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Friday, December 28, 2007

Brief Update

To all my loyal visitors to my blog!
Sorry about my prolonged absence. Sadly I suffered a stroke at home here in Bristil on 9th December, b I have some residual problems with my eyesight and cannot now drive, but I'm getting around, walking wounded! But with some damage to my eyesight. I was taken to Frenchay Hospital and stayed there until the Thursday before Christmas.
I may not be posting to my blog very often but will try, as often as I am able.

I would love to hear from any visitors to my site by comment on the blog or by personal email to me at johnp@wega.org.uk
Some recovery expected but don't expect my typing to improve!
Love to all my loyal friends, relatives and any other visitors.
Happy New Year from

Monday, December 03, 2007

A blot on the Landscape?

Near the proposed site - Cefn Coch near Llanfair Caereinion

I have been preparing this piece for a few weeks now, trying to get together pertinent information and trying to come to some sort of rationale. One of my cousin had alerted me to the fact that at Cefn Coch, in the hills above Llanfair Caereinion in Montgomeryshire, plans are afoot to build a wind turbine farm in this particularly beautiful area of Mid Wales. Many local peopled had been demonstrating against the proposal and urging the planning authority to withhold permission. I considered protesting mytself, but I realised that I knew little about the main issues. It seems to me that the fundamental questions that need consideration are 1. Would this wind farm generate enough electricity to be cost effective? 2. Are the turbines a fatal hazard for near flying birds or bats? And 3, Does the noise or visual impact of this farm, placed on the Cefn Coch ridge detract from the natural beauty of this sparsely populsterd area.

I have seen various figures given for the vast amount of wind energy potentially available to us in the British Isles and turbines are becoming a common sight around our coasts and on ridges in hilly areas. I could copy various references, damning or praising wind turbines but would only be adding to the confusion. No one I think would deny that renewable energy must be used where and when possible though because of the noise and the scale of the plant some would say “Not in my back yard or spoiling our view!” I can sympathise with this view, I love this area of Mid Wales that my mother described in her book, A View of Old Montgomeryshire as: humped backed hills, lying like sleeping lizards in the sunlight.

As for a wind farm being fatal for migrating or flocking birds, according to this Eco-Myth and Healthlink articles the danger does seem to be mostly an urban myth, though I would like to see some evidence if there is any, of bird kills from around other wind farms. Some birds have undoubtedly been killed by flying into the blades of wind wirbines, but is the number greater than those killed by domestic cats and irresponsible royal shooting parties far more? I think so!

Any comments gratefully received!