Wind turbines on your door step?

Solar energy, wind turbines whatever it is then here is your place to talk about it.
seasidegirl
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Re: Wind turbines on your door step?

Post: #254945 seasidegirl
Sat Feb 25, 2012 3:22 am

Interesting thread.

I think MKG makes the best point

'More realistic, I would hope, would be a program of education to reduce power expectations and, thus, requirements. But I don't hold out too much hope for that either.'

I think power expectations or usage are already reducing because money is so tight and bills so high. There must also be a way for technology to make better use of renewable power when it is available. Years ago people used storage heaters which were fed by overnight electricity because it was cheaper. There must be heaters that can do likewise with sunshine and wind power.
We don't have the money to invest in solar panels but I'm thinking about going for the free ones and thinking about how we can make the most of daytime electricity.

I like wind turbines in principle. Recently blogged about a planned wind farm off the coast near where I live.



http://wendusworld.blogspot.com/2012/02/wind-farm-on-horizon.html

Deblah
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Re: Wind turbines on your door step?

Post: #263896 Deblah
Tue Jul 10, 2012 9:28 pm

I totally agree. Windturbines seem like a good idea in theory, and I read that they dont affect birds nearly as much as some people say.. Obviously I support renewable energy, but there is always a bit of doubt when its close to home - I reckon even the best of us are prone to a bit of NIMBYism now and then.
But my main problem with windturbines is that they get stuck up by these large companies and those around them have to deal with the effects (whether large or small) and dont get any physical benefit (apart from the knowledge that a little less oil and gas is being used) - the best solution I can see would be to involve the locals, get them to site the turbines, maybe get them to put a (small amount) of money in to invest, and then give them some of the money back each year as the turbine produces energy - make it almost like a company.
I think people would be much more willing to accept this type of renewable energy if they were more involved!

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Re: Wind turbines on your door step?

Post: #265459 EcoSam
Thu Aug 16, 2012 7:31 pm

I'm all for turbines - they're a simple, relatively efficient and cost effective way of producing electricity. Larger turbines are more efficient than smaller ones due to the added advantages of height and blade length and therefore they pay off their energy and financial investments in a pretty short amount of time (some in less than a year).

I think that turbine developments need to change in nature however - at least with onshore farms. Instead of the majority being owned by corporations and these corporations handing over a relatively small amount of money to the local community, wind turbines should be owned and operated by the community in question through mechanisms such as Community Interest Companies or co-operatives where shares can be issued to local people and businesses. Not only does the community therefore retain control over the wind farm it also receives all of the profit generated. This obviously benefits the shareholders but also ensures that more money is kept within the local economy and people are more inclined to be receptive of the development in the first place cos they see that the profit ain't just going into some outsider's back pocket.

Another approach is the social enterprise approach where the profit is reinvested into local charities, projects, schemes and possibly businesses. Again, this keeps money within the local economy and reduces objection to the turbine/s.

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Stonehead
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Re: Wind turbines on your door step?

Post: #267458 Stonehead
Fri Oct 12, 2012 12:29 pm

We’ve just learned the farmer across the road has applied for planning permission for two wind turbines. What we find irritating is the double standards and finessing of the system to advantage some applicants, but not others.

When we bought the croft, we considered putting a 6kW wind turbine in on our ridge, standing about 30-ft high. We made a few enquires of the council, but the planning officers were not in favour because it would impinge on the sight line from Dunnideer, a scheduled ancient monument (they’d refused planning permission for a house close by for the same reason), because we’re in an area designated as and because it was too close to a house belonging to one of our neighbours. We were also told raptors nest in the area (which is true as we’ve photographed them). We decided it wasn’t worth the hassle and went for solar hot water.

Now, there’s a planning application in for two 55kW turbines, 218-ft high. The farmer will lease the land to a major plc to install the turbines and generate electricity.

As a result, the application is an all-singing, all dancing, “minimal impact on everything” affair. The impact on the look of the landscape is minimised, the impact on various scheduled ancient monument is minimised, the area of visual protection is dismissed, the impact on the house is minimised (it’s much closer than ours would have been) and the impact on birdlife is dismissed because “no protected species nest in the area”. (Are sparrowhawks, goshawks and buzzards protected? We have them. We also have bats.) As for the sightline from Dunnideer, they carefully positioned their camera for the montage and took photos from a shoulder of the hill, not from the summit.

