Scotland against Spin [wind turbines, that is] ask for petition signatures

3,100 have already signed this Scotland Against Spin petition and today is the last day - 15th March – to join them.

The petition is here on Change.org – and pleads ‘Stop the reckless siting of wind turbines in Scotland’s scenic landscapes’.

The organisation has invited the First Minister, Alex Salmond, to accept the petition at a demonstration taking place in Inverness on 23rd March.

An extract from the letter of invitation says:

‘I would be honored if you, as the leader of ALL the people of Scotland in its efforts to preserve Scotland’s globally important natural heritage and protect the £1.4 billion nature tourism sector of the Scottish economy, would attend and accept the petition from our delegation at Eden Court on March, 23rd between 13.30 – 16.00pm.

‘Our delegation will be led by Rhona Weir, widow of celebrated climber, author and broadcaster Tom Weir. Like Tom, Rhona is a great champion of the Scottish landscape and has carried on her husband’s pioneering work in protecting it. She recently gave a vivid interview on Wind Wise Radio, describing the impact of industrial wind turbines on the Scottish countryside which she so prizes.

‘As Rhona is 93, we would appreciate it if you could fix a time when her delegation could meet you at Eden Court.

‘Our delegation will also include members of the younger generation who do not want Scotland’s unique and iconic landscapes destroyed by this generation. They hope to give you a bound copy of the petition including a list of the signers’ supporting comments.’

The point of the date of the protest march is that the SNP spring conference will be in the city on that day.

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219 Responses to Scotland against Spin [wind turbines, that is] ask for petition signatures

  1. I commend the – ScotlandAgainstSpin – website to you :- http://scotlandagainstspin.org/
    The organisation is being run by some very dedicated people and has brought together everyone fighting the blight of wind farms in Scotland. Their Facebook and Twitter sites can
    supply all the information ( and more ) that the average anti turbine campaigner will ever need.
    You will learn for instance that this morning it has been revealed that Salmond lied about the number of wind farm jobs in Scotland. He claimed 18,000 and then had the records altered apparently without informing parliament to 11,000 – it has now been confirmed there are actually only 2000. Should he not be resigning ? Yea OK that’s a joke. That would only be considered by someone honourable.
    Another lie issued by Mike MacKenzie in Holyrood recently was that wind generated power was only costing the average Scot about £21 per annum. In fact, including the present distribution costs of spreading this occasional supply of electricity round the country – in an Independent Scotland – that figure would be about £180 per annum just now – and liable to double – even treble – over the coming years.
    As it looks as if the Loch Fyne area is under threat from foreign investors in wind farms now. Perhaps concerned residents should look at this video we have made for the poor folks down in Straiton, South Ayrshire:- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0W4vf6ITHz8

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    • Just admit your a front for the nuclear power industry who has wasted trillions on a failed and dangerous system.

      Every time it rains at Hunterston, Ayrshire they have got to clean up radioactive sludge –in fairness it employ’s very technical people with shovels and buckets. THey even get protective goggles and respirators.
      I think a new nuke station on Loch Fyne will be so pleasing to the eye. Not much good for the fish as it heats up the water = less Oxygen. If you don’t want windfarms you must take the nukes

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  2. SAS CAMPAIGNS AGAINST THE SPIN OF THE TURBINES, THE SPIN OF THE INDUSTRY AND THEIR LOBBYISTS : SORRY PUBLIC RELATIONS GURUS : AND THE SPIN OF THE GOVERNMENT,

    SPIN Wind power will keep the lights on
    SPIN Turbines are in the national interest
    SPIN Turbines don’t affect human health
    SPIN Turbines reduce our CO2 emissions
    SPIN England will buy our renewable energy
    SPIN No unacceptable noise from turbines
    SPIN Community benefit is not a bribe
    SPIN Developers care about communities
    SPIN Tourists love wind turbines
    SPIN House prices are unaffected
    SPIN 1000’s of long term jobs
    SPIN Killing birds, bats and marine life is OK
    SPIN Turbines don’t add to fuel poverty
    MEGA SPIN

    The Scottish Government will only approve the right wind farm applications in the right places

    If the Scottish Government was a finacial services provider they could be accused of mis-selling wind energy on the above grounds coupled with their disastrous target and developer driven energy policy.

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  3. Well – we didn’t lie like Mr Salmond and claim we would have 18,000 signatures
    We didn’t even lie like Mr Salmond and claim we would have 11,000 signatures.
    But in fact we have just turned 4000 signatures from decent honest people who don’t like seeing their country and their businesses trashed at the political whim of the SNP. That’s twice the number of people employed in the whole of the wind farm industry in Scotland if you hadn’t noticed..

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    • Thought about signing but as it appears that this group is politically motivated as opposed to being a true apolitical pressure group I would rather not.
      Sorry

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      • I know SAS and am not aware of any political affiliation. The founders have none, and the group has been very careful not align itself with any political parties. It is against Government wind policy – which means at the moment SNP wind policy, but it is not against the SNP. Please tell me what the evidence is for your claim.

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  4. For information here’s a more detailed account of the accusation against Mackenzie MSP

    https://www.wind-watch.org/news/2013/03/11/it-wisnae-me-msp-caught-out-in-wind-industry-spin/

    Those of us who have known him for some time will not be surprised at the accusations against him. It is perhaps also amusing that he has acquired the nickname of “The Parrot” due to his tendency to simply repeat either what he has read or what he has been told. I believe this view is also supported by the Newsroom article:

    http://forargyll.com/2013/02/what-our-local-and-regional-msps-have-been-saying-this-week/

    Here it is pointed out that Mackenzie:

    “…use of standard text…” and “…repeated the First Minister’s encouragement”.

    It is alarming that this type of person is supposed to be representing the people of Scotland at Holyrood.

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  5. Perhaps Newsroom can remind us of how Mackenzie allegedly tried to mislead ForArgyll in the not too distant past. Was it something to do with the number of court cases brought against him?

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  6. Why do I think a Yes vote would simply lead to a repeat performance substituting Holyrood for Westminster?

    The attitude of Salmond and his mates over wind factories is just precisely an example of this – look after the most populated areas and to hell with everyone else.

    Some friends and I have been looking for self-catering in the Borders for an event we’re attending later this year. It happens to be a popular weekend but (and admittedly distance critical) the only ones with availability have wind factories in view. As none of us can stand the things, we’ve decided to camp somewhere with none of these monstrous industrial things and their associated tracks in view. I suspect next year, that will have changed and we won’t go – so who says wind factories don’t affect tourism?

    I have a standard question now if I go away – is there a wind factory in view? If so, no thanks!

    Incidentally, YouGov has done a survey asking questions about wind factories (only they call them farms!!) in last couple of weeks

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    • There’s surely a big difference between a monstrous overbearing array totally dwarfing the landscape and a more modest windfarm that – although visible – doesn’t dominate the scene. The real eye-opener is when you’re up somewhere high and remote and find that there are small armies of turbines in several directions; that definitely alters the ‘feel’ of the hills.

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  7. Then how about you showing your support for those dedicated people working 10 / 12 hours a day, 7 days a week trying to stop the planning applications for the massive arrays of wind farms which are despoiling the landscapes all over Scotland. You don’t have to do anything other than join in with ScotlandAgainstSpin at http://scotlandagainstspin.org/ The people putting in so much effort really appreciate knowing that they are being supported by others. There are already many hundreds on board and of course all are buoyed up by the results of the poll yesterday … 4,000 +.
    Come on Robert / Lowry and everybody else – ten quid to support the cause and get rid of – or at least help reduce – the scenarios you describe above.
    I made this computer game to help get rid of tension – SAS ExTurbinator – http://www.windfarms.me.uk/wind11.html

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    • The trouble is, Malcolm, that ‘the cause’ – as represented by you – is indiscriminate in its condemnation of all things windy, when – to my mind – it would have far more credibility if it adopted a more balanced attitude to the impact of wind turbines on our lives.

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    • Malcolm, for your information, I have been fighting wind factories for over a decade supporting groups opposing wind factories in areas of Britain that I know well and visited regularly. However, a pension only goes so far1 I have passed on the SAS petition to everyone I know

      Robert, in some ways you have answered your own question. A series of “modest” wind factories will still be a forest of them when they’re visible all over from high and wild places. I’m thinking of a place in Dumfries and Galloway some four years ago (i.e. before three new big factories went in) where nine “modest” wind factories were in view. They spoiled a stunning landscape and, as it wasn’t my home patch, I can hardly be called a NIMBY for that.

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    • Can’t help being amused ( as in genuine smile ) by the single thumbs up here. Has it something to do with the suggestions that you might have to part with £10 ?

