Welcome to the Highlands

Welcome to the Highlands, the land of  sparkling Burns, The Heather hughed Glens, High Mountains where the Eagles soar, a land of Deer and Salmon, Kilts and Pipes. The Corbetts, the Grahams and the Monros. A place to revitalise the Spirit and the Soul. This is a land of proud people, people that will give any man the time of day.

But today a certain sadness pervades all. In a desperate drive for fame our politicians have sold Scotland and its wild places to the lowest bidder. The march of the wind factories is heard in the Glens. Tourism for Scotland is dead. Our way of life crushed beneath the greed of mostly foreign adventurers and aided by our Government and Planners.

This is the opportunity for all you to have your say and perhaps we will save something for our children.

The first great requisite of motive power is; that it shall be wholly at our command, to be exerted when, and where, and in what degree we desire.The wind, for instance, as a direct motive power, is wholly inapplicable to a system of machine labour, for during a calm season the whole business of the country would be thrown out of gear.

William Stanley Jevons (1865)

“God never made an ugly landscape. All that sun shines on is beautiful, so long as it is wild.”

— John Muir

“Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home; that wildness is necessity; that mountain parks and reservations are useful not only as fountains of timber and irrigating rivers, but as fountains of life.”

— John Muir

Posted in Tourism, Uncategorized | 36 Comments

Out of the Mouths of Babes

Fantasy

fantasy

Reality

Sophia, 7, wrote during school.

“You may think wind turbines are good but when you have 50 by your home…you can’t sleep in your own room and you try to sleep but you can’t because of the wind turbines (noise). I had to move into a mobile home because my mom, dad and brother plus me couldn’t sleep.”

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Solar Firm Offers to Spay Cats to Balance out the Number of Birds Killed by Their Green Energy

Dougal Quixote:

No, you couldn’t make this up!

Originally posted on Quixotes Last Stand:

(Note:   You just can’t make this stuff up.  Because their solar facility has become the world’s largest bug and bird zapper, BrightSource has offered to offset this by donating $1.8 million to programs that spay and neuter cats.  Good grief.  This article starts off talking about the dangers to pilots and airline passengers, but eventually talks about the number of bird deaths at this facility.  — DQ)

Ernest Istook — Washington Times — August 20, 2014

Thanks to a $1.6 billion green energy loan from the feds, pilots are being blinded by glare as they fly over the Mojave Desert. It’s a safety hazard that affects over 40 million airplane passengers a year.

The culprit is the Ivanpah solar energy project, with more than 300,000 giant mirrors spread over 5 square miles of public land provided to BrightSource/NRG Energy. The $1.6 billion loan is only part of $5.2 billion extended…

View original 316 more words

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Glenmorie Refused!

Glenmorie Wind Farm refused

Glenmorie Wind Farm refused

The Energy Minister agreed with the findings of the Public Local Inquiry Reporter that the wind farm would cause unacceptable landscape and visual impacts, including on wild land.

Link here

With Kyllachy refused by The Highland Council yesterday it seems that the success rate of applications is falling by the week. That must raise a question for the developers about how much more money can they afford to burn on dubious applications!

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Scottish Renewable Energy Targets – When to say stop!

T H E   B O R D E R S   N E T W O R K

O F  C O N S E R V A T I O N   G R O U P S

NEWS RELEASE                    

For immediate release                                                          19 August 2014

Scottish Government risks huge liabilities as renewables poised to overshoot 2020 targets

Targets set by the Scottish Government for renewable electricity generation have now virtually been met by schemes that are already operating or have been consented.

UK renewable electricity schemes in operation or consented – including Scotland’s – now account for nearly all of the subsidies available from the Treasury up to 2020.

Energy Minister Fergus Ewing stated recently: ‘The Scottish Government’s target is to generate the equivalent of 100% of Scotland’s gross annual electricity consumption from renewable sources by 2020 as part of a wider, balanced, low carbon energy mix’.

In 2012, Scotland’s gross electricity consumption was about 36.6 TWh. Output from operational and consented capacity (17 and 18 TWh respectively) is already capable of generating about 35 TWh – very close to the target. Schemes still in planning, almost all of which are wind, have the potential to produce an additional 18.1 TWh –   grossly in excess of what is needed. (See notes below and new research by the Borders Network of Conservation Groups (BNCG.) attached).

target met

 

Scottish renewables targets seemed ambitious at the time they were set, given their low starting point, but growth in renewables across the UK has accelerated rapidly under generous subsidy schemes. Now that the Treasury’s renewables subsidy pot is almost empty, the Scottish Government needs to consider the logic – and potential liability to Scottish citizens – of allowing schemes that are surplus to its 2020 target to come on stream.

