‘Strange reasoning’ over windfarm

IT was interesting to read the comments of those supporting the proposed RES windfarm at Park Head, Wingates, on the Gazette website on January 26.

Although rejected by the planning officer, typically, the developers demand a public inquiry at vast cost to the objectors and taxpayers.

Among those supporting the proposal are hoteliers Victoria Fyffe and Michael Townsend, of Embleton, and Alison Culverwell, of Rennington who ‘wrote near-identical letters expressing confidence that turbines would not harm their businesses’. Given that Embleton and Rennington are about 20 miles from the proposed site this seems to be stating the obvious.

They also wrote that ‘tourists visit Northumberland for its pristine natural environment’. This is true but it seems to be totally irrational to then claim that the best way to preserve this pristine environment is to erect nine 127 metre high man-made turbines.

The following snippet of information might explain some of this perverse reasoning. In June 2006, Alnwick Friends of the Earth (FoE) held a Rising Tide Bike Ride claiming ‘to highlight the importance of making a stand for safe renewable energy’. The contact names for further details were Vickie Fyffe and Mike Townsend.

Given that these letters from Embleton and Rennington were ‘near-identical’ it would be interesting to know how many of the 172 letters supporting the proposed Park Head windfarm were from supporters of the pressure group FoE, especially as Greenpeace, FoE and WWF established Yes2Wind to support and promote windfarms. Readers should be aware that RenewableUK, which represents the interests of the developers, is currently lobbying MPs to stop local people having a bigger say over windfarms as a result of the coalition Government’s ‘localism’ agenda.

Ann Ferguson,