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  8. Good News – as those of you who have signed up to support ScotlandAgainstSpin will already know – Vattenfall – the Swedish wind turbine company is cutting 2500 jobs to help make savings of £450 million. These are the jobs we have needlessly been paying wages for through massive subsidies added to our already excessive electricity bills. Apparently the Company have to prepare themselves for a fall in demand for its wind farm electricity in coming years.
    It means that the much vaunted turbines to be built 1 mile of Donald’s golf course probably won’t go ahead as Vattenfall had a 75% stake in the proposal.

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    • Malcolm, you might be right but more probably are off at a tangent – Vattenfall are heavily into nuclear, hydro, gas and coal generated electricity: their job cuts seem to be mostly in their admin staff (predominantly in Germany), and are related to ‘low electricity prices’, ‘production overcapacity’ and ‘too many carbon dioxide emissions allowances in the European market’. They seem to be getting a lot of grief – maybe particularly because they’re Swedish based – for their German coal fired power business, which they say is essential to generate the cash to invest in renewable power sources (and what they don’t say is that maybe these coal stations are going to be around much longer than expected given the German government decision to abandon nuclear power).
      I don’t know where you get the idea that the turbines offshore Trumpland might be a dead duck, as Vattenfall is just one of several partners in what in any case is intended for engineering research as well as power generation.
      Incidentally, SSE has just bailed out of the Scotland – Norway interconnector project, but the other partners, including Vattenfall, are sticking with it.
      My ‘long term personal animosity’ for you is in reality an ongoing disbelief in a great deal of what you present as fact.

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      • As usual you don’t read posts correctly – in fact do you read them at all – I sometimes wonder.
        Vattenfall has 75% of the Aberdeenshire proposal – if they are not going ahead with it – who is ? The worry is that Salmond will pump even more taxpayers money into it.
        Germany are building 23 new coal fired power stations – is that because it has just been confirmed that Global Warming has just been hit with the fact that temperatures have risen by only a small fraction of 1 degree C in the last 15 years ?

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        • Malcolm, you’re so fixated on wind turbines that you seem to completely fail to understand that only a relatively small proportion of Vattenfall’s activities are to do with wind energy, that most of the redundancies will be of admin jobs – and most of those in Germany, where their business is predominantly thermal power generation, from coal. To say ‘false jobs paid for by massive UK subsidies’ is so far from the truth as to be utter nonsense.

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  9. Haven’t we just experienced about one month of very still, cold weather when the wind turbines have turned very little, if at all, yet electricity has been in high demand for heating etc.? I am delighted to hear your news.

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    • It’s spells of weather like this that are driving the need to develop large scale power storage systems, but apart from the possibility of more pumped storage hydro power schemes there seems to be a lack of progress, particularly with the proposal for hydrogen generation and storage.

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    • Actually we’ve still had a fair bit of wind out here on Tiree, not sufficient for running at full capacity, but still an appreciable amount. For example there has been a northerly wind in the 15-20mph range for much of the last 24 hours. I’ve not checked the data for every day but my recollection is that this has been broadly typical. Bear in mind also that these are ground level inland speeds – those out at sea 200ft up are going to be significantly higher and more sustained.

      Storage capacity will help smooth out the lumps and bumps, but the main thing we need is a good HVDC network across Europe and a decent smart grid system.

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      • So you want to put our Electricity supply into the hands of foreigners ? Or maybe you are one of the few left that really think that expensive scottish wind generated electricity could be exported. Are the headlines not about how much we depend on Europe for gas and here you are suggesting we hand them a say in the supply of our essential electricity as well!

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        • Malcolm, I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt and assume that you just have an unfortunate tendency for misrepresentation rather than being genuinely dim.
          I’ll assume that you do actually realise that the days when large power companies were British only are long gone, that the planned interconnectors across the North Sea are designed to balance out over-supply and under-supply of electricity, and that the gas is (unfortunately) not coming from Europe as much as from Siberia, via our ‘friends’ in Moscow.

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          • Robert – as always unpleasant and personal – the legacy of Webcraft and Napoleon is intact.
            As long as the generators are on UK soil we have control. And by the way we don’t buy gas from Russia as is commonly believed.

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          • Malcolm – Dr DM put a lot of time into clarifying the facts in discussions posted on this website, and I associate his silence with harassment and criticism, a lot of it juvenile, by one or two numpties who love criticising others but can’t take it when their own pronouncements are found lacking in substance.

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        • Foreigners—are they like french people owning a nationalised nuclear energy company or english or german owned companies etc —in a globalised industry they are all foreign –unless we nationalise energy companies ourselves and have a true SSEB/Scottish Hydro/Scottish Gas!!

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    • No –many turbines were turning due to the temperature difference and air pressure between the warmer sea and the colder hills.

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  10. Jade – good to hear from you – have you seen what they are proposing for Straiton in South Ayrshire http://savestraitonforscotland.com/ It’s totally unbelievable and I fear soon that Argyll will also be overwhelmed with applications for wind farms so any chance of the tourist business picking up for those who depend on it will be well lost. Of course there are always the community bribes to be distributed, in order to quieten objectors.

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    • I am always intrigued by the ‘impact on tourism’ argument put forward by the anti-wind farm campaigners, largely because I am yet to find anyone who can actually support the argument with anything other than general statements about knowing loads of people who won’t holiday where there is a wind farm.

      Something a bit more concrete might actually make it a more credible argument. For example something like:

      1. The Wind Farm Consumer Research carried out in 2011 by Visit Scotland in which 80% of respondents saying that their decision about where to go on holiday would not be affected by the presence of a wind farm.

      2. 2002 – Tourist Attitudes Towards Wind Farms (MORI Scotland) which found that over 90% of tourists would return to Scotland irrespective of whether there were wind farms in the area. Of those surveyed who had seen a wind farm only 8% came away with a negative impression of them.

      3. A Leeds Metropolitan University research study (Visitor Attitudes towards Wind Farms on the Boundaries of a National Park (2003)) concerning the Lake District National Park which found that 87% of tourists and 88% of tourism organisations felt positive towards wind farms and the vast majority of tourism organisations reported no effect on their business from the presence of an existing wind farm in their vicinity.

      In addition to this there is the recently published report by Professor Cara Aitchison (University of Edinburgh , and University Chair in Social and Environmental Justice). Profession Aitchinson is recognised as being one of the world experts on the effects of wind farms on tourism. She was commissioned by the Economy, Energy and Tourism Committee of the Scottish Parliament to review the relevant academic and industry data on the potential impact of wind farms on tourism. The key findings of this report, Tourism Impact of Wind Farms were:

      1. There has been no economic impact, positively or negatively, from wind farms on tourism

      2. In 15 years of wind farm development, no evidence has emerged from developed sites that tourism has suffered as a result

      3. It is possible that the planned and sustainable development of wind farms in Scotland could result in a small increase in visitor numbers and tourist-related expenditure.

      Professor Aitchison ended her report by stating:

      “In conclusion, the findings from both primary and secondary research relating to the actual and potential tourism impact of wind farms indicate that there will be neither an overall decline in the number of tourists visiting an area nor any overall financial loss in tourism-related earnings as a result of a wind farm development.”

      Now I recognise that the conclusions of any study, in any field, will be subject to accusation of bias etc however I am yet to see anything conclusive as Professor Aitchinson’s work (and I mean by reading the whole report rather than the summary conclusions) which lends any weight whatsoever to the argument that wind farms will have a devastating impact on tourism.

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      • The point being – the people that were not coming back because of wind farms – weren’t here to ask – is that not obvious ! And as long as Edinburgh and Glasgow are stacked out with visitors it will be assumed that the Scottish Tourist Business is healthy
        And as Jamie says below :-

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        • Errr… no – it says 90% of people would return – not 90% of people who did return. They were studies of people who had been on holiday in Scotland.

          And you accuse others of not reading posts before responding.

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          • But the ones that really tell the story were not there – were they ?
            And of the ones interviewed – have you checked that they actually did come back or were they just being pleasant to the interviewer.

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    • And the 2011 one? And the fact that Cara Aitchinson’s study was published in 2013 .

      The question still stands – where is the evidence to support the claim of a detrimental impact. I am more than happy to read it if it can be produced.

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  11. Ok, I am the first to admit that other than knowing what one looks like, I know hee-haw about windfarms.

    After reading this, I feel like I need some clarification on a few things.

    The petition states “reckless siting of wind turbines”. So is this petition against those only, but supports ones that are sited unrecklessly? It is a little confusing because according to the posts on here, supporters of SAS seem to be against ALL wind turbines.