If the renewables target is overshot, taxpayers will incur heavy costs in unnecessary subsidies – over and above the hundreds of millions of subsidies for those operational and consented schemes needed to meet the 2020 target. The Renewable Energy Foundation calculates that green power generators in Scotland received more than £600 million in public subsidies last year (with 91.5% being paid for by electricity consumers in the rest of the UK). This sum WILL almost double as schemes that have consent but are awaiting construction come on stream. To put this in context, £1.2 billion was more than 10% of Scotland’s income tax last year (2013).

As the Scottish Government has an annual budget of around £54bn, it is clear that an independent Scotland would face substantial –and completely unnecessary – subsidy payments should it sanction an overshoot in this country’s renewables target. 

For detailed pdf click here

Ends

For more information, please call John Williams, Borders Network of Conservation Groups’ chairman,  on 01875 835679 or 07768 327107

Notes for editors

1 To read the article quoting Fergus Ewing, please see http://news.scotland.gov.uk/News/New-Stats-show-another-record-year-for-renewables-79a.aspx).

2 Audit Scotland estimates that a renewable energy capacity (ie the maximum that can be generated under optimum conditions from all renewables schemes) of 14-16 GW is needed to meet the Scottish Government’s 2020 targets. Current data show that 13.5 GW of capacity is already operational, under or awaiting construction, and that another 7.2 GW is in planning. The simple histogram in the attached paper by Jack Ponton, Scottish Renewable Energy Targets and Planning, shows that whatever measure – capacity or output – is used, Scotland risks overshooting its 2020 target.

3 The UK context – the Scottish Government’s renewables electricity target has to be seen in the context of the UK 2020 target. This is for renewables to meet 15% of UK energy consumption, or about 220 TWh, although “It should not be taken as an upper limit to our ambition for renewables deployment” [i]. There are no fixed targets for particular sectors, but DECC considers a plausible scenario to be about 50% of renewable energy to be in the form of electricity, with heat 30% and transport 20%, giving a UK target of about 110 TWh from renewable electricity. Scotland currently generates about a third of UK renewable energy, and the Scottish Government target of 100% of gross consumption by 2020 also happens to be about a third of the UK’s 110 TWh projection for electricity by 2020. Could the Scottish Government expand renewable electricity beyond its own 100% target?

The surge in renewable electricity schemes, predominantly wind, in Scotland mirrors that in the rest of the UK. DECC’s statistics show that, across the UK, 35 GW of renewable electricity capacity has now been consented by the planning system, sufficient to generate about 111 TWh[ii]. So the UK as whole, like Scotland, has enough renewable electricity schemes consented. Other renewables sectors are also delivering. Renewable heat sources are expected to reach about 20 TWh in 2014, and substantial further growth is anticipated in response to the Renewable Heat Incentive[iii]. The UK’s target for 10% renewable energy in transport by 2020 is binding under the Renewable Energy Directive, and is equivalent to about 20% of renewable energy. Taking these together, there will be sufficient renewable energy schemes to meet the target of 15% by 2020, and probably well before. So at the very least, further development of the much-resented onshore wind schemes will not be necessary. But the real constraint on the growth in renewable electricity is the cost of subsidies.

4  Subsidies -Subsidies are used to incentivise the deployment of renewable generation technologies. The money is collected directly from consumers’ bills by electricity supply companies, who pay it to the generators of renewable electricity. The Treasury imposes annual caps, through the Levy Control Framework (LCF), on these consumer-funded levies. The purpose of the LCF is that DECC “achieves its fuel poverty, energy and climate change goals in a way that is consistent with economic recovery and minimising the impact on consumer bills[iv].” The LCF ‘requires the Department to develop action plans with HM Treasury to bring spending within caps if forecasts suggest spending will exceed them, with particular urgency if forecasts exceed caps by a specified extent – currently 20 per cent.’ The LCF provides for the expansion of renewables capacity through annual increases in the cap on total spending on subsidies from £3.2 billion in 2013-14 to £7.6 billion in 2020-21. Yet subsidies are already forecast, at £3.5 billion in 2013-14, to exceed the cap, although still to be within the cap plus 20% headroom of £3.8 billion..

5  Subsidies are paid at different rates for electricity according to a number of factors such as the technology and its scale. Offshore wind attracts more than onshore wind, for example (about £105 v £45 per MWh after allowing for the wholesale price of the electricity). So the average subsidy has changed over time, as the technology mix has changed, and has increased as more expensive offshore wind schemes become established. The average cost of subsidising renewable electricity in 2011 was about £45per MWh, when technologies with a low subsidy rate predominated, but has recently risen to £69 per MWh[v] with the expansion of wind and solar power. Even if this rate increases no further by 2020, it would only be sufficient to subsidise the generation of 132 TWh of electricity from renewables, given the LCF limit of £7.6 billion plus 20% headroom. If expensive technologies such as offshore wind and large-scale solar predominate by 2020, and their subsidy rates are maintained, then the renewable electricity generation affordable under the LCF may even be much less that the 110 TWh that would satisfy the UK mix of renewable energy.

