The myth of the wind farm!

Living in rural Norfolk and being a frequent visitor to the north and east coasts, I am only too familiar with the rapid
growth of the wind generation business: massive wind farms now sprawl over large expanses of East Anglia's once
beautiful coastline/

Some people claim that we will get used to the sight of these monstrosities and come to accept them as part of the landscape like windmills and wind-pumps. Yeah, right....

It is claimed that wind power is 'clean' and sustainable: figures comparing the cost per megaWatt/hour of electricity generated by wind farms with that from fossil fuel-burning power stations appear to demonstrate that, although more expensive, prices are in the same 'ball park':

Wind generation £35.70
Coal-fired generation £34
Gas-fired generation £33.50

But let's examine the figures that are not widely publicised: the costs in financial and 'carbon' terms. The example
I use here is for the Scroby Sands wind farm off Great Yarmouth:

Manufacture / installation cost per turbine
Total installation cost of current farm £78,000,000
Annual maintenance per turbine £50,000+
Expected lifetime of a turbine < 20 years
Total maintenance cost of current farm over 20 years £30,000,000+
Total cost over expected lifetime £108,000,000
CO2 'footprint' of turbines (steel manufacture / transport) > 1000 tonnes

To summarise: this 'environmentally friendly' windfarm off the Norfolk coast will require replacing at least every 20 years
at a cost of over one hundred million pounds. (You can expect this to increase, of course!) The turbines don't
even generate sufficient electricity to power the small town of Great Yarmouth: a 1.5MW turbine operating at its peak
capacity will provide electricity for just 330 houses: Scroby, therefore, powers around 10,000 homes.

But of course, only a small fraction of the UK's electricity is used domestically: the vast majority is used by industry, transport, for street lighting etc, so that the Scroby WF probably doesn't provide any electricity for the tax payers of Great Yarmouth whose money was used to build it......

And it must be remembered that Scroby Sands once held a significant breeding colony of Common Seals: these have been forced off onto the beaches around Winterton & Horsey, where the pups are continuously under threat from dogs, foxes and holiday makers. One last thing: check out the video HERE to see another hidden cost of windfarms.