    Graham Lang’s statement regarding all the “Spin” are not corroborated by any evidence and Malcolm Kirk’s friendzied, agitated rants seem to be filled with personal bitterness. Therefore, I cannot trust any of their statements as being accurate. They complain of government propaganda, but isn’t that exactly what they are doing? Making un-substantiated allegations?

    How can anyone in my position (ie on the fence) can make an informed decision about this when the truth seems to be the vital bit missing or obscured from all these comments?

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    • CSB

      In essence it is very hard to find the truth as both sides of the fence (pro and anti-wind farm campaigners) are notorious for selecting studies that support their view and either ignoring or rubbishing those that don’t. Also a lot of studies are carried out by people who were never impartial in the first place – Malcolm posted a link to such a study a while ago on here – I will see if I can dig it out.

      That is why, purely on the topic of tourism, Professor Aitchinson’s study is a lot more valuable than most as it was commissioned entirely because the Economy, Energy and Tourism Committee recognised the difficulty of reaching conclusions against conflicting evidence, which has often been far from impartial.

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      • That would be the SNP loaded Economy, Energy and Tourism Committee which included Mike MacKenzie, wee green Harvie etc . To think for one moment that they would stray from the ‘Great Dictators’ orders – no way – on pain of ……
        Anyone who believes that Holyrood works on a democratic principal whilst Salmond is in charge, is truly mistaken,therefore all reports commissioned by the SNP have to be seriously doubted.
        PS Thanks crazybat for that input reminding us of SNP finesse and sophistication – a few people have asked me to check that you didn’t hurt yourself when you fell off the fence – at least I think that’s what they said.
        PPS – Robert – just been sent this http://www.heraldscotland.com/business/company-news/norway-could-break-scots-green-energy-link.20516762

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        • Again Malcolm you deliberately miss the point and highlight your own hypocrisy.

          The commitee commissioned it, they didn’t write it. If you are now going to dispute Cara Aitchinson’s credentials you really are clutching at straws.

          However whilst you are in the modd to discredit a study based on who was involved in it remind me of the study you linked to on here which was written by one of the most anti wind farm campaigners imaginable – I think you also posted a link to a youtube video of the author condemning wind farms. Is that the sort of ‘impartial’ study that you think people should be giving credit to?

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          • Don’t know what you are talking about – I have not posted any links to other youtube contributors – must have been Robert. However we strayed from the point when we got involved in tourist numbers. Many of the hundreds of people campaigning against wind farms next Saturday in Inverness are doing so on their own behalf or their neighbours – they live near scenery that could be destroyed under Salmond’s rule and their properties devalued. If you are of socialist leanings you will say ‘tuff’ – mainly because these people have something you don’t have – par for the course. Others think otherwise.
            But if you are of socialist leanings you should really be onside because by limiting wind farms you reduce the number of less well off Scottish people who are liable to fall into the ‘fuel poverty’ trap being set by Salmond.

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        • Meowwww Malcolm. Again your post is little more than a personal swipe lacking in content and completely unproductive.

          Tell your friends to rest assured, I did not get hurt as I have NOT actually fallen off the fence, in fact, I am getting splinters sitting on it still ;)

          And as far as my political affiliation? What makes you think I trust them either? As most people on here know, I am one of the most skeptical people there is and only in the last couple of weeks stated how scunnered I am with politics.

          So, after answering your innocuous comment, would you like to at least answer some of the questions I posed originally? Or do you have no answers? Just vitriolic nonsense then?

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      • Much of Aitchison’s work is funded by the wind industry and of highly questionable relevance to the current situation in Scotland as senior officials in the Scottish Government, and indeed Cara Aitchison herself admitted, at a seminar organised by the Scottish Tourism Alliance last autumn. There were many people from the tourism industry there who were overwhelmingly convinced of the negative impact of wind farms on tourism. The interesting question is why hasn’t the Government commissioned independent research into this. I think it’s because we all know what it will come up with, so if the Government wants to carry on unchecked with its current policy, the best strategy is not to commission any new research and denounce all evidence to the contrary as “anecdotal” and “subjective”.

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    • CSB
      The difficulty we have is that Scotland is only just starting to build wind farms at a significant rate. Whenever the 100% renewable target is achieved, we’ll have approximately 6% of Scotland’s land area with a windfarm on it. The data for this is here somewhere in FA and it starts from data supplied by SSE for the output and occupied area of the Whitelee farm.
      There are two caveats:
      1) the SSE farm has high capacity turbines whereas the Scottish average is likely to be somewhat lower which increases the area required for the same power and
      2) every one of these turbines has to be built somewhere near a main arterial route which will have the effect of making the structures more intrusive.
      One criticism made by the MSP tourism etc committee was that the exact status of wind development by council was not known centrally and I think the intrusion by wind farms will creep up on us and we won’t like it at all. Scotland sells itself on its scenery and if you start having to take photographs that are 10 years out of date because the current view is of wind turbines, you’ll know we’ve gone too far.

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      • Hans. I’m very surprised SSE supplied those figures for Whitelee as the windfarm is owned and run by SPR.
        And I don’t understand your two caveats. Most developers seem to be proposing the largest capacity turbines that are practical. Why would they choose lower capacity turbines? And how does the locality of building the turbines – “near a main arterial route” – make them more intrusive. And the people of Campbeltown, where turbines are built, would love to be near “a main arterial route”!

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      • “every one of these turbines has to be built somewhere near a main arterial route” – well there are windfarms in Kintyre peninsular, on Gigha, on Orkney, in the Western Isles, and in the sea.

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  12. Can’t respond to last comment Malcolm as there is no reply option.

    So what you are saying is that people who hate wind farms, and are normally very vocal about it, suddenly went all nice to an interviewer they have never met. Yes that makes perfect sense.

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    • You can, Integrity, by tucking it in as a reply to your previous post – it will then appear immediately following Malcolm’s.
      Incidentally, Malcolm, as I’ve never posted any links to other youtube contributors, there’s no ‘must have been’ me about it.

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  13. Slightly off topic but, on a separate thread (the “bedroom tax” issue) someone queried the excessive artificial constraints placed on the use of land for housing in this, the second lowest populated country in northern Europe. I agree. Why, practically anywhere in Scotland, does a decent building plot cost the better part of £100k when the alternative use, generally poor quality agriculture, warrants a value of a few hundred pounds? Low land prices and the ready supply of sensibly priced, good quality, modern housing which would follow, should be one of the greatest benefits of living in Scotland.

    My point is, it seems to be anathema to our planners to follow the Scandinavian or Swiss models whereby housing is scattered around valleys and hillsides; we seem to prefer to have the views uncluttered by people and habitation. The cost, to the majority, of preserving such sterility is enormous in terms of what they have to pay for housing.

    Why, then, are the same planners, politicians, etc., who won’t allow us to have cheap housing land, able so freely to rezone similarly pristine land for major industrial complexes? Because that’s what the misnomer, wind farm, actually applies to.

    I’m in two minds about wind “farms”. I’m dead against sterilising 95% of Scotland of people.

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    • I don’t think I’d like Scotland to end up like Ireland, with little control over where and what people can build, but I agree there is a happy medium to be struck compared to the status quo. That said it’s not just planning which constrains housing in Scotland, but the small number of people who own most of the land(or control it via trusts).

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      • Ditto to that.

        The great tragedy is that the general public, or at least that portion with a stake in property, are complicit having been delude for 50 or 60 years by the myth that house price inflation is a good thing, a notion that is no more attractive than inflation in the price of bread or water or energy. As with those other essential commodities, inflation benefits only those able to sell. My belief is that the politicians of all parties have dared not destabilise this “feel good” factor and the easy access to imaginary equity which went with it, hence the excessive constraints they continue to place on the supply of land for house building (a Pied Piper economic artifice, ultimately doomed, as we are beginning to be forced to realise).

        Where the allocation of land for erection of wind turbines is concerned, I feel as though I’ve been teletransported to some parallel universe in which an entirely different set of value judgements apply, so far are they from the other norms current in rural planning. And as with rezoning of land for housing, the same small minority stand to make massive windfall gains, unearned, and merited only by the whim of a planning decision.

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        • But it’s not as if wind farms in Argyll are getting approved ‘on the nod’ – there’s a very clear indication in the local plans of the council’s policy, of where they might (not will) be acceptable, the ‘areas of search’, and the planning authority seems diligent in thoroughly reviewing all proposals for the impact they’ll have on the landscape and the people. My worries are centred on whether the employment benefits could be given too much weight by councillors, and whether the government’s renewable energy targets push us into a situation where ‘fulfilling the norm’ takes precedence over sensible planning policies and decisions.

