Comment posted Caithness wind farm rejection by Liam.
You’re quite right Tim – only about half the actual wind generation is displayed – as is stated below the graph on the NETA website. Also, when wind generation peaks at around 10% of UK supply, it is of course supplying a much higher percentage in Scotland of at least 30%. It’s not insignificant.
Having said that, I believe that we do need to be careful in our siting of wind farms. the likes of caithness is a very flat county, and the benefits of new wind has to carefully weighed up against the cost and impact on local people. it is clear wind is not perfect – a big mix of different generation technologies and storage options is required. But neither is it the technology of doom that some portray it as.
The problem is, no -one wants to accept any new generation:
- coal – record number of objections for the new coal plant planned
- Nuclear – we all know how nuclear stations are received by the local population
- Gas – the cost is too variable and has been the main contributor to rising bills
- Pumped storage / large hydro – many vocal mountaineers hate, see new plans for near inverness
- wind – need i say anything
- marine – personally i love the idea of wave and tidal energy but ti will not be mature for at least 5 to 10 years, costs 5 times wind presently (although that will come down) and is unlikely to supply more than 20% of our electricity at full development.
If you hate windfarms, what’s the alternative solution? You can’t hate everything and build nothing and the status quo of coal and gas is no good due to climate change / increasing costs / reliance on unsecure imports.
I doubt we’d be up for rationing our electricity! We need to pay for our modern excesses – our appliances, our emissions, our waste production – it’s just a question of what the best option is.
What’s for sure is we can’t choose no option, no matter how difficult the various alternatives are.
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