We've all heard the guff from anti-wind fanatics that windfarms are "expensive" (compared with what? Nuclear power plants?), "reliant on subsidies" (those mythical tax-payer subsidies which nobody can actually identify) and the cause of fuel poverty.
We also know that only an absolute idiot who has made no attempt whatsoever to check the facts would make such claims. In 2010, the British government subsidised gas, oil and coal prices to the tune of £3.63bn, according to figures from the OECD. Over that same period, all wind energy in the UK (that's onshore and offshore combined) received £0.7bn in top-up fees, referred to in the industry as ROCs (Renewable Obligation Certificates), which are paid by the energy utilities, not the tax-payer, and so are quite categorically not "government subsidies", no matter how hard the nimbies try to bend the truth.
Last year, the steeply-rising wholesale price of gas added approximately £120 to the average annual energy bill. Contributions to creating a level playing field for wind power added less than £4.70. Gas receives government subsidies. Wind power does not, and even the ROCs are being reduced as the costs of wind power fall.
So, while increasing gas prices accounted for 10% of the average annual bill for energy last year, wind power accounted for 0.05%.
And some wretched loonies are trying to tell you that wind is the cause of fuel poverty???
It's likely to get worse. As this article indicates, the gas companies are warning of increases of up to 27% to the average bill over the next few years:
The implications of this are startling. Add to that the fact that two nuclear power stations currently being built in Finland and France are years behind schedule and massively over-budget, and the picture doesn't look too good, does it? Even if the government is able to get its new nuclear programme underway, it's extremely unlikely that any new power stations will be up and running before 2020. Old nuclear power stations are already being decommissioned (for which we, the tax-payer, are paying - more than half of the DECC's annual budget is going on winding down these expensive, hazardous monoliths), leaving us with few real options. Carbon Capture and Storage has yet to prove that it actually works, making any increase in coal-fired power generation a major problem vis-a-vis our legally-binding commitment to reduce carbon emissions. And if we stick with gas ... well, apart from blowing up in the North Sea, costing a bomb on the international markets, being genuinely subsidised already and now requiring costly infrastructure improvements, that just means energy bills going through the roof for the foreseeable.
Renewables, meanwhile, and wind power especially, already out-perform conventional sources on price (no, don't start yelping about "subsidies" for wind, because they don't exist; try, once and for all, to get this into your thick nimby skulls: fossil fuels are subsidised by the tax-payer - windfarms are not), with the exception of gas, but wind power is fully expected to beat gas on price within the next few years. The way things are going, wind will in fact be cheaper than gas in a matter of months.
So, what is actually causing the rise in energy bills and the consequent problems of fuel poverty? Only a deluded numbskull would say that it's wind power. So that, of course, is what the nimbies claim. They point to Denmark as an example of how "expensive" wind power is, paying no attention at all to the fact that Denmark levies heavy taxes on energy; actually producing electricity in Denmark costs 25% less than it does in the UK, because so much of it is wind energy, which is really rather cheap.
Just remember: those among you who are campaigning, fraudulently and foolishly, against windfarms are expecting YOU to foot the ever-increasing bills for more expensive gas and (if it ever gets built) new nuclear.
It is your manic nimby neighbours who are driving you into fuel poverty with their blinkered opposition to a safe, sensible, cheap, clean and efficient solution to the problem.
The whopping increases in your household outgoings for energy use are the price they want you pay for their short-sighted selfishness.
Don't let them get away with it. They can't fool all of the people all of the time. And it's your household budget that they're squandering.
When we're all paying even more for our (subsidised) gas-fired power, you'll be able to thank them, won't you, for making it all so much more expensive for us all. Maybe you even believed them when they made their stupid claims about "massive government subsidies" for wind power. So you can thank yourself, too, for the extra amounts we'll all have to pay because you didn't tell the nimby liars where they could stick their lies.