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          • Anybody believing that the erection of windfarms creates more than nugatory direct employment is smoking something illicit; there’s work for the tower factory at Campbeltown and for the civil contractors in the build phase, but after that it’s a few hours visit per month from technicians.

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  14. If we are straying off the point we are only straying in a direction you took it in when you said ‘It’s totally unbelievable and I fear soon that Argyll will also be overwhelmed with applications for wind farms so any chance of the tourist business picking up for those who depend on it will be well lost’

    I’m just waiitng patiently for you to provide any evidence to support this statement – so far I see nothing other than a very lame atttempt to belittle evidence that counters it.

    The search engine on here isn’t great so I can’t find the study I was referring to (I was pretty sure it was you who posted the link to it as well as the link to a youtube video of a person making the subsidy case but apologies if wasn’t).

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    • Integ – it was Malcolm who posted it, few months back – maybe he’s forgotten.

      Some guy up in Caithness – Stewart something or other? A study and a video link of a presentation if I remember rightly.

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      • Stuarts video has been viewed over 360 times around the world and still going.
        I did not connect it to what was said above because I just put the video together, rather than it being of my own original making.
        I commend it to anyone who wants to understand why there are serious questions about the cost of Wind Farms in Scotland and the rapid spread of ‘fuel poverty’
        http://www.windfarms.me.uk/wind8.html

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        • Malcolm

          The point very clearly made and, as always, ignored by you is that you have tried to ridicule the work of Professor Aitchinson as meaningless due to what you consider to be the bias of the committee commissioning it. However you post a link to a study written by an anti-wind farm campaigner and expect people to take that seriously.

          I am sure the majority of people can see how ridiculous that is even if you continue to deny/ignore it.

          I am still waiting to see the evidence of wind farms having a detrimental impact on tourism or is providing evidence to support claims an irrelevance when you are falling back on scaremongering to try and convince people.

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  15. Hi Malcolm– looked at your website re your upcoming demo in Inverness –you want to make a lot of Noise—surely that will breach other’s human rights and break environmental and public health legislation.

    By encouraging the bringing of whistles, loudhailers etc surely you are deliberately breaching the peace. Should we keep the jail open at Inverary?

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    • One of the most boring video’s ever created.
      Your wee story give your tourist driving all the way from “the south”. Tell them to use sail much more environmental rather than burning all that carbon.

      Surely people may agree with you if you were not just anti- everything with a wind turbine. Surely your argument would win more supporters if you could promote: Improved insulation, less energy use, alternatives such as hydro, wave, tidal etc.

      Not all windfarm proposals are good nor bad

      What you do not do is tell us how we should produce future energy. Please clarify.

      Do you use oil lamps at present?

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  16. It is my experience when putting hard facts in front of those who have so much to say in favour of wind farms, that it is usually followed by a complete silence – guess what !
    Many have looked at my wee Lochgair video:- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yTM9imU_bMU
    So some questions should this wind farm be approved:-
    Would you expect the tourist occupancy rate of the hotel to increase or decrease.
    Would you expect the value of the hotel to increase or decrease if it was put up for sale.
    Would the value of the houses with views over the Loch increase or decrease compared with others with no view of the wind farm further along the coast.
    Would you want to see dozens of massive wind turbines that close across the way from every front window of your property ie. no escape.
    Would you be tempted to sell up and go elsewhere to try and find the peace and tranquility – that made you move to that area in the first place.
    I think I saw mentioned on another forum that there was a planned wind farm opposite Minard – if anyone wants to post the information I would be interested.

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    • I am still waiting to see the evidence of wind farms having a detrimental impact on tourism or is providing evidence to support claims an irrelevance when you are falling back on scaremongering to try and convince people.
      Seconded.

      Just noticed I have used the name Ileach – I am not the newspaper, just from there. I’ll use a different name for any future posts.

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  17. I read that England are getting a new nuclear power station that could have met most of Scotlands energy needs if sited here.

    What a missed opportunity for Scotland.

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    • Yes – HInkley Point – Up to 5,600 jobs in the building and 800 permanent jobs when operational. Being built on an existing power station site so not likely to offend anybody.
      Interesting thought – it is to cost 3 times the cost of the newly proposed wind farm ( biggest in the world) in the Moray Firth. If – in new condition – the wind turbines could produce 33.5% efficiency then 3 times their cost = Hinkley Power Station which will produce 100% efficiency. But we expect to be able to switch on a light or kettle at any time day or night- which of course can’t be guaranteed in any way from wind generated electricity – but most definitely can be guaranteed from traditional Power Stations like Hinkley. Further – Hinkley has an estimated life of up to 60 years as opposed to the 15 – 20 year limited life expectancy of an offshore wind turbine.
      So why are we paying for a second unnecessary supply from wind farms ? ? ? It is utter madness.
      Billions of our hard earned £pounds going into the hands of foreign companies and Spanish Banks.
      It is clear that Nuclear Power is not cheap but should be no more expensive than the price we are already paying for wind generated electricity, the difference being for that we will get a constant reliable supply for the next 6 decades.
      Oh – did I hear somebody mention Global Warming – our Met Office has just confirmed that in the last 15 years the temperature has gone up only 0.07 degrees C.

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      • Electricite de France might now have all the permits to construct Hinkley C, Malcolm, but as I understand it there’s the small matter of EDF wanting the government to guarantee a minimum price for the electricity of around twice the current UK average.
        The negotiations seem to have been ‘ongoing’ for a long time, so it’ll be interesting to see if the government now gives way in the face of increasing nervousness about the looming threat of a damaging shortfall in electricity generating capacity as more big coal fired plants are shut down. EDF seem to be in a strong bargaining position.

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        • Twice the UK average is what we are paying for onshore wind turbines already and it’s 3 times for offshore. Thats why I said above that Nuclear won’t be cheaper but it will be reliable and is good for 60 years production.

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    • Yes inverary is a good place to put it or oban or lochgilphead —much nicer for the environment and the fish farms will glow in the dark

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  18. So you are sponsored by nuclear !!—give me the costs for decomissioning give or take a few billion-& we pay for it

    Who pays for the clean up at Hunterston everytime it rains–we do

    The other simple fact is no-one want’s to build nuclear–it aint economic–FACT–so it is pie in the sky -

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    • haha, thanks for the giggle Hamish! Your implication is that wind turbines are economical – what a hoot! Tell me why they are subsidised to the hilt and no commercial ones are built without relying on subsidy?

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      • Jamie

        Are you prepared to also acknowledge the huge amounts of direct and indirect subsidisation of fossil fuel and nuclear? Both now and throughout its life. Personally I have no problem with the subsidies on wind farms but it is an argument that I acknowledge has some credential and does annoy aome people. However the more vociferous anti wind farm campaigners seem to conveniently ignore that it is far from unique to wind power. It is another example of where cerrain campaigners will basically lie to convince people without the time or inclination to dig beneath the surface.

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        • If YOU dig beneath the surface you will find that conventional power stations are not subsidised and that can be proved – we’ve been through this before on ForArgyll – many, many times.
          Right – so nobody has anything to say about the wind farm threatening Lochgair and its businesses and residents. You would all like to live there with a large wind farm across the way rather than the unspoiled hillside you were accustomed to – Ah well – each to his own !

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          • Just so I can be clear on this Malcolm.

            You are denying that nuclear power has been subsidized directly and indirectly for about half a century – through supporting uranium mining, bearing the costs of long-term waste disposal, provision of loan guarantees to underwrite huge nuclear construction projects(especially in the US) which have often resulted in defaults – the costs of accidents and subsequent clean up, assistance with plant decommissioning – all of these costs, and many others, subsidised by the public purse. Isn’t uranium still exempt from taxation?

            Can I look forward to your evidence for denying this being a youtube video of a cartoon nuclear plant with a smiley face above it?

            The bottom line is that there isn’t a mainstream fuel provision method in the world that isn’t supported by subsidy, especially in the early ears of its lifecycle. Personally I have no issue with it, whether it be for nuclear, wind, coal, gas etc. I have no personal dislike of nuclear and I don’t support the ambition to generate 100% of Scotland’s energy from renewable sources. I am all in favour of a mixture of delivery methods which find a balance between energy provision now and helping develop future energy provision long after I have shuffled off this earth.

            I don’t have a problem with people who simply hate wind farms either – personal choice and all that. What I find utterly obnoxious is people who blatantly lie to try and get their way and use ridiculously flawed arguments to counter evidence which has been gathered in a professional and competent manner.

            Did I just see that a nuclear plant would attract visitors if it had a visitor centre? I am sure a wind farm would attract visitors if it has a fun park built beside it too – does that make it any more, or less of an eyesore?

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  19. I read somewhere a while ago that nuclear power stations are actually only 25% efficient and not the 100% quoted above.

