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Western Morning News


Date : 04 Oct 2005
Rachael Ruffle of Renewable Energy Systems (WMN, September 20) really is scraping the barrel if she has to put forward the pitiable bribe of a community fund as a significant benefit of her company's desire to construct wind turbines in the Den Brook Valley. Even this is a typical half-truth. Some of the people who will find themselves living closest to Ms Ruffle's wind turbines live in the parish of Zeal Monachorum, but she has consistently refused to include the parish of Zeal in any of the dealings of her company. So no community fund for Zeal.

Dartmoor has recently been voted the BBC's Best British Holiday Destination because "it remains a wilderness and a favourite destination for lovers of the outdoors". This accords with the CPRE view that this area remains one of the three remaining "sinks of tranquillity" in England.

To build a wind factory, and associated infrastructure, within the North Tawton, Bow/Zeal, Spreyton triangle - adjacent to Dartmoor - could ruin our tourist trade and therefore our livelihoods. Not only will there be negative effects on the tourist trade but there will also be adverse effects on property values. Perhaps all this would be worthwhile if wind turbines produced significant amounts of green electricity. The truth is they don't.

Wind power can, at best, only fulfil a marginal role in satisfying the country's energy needs. Also the National Audit Office highlighted the poor value for money of the Renewables Obligation in February of this year. Wind power depends on the Renewables Obligation for financial solvency. The Public Accounts Committee of the House of Commons has also joined in the questioning.

It would appear that every time an authoritative and dispassionate person/group looks at public policy on renewable energy in general, and wind power in particular, they are highly critical.

This should act as a warning to the people of Devon to stop the mad rush by developers to milk the windfarm subsidy cow at the expense of our irreplaceable and glorious countryside.

Maureen Thomson

Chairman, DBVAG North Tawton

Turbines a hideous intrusion

RACHEL Ruffle of Renewable Energy Systems claims that the building of between ten and 19 turbines in the Den Brook Valley will somehow enhance Devon's environment. Well she would, wouldn't she? Her company stands to make a great deal of money from the proposal. She doesn't, of course, live anywhere near Den Brook.

Let us get the facts straight. These turbines will be a hideous industrial intrusion into our countryside. They will blight the view from the northern edge of the Dartmoor National Park and won't make a scrap of difference to global warming. It is time that there was a full and independent public inquiry into the activities of these speculative companies, particularly with regard to the money they receive from the taxpayers of this country.

John Bainbridge

Western Morning News


Date : 04.10.05
Until the day comes when windfarms will no longer be applied for, and we can all go back to being proud of our British countryside without fear of it being ruined by cash ridden hooligans, I suppose we shall have to put up with contributors such as Tom Langdon-Davies and Linda Lever with their somewhat bizarre views (WMN, August 30). It seems that while most people have educated themselves about the nonsense of windfarms, there are those who fail to take in any plain facts and still live in the fantasy world of believing that windfarms will save the planet.

Mr Langdon-Davies of Devon Towns Forum, is obviously besotted by money, the same as the companies who lap up the enormous subsidies on offer through New Labour spin designed to spend taxpayers money on something that does not really work, but has a disgraceful visual effect.

Linda Lever of the Devon Green Party wants to know what people campaigning against wind power would put in its place.

Firstly, her big mistake is that campaigners do not object to wind power, for windfarms are only a part of the technology, and not all wind converters need to be obtrusive.

The fact that windfarms only perform at an average of 24.1 per cent per annum seems to have escaped her. The Greens cannot see beyond idealism, and live in a world of their own.

Windfarms are a massive con at our expense and costing three times more than any other reliable source of power.

Renewable energy has many other avenues to go down even though they are all minute amounts of power which cannot keep pace with demand.

Linda is right about energy saving, but getting the public to participate is like asking a star professional footballer to play for nothing.

In France, 80 per cent of power is supplied by nuclear, and they do not complain about having all the electricity they need with no carbon emissions.

We have created a demand that can only be equalled by nuclear technology. We have to live with it.

In not too many years we are likely to be buying nearly all of our power from abroad. The risk of being cut off by any country who wishes to hold us to ransom will be the dominant factor.

As climate change increases, our hemisphere will have less wind, so the money grabbing companies should take their subsidies by building their useless turbines, that is until the subsidies end and we return to commonsense.

In the Netherlands all new homes have solar power and many state owned buildings are being converted.

The power of sun and light are for use every day. The big question is why not in Great Britain?

Oh of course, silly me. Its not obtrusive enough like 400ft turbines.

Alan J Nunn

St Austell