Letters: Wind farm plans

Knabbs Ridge wind turbines.  (140129M1n)
Knabbs Ridge wind turbines. (140129M1n)

Our MP has got it right

I agree strongly with Andrew Jones when he emphasises that small scale generation of power to help households and small communities to use less grid energy is the way to go.

Offshore wind power is as yet unproven, but may well provide some useful electricity, and also if proved viable, a technology that could be profitably exported. What is certain is that large scale onshore wind power aimed at providing grid power and replacing fossil fuel burning is proving a highly flawed technology to the point of not working at all.

The combined output of all onshore wind farms will currently provide between 0 per cent and about 20 per cent of the country’s requirement for electricity on a minute to minute basis, but this is in no way a good deal in terms of the costs involved and the environmental damage done to the countryside.

When providing 0 per cent this effectively means that no other power stations can be permanently closed – complete back up is necessary to ensure that the lights stay on, (not to mention our central heating controls). When wind is providing 20 per cent of our national needs this will be only for a few hours at a time, later in the day it may only be 10 per cent! Only gas fired power stations running rather inefficiently can possibly keep up with such variability, so a lot of the apparent savings in carbon emissions will be lost. Significant amounts of power from onshore wind farms (which tend to power up and down largely together in our climate) can only be used at all by running the rest of our power stations less effectively. The savings available are proving to be very much lower than have been claimed, and the situation will only get worse the more onshore wind farms are built. Andrew Jones is right to put is emphasis on microgeneration, and not on the big onshore batallions.

Bruce McIntosh

Park Drive, Harrogate

Wind farm

The true height of the turbines

I have just read Laura Hill’s article about the proposed windfarm and would like to point out an error regarding the Infinis application. The proposed turbines would be 126.5 metres high not 26.5 and that makes a considerable difference. I would also like to say that I totally agree with the comments made by Gillian Knox and Paul Slater.

On a slightly different tack. Who are Infinis Energy? I looked up the board of directors and half of them appear to have come from Nomura and the shareholders appear to be mainly Terra Firma (Guernsey) and Monterrey Capital (Luxembourg). Is this another example of an offshore company taking trying to make massive profits but paying little tax or have I got this wrong?

Denise Rawson

East End, Norwood


Taller than St Paul’s Cathedral

Whilst I applaud the article in the Nidderdale Herald and the Harrogate Advertiser in drawing readers attention to yet another possible blight on our treasured landscape, I was disappointed with the inaccuracy In the opening paragraphs the article refers to Infinis ...”scoping opinion on plans for 100 feet tall wind turbines.” It appears that, even at this early stage, Infinis through a quoted response from their project development manager Paul Carvey, are attempting to mislead and downplay the fact that their proposal is not ...”for up to six turbines which would be 26.5 metres tall.” But for massive 126.5 metre tall turbines. At this height they would be 15.5m taller than St Paul’s Cathedral (111m) and 3.5m taller than Salisbury Cathedral (123m).

Not only are these turbines in a more prominent location than the existing Knabs Ridge turbines, who’s actual output is so far below their rated output as to be pitiful. This fact clearly demonstrating the unsuitability of their location for wind power generation. The location on higher ground at Lindley Moor, would have a far greater visual impact on Harrogate, the AONB, the Yorkshire Dales National Park and the North York Moors National Park.

These six additional turbines, together with the existing turbines and those currently in the planning process or proposed would become lasting monuments to corporate greed and would have devastating consequences for tourism, local businesses and residents of this historic and uniquely scenic area. They would also, with 42 turbines create the largest wind farm in England.

Time is running out, If you have not already done so, please, please register with Save the Dales and register your objection with HBC as a matter of urgency.

Chris Truman Davies

Potters Field, Darley

Hidden Agenda?

Do they want to destroy our area?

Like most I was horrified to learn of the intentions for yet a further commercial wind farm, at Lindley Moor, further threatening the Nidderdale AONB and Washburn Valley; one can be forgiven in believing that there has to be a hidden agenda to destroy these beautiful areas.

With massive turbines of over 126m tall (415ft) it makes no difference as to whether they are located just outside the AONB borders or within; the short, medium and long range visibility of these industrial monstrosities remains exactly the same.

Equally horrifying were the misleading comments in last week’s newspaper article by the developer. He reportedly stated that the six turbines would be 26.5m tall when in fact their own documents, submitted to HBC, confirm they are actually 126.5m tall. He further stated that in essence they were only considering the wind farm.

Does he honestly believe that people are really so naive to believe that his company will spend well over £100,000 on an Environmental Impact Assessment before realising the obvious - the wind farm location is grossly inappropriate. Remember the previous Kelda consultation process and their subsequent forced and grovelling admission to the Advertising Standards Authority and this newspaper, when they were caught out, that they had grossly mislead the public over that wind farm - clearly never believe what you are told!

The stark and brutal truth is that gaining a wind farm of 42 turbines, between 100m and 126.5m in height, is the solid intention with many £100,000s being spent on this dastardly plan; it will dominate over and destroy the intrinsic value of the AONB. If that is achieved then there is no doubt whatsoever that the ultimate prize for the wind developers will be to get within the AONB itself.

If you really care about the area, the AONB and Washburn Valley, please take the small amount of time it takes to lodge an objection to HBC for the first two applications; those few minutes may be all it takes to Save the Dales!

Gerry Smith