Wednesday 2 February 2005

Yesterday was April 1st

That's what I thought when I read about this:
THE unique Edinburgh landmark of Salisbury Crags could be under threat from a plan to set up a wind farm.
There's no way this will be allowed unless the world is even more bonkers than I think:
A spokeswoman for Historic Scotland said: "I can confirm that Historic Scotland has formally objected to this proposal, because of the adverse impact on part of the royal park and on the setting of a category-A listed building, the Palace of Holyroodhouse."
Actually, this proposal is good news: it makes clear just how mad the enemies of the earth have become.


David Farrer said...

Comments made on previous template:

Paul Lewis
Neil Craig:" immediately be cut up & treated as waste." 
That deals reasonably with the hulk of a spent reactor. How about the reprocessing the spent fuel rods? The greenies don't like that either. 
And I believe the SNP have something to say about the idea of siting the underground waste storage facillity in Scotland?

5 February 2005, 11:04:50 GMT
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Neil Craig
Decomissioning costs are political because greens insist decommissioned reactors be immediately becut up & treated as waste. Reactor waste has a short half life & so burns out within a few decades so the sensible way is to lock up decommissioned reactors for 50 years & put your new reactor beside it thus keeping everything within the same security perimeter.  
This costs almost nothing & is therefore not what we do.

3 February 2005, 20:31:00 GMT
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Bishop Hill
Wow, I'm fascinated by your response Paul, but OK, another time.

3 February 2005, 13:00:28 GMT
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Paul Lewis
Neil Craig: "... & in any case the decommissioning costs are largely political." 
That is interesting, why do you say that? I think I know what you mean, 'political' in terms of intra United Kingdom politics, or ecological politics? 
Neil Craig: "Gas costs have recently gone up significantly."  
Yes, and are probably likely to rise even more. As hydrocarbon resources start to dwindle, and the emerging economies start to accecelerate their industrialisation, contention for natural hydrocarbons will become feirce. Under these conditions (which will lead to higher hydrocarbon prices) there may be a much better case for 'renewable' energy sources. But even then, wind generation would not be my chosen source. 
Bishop Hill: "I don't believe that there is an economic case for windfarms."  
Then we agree. 
Bishop Hill: " It's funny how often public subsidy ruins everything isn't it?" 
Yes, we agree again. Except it is tragic. If we expected the degree of accountablitiy from 'public servants' that we demand from corporate officials, the next stop after leaving public office would be the county gaol. 
Bishop Hill: "He doesn't own the birds which fly over his hill each day, and nest on the lochside." 
I am not sure we agree on this one. If it is ok with you, lets leave that for another thread?

3 February 2005, 09:46:50 GMT
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Neil Craig
I probably wouldn't. I think the building regulations in this country are generally very destructive. Our housing shortage & consequent rising prices are entirely down to not being allowed to build. Nonetheless while I would support knocking down a few listed buildings & putting up skyscrapers, thousands of 300' windmills decorating the countryside would, to me, justify serious restriction. 
That is if the planning system that prevents people painting listed buildings wasn't pushing such vandalism.

2 February 2005, 23:45:36 GMT
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Bishop Hill
I don't believe that there is an economic case for windfarms. If they weren't subsidised they wouldn't be built, the view wouldn't be spoilt, the jobs would be kept at Gleneagles, the birds and bats wouldn't get shredded, the hillsides wouldn't get roads built up them. 
It's funny how often public subsidy ruins everything isn't it?  
If the windfarms could stand on their own economic feet how would I feel about them? I would feel strongly that the landowner had a right to do what he wanted with them. I'd also think thought that he would have to do something about the impact on wildlife. He doesn't own the birds which fly over his hill each day, and nest on the lochside.

2 February 2005, 22:35:30 GMT
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David Farrer said...

Neil Craig
"Our cheapest electricity will come from gas turbines and nuclear stations, costing just 2.3 p/kWh (British pence per kilowatt hour), compared with 3.7 p/kWh for onshore wind and 5.5 p/kWh for offshore wind farms"  
This is a bit outdated since nuclear production has actually gone up from 44% to 55% of our electricity & in any case the decommissioning costs are largely political. Gas costs have recently gone up significantly. I believe the wind costs here are distinctly optomistic based on official costs at the time - wind is proving considerably less than 100% effective. 
The person proposing an Arthurs Seat windmill is a rural anti campaigner so I think his intention is to make fun of Executive accusers of nimbyism rather than to make his fortune. he has clearly succeeded.

2 February 2005, 19:42:14 GMT
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Paul Lewis
Stewart: "I thought that you "libertarians" all strongly objected to the authoritarian planning system?" 
We do. Sailsbury crags is private property.  
Stewart: "You are hypocrites." Usual insults duly noted. Likewise lack of esthetic sensibilities.

2 February 2005, 16:37:46 GMT
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Stuart Dickson
-"There's no way this will be allowed unless the world is even more bonkers than I think." 
I thought that you "libertarians" all strongly objected to the authoritarian planning system? Yet as soon as a development is proposed which doesn't suit your own warped view of the world you are all up in arms. 
You are hypocrites.

2 February 2005, 15:35:22 GMT
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Paul Lewis
Source of the above mentioned doc: publications/pdfs/windfs3.pdf

2 February 2005, 12:44:08 GMT
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Paul Lewis
This is an interesting page from the DTI, 
Is it significant that they can't find the figures to populate the economic case for wind power? 
Anyhow, I have found another source from the DTI on the web. It tells us the following: "Capital costs for wind farms in the UK have dropped significantly since the first commercial wind farm was built in 1990. In 1991, capital costs were around UKP 1000/kW of installed capicity and currently they are around UKP 700/kW. This is due both to reductions in the price and the increased size of turbines." 
So there you have it, any one care to pay seven hundred pounds per kilowatt? 
Document copyright 2001, so perhaps you only need to pay UKP 400 per kilowat, now. Any takers??

2 February 2005, 12:40:55 GMT
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David Farrer said...

Andrew Ian Dodge
Can anyone show me proof that Wind Farms actually are off any use?  
Considering all the energy it takes to get them to their site and construct them and their output, it takes them a long time to be viable. IE: What Paul said.

2 February 2005, 11:39:34 GMT
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Paul Lewis
Bishop Hill: " as not to affect the view for the plutocratic guests. Sod the locals." 
What long term employment benefit will a wind farm have for the 'locals'. Short term construction maybe, but once the things are up, they will need a team of half a dozen to maintain. 
Now, if the plutocratic guests stop coming to Gleneagles, not only will the hotel probably close, but the plutocrats will stop spending their money in the locality. 
So it looks like a trade off between a non ecological wind farm, and sustainable development. 
I am interested in the economics of wind farms. I would love to see the balance sheet of the ecological cost of mining the ore, refining the ore, the energy used to cast and machine the bloody great big things the energy needed to lay cables to and from the wretched things to link them into the grid all that energy used to produce them against (a) the projected lifetime and (b) the energy produced during that lifetime. 
All we need to do then is persuade the wind to blow during the commercial break, when every body gets up to make tea.

2 February 2005, 11:37:14 GMT
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Bishop Hill
It is apparently Perth & Kinross policy that no windfarms will be built within sight of Gleneagles Hotel so as not to affect the view for the plutocratic guests. Sod the locals. 
No doubt a similar reasoning will apply here. The Royal family's view will not be spoilt, and the windfarm will be built elsewhere.

2 February 2005, 09:26:40 GMT