The application also claims the wind turbines will generate and protect jobs in the area. What this means is an engineer coming out four times a year to service it and the farmer continuing to work his farm—never mind that he actually works off the farm five days a week already.

I’d have less of an issue if the impact was properly and fairly assessed—regardless of whether it was small fry like us or a big plc—but I get the feeling it’s no to little ones and yes to big ones, especially as the council only published the application online yesterday with a closing date of 18 October. Apparently, it’s been available in the council offices since 18 September and we could have found out about it if we wanted. Well, except we don’t go to the council offices every week to check the planning applications.

Our neighbour, whose house will be in the lee of the turbines, is very much opposed. He’s just come back from six weeks in Canada and discovered he has eight days to come up with his objections. He already hated wind turbines with a passion and now discovers he’s getting a pair just under 400m from his house—and it’s his next door neighbour who he previously got on with. So we now have a second neighbour dispute brewing and there are only four households here.

Just what we needed.
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gdb
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Re: Wind turbines on your door step?

Post: #267489 gdb
Sat Oct 13, 2012 9:24 pm

400m away from his house? Are there no limits in the UK? I understood that the general adivce was to put them a minimum of 2km away.
Is that only a guideline and not a law?

As to the other... it must be infuriating. Sadly all councils seem to be the same wherever you go. Always ready to bow down and grovel for an agro business and/or a corporation. (Backhanders, I always suspect).
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Re: Wind turbines on your door step?

Post: #267491 dave45
Sat Oct 13, 2012 10:23 pm

When you look at the externalities of large-scale expansion of wind within a sort-of free-market energy system, other issues become important, and how to deal with intermittency is one of them... At low levels of wind, you can ignore it, as unexpected shortfalls or surpluses in wind output can be dealt with by the regular system reserve generators.

At the sort of levels proposed by enthusiastic greens (and Huhne when he was energy minister), this can no longer work, and you have to ask what happens when for instance there is a high-pressure calm over the whole of northern europe... and the answer seems to be that you need to build backup gas power stations that only get used rarely in these unusual weather conditions. There is no incentive to build these unless they can command VERY high prices when they are used. in all simulations of market conditions with large amounts of wind, price volatility goes mad

see http://www.ilexenergy.com/pages/Documen ... ISv1_0.pdf last few pages... Poyry have done more detailed studies on this too.

In the other direction a large over-supply of wind will be more than the grid can cope with and wind-power generators will be paid to shut down to safeguard the grid. This is already happening, to the delight of anti-wind Telegraph and Mail readers.

Just looking at the local level doesn't give the whole story.

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Re: Wind turbines on your door step?

Post: #267497 Stonehead
Sun Oct 14, 2012 9:58 am

gdb wrote:400m away from his house? Are there no limits in the UK? I understood that the general adivce was to put them a minimum of 2km away.
Is that only a guideline and not a law?

As to the other... it must be infuriating. Sadly all councils seem to be the same wherever you go. Always ready to bow down and grovel for an agro business and/or a corporation. (Backhanders, I always suspect).


While they do have an axe to grind, CAWT has fairly good coverage of the wind turbine situation in Aberdeenshire:

http://www.cawt.co.uk/

Have a look at the map on the home page to get an idea of the density of existing and proposed turbines up here.

When it comes to separation distance, there’s a range of advice and guidelines, most of which appears to be ignored.

Again, CAWT has details.

http://www.cawt.co.uk/index.php?page=se ... n-distance

Scottish Planning Policy recommends a separation of 2km from the edge of cities, towns and villages.

Aberdeenshire Council’s policy is not less than 400m from dwellings and/or 10 rotor diameters. However, the council has granted consent for turbines much closer to dwellings.

Highland Council’s separation is 10 rotor diameters, Perth and Kinross is 20 times turbine height while Fife goes for 2km between homes and commercial/industrial wind turbines.

The situation is a mess and ripe for cynical exploitation.
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Re: Wind turbines on your door step?

Post: #267516 MKG
Mon Oct 15, 2012 2:29 am

Well, cynical it may be, Stoney, but if I were you I'd bang in my re-application for a turbine right now.

The logic behind turning yours down yet approving the other would, if your application was unsuccessful, be fascinating.

Mike
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