6.The Borders Network of Conservation Groups (BNCG) was formally set up in spring 2014 by diverse groups across the Scottish Borders to promote the appreciation and protection of the unique and beautiful landscape and amenity to  the region’s economy, culture, recreation and ecology. The BNCG is a not-for-profit organisation, with no party political alignment, and includes among its membership conservation groups, amenity societies and non-statutory planning consultees. Its current focus is the lawful and rational consideration of wind energy development in the Scottish Borders.

 

Footnotes:

[i] DECC, National Renewable Energy Action Plan for the United Kingdom

[ii] http://www.ref.org.uk/publications/313-progress-towards-the-2020-renewable-electricity-target

[iii] DECC: UK Renewable Energy Roadmap Update 2013

[iv] http://www.nao.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/10303-001-Levy-Control-Framework.pdf

[v] Department of Energy & Climate Change: Business Plan – Indicators and Other Data Sets update Q4 2013-14 (https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/decc-business-plan-quarterly-data-summary-indicators-and-other-data-sets)

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The Truth about building on Peat Bogs

Strathy North

Ships are delivering 100’s of tonnes of felled timber to the quay at Wick on a weekly basis. It is loaded onto lorries and taken to Strathy North to provide foundations for turbine pads. As we know, blanket peat bog is not the ideal surface for structural engineering purposes. However, throw enough funds at it and anything can be achieved. Another ‘green’ masterstroke by Scottish Ministers…This technique was used by the railways to cross Rannoch Moor in the dim and distant past. Now we question the morallity of such behaviour.

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UK’s Inshore Fishing Industry – Sacraficial Lamb to Foreign Developers

Wells-next-the-Sea East Coat Fishing Harbour

Wells-next-the-Sea
East Coat Fishing Harbour

Despite talks between fishermen and the wind firm since May, the two parties were unable to agree on a compensation package.

Fishermen were left reeling when an offshore wind farm owner slapped a court injunction against boats entering waters due to hold wind turbines on Monday.

Norfolk fishing boats are prevented from entering an area near the planned Race Bank wind farm because the wind power company DONG Energy wants to run surveys of the seabed.

Race Bank is to be built 17 miles off the Norfolk coast and is expected to be ready by 2017.

Court documents seen by ELN specify any persons using “fishing gear or other related equipment… including but not limited to pots, ropes, buoys, nets and lines” from entering a set area between 15 August 2014 and 22 October 2014.

Breaching the order could result in imprisonment, fines or having assets seized, the documents warned.

Barrie Deas, Chief Executive of the National Federation of Fishermen’s Organisations (NFFO) likened using a high court injunction to “using a sledgehammer to crack a nut”.

He said: “Fishermen have a legitimate right to fish on their customary grounds.”

Court action has been rare in the last 30 years, suggested Mr Deas: “We can usually sort out an amicable arrangement that compensates fishermen for losing temporary or permanent access to their fishing areas.”

Image: Thinkstock

He speculated: “It seems DONG Energy has left insufficient time to reach agreement with local fishermen and there has been a regrettable breakdown in dialogue.”

Despite talks between fishermen and the wind firm since May, the two parties were unable to agree on a compensation package.

It is unclear why, as DONG Energy could not go into details of what the sticking points were.

But a spokesperson described the court action as a “last resort”.

They said: “It is very unusual for us not to reach agreement on a displacement package with affected local parties.

“However, while we are still trying to reach an agreement with local fisherman in the Wash, we also have to progress with our offshore geophysical surveys to comply with the terms of our agreement for lease with The Crown Estate who control access to the seabed.”

Talks will continue with the fishing community in the meantime, “with a view to reaching an agreement over our current and final displacement offer”, added the spokesperson.

DONG Energy bought Race Bank wind farm from Centrica last year for £50 million. Centrica had reportedly been planning to ditch the 580MW wind project – big enough to power around 450,000 homes – because subsidies were too low.

Buying off a few fishermen ignores that fact that for every man at sea there are ten on land in the supporting industries from ice plants to net makers, transport drivers to fishmongers. The Industry is being sacrificed through ignorance and political idealism for an energy resource that is simply economically unviable. Dong is 75% owned by the Danish Government.

