January 5, 2005

Against the wind

[ Letter in the Western Mail (Wales), Jan. 3 ]

SIR -- Most people are aware that electricity cannot be stored.

For this reason wind turbines do not significantly help reduce CO2 emissions, which, we are told, is the main cause of global warming.

If we were to rely on wind power for even a fraction of our electricity needs and the wind drops, the lights would go out; which is why we need constant, C02-emitting back-up from conventional power stations.

Wind power is a political fairy tale: it is designed to make all us soft greenies feel less guilty about our consumption of electricity and thus win Brownie points for our parliamentary leaders.

But the truth is that in believing wind power is actually helping save the world from global warming, we are compounding the problem and wasting valuable time in pursuing a white elephant that doesn't work.

The hypocrisy of our current energy policy beggars belief. Why aren't we all being encouraged to conserve energy which could cut C02 emissions by 20%?

Answer: because it would affect the profits of the electricity companies.

Why not put a tax on aviation fuel which is one of our biggest environmental polluters?

Answer: because it would effect the profits of the airline companies and would ultimately be a vote loser for Tony Blair.

It is time to stop this hypocrisy and to end the evangelistic obsession with wind turbines; instead, we must look to measures which we know can make a difference, such as energy conservation and renewable energy from a reliable source such as tidal power.

Clout (Conwy Locals Opposing Unnecessary Turbines) Steering Committee, Pandy Tudur, Abergele