves grid parity.

    3) People exaggerate how much subsidies (RO and FiT, obviously just the former for large wind farms) add to their energy bills, and come out with generic, self-pitying comments like 'massive cost to the hard-working taxpayer'. According the CSE report you linked to recently; "one aspect of the [RO] policy ensures that this is never more than an additional 3p/kWh on a maximum 10% of the customer’s electricity use, meaning that 90% of a customer’s bill is unaffected by the Renewable Obligation."

    And while this is only my own opinion, I'd rather my taxes were paying for renewable energy than the royal family, banking bailout, certain military conflicts (Iraq), etc.

    Regarding Wind Farm Wars. I initially had some respect for Mike (the guy wanting the noise data), and wasn't entirely sure why RES didn't give it to him (turns out it was simply company policy back then but have since rescinded this, see here However I lost a lot of respect for him during episode 3; he went to visit people who live near [proposed in one case] wind farms, but instead of being open-minded and visiting a selection of random people living a similar distance from wind farms like that proposed at Den Brook, he went to see two couples already obviously against wind farms. The woman of the couple in Norfolk, incidentally, was Lee Moroney who works for REF. He said "this is going to ruin my life", presumably referring to the wind farm, but it seems to me like he's determined to ruin his own life.

    I'm ambivalent towards the news from Germany. On the one hand I think they may be making a mistake going without nuclear entirely (as you may have seen in a previous reply I reluctantly support the need for some new nuclear plants and therefore disagree with you on this), as I don't see where they'll get their base load from. As such they may have to build new coal and/or gas plants, with obvious consequences environmentally. On the other hand, though, I think given Germany's track record on engineering solutions and as Europe's major economic power, I'd like to think they know what they're doing. In addition, if they can commit more to renewables and eliminate their need for nuclear, it could be a model for other countries to follow. I look forward with interest to seeing what happens there.