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Fracking – Fact or Fantasy

The green movement doesn’t like Fracking but they do like Wind. Why? Fact is wind is intermittent, drives people into fuel poverty, devalues neighbourhood homes and has to be supported by subsidy. Fracking on the other hand has reduced energy prices in the US, created thousands of jobs as energy prices tumble to the benefit of US industry and needs no subsidy. So why has the Green Lobby reacted so viciously to fracking. Their web sites are a liturgy of lies and obfuscations.

fracking objectors

They are the great unwashed, the swampies and the anti capitalist objectors and yet they are also rent a mob. Never has a Wind Farm objection rally needed the police manpower that fracking does. Truth is that it is simply political activism, what Patterson referred to as the Green Blob. How seldom do we see locals in their ranks. Those that are have believed the hype and failed to properly study the fact. Flaming faucets: cold bed methane in groundwater that would be there without any mining. Nothing to do with fracking at 8000ft well below groundwater. There are dangers, but none that cannot be adequately addressed by good management and oversight by an effective regulator. After all it is not in the developers interest to be faced with expensive clear up costs and loss of production. And those toxic chemicals? Another myth perpetrated by the Green Blob. Cuadrilla are perfectly transparent on what chemicals are used. See here for Fracking Fluids

So what about the real legacy of fracking. In the south we have been drilling the Wytch oil field for years and few even know it exists. Fracking, as a technique, has been used for the best party of forty years but new equipment and deep wells have brought it into it’s own more recently. Centrica have been fracking wells for gas in Norway for the last few years. Interestingly they are using mostly Scottish engineers. Good well paid jobs for the indigenous population.

A wind farm requires 700 times more land to produce the same amount of energy as a fracking site, according to analysis by energy department’s recently-departed chief scientific advisor.

Prof David MacKay, who stood down from the Government role at the end of July, published analysis putting shale gas extraction “in perspective”, showing it was far less intrusive on the landscape than wind or solar energy.

His intervention was welcomed by fracking groups, who are battling to win public support amid claims from green groups and other critics that shale gas extraction will require the “industrialisation” of the countryside.

Hundreds of anti-fracking protesters on Thursday occupied a field near Blackpool neighbouring a proposed fracking site for energy firm Cuadrilla.

Prof MacKay said that a shale gas site uses less land and “creates the least visual intrusion”, compared with a wind farm or solar farm capable of producing the equivalent amount of energy over 25 years.

He rated each technology’s “footprint” against six criteria covering aspects of land use, height, visual impact and truck movements to and from the site. [...]

Prof MacKay said the analysis showed that “perhaps unsurprisingly, there is no silver bullet – no energy source with all-round small environmental impact”. He said that all sources “have their costs and risks” and said the public should “look at all the options”.

So what effect does fracking have. Essentially a fracking site will experience disturbance for about forty weeks after which it will revert to a simple well head. There was one incident at Witch Farm that bears mentioning. During a well test a large group of people were spotted marching up and down the access roads with signs. Since they were in a restricted area one of the crew was dispatched to ask them what they were doing. It turned out that they were there to demonstrate against the oilfield because it was horrible or something. However, they were puzzled that they had been told where it was – but couldn’t find it.They were quite surprised to find that they had been walking past all the wells for the last few hours and hadn’t actually spotted any of them.

Fracking well head

This is in Marcellus, New York State, and cannot be seen from the road. The alternative is something like this at Ardrossan.

Ardrossan

Ardrossan

Of course the first runs 24/7/365 for some forty years and the second runs as about 21% when the wind blows and has a life of about 16 years before it needs re-powering. We have all been promised a maximum of 25 years but do we believe them? No way. Read the small print. In practice what will happen is either the death of the industry with wholesale bankruptcies and rusting hulks littering our scenery or bigger monstrosities here for forty years or more.

For a safe, sustainable, future the truth is we need deliverable energy at a cost we can afford with a mix of clean coal, gas, nuclear and hydro. It is without doubt that as civilisation moves forward we will have an expanding demand for electricity, not because it is green, but because it is easy. Cars, buses, trains will all demand much higher energy requirements than we could currently(sic) supply. So listen to the Royal Geological Scociety, the Nuclear Industry and the engineers in the power industry. Don’t listen to the Swampys and green ideologues as they peddle dis-information. Get your facts from people who know, not the Green lobby with their eschewed values which even their founders now despair of.

We need to build a future based on fact, not fantasy!

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The Conspiracy Theory

In the Politics of Energy and the Global Warming Agenda we come across certain terms which reflect where we as a Society have gone. Some see this as a Global Conspiracy, others as ineptitude of Politicians bowing to lobbying and self interest groups. In both instances there is certainly an element of ‘Follow the Money’. More likely they are imbued(to inspire or influence thoroughly; pervade) with groupthink:

conspiracy theoryCognitive Dissonance – The tendency to resist information that we don’t want to think about, because if we did it would conflict with an illusion we have ought into – and perhaps require us to act in ways that are outside our comfort zone – Lean Festinger

Common Purpose – A UK ‘Charity’ specialising in Behavioural Modification. An elitest pro-EU political organisation helping to replace democracy in UK, and worldwide, with CP chosen ‘elite’ leaders. In truth, their hidden networks and political objectives are undermining and destroying our democratic society. Google their ‘graduates’.You will be alarmed.