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          • By the way can you ask Stuart to put his ‘honest broker’ consultancy firm to work on what appears to be a pretty obvious subsidy to help EDF build the new nuclear plant at Hinkley Point.

            Of course they are not calling it a subsidy – just giving them a guaranteed price for electricity generated irrespective of market price. Is it a 40 year guarantee that is being negotiated?

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          • Which part of ‘ Integrity ‘ failed that time ? It would appear we have corrected your views re ‘ subsidies’ for reliable consistent traditional Power Stations in the UK.
            An apology or even recognition of that fact is called for. It was always the Guardian twisting things as usual.
            No information is yet available on how Hinkley Point will be financed.
            But you know what – if the subsidies which go towards supporting wind farms are removed and given to Nuclear Power Stations then I would be happy to openly call them subsidies for at least then they would be worthwhile.

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          • You haven’t corrected my views at all – if you read above I clearly state I have no problems with subsidies for all energy generation methods.

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    • Hen !!!

      I take it you mean this as a compliment rather than some demeaning male attitude to women which would tend to suggest you have of a slightly older attitude if not arrogant superiority complex.

      Can I call you “son”?

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  20. For those of you who have signed on with ScotlandAgainstSpin :-http://scotlandagainstspin.org/ – you will have seen the post on Facebook this afternoon from Cara Lewis re the devastating affect a wind farm had on a caravan site down in Yorkshire. Unfortunately, there is not a website address that I can post:-
    The post was sent to SAS to illustrate that any claim by politicians or the renewables industry that turbines have no impact on tourism is simply not the case. It’s time that politicians here in Scotland began to sit up and take notice that these are real jobs and industry under threat, and the consequences are long term.
    ” TOURIST BUSINESS BLIGHTED BY WIND FARM ”
    “The Knabs Ridge wind farm near Harrogate, North Yorkshire has had a devastating impact on the neighbouring caravan park,despite assurances from a Planning Inspector that it would have no effect on neighbouring businesses.”
    “Knabs ridge is an 8 turbine wind farm 430 metres from out park”
    “This Park has been in the same family ownership for 28 years and throughout that time until the wind farm was operating, the number of vacant pitches each season has been an average of 8 ( the Park has 159 static pitches and 57 touring pitches”
    “We began dramatically loosing customers once the wind farm became operational”
    “We have lost £91,360 in pitch fees income plus caravan sales of approx £400,000.
    This is a short precis of the full post which included comments by ex customers as to why they left, and noise played a big part in that, especially at night.

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  21. Newspaper report today.
    A PRO-INDEPENDANCE think tank has urged Alex Salmond to halt the spread of unsightly wind farms.
    The Options for Scotland group,set up by the former SNP leader Gordon Wilson,said the country’s energy policy is an “almighty mess”
    It wants a moratorium on new offshore wind turbine developments amid concerns about the cost.
    The call is a damning blow to Mr Salmond’s green energy policy.
    In a devastating attack on wind farms,the report raises concerns about ‘intermittent’ energy supply – the need for power station back up – and the cost of the subsidies.
    Says it all really !

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  22. Good site – high up – easy to get to – surrounded by park land – 1000′s of people able to enjoy the vision of wind turbines from their own homes – 125 metre machines all turning out of sync – making a noise that can have a serious mental effect on many – all sounds fairly idyllic – I mean other people have to put up with it:- http://www.windfarms.me.uk/wind7.html

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  23. Could I just point out to everyone that the petition is not a Scotland Against Spin initiative. Originally it was for folk in North America but so many people from other countries, including the UK, signed and commented, that it was opened up to allow signatures from all. People from over 43 countries have now signed. It was set up by Wind Wise Radio in Massachusetts.
    Stop Highland Windfarms Campaign and SAS are, however, facilitating the submission of the petition to Alex Salmond

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  24. I am surprised that the video of the potential downgrading of the Lochgair area as a tourist attraction as shown here – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yTM9imU_bMU – has not attracted further comment from those who had so much to say about how wind farms could not possible affect the the Tourist Industry. There have been to date 54 viewings of the video,which incidentally is 5 even 10 times more than I usually get when posting one of these wee educational videos on ForArgyll. Remember – it could be Minard, even Inverary – although I understand that Inverary is getting a wind farm on the hills up behind them anyway.

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    • Well done Tim – you’ve just reminded me that there is probably not a wind turbine producing electricity in virtually the whole of Britain at the moment – it’s too windy.
      But – and here’s the rub – they will still get paid for their loss of income by you and me.
      Anyone see Whitelee from their window or any of the many wind farms from Ardrishaig south down the peninsula ?

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      • Malcolm, if you check out the Elexon BM website, you’ll see that there is a steady 5GW plus from wind all day today, equivalent to a dozen or so CC gas generating sets – definitely a worthwhile saving to electricity consumers on a day when a gas trader has told the BBC: “I don’t think the [gas] price has ever been higher.”

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  25. Checked with NETA – the average contribution from wind in the last half hour and generally over the 24 period is just about 11%. This is possible attributable to the massive offshore wind farms off the South East coast where the wind speed is about 30/35 mph at the moment – but remember we are paying three times – yes 3 times – the price we normally pay for our electricity from these monsters. So would the temporary increase in gas price caused by presumably a similar temporary fault in one delivery pipe line outweigh the enormous costs of offshore wind farm produced leccy – doubt it. Just heard at 3 p.m. the power has gone off in Lochgilphead !

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  26. The report is from an Independent (newspaper) journalist who quotes Ms Hodge who I watched on telly recently – not impressed.
    I don’t see where subsidy comes into it but undoubtably the costs are huge – however the whole thing has suffered from political weakness from all governments for decades which has cost us, the taxpayers, so much. The salaries appear to be no worse than earned by BBC executives,Civil Servants, etc but of course that does not make them necessarily right or acceptable.
    It is interesting that those who work closest to the nuclear industry have no problems with any of it. Didn’t the council closest to Sellafield not vote in favour of hosting the deep underground storage system – and if anybody should have an idea of what is safe and what isn’t – they should.
    In America they built the Yucca Mountain storage facility and then didn’t use it because of the fears apparently of people who had nothing to do with it, and of course politicians catching votes. The people on site had no problems with it.
    In Sweden, they have a different local authority system and 2 underground storage facilities have been built on the vote of the local people without outside interference.

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  27. The name is Stuart Young – please try and get it right.
    There was a government paper written by Jehan Sauvage of the OECD – a Trade Body Analyst – who created a report which was subsequently bent by the Guardian Newspaper. The report was typically deep and to the layman quite difficult to assess so I wrote to Jehan in Paris and asked if he could summarise the whole thing for us. That summary was rewritten in plain English by Stuart Young for us all to understand.
    As I have said before, Stuart and others in Caithness / Sutherland are trying to save their Scotland from the policies of Holyrood/Westminster and the possible obliteration of their hillsides with pointless wind farms.
    Back to the real question which you have body swerved – will wind farms on the east side of Loch Fyne make a difference to the tourist industry on the west side of Loch Fyne.
    1. YES
    2. NO
    No time for answers on a postcard – this is the here and now !

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  28. I am sure you are all waiting with baited breath for the results of the SAS protest at the SNP conference last Saturday. Unfortunately, the weather took a heavy toll,trains being up to an hour and a half late, road transport being difficult as with everywhere else. However 100 stalwarts turned up and made as much of the protest march as was possible. Many retired earlier than planned because of the bitterly cold conditions. Anyway – good on them for making the effort.It is pleasing to note how many newspapers have given coverage.
    Robert you mentioned Spin somewhere above – how about this:-
    The SNP/Renewables Industry came up with this for last weekend:-
    ” Wheelhouse welcomes all Party support for Wind – http://www.snp.org” Apparently a new You Gov poll shows that a majority of every party supports wind power. Read the article – its typical SNP/Renewables propaganda. However when you break this wonderful information down it turns out that it was based on only 1003 opinions. Of those only 642 people out of a Scottish population of 5,295,000 agree that wind should be continued with – a percentage of 0.012. And of those who would choose wind farms to supply the majority of their electricity there were only 180 – a percentage of the Scottish population of 0.0033.
    A subject much covered by many newspapers over the last few days is this one:- 44,000 people have objected to wind farm applications over the last 5 years- http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/environment/surge-in-complaints-about-wind-farms.20600848

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    • Malcolm – Your interpretation of statistical methodology is interesting, and leads to the conclusion that if only 100 people turned up to this well-publicised anti-wind march in Inverness on Saturday, that means that only 0.002% of the Scottish population object to wind power…

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      • By the same calculation – only those who attended the SNP conference represent the actual true support for the SNP in Scotland. Lots of zeros after the decimal point there as well.

