Tourists + Wind farms = empty beds and closed hotels

The Scottish Government routinely return to the Moffat report that they allege suggests tourists will not be put off by Wind Turbines. They only ever read the Executive Summary as a proper investigation shows one hotel had changed hands (because it was so successful?) and another had lost their major client, a bus/tour company. How they spin that as no negative effect beats me. A further report on the Solway Firth suggested a minimum 20% loss in visitor numbers. Enough to cripple most tourism businesses in Scotland. Scottish Government then stated those figures would not be transferable elsewhere in Scotland. Why not? Tourism has to be divided into it’s different elements. Event Tourism; the Fringe, the Edinburgh Tattoo, T-in the Park, The Golf Open; will probably not be effected by wind farms, partly because those events are predominately urban centric. Heritage and Ancestral tourism, some £400 million pa, may not be badly affected as the Diaspora come to where their roots are. However that sector does get a great deal of return visitors attracted by the scenery and the people. That is an unknown. Wildlife, hill walking and scenic touring, including climbing, will be badly effected. Just by how much is debatable but so many anecdotal reports suggest by a huge margin. Scottish Government suggest people will come on Turbine watching holidays. What world do they live in?

campervan in the HighlandsFor probably the first time we have elements of the Tourism Industry, albeit in Holland, raising their heads above the parapet and suggesting that the wind industry will decimate tourism and the jobs that rely on it.

Credit:  Wednesday 19 February 2014 | www.dutchnews.nl ~~

The tourist industry has added its voice to the campaign against massive investment in wind farms off the Dutch coast, Nos television says on Wednesday.

Tourist company association Recron says its members will lose tens of millions of euros a year and several thousand jobs could go if the government presses ahead with placing hundreds of offshore turbines.

‘Tourists want to see a beautiful landscape and great views, not a wind turbine in front of their door or in the garden or the sea,’ said Recron spokeswoman Marike Rosier.

Spending

A report for coastal towns and cities by Buck Consultants International says €100m a year in tourist spending is at risk because of the plans and that 3,000 tourist industry jobs will be lost.

The energy agreement signed by the national and provincial governments envisages the development of several massive offshore wind farms in order to meet green energy targets.

Islands

One location earmarked by the minister is a site some six kilometres off the Wadden islands’ northerly coasts.

The mayors of the Wadden Islands have already written to the economic affairs ministry calling for an urgent rethink.

The island council says the massive development is ‘not responsible’ given the greater social importance of the Wadden Sea area as a top tourist attraction.

They also say the plan threatens shipping, bird migration and the region’s status as a Unesco world heritage site.

Potential sites

The government has earmarked almost 1,500 square kilometers of the North Sea as potential sites for new offshore wind farms in an effort to meet sustainable energy targets.

The recent energy agreement drawn up by the government, industry, unions and green groups includes a commitment to ensuring five million households are provided with electricity derived from wind farms within 10 years.

The Netherlands currently has two offshore wind farms which generate a combined 200 megawatts of power. Plans for the location of new wind farms will be finalised next year.

Source:  Wednesday 19 February 2014 | www.dutchnews.nl
Tourism in Scotland generates £11 billion in revenue and provides employment for 250,000 people. At the same time our Minster for Tourism is also our Minister for Energy. Not even a Cabinet Post at that! Tourism in many parts of Scotland is fragile, partly due to weather, partly due to the financial collapse. Do you destroy a successful industry that has a large growth potential; TNS suggests that Heritage and Ancestral tourism alone will grow from £400 million today to £1 billion by 2020; and replace it with an industry reliant on subsidy for half of their income and reliant on rUK continuing to support those subsidies should Scotland cede from the UK after the Independence vote.  This really is the economics of the kindergarten. 
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About Dougal Quixote

Slightly mad. Always believes a cup is half full so continues to tilt at Wind Turbines and the politicians that seem to believe it is their god given right to ruin Scotland for a pot of fool's gold.
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