Common Good – The political expediency that Politicians actions are in support of the common good. In that way there is no room for individuals. It is their definition of Democracy.

The Law of Unintended Consequences - often cited but rarely defined, is that actions of people—and especially of government—always have effects that are unanticipated or unintended. Economists and other social scientists have heeded its power for centuries; for just as long, politicians and popular opinion have largely ignored it.

Groupthink - a term coined by social psychologist Irving Janis (1972), occurs when a group makes faulty decisions because group pressures lead to a deterioration of “mental efficiency, reality testing, and moral judgment”.  Groups affected by groupthink ignore alternatives and tend to take irrational actions that dehumanize other groups.  A group is especially vulnerable to groupthink when its members are similar in background, when the group is insulated from outside opinions, and when there are no clear rules for decision making.

Mindguards – Protection of the group and the leader from information that is problematic or contradictory to the group’s cohesiveness, view, and/or decisions.

The Hubris Syndrome – The hero wins glory and acclamation by achieving unwonted success against the odds. The experience then goes to the head: they begin to treat others, mere ordinary mortals, with contempt and disdain and develop such confidence in their own ability that they begin to think themselves capable of anything. This excessive self-confidence leads them into misinterpreting the reality around them and into making mistakes. Eventually they get their come-uppance and meet their nemesis, which destroys them… The moral is that we should beware of allowing power and success to go to our heads, making us too big for our boots.

Plausible Deniability - is used when someone in a position of authority, or setting an example, cannot admit something he needs to say. To take care of this, a story is created so that he can say it, but if he is asked about it, he has a good explanation so that he can say he didn’t do it. In other words, plausible deniability.

Newton’s 3rd law of motion - if applied to bureaucracy, would state: “Whenever politicians attempt to force change on a market, the long-term results will be equal and opposite to those intended”.

Agenda 21 – said to be a major tool of the New World order, conceived in 1992 in Rio De Janiero at the “UN Earth Summit.” its original aim was “Sustainable Development”. However there have been worrying glimpses of something much more invasive: “global land use, global education and global population control and reduction” The true objectives of Agenda 21, revealed, include an end to national sovereignty; restructure of the family unit which means basically the state will take care of your children, with a keen eye toward indoctrinating them into state control over family allegiance; abolition of private property. Looking at the SNP moves to provide every child a state guardian and their new Land Reforms does question whether this is as far fetched and conspiracy theory as we first think. After all the IPCC and AGW could be considered the first steps down the road of global governance. The actions of the EU in attempting to foist a Federal Europe on us. The removal of state veto and the power of the EU elite.

The Bilderberg Group – Bilderberg Club is an annual private conference of approximately 120–150 political leaders and experts from industry, finance, academia and the media.The Group is not democratic or accountable to the people of the world. Yet the decisions taken by this group affect every human being on earth, now and far ahead into the future. And Bilderberg Group meetings are never reported in the news.

The Club of Rome – The Club of Rome is a conspiratorial umbrella organization, a marriage between Anglo-American financiers and the old Black Nobility families of Europe, particularly the so-called “nobility” of London, Venice and Genoa. The key to the successful control of the world is their ability to create and manage savage economic recessions and eventual depressions. The Committee of 300 looks to social convulsions on a global scale, followed by depressions, as a softening-up technique for bigger things to come, as its principal method of creating masses of people all over the world who will become its “welfare” recipients of the future.

Green 10 -  Ten of the largest environmental organisations and networks active on the European level. Such is the scale of environmental NGO penetration into the structures of governance, at global, regional and national level, that it is almost impossible properly to describe the degree to which they have become part of the fabric of government, their massive influence setting the agenda in a way that is scarcely realised. EU Grants to the green anti-industrial lobby included multi-millions to Friends of the Earth €4,188,230 (£3,332,220), WWF €5,344,641 (£4,252,279) and the RSPB €3,802,544 (£3,024,327).

Quotes by H.L. Mencken, famous columnist: “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed — and hence clamorous to be led to safety — by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.” And, “The urge to save humanity is almost always only a false face for the urge to rule it.”
The threat to the world, as is always the case, is a current group(s) of humans who want to impose their values and desires on others. These people represent such a group, and they are not saints as individuals; in fact, quite the opposite, unfortunately

Now we need to consider where common sense and conspiracy theory diverge. And that I will leave you to ponder!

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Struan Stevenson – Reborn

 

 

winds of justice1

winds of justice

 

One might question the political comment by Fergus Ewing rather than addressing the issue. One could equally point to those in the SNP party whose children have nice comfortable wind farm/renewable energy jobs.

http://windsofjustice.org.uk

and to discover that you are not alone!