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    • Opinion Polls are only of use if they represent a majority view – or at least make a reasonable effort to fairly represent a majority view. A majority view from not so long ago was that the SNP support in Scotland was ONLY 24% of the population – a figure that is probably now well down after your ‘ Dear Leader’s” speech last Saturday.

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  29. Oh we’ll . . . I guess you don’t believe last week’s Ipsos Mori poll showing a +12% approval rating for ScotGov vs a -41% rating for The UK govt either . . .

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  30. Talking of polls, Nicola Sturgeon says that there should be a debate between Alex Salmond and David Camerson, the rationale being because the public want it – source – a poll.

    Funny how she has completely ignored all the polls which show Scottish people do not want Independence. Using her own logic, she and her party should stop this nonsense on Indy :P

    Oh well…

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  31. By your logic then the first time support for independence goes over 50% in a poll Westminster should simply hand over the keys.

    ‘Red button’ democracy big brother style. Wonderful.

    In fact last week’s independence poll showed only 46% currently intending to vote ‘No’ – not sure how you spin that to mean ‘shows the Scottish people do not want independence‘.

    (Ah, spin . . . back on topic at last ;-) )

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  32. SHWC convener Pat Wells said: “It’s just absolutely appalling that Alex Salmond has not got the courage to come and meet the people who have travelled all the way here, whose lives are being wrecked by wind turbines.

    All the wind worriers wanted was publicity . . . if they genuinely want to talk to the FM there are many more convenient times and places.

    Why precisely should he disrupt the conference to speak to them? If it was that easy to disrupt party conferences there would be a never-ending series of rentamobs turning up outside demanding an audience.

    It’s a bit like me being accused of ‘snubbing’ junk callers who phone me up when I am working wanting to sell me things or discuss my Yellow Pages entry. Am I a ‘coward’ because I don’t stop what I am doing to listen to their sales pitch?

    And how many were there? It says ‘scores’ so – less than 100 I guess (or less than 0.002% of the Scottish population for the democracy-loving Mr. Kirk).

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  33. I do actually agree that a poll which reflects a tiny percentage of the overall population carries little weight. I just wish the logic would be applied consistently. In this thread Malcolm was saluting that about 3 or 4 thousand people had signed the ‘against spin’ petition and we discover it was a global initiative. Im not sure Microsoft Excel’s character restrictions per cell could cope withthat many zeroes.

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  34. Again not reading the evidence correctly – at no time were the signatures offered up as a poll of the world’s population on wind power – they were signatories to a petition on a subject they considered important – At no time, if you had taken the trouble to look further, was it said that the signatories were all from Scotland plus Mary explained it for all to understand in 31 above.
    However, I’m still waiting for someone to say that a wind farm proposed for Loch Fyne opposite Lochgair will have no affect on the tourist industry in that area. 62 people have now viewed the video so there have to be some opinions somewhere ?
    http://www.windfarms.me.uk/wind7.html

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  35. I appreciate this isn’t the right thread for this but it is the closest ‘live’ thread.

    I see Trump has repeated his fairly disgusting remarks where he links the Lockerbie disaster and release of al-Megrahi to the SNP policy on wind farms. To use something like Lockerbie in order to mobilise ill feeling amongst opponents of wind farms is insulting to the people who died on Pan Am flight 103 and those who have suffered through that loss.

    Irrespective of whether you agree with Trump or not on wind farms it is surely beyond anyone’s concept of decency to behave in such a manner. The man is truly odious.

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  36. What was it Mr Salmond said? Something like ‘ follow the money’.

    As much as a can’t stand Trump, maybe Mr Salmond should take his own advice when he watches the money being withdrawn because of wind farms…?

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    • Does that mean a government should sell policy decisions to the biggest bidder?

      Out of interest (and I genuinely don’t know the answer)did Trump have a greta interest in opposing wind farms before there was one to be be built in the vicinity of his golf course or his interest purely self serving (which I can understand however if it is I wish he would stick to that line rather then claiming his interest is in the greater good of the whole of the UK)?

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  37. Kinda of – he thinks that because oil companies are investing, there will be an oil boom. Therefore a good reason for Scotland to become Independent. Not my words, just paraphrasing!

    I can see where he’s coming from, but it’s very flawed :)

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  38. Would someone let the pro wind farm – Biased Broadcasting Company – know that if they want to be anywhere near honest and realistic when showing pictures of the proposed wind farm off Donald Trump’s golf course then they would be better with an actual scaled image – as attached.
    One turbine gently rotating can be mesmeric – a row of them turning out of sync could drive you to the loony bin. The proposed turbines 1 mile offshore are to be absolute giants and no doubt if a golfer has those in the corner of his eye when trying to concentrate on a shot, to say the least, could be disturbing, hence the concern. The other is, of course, that generally wind farms are destroying the traditional Scottish landscapes / seascapes – but who the hell cares – not the SNP that’s for sure.
    http://www.windfarms.me.uk/wind13.html

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      • Yes – similar situation to the present residents of Lochgair – if the wind farm is approved across the way and they don’t like it they can always move down the coast to beside you or even into the metropolis of Lochgilphead – it’s all about individual choice isn’t it Robert !
        BREAKING NEWS:- On this very cold morning, the UK’s total of 4,414 installed wind turbines,costing £7 billion were producing a paltry 784 MW of electricity,compared to 15,764MW from coal,14,153 MW from Gas and 6,900 MW from nuclear – pathetic !

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    • The ‘blot on the seascape’ of the proposed offshore turbines is nothing compared to the blot on the landscape of Trump’s proposed 140-room hotel. Malcolm – why don’t you occupy yourself on something useful for a change and produce an accurately-scaled picture of the hotel :-)

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      • Trump has destroyed a rare thing, a truly wild landscape right on the edge of one of our major cities. I knew the place well in my University days. Trump is a vandal and a bully; personally I hope he expires of apoplexy while looking at a wind turbine.

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    • In my experience this is typical behaviour from Mackenzie who never seems able to tell a straight story. He is also a parrot – will repeat information that he’s read or heard but doesn’t appear to understand what it means. (apologies to parrots). This is really quite worrying when you think people like him are running/ruining the country.

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    • Was it dear old Donald who’s fiefdom made us put up with the over budget Holyrood parliament and consulted with no one except his wee pals the Alexander twins as he was pally with their dad —who then went on to promote a wee tram line I Edinburgh–and then Alistair I luv myself Darling who Bankrupted the UK !!

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  39. “Bulgaria’s grid is suffering from power overloads caused by a rapid increase in wind and solar capacity coupled with decreasing domestic consumption in the face of a weak economy

    Green energy renewable subsidies cause energy poverty for families and are a killer for jobs, the future for Bulgaria is somewhat less than bleak, unless the feeding frenzy of the Green vultures can be curbed, you can tell just how bad the situation has become with the Green Dream when EU energy chief Günther Oettinger says there must be no more new Green taxes on energy and emissions in the EU.”

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  40. Can someone tell me what Donald Trump’s Links Golf Course has destroyed – what makes it so terrible compared to all the other popular Links Golf Courses throughout the country.As far as I can see it is the man himself who is disliked along with Salmond and some of the local politicians who were involved – the golf course seems to be absolutely OK and is much enjoyed by the players. If anyone tries to imply that birdlife was killed off in the making of the golf course I will offer up the figures on the regular deaths of birds and bats thanks to spinning wind turbines.

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    • I have tried to find out why it was designated as an SSSI – and what has changed as a result of the building of the golf course. Having lived in East Lothian much of my life I am familiar with sand dunes and how they change size and position with the wind – nothing is static – what made this place so special ? East Lothian is full of Links golf courses !

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      • That’s the point, Malcolm – the east coast is stuffed with links golf courses, dumbing down the natural behaviour of the dune ecosystems, and the dunes at Menie were a stretch of the Aberdeen coast that was relatively free of human disturbance, till Trump rolled into town.

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  41. So Malcolm,

    You don’t believe in reducing carbon emissions because climate change is a con and you don’t believe in preserving our natural environment via mechanisms such as the SSSI.

    What exactly are your qualifications in climate science and ecology that allow you to know so much better than the experts?

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  42. Webcraft you are an ….
    You see – I always doubt paid officials who come up with designations like SSSI – its a lottery they enter to get special attention and funds for their departments. Its a title – it’s a designation – it could be utter nonsense but a civil servant somewhere will confirm it. It’s all about earning a few bucks for themselves.
    https://www.wind-watch.org/news/2013/03/30/the-9million-bonus-bonanza-dished-out-to-green-energy-bureaucrats/

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    • So – no qualifications, just an overweening arrogance.

