Windfarms unconvincing

I HAVE just read your report, on the exhibitions for the windfarms in this week’s Gazette.

I could not get to the one at Hadston but managed to see the Wednesday one at Widdrington.

My impressions of the whole thing was that all the ‘benefits’ came with ‘ifs or buts’ and nothing was cast in stone.

It did look like the people in favour were more interested in the cash promises.

The first slide as you came in was of all the new amenities that will be provided once the windfarms are up and running. I asked if any research had been done on the impact of a 300-bed hotel on the local B&Bs and smaller hotels. I was quickly told that was not part of their project.

Another slide was all about the size and power output of each of the 13 turbines saying they would produce 205 of the county’s needs but no mention of cost.

With all this information, I asked where the turbines would be made, only to be told that they did not know.

This seemed strange to me as the turbines will be the most expensive purchase. I suggested that they would be coming from Spain, the origin of the 13 at Ellington or China, who are now the world’s market leaders in windfarms. I was met with blank expressions.

It was plain to see that no local jobs would be created during the installation of the turbines and even local B&Bs will not see any trade as the construction teams preferred to stop at Whitley Bay rather than Ashington or Amble, while erecting the Ellington turbines.

I do not have a problem with how the turbines look but I am concerned about the cost of the power that they generate and we still need a 100 per cent back-up plant.

Another concern is, if they look so good, why are they not building them further south as I am sure the wind blows down there as well.

Bearing in mind that we do not have a National Grid Power Station in Northumberland, why do we need so many turbines. These 13 and the 13 at Ellington will provide 40 per cent of the power needs for all of the county.

The companies that are erecting all these turbines are not doing it for nothing and I am worried that we as consumers will be paying a very high price for this folly. Turbines could be the next ‘Windgate’ scandal.

John Boyd,

St John’s Estate,

South Broomhill