Letter: Wind farms will be seen as a monument to man’s crass stupidity

FROM the two page advertisement in the West Sussex Gazette (February 15), I see the German company, E.on hope to construct a wind farm off the coast of Sussex. For the reasons listed below I am probably one of many who pray that this project is firmly rejected.

Dr John Constable, Director of the Renewable Energy Foundation (www.ref.org.ukwww.ref.org.uk ) has stated that “The UK’s planning system prevents development where the damage of the proposal exceeds the benefits.”

What wonderful news that is, as it SHOULD mean no more wind turbines will be constructed, either on or off-shore, in the UK! Please bear in mind that:

Despite the high cost of gas, electricity generated by wind turbines is up to 22 times more expensive than that produced by a gas powered generating plant.

Electricity produced by off-shore wind farms is considerably more expensive than land-based turbines.

The successful lobbying of parliament by energy companies, all but one foreign, will net them £850million a year through electricity generated by wind farms which will be added to household and business electricity bills.

Germany has somewhere between 19,000 and 22,000 wind turbines and their independent engineers (but not most of their ‘Green’ politicians) admit that not one ounce of CO2 has been saved by these monstrosities.

In order for the lights not to go out, in both Germany and the UK, nuclear generated electricity has to be imported from France.

France, where 80 per cent of electricity is produced by nuclear power, has the lowest priced electricity in Europe.

Large tracts of the American landscape are desecrated with broken down wind turbines that are too expensive to repair and, in any case, have been found to be an uneconomical way of generating electricity.

The construction of wind generators produces large amounts of CO2 which is rarely recovered. This is because conventional generators cannot be shut down when the wind blows, and restarted when it dies, at the flick of a switch.

Wind turbines do untold damage to wildlife, particularly bats which eat insects that damage crops. Thus, farmers have to spray insecticide more frequently. Off the Norwegian coast many rare birds have been killed by a wind farm.

Land that has wind generators built on it will, I predict, reduce in value enormously within the next 20 years. The cost of removing the generators will have to be deducted from the pre-turbine value.

Currently, the only way the government can sustain wind farms is by milking the taxpayer, and electricity consumer, to subsidise their gross inefficiency.

The West Sussex Gazette reported, on the front page of their March 10 2010 issue, that the Green Party has made it clear that they would ‘celebrate’ the construction of wind farms on the South Downs National Park!!

Fishermen report that fish, and other sea creatures, have deserted coastal areas where wind turbines have been constructed. This is because sea creatures are highly sensitive to the noise made by machinery, including wind turbines.

I cannot resist including here the comments of an engineer who has been employed in dealing with wind turbine problems for ten years, and I quote: “Incidentally, on the question of wind energy, I expect to have to go to Greece to inspect and carry out a failure investigation on a wind turbine gearbox, and I learn that to avoid bearing failure, some turbines need to have an auxiliary diesel engine to keep them moving when there is no wind.

“We need political reform and leaders who understand the complexities of technology and the lack of sustainability we acknowledge but do little about.”

Clearly, we need to reduce our consumption of fossil fuels, which are finite, but wind generated electricity is not the answer.

Future generations will probably conclude that wind farms are a highly visible monument to the crass stupidity of man, in general, and today’s leading politicians, in particular. I must add that I have reason to believe that my MP, Andrew Tyrie, has strong doubts about the wisdom of constructing wind turbines.

Derek Hunnikin

St Leodegar’s Way

Hunston, Chichester