      And I imagine it is a different story when a SSSI gets in the way of a wind turbine . . .

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    • So the artists “are passionate about the issue” Hud me back – when ever were artist not ‘passionate about the issue ” Do you want your way of life dictated by ” artists” ? And webcraft – it is possible to list the wildlife killed by wind turbines on land and potentially at sea – how about you coming up with even one single mouse being killed in the development of this golf course.

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  43. Do you want your way of life dictated by ” artists”

    Oh do give us a break Malcolm! It’s you who constantly drones on about your exquisite sensitivity to the ruination of Scotland’s iconic landscape by turbines.

    What about the people who had their lives ruined by Trump’s exploits at Menie?

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  44. Lowey -I have great respect for all your postings so hopefully we can have an adult discussion on this matter. How come sand dunes that have moved here and there over very short periods of time are suddenly of more importance than the visual despoiling by wind farms of the Scottish landscape. Wind farms are the destroyers – not links golf courses.

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    • I hope that Karl’s posting helps you and others to realise the true value of the sand dunes.

      I am opposed to wind farms, their impact, the cost and doubt that they will ever deliver. I was also against the Trump proposal because of its impact on a unique piece of the Scottish environment that we should have cherished and not allow to be destroyed by the rich for profit and exploitation of yet more of the rich. Not too dissimilar to windfarms actually.

      Both claim to deliver jobs etc. etc. but at the end of the day it’s all about making the rich richer and a huge loss to our environment.

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  45. SSSI says who. To most of us it’s just a pile of sand with some plants and weeds growing in it and a few birds building nests. Only an escapee from the concrete jungles could find it of “special scientific interest”.
    Once the sea levels rise or the ice age comes it will be changed to something else, like the Labour party it will become “irrelevant”.

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  46. All going a bit pear shaped for Merkel – let’s hope Salmond is next:-
    http://www.businessweek.com/news/2013-04-04/merkel-losing-allies-in-700-billion-shift-to-renewable-energy

    Oh ! and – maybe CO2 is not as bad as we thought – and this from a man who claimed we were all doomed:-
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/environment/globalwarming/9974397/Global-warming-time-to-rein-back-on-doom-and-gloom.html

    Oh! and there is a picture in the Telegraph this morning of a Ferry following an Ice Breaker in the Stockholm archipelago. The caption is ” Scientists say the ice on the Baltic Sea this year is thicker and further spread that previously recorded ! “

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    • I would urge peple to actually read the article Malcolm has linked to from the Telegrapgh rather than accept his summary of it.

      When you do you will realise it frequently reminds the reader that climate change hasn’t gone away and shouldn’t be ignored.

      It finishes by saying

      ‘The new research might just give the world a much-needed breathing space. But it would be foolhardy to breathe out for long. ‘

      Which I suppose for some means ‘I will be dead by then so why should I care’

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    • one year !

      You might want to check out the increase in Antartic ice while you are at it….
      However, the reason is not that the ice sheet is growing…the surface area is increasing, the mass is decreasing…
      Global tempratures are increasing Malcolm…at a phenominal rate…its a fact…not a con.

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    • Malcolm. I’m sorry to see you fall into the well-known trap of thinking that “weather”, e.g. ice on the Baltic in one winter, is the same as climate, e.g. unarguable increases in global temperature over many decades. Just to give you a little perspective, it now looks as if the cold weather that western Europe, including the UK and the Baltic, have been experiencing this winter is related to the thinning and great decrease in the amount of arctic ice, which is a direct result of warming seas. *If* you are interested, you will find a scientific discussion of this on the internet, but be sure to approach it with an open mind.

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      • Do you mean that the Met Office’s statement ( back down ) that said temperatures had only risen 0.07 degrees in fifteen years is yet another incorrect uttering from that source. And of course the discovery of the Biased Broadcasting Corporation’s gang of 28 did nothing to make people believe in the many supposedly ‘ experts ‘ papers on Global Warming. I have no time at the moment to read what you suggest but will happily try to get into it later today.

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        • No, Malcolm, I mean that you are failing to distinguish between weather and climate. This is a hallmark of global warming deniers who are only too ready to claim that a single cold winter, or a single summer drought, are “evidence” for global warming having stopped/never started/is a load of lies. You have picked out ice on the Baltic. You could have picked out Australia’s hottest summer on record in 2013, or the 2012 drought over the US which is continuing into 2013, but as these relate to hotter conditions, of course you ignored them.

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  47. Webcraft – I always read every article before offering it up to your all to predictable SNP criticism.One of these days you will come up with something worthwhile – actually – probably not !
    Integrity – your comment on my summary is unfair – I didn’t imply anything other than what’s in the article which I of course had read in full. This article is important because it has been written by someone who is very much of the global warming mindset and is now prepared to perhaps consider watering down his previous views.
    Karl – According to our reliable Met Office the temperature over the last 15 years has risen by 0.07 degrees and didn’t I read somewhere recently that new research has discovered that the Antartic ice was thicker than previously thought ?
    Lots of good news this morning on how much shale gas may be available in the UK – should make renewables appear what they really are – useless, unreliable, hugely expensive, and a drain on every householders hard earned income.

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    • What exactly have the SNP got to do with climate change? Are you claiming that everyone except SNP voters are now climate change deniers like yourself?

      The Arctic has warmed phenomenally over the last two decades, with the likelihood of another record sea ice minimum this Summer.

      Posting endless links to dreary Mail and Telegraph articles and making daft wee videos to justify your blanket objection to wind turbines is one thing, but flatly denying the all too obvious reality of ongoing rapid climate change takes you into another order of daftness altogether.

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      • There’s some folk so politically fixated that they’d blame another party for absolutely anything nasty that happens, regardless of reality. Maybe it’s an unavoidable by-product of a functioning democracy that you get people for whom politics is the be-all and end-all of everything, and for whom the notion that politics are just part of getting human life to work reasonably well is incomprehensible.

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    • ” only risen 0.07 c in 15 years…” ! you do not seem to realise that the northern and southern hemispheres will initially be slower to warm…and you are refering to only British weather…the central areas of our planet will suffer most…

      The fact is the worlds major industrial nations have it in their power to slow our effect on the planet, be that the polution of our oceans, land or atmosphere..wind energy is not the problem Malcolm, its a problem in itself due to the commercialism…its certainly not the panacea wome would have us believe…..our addiction to fossil fuels is the problem…our reliance on plastics are a problem…

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  48. I think the problem is that the SNP are trying to sell us the story that if we put up with all their lovely windfarms the climate change problems will be resolved. Utter drivel.

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  49. Can I suggest that instead of listening to Captain Kirk’s ramblings you turn to a real rambler, outdoors writer, broadcaster and mountain walker – Cameron McNeish ?

    In his blog post on the WalkHighland website he remarks that 28% of Scotland’s land has been designated ‘wild land’ .
    He goes on to say

    That may be well down on previous SNH estimates but it’s still a reasonable slice of cake and if we are offered it we should grab it with both hands.

    Given the public and cross-party political support for wind energy it will be a bold government that offers to keep over a quarter of Scotland’s land mass free of wind turbines. But we are in the Scottish Government’s acclaimed Year of Natural Scotland so what better time for First Minister Alex Salmond to show some his party’s green credentials and announce substantial turbine-free zones?

    Well, guess what? The Scottish Government is drawing up plans to do just this.

    So the SNP are listening to rational argument and large parts of Scotland will be protected from nasty windfarms.

    Now what do you say Malcolm?

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      • In your haste to rubbish the government at every opportunity it seems you haven’t actually read either of the links I offered.

        It’s not any old 28% of Scotland, it’s ‘wild land ‘ as agreed by SNH, JMT etc.

        Your blind hatred of the SNP and blanket condemnation of their every action is becoming tiresomely predictable Jamie. Why not try looking at things on a case by case basis?

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        • Rather than the SG spin of ” hurrah 28% of Scotlands wild lands protected” … why not rephrase…. so… 72% of Scotland now at risk of industrialisation !
          Given Scotlands small size thats horrific !

          Webcraft if it makes you a wee bit happier try this instead: 28% of Scotlands land area may now be protected from industrial/commercial wind farms…as for the other 72% it’s open season. After all the Scottish Government says the “consultation would allow ministers to hear a “full range of views” on how wild land should be protected by the planning system”…nothing is certain…it is just a whisper of hope in a gale of claptrap…and yet another “transparent consultation” that the TAX payer will have to pay for.

