The Facts about Wind Generation
‘Wind energy is often criticised for being unreliable. Critics claim that wind energy can never replace existing power stations, or remove the need for new power stations to be built, because the wind cannot be relied upon. Wind energy can be relied upon; even though the wind is not available 100% of the time. In fact, no energy technology can be relied upon 100% of the time’ (Baywind)
The giant power company, RWE Npower, has submitted plans for a nuclear power station at Kirksanton, in Cumbria, which will result in the destruction of the long established 8 wind turbines at the Haverigg wind farm. Although two of the turbines are not within the perimeter of the nominated site, the whole cluster would be put out of action. Spokesperson for RWE Npower, Stuart Dagnall, publicly stated that the existing wind turbines could not work alongside a new nuclear power station.
Haverigg Wind Farm
The Haverigg wind farm sits beneath Black Combe and is sited on the flat plateau of the old RAF airfield very close to the boundary of the Lake District National Park. It is surrounded by the picturesque villages of Silecroft, Kirksanton and Haverigg, and the stunning Duddon estuary.
The wind farm at Haverigg is home to one of the UK’s first and most successful wind energy projects. It was developed by Windcluster Ltd. which is a small privately owned company. Half the turbines are owned by Windcluster and of the remainder three belong to Triodos Renewables and one to the Baywind Energy Co-operative.
The wind turbines have been financed by investors nation wide, who believe in the success of the site. They are of the opinion that wind turbines are widely regarded as an exemplary example of sensitive and sustainable wind energy development, which enjoys local support.
Triodos Renewables plc is owned by over 4,000 investors. Baywind Energy Co-operative Ltd. has 1,300 members, one third of whom live locally to the site. The Department of Energy and Climate Change, during its consultation regarding the Strategic Siting Assessment for new nuclear build received many responses from investors and other concerned people, who were objecting to the demolition of the wind turbines in favour of a nuclear power station.
‘Local windfarm is threatened by RWE’s new nuclear plans’ – Sarah Arnott in the Independent, 28th April 2009
‘RWE’s “mistake” over bid to replace wind farm with nuclear plant’ – New Energy Focus, 5th May 2009
‘Giant German Utility Plans Nuclear Power Plant that will destroy community owned wind farm’ – Baywind – http://www.baywind.co.uk/baywind_newsdetails.asp?newsID=14
Simon Hughes, Liberal Democrat Shadow Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change said recently:
“A new generation of nuclear power stations will be a colossal mistake, regardless of where they are built. They are hugely expensive, dangerous and will take too long to build.
“There is a real danger that the government is becoming too close to the big energy companies. the best answer to Britain’s needs is a massive expansion of renewable energy. If billions of pounds are wasted on new nuclear sites, the money won’t be available to do this.”
Haverigg Prison’s Wind Farm Proposal
HMP Haverigg owns land adjacent to the prison and the existing Haverigg wind farm and is working with Partnerships for Renewables to explore the feasilbility of siting wind turbines on this land.
HMP Haverigg has put forward a proposal to build seven 850 kilowatt turbines that could be installed in the grounds of the prison, facing the Irish Sea and opposite the existing wind far. the new wind farm would be within metres of the new proposed nuclear power station.
The shadow of the proposed nuclear power station is threatening a dark future for the prison. ‘A spokesman for the Department of Energy and Climate Change told the Evening Mail that the prison would not stand in the way of the nuclear plant should other key elements needed to support a plant, such as transport and infrastructure fall into place. The government has not ruled out moving Haverigg Prison to make way for a nuclear power plant’. – North West Evening Mail, 17th November 2009)