 

http://windsofjustice.org.uk/category/experiences/

 

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An ill wind

Noise and Illness, So What! I can't hear it in Bute House

Noise and Illness, So What! I can’t hear it in Bute House

As the explosion of health complaints allied to wind farms increases, The Scottish Government has caused some resentment from wind farm developers in progressing a health study. Those experienced in the machinations of the SNP cadre will shake their heads and expect yet another tick box exercise to exonerate their friends in the push to renewables in contrast to the peer review evidence increasingly from around the world that governments and industry have been criminally lax in ignoring that data available even prior to the March to Wind. This article in the Express really drills down into where we are now.

Click Here

noise

But I can in my home!

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The Future of Fracking

Frack Sheet 1I agree with Fracking Shale gas and consider it a great opportunity for the UK. However with the recent roll out of enhanced opportunities I worry that we will not frack for our own needs but for multi national companies to rape our reserves and sell them to rEurope leaving us with little benefit. Profit and taxes will as usual in this brave new multi national corporate world disappear to tax havens. We have a mature oil and gas drilling industry. Use that. We saw what happened to oil and gas. Restrict development to serve our needs and ours alone. It will last into many future generations them, not just our lifetime. But I have little doubt that greed will triumph. When Politicians get involved it usually does as the lobbyists and spin doctors entertain the gullible to expense account champagnes lunches in top London eateries with a few side dishes of trips to conferences and educational visits to the more glamorous watering holes of the world. I am also sure that many politicians and bureaucrats will secure lucrative positions for their wives and children along the way with the odd directorship promised for their retirement.

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McWeasel – or SNP plans to keep the lights on

With thanks to Old Sparky of Private Eyemcweasel

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Rampion Wind Farm encouraged to bribe National Park by Minister

Wind farm may damage views from East Sussex coastline
Seven Sisters and Beachy Head.

seven sisters

Seven Sisters and Beachy Head.

Published on the 05 August, 2014
Sussex Express

Concerns have been raised about the impact of the wind farm on views from the coastline in East Sussex.

The National Trust, the South Downs National Park Authority and Peacehaven MP Simon Kirby were amongst those who spoke out against the scheme.

The Rampion Offshore Wind Farm will be built about 12km off the coast of Newhaven and will consist of up to 175 turbines.

National Trust general manager for South Downs Jane Cecil said: “We support renewable energy in principle, but we remain concerned about the major potential impact of the proposals on Birling Gap, Seven Sisters and the Heritage Coast within the National Park and are disappointed that there is not a satisfactory resolution of the offsetting issue to maximise the potential for mitigation.”

E.ON was granted planning permission by the Government to construct the wind farm. The timing of the announcement on the day of Cameron’s long knives was either fortuitous or convenient. A typical PR stunt to bury unacceptable announcements on bad news days. 

The Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change required E.ON to support further mitigation and monitoring with a payment of more than £358,500 to the National Park.

Chief executive for the South Downs National Park Authority Trevor Beattie said: “Recognising the benefits of renewable energy we worked closely with Natural England and E.ON to take the protected landscapes of the National Park, including the UK’s first heritage coast, fully into account in their proposals.

“The SDNPA will remain vigilant to ensure that the long-term benefits of renewable energy are not jeopardised by damage to our precious landscapes.

“We are disappointed that E.ON did not fully mitigate the impact on the South Downs.

“It is good news, however, that the Secretary of State has recognised the importance of our landscapes by agreeing the package of mitigation measures recommended by both Natural England and the SDNPA to reduce the impact on both the land and the people who work on it and enjoy it. By, in football parlance, giving a £358k bung! Anyone one else would end up in prison, where of course the Ministers predecessor did! Albeit, we should add for different reasons.

“This includes reducing the number of turbines and a turbine exclusion zone to reduce the visual impact on the world famous Seven Sisters.

“In addition changes to construction practices, and a requirement to work with the SDNPA, should minimise disruption and make sure E.ON meet these commitments.”

The National Park said it had secured a reduction in the number of turbines from 195 to a maximum of 175, the exclusion zone to restrict turbines closest to the Heritage Coast and changes to the construction process to reduce impact on archaeology, ecology, landscape and those visiting the National Park.

Peacehaven MP Simon Kirby has written to Energy Secretary Edward Davey asking him to look again at the decision.

Mr Kirby said local residents had raised concerns about the wind farm which included: the impact on birds; the view that local people will have from the coast, the level of subsidies with the cost of the turbines potentially adding significantly to the cost of electricity bills.

Mr Kirby said: “This is a matter of deep concern to many of my constituents. I hope the Secretary of State will look again at this decision which has many long-term implications for the area”.

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Windfarms, Water and the Smoking Gun – by Dr. Rachel Connor

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The Danish Democracy does not like the truth!

      Written by John Droz Jr

Henrik Møller, Denmark’s leading academic expert on noise research, has been fired by his university after exposing a far-reaching cover up by the Danish government of the health risks caused by wind turbine noise pollution.