          You might want to check out how much is already protected ! as national parks, national scenic areas, areas of outstanding natural beauty, SSSi’s and the likes…do the maths and come back and tell us all… the announcement is not a load of crap.
          http://jncc.defra.gov.uk/page-1461

          But while we are at it lets not forget the likes of the Monadhliath Mountains, or the vast swaths of the borders, or the Loch Tay proposal, Lewis etc..etc..etc..that are not “protected” but are still as the SG and their SNH quango say “Wild land means there isn’t much there in terms of human artefacts”.
          Mr Salmond is trying to make a silk purse out of a pigs ear for the electorate…nothing more, nothing less..as for Mr Cameron McNeish he’s not exactly an un bias 3rd party is he ? Give me John Muir, Hamish Macinnish, Poucher any day of the week.

          As for your below comment “It’s not Scottish government spin, it’s a pragmatic move that is driven by and supported by all the bodies whose business it is to look after the Scottish landscape.” I take it this was a tongue in cheek comment ? if its not then you really have lost your perception of reality.

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          • Karl,

            Now it is you who is doing the spinning. It is not 28% of Scotland’s wild land, it is all Scotland’s officially designated wild land.

            Much of Scotland – like most of Europe – is a man-made landscape, whether industrialised or co-opted for agriculture, forestry or whatever.

            The 28% is the percentage that is deemed still ‘unspoiled’ or untainted by artificial visual intrusions. Scotland is lucky to have such a high percentage. It seems like a good place to draw a line.

            It’s not Scottish government spin, it’s a pragmatic move that is driven by and supported by all the bodies whose business it is to look after the Scottish landscape.

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        • It seems that windfarms really do bring out tbe very worst in the SNP\Nats. I`ll put your outburst down to bad mood or something webcraft, you know full well my stance on te SNP, i`ve outlined it often enough on these pages.

          But for the record, in this case, I have little support for windfarms, and know that thanks tothis very SNP government, swathes of land are being ruined by these. Sadly the impact will be felt too late down the line.

          Their narrow minded `wind is everything` stance is unforgiveable. But hey, nuclear is fine just until we think wind is sorted, only then try shut them down.

          Having travelled much of Scotland recently, i`m horrified at the amount of these things spoiling the scenery. Even the remoteness and rugged landscape of Skye has not escaped.

          I do think the snp folks do protest a bit too much on wind.

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          • Jamie,

            You have little support for anything as far as I can see. I don’t remember the last time you made a positive comment on any subject. Try not to be so negative all the time – that is not what Scotland needs right now.

            And your protestation about the number of windfarms is hyperbole. I regularly travel from Oban to Deeside – 180 miles across the widest, wildest part of Scotland – and don’t see a single turbine on the way.

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          • Okay.

            Same sex marriage
            Dunnon Ferry solution (caveated with the need to rovide a more robust ferry than Ali Cat)
            New nuclear power stations in Scotland
            Retention of nuclear submarines in Scotland
            Retention of Trident in Scotland
            Scotland staying in the UK
            DEdinburgh Trams
            GARL
            Borders railway reinstatement
            Free prescriptions(caveated that i believe there should be a modest fee)
            Free education

            Those, webcraft, are literally off the top of my head.

            So i`m negative because i believe in different things than you? You and the SNP\Yes men and woman simply cannot, for a minute accept that some people do not agree. You pull out the negative card at every opportunity.

            Do keep it up, you do Better Together a lot in gathering support.

            SNP – agree with us or you are negative?

            Cheer up :-)

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        • Webcraft, having read both articles several times, they were not worth reading. Absolutely nothing in then, except that Mr Salmond might be open to creating turbine free areas.

          Far too little, far too late. If it even happens. I stick by my original comment too btw – convenient definition of wild lands there.

          Keep them coming.

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    • I just love pushing Webcraft’s buttons – aren’t his insults and rages so beautifully predictable ?
      However – back to business. I can be very clear on what I say – all of us in SAS and all the dozens and dozens of groups fighting wind farm planning applications in Scotland are beginning to get through to the SNP .
      Salmond’s latest climb down and rethink undoubtedly stems from the SAS protest march in Inverness 2 weeks ago.
      http://scotlandagainstspin.org/2013/03/first-minister-snubs-first-lady-of-scottish-wild-land-thousands-of-petitioners-hundreds-of-protestors/
      After this sort of headline appeared in so much of the UK national press over the following few days – he had to do something and is apparently now keen to meet Mrs Weir.
      Want to take a bet on how much of this apparent change of heart was due to political self preservation and ego as opposed to real consideration for his fellow Scots and their countryside.

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      • Salmond’s latest climb down and rethink undoubtedly stems from the SAS protest march in Inverness 2 weeks ago.

        You crack me up Malcolm.

        I think you will find it is people and bodies with opinions worth listening to when it comes to the Scottish landscape who have brought this about – people like Cameron McNeish, SNH and the John Muir Trust.

        A rentamob handful of bussed in middle class nimbys worried about their property prices is not the great force for change you fondly imagine it is.

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          • Karl,

            What do you believe? Still enjoying the income from Tilley?

            I find you very conflicted, and sadly consumed by your irrational loathing for the current government. Now that the Argyll Array looks like being a non-starter isn’t it time you chilled out a little?

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        • Isn’t he wonderful ?
          Tell you what Webcraft – I will donate to charity a £pound for every green thumbs up I have so far on this page, if you do the same for every thumbs down you have. OK ?
          You better bus in some supporters ! !

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          • Malcolm,

            If you believe that a flawed and easily subverted ‘voting system’ on a small out of the way blog represents anything real then you really should get out more. Anyone can vote as many times as they want simply by rebooting their router, so a bet of that nature would be an extremely stupid undertaking whichever ‘side’ you were on.

            Might I suggest getting a life?

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  50. Re 28%.
    Does that mean that 28% can’t be built on but a metre outside the boundary it’s open house.
    Or does it mean that from the boundary of that 28% -and therefore obviously from anywhere within as well – there shall not be a massive wind turbine anywhere in sight in any direction ? Now that would be really really good !

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  51. Is there nothing Salmond and the renewables brigade won’t stoop to to gain a headline.
    http://www.scotsman.com/news/environment/scotland-s-tidal-power-gets-us-investment-boost-1-2882120
    ‘latimeralder’ posted this below the article:-
    I checked out their website. It’s a start up with an idea, no actual working product – not even a prototype – and wants to spend the Scottish Government’s money on working on some design drawings.
    It is not a case of ‘ ResHydro investing in Scotland’, but of Scotland paying £100,000 to venture capitalists.

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    • Their partnership with Strathclyde University should provide the assurance that they’re not a bunch of chancers – but I understand your objection, Malcolm, to tidal energy – it’s probably far too reliable for your tastes.

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    • Malcolm. Every device starts with “design drawings” and as Scotland already has tidal power devices being tested in Orkney and plans for large-scale use of them, what better than a foreign company should see this as the best country to invest in, where there is existing expertise. The £100,000 investment in them gives the promise of significant jobs.

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      • You will have to explain what the £100K is being invested in because I don’t see any great gain for anybody – it’s just another headline for Salmond with little if any substance behind it. Incidentally, the tidal turbines being tested in Orkney were built in Norway and if you look at the videos of the massive installation process you will see that Scotland featured little. Robert will know the answer to this – example we pay 2 x for our leccy from onshore wind turbines – 3x for offshore – 5 x for solar panels – 5 x for pumped storage Hydro ( the only one liable to produce leccy when required – so worth while ) – so Robert what is the subsidy going into your tidal turbines ? In fact what is the cost so far ?
        With all due respect Alex, you obviously don’t know a great deal about the tides round the UK. Yes there are places tidal turbines could work but there ain’t that many.
        If Salmond had to climb down from his claim that the wind industry employed 18,000 to
        actually then state 11,000 and for it just very recently to be more accurately put at 2000,please don’t offer the promise of significant jobs in renewables. As you can see we have heard it all before.

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  52. Appears that Malcolm Kirk wishes Scotland to stop innovating, stop encouraging investment.

    Why don’t we just return to being a land mass for the rich and forget all these possibilities…

    Yeah..far too much trouble.

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    • I appreciate that what you say could be taken from what I have posted. Nothing is further from the truth. I am all for R & D and for investing taxpayers monies into Scottish/ British research. We don’t do it enough. Scotland has blessed the world with engineers,scientists etc and I believe there is a little gene in the Scottish makeup that produces these great guys. But when a development reaches a stage where it becomes unsustainable from a potential commercial point of view it has to go. Is it not true that often from this sort of research a side shoot appears which can often be taken forward to a successful conclusion.
      Just to annoy the usual suspects I will point out that Donald is half Scots and maybe it’s that side of his family which has made him the successful businessman he is – incidentally – his companies put about 20,000 wage packets into households each week – not bad !

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