The Scottish Wild Land Group opposes wind farms and explains why in a special issue of their newsletter, Wind Farms Gone Wild, which is available for free. A primary concern is cost. Wind farms are expensive. This hurts the poor because their cost of energy rises. The profits generally do not help the local community, and go elsewhere instead.
But it’s not just Scotland that needs reasonably priced renewable energy. The planet does too.
“… it has been apparent for some time that the costs of wind-power, on which the UK’s policies are dependent, are so high that the technology fails to offer the developing world a viable alternative to coal, and because of this our overall climate change policies lack credibility. Rethinking this position requires governments to admit that little or nothing has been achieved in the last two decades, in spite of vast subsidy expenditure.”
They also think wind farms, which can contain dozens if not hundreds of turbines, mar landscapes, kill birds, injure habitats, and pit communities against each other.
“I’ve recently noticed an interesting phenomenon in the world of environmental communications… If you are associated with the ‘green’ or environmental movement in any way, it automatically seems to follow that you must be a supporter of all forms of renewable energy, including mega-windfarms, because the alternatives (fossil fuels, nuclear power) are unspeakably pernicious. And if you don’t think that wind farms are a good idea, then you can’t be a ‘proper’ environmentalist…wind energy is renewable…but the often-fragile ecosystems associated with the hills and moors colonised by wind farms are not.”
That same damn-the-environment attitude is happening in California deserts too with solar power installations.
The Tucson Citizen rightfully notes.
I find this magazine both amazing and heartening, because it shows that at least one environmental group bases policy on facts and concern for people.
All of this may be yet more reasons for wind farms to be sited offshore, where winds are stronger and steadier anyway.
Update: A Scottish friend says their office is a private house in an affluent area and calls NIMBY on them