Moller

Shock and outrage at this latest example of the heavey-handed cover up of government-backed junk science has brought strong condemnation from independent scientists. John Droz Jr, a respected critic of wind farms, has issued the following condemnatory response:

As you probably know, a passion of mine is defending my profession (Science) from assault.
This is approaching a full-time job, as those promoting political or economic agendas are painfully aware that real Science is a major threat to their aspirations — so they are aggressively attacking it on multiple fronts. (See ScienceUnderAssault.info.)
We now have yet another distressing example, where a leading scientist has lost his job — apparently for the crime of being a conscientious, competent academic, focused on quality research (instead of chasing grant money).
Dr. Henrik Møller, is an world-renown expert on infra-sound, and has published several high-quality studies on low-frequency acoustics (like hereherehere, and here). More recently, some of these have dealt with industrial wind energy noise (e.g. here — which was peer-reviewed).
He has been praised as Denmark’s “leading noise researcher.” What’s even more important is that he has been courageous enough to have publicly spoken out against poor government policies, as well as the misinformation disseminated from the wind energy cartel.
In Denmark there have been several newspaper reports about this surprising firing, but I’m sending this to the AWED list as such an event should have much wider coverage.Here are English translations of a few Danish articles (I have the originals as well). It seems to me that some of the key points made in them are:
— Dr. Møller has had thirty eight (38) years of distinguished service for Aalborg University.
— Ironically, this institution publicly prides itself as looking out for its professors: “At Aalborg University we focus intensively on staff welfare and job satisfaction.”
— He was the only one of 200± researchers at the Department of Electronic Systems in Aalborg who was let go…
— The purported reason for his firing, is that the professor is no longer “financially lucrative” for the university…
— Despite claiming that the termination was due to a shortage of funds, the university had recently hired two additional people in the same department…
— Dr. Møller’s reasoned responses were:
1) During the last year he may not have produced that much income, but in many other years his work resulted in substantial profit to the university.
2) Statistically, approximately half of the faculty would be operating at a loss — so why single him out?
3) In his prior 38 years of employment, and reviews, he was never informed that his job was solely dependent on outside funding.
4) Additionally, prior to the sacking, he had not been informed that his income production was a problem that need to be addressed — giving him a chance to do so.
— The Danish Society of Engineers, and the Danish Association of Masters and PhDs, have gone on record stating that it is unreasonable to dismiss researchers due to a lack of grants. Furthermore they reportedly said such a policy is contrary to the Danish University Act, which specifies that the purpose of research is to promote education, not to be a profit-making venture…
— The VP of the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations stated that it’s rare that a Danish professor is fired.
— It has been reported that the wind industry has frequently complained about Dr. Møller to his boss (Dean Eskild Holm Nielsen)…
— Consider this: the same Dean Nielsen was a keynote speaker at the Wind Industry Association’s meeting, the day after he fired Dr. Møller!
— As one article explains, this termination might have also come from the fact that the Technical University of Denmark (DTU) has a very close association with the wind industry, and that Dr. Møller’s scientific research had resulted in embarrassing revelations.
— The same article states that with Dr. Møller out of the picture, wind industry friendly DTU will now take over responsibility for assessing acoustical impacts of industrial wind turbines on Danish citizens. (I wonder what conclusions they will reach?)
As one report accurately stated: it takes courage for academics to focus on scientific research, instead of pursuing outside funding.
Please consider writing a short, polite email to Dr. Møller’s boss (who fired him) objecting to this shameful termination: Dean Nielsen

It would be helpful to cc a reporter at an important Danish newspaper: Axel Pihl-Andersen:

and bcc Dr. Møller:

Regards,
John Droz, Jr.
Physicist & Environmental Advocate
PS — Although his studies on industrial wind energy only comprise a small amount of his thirty eight years of academic work, they may have resulted in the most notoriety.
Since many of the people on this list are interested in that topic, here are a few other examples of Dr. Møller’s work related to wind energy, in his words:
1) We made an analyses of a wind project in Maastricht, planned to possibly have turbines from a Danish company. The City Council stopped the project after our report — a result that did not make us popular with the Danish wind industry.
2) A reason why we seem to be a nuisance to the wind industry in Denmark is that we keep finding errors in noise calculations and evaluations. As an example, we found serious errors in the environmental impact assessment behind a new law on a wind turbine test center, and the law had to be changed.
3) We also revealed that in a big Vestas promotion, they mixed up two acoustical terms (and Vestas had to change part of their campaign). I’m afraid there are only Danish newspaper articles about that — which is unfortunate, because it was quite funny.
4) We also criticized Danish regulation of wind turbine noise, which resulted in feature articles in Danish newspapers. I am not sure if others have been translated, but here is one example.
5) We also put together some web pages about the Danish wind regulations, which made the wind industry complain about me to the Dean (again).
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Turbines are Green – Like hell they are! (or is that like Dell they are?)

turbine base

 

Thanks to Andy for this analysis

So what’s the carbon foot print of a wind turbine with 45 tons of rebar & 481m3 of concrete?

Its carbon footprint is massive – try 241.85 tons of CO2.

Here’s the breakdown of the CO2 numbers.

To create a 1,000 Kg of pig iron, you start with 1,800 Kg of iron ore, 900 Kg of coking coal 450 Kg of limestone. The blast furnace consumes 4,500 Kg of air. The temperature at the core of the blast furnace reaches nearly 1,600 degrees C (about 3,000 degrees F).

The pig iron is then transferred to the basic oxygen furnace to make steel.

1,350 Kg of CO2 is emitted per 1,000 Kg pig iron produced.

A further 1,460 Kg CO2 is emitted per 1,000 Kg of Steel produced so all up 2,810 Kg CO2 is emitted.

45 tons of rebar (steel) are required so that equals 126.45 tons of CO2 are emitted.

To create a 1,000 Kg of Portland cement, Calcium carbonate (60%), silicon (20%), aluminium (10%), iron (10%) and very small amounts of other ingredients are heated in a large kiln to over 1,500 degrees C to convert the raw materials into clinker. The clinker is then interground with other ingredients to produce the final cement product. When cement is mixed with water, sand and gravel forms the rock-like mass know as concrete.

An average of 927 Kg of CO2 is emitted per 1,000 Kg of Portland cement. On average, concrete has 10% cement, with the balance being gravel (41%), sand (25%), water (18%) and air (6%). One cubic metre of concrete weighs approx. 2,400 Kg so approx. 240 Kg of CO2 is emitted for every cubic metre.

481m3 of concrete are required so that equals 115.4 tons of CO2 are emitted.

Now I have not included the emissions of the mining of the raw materials or the transportation of the fabricated materials to the turbine site so the emission calculation above would be on the low end at best.

This is particularly informative as Coriolis announce their plans for a further fourteen turbines of 462ft in height to add to the Loch Ness Ring of Steel.

This announcement comes in the tails of the approval of the Stronelairg’s 67 turbines in the vicinity to the Glendoe Hydro Scheme. Helen McDade, head of policy at the John Muir Trust puts this into perspective:

“The Trust will look carefully at the detail of the Dell proposal in the context of the cumulative impact of a flurry of development around the Monadhliath Mountains and Loch Ness, which includes the recently consented 67-turbine Stronelairg Wind Farm.

Unfortunately, some developers have since used the existence of the Glendoe Hydro Scheme as a Trojan horse to justify other applications, with the result that the character of the entire area is now being transformed.”

This does raise the issue of one application following another and confirms the concerns that we have previously expresses that once an area hosts one wind turbine, the area is already trashed and the developers see it as pushing on an open door. The Monaliadths, as Caithness, Dumfries and Galloway and North Ayreshire have all been virtually destroyed by the proliferation of wind farms and Councils seems to have lost the will to protect their areas. As the march continues down the Greta Glen will the Coire na Glas hydro scheme be another trojan course to extend the wind farm expansion even further. As the option of Shale Gas becomes more attractive and the practicality of wind post subsidy concentrates minds, will we ever be able to turn the clock back before Armageddon strikes. Already we see the progress of Millenium 3 in the starting blocks and that raises the other question. After much debate Coriolis reduced the number of turbines by a third or more but on current experience we know that if approved, extensions will follow until they reach or exceed their precious ambitions. Sometime, someone has got to say that approvals that are given after challenge and consideration, when numbers are often reduced to gain approval, are the end game. Extensions will simply not be allowed and further applications within the area will not be considered. Problem is that this must come from central government and I see little appetite for that from the present administration. We have seen what the industry thinks of the Wild Lands designation. They simply ignore it and I am probably right in assuming that their action is based on a steer from the Energy Consents Unit and the Scottish Ministers. If the Government had been serious they could have made the Wild Lands designation a statutory order. They didn’t!

 

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Energy: Can we really have it all – secure, low-carbon and cheap?

ben cruachanThe purpose of this web site is to inform as much as to campaign. We tend to challenge the theory of wind as an economical and renewable energy supply as there are plenty of other sites which promote wind. We also strongly champion the impact on humanity and particularly local residents as this is sadly missing from the Industry or from Government. In this lecture by Prof. Paul Younger FREng at the University of Glasgow you will be able to hear an argument that is informative and balanced. We hope you enjoy.

Click Here

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What is Hell Like? Being surrounded by a wind farm!

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Red Squirrels get bored in Cities

This is a bit of fun and we all need a laugh sometimes.

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Wind is a total success in Denmark. Or is it?

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