Winds of change

Academic scientists have, over the years, pointed out that building wind farms on healthy peatlands is counterproductive.

It is interesting to note that a conservationist organisation (the RSPB’s Aedán Smith, Letters, 1 May), otherwise enthusiastic about wind farming, has produced evidence demonstrating that it is inappropriate to erect turbines on the Strathy South peatlands, thereby vindicating the aforementioned scientists. 

The Flow Country is indeed of international importance, but how many thousands of hectares of less famous peatlands have been destroyed to no useful purpose whatsoever in terms of combating global warming, but at enormous cost to electricity consumers as a consequence of the current subsidy regime promoted so vigorously by ­recipients thereof?

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The government assures us there is a methodology for calculating the extent to which the reduction in CO2 emissions resulting from wind farm construction is negated by the emissions from destroyed peatlands. Presumably these assurances are of as little value as those produced by vested interests relating to the number of jobs and inward investment created by the current energy strategy. 

John Milne

Ardgowan Drive 

I have always been a bit puzzled as to why a group of wind turbines should be called a wind “farm” – these massive industrial installations are as far from true farming as is possible. However, if they are to be referred to as farms, a more appropriate name would be “subsidy farms”, on the basis that they are subsidised when they produce intermittent electricity, and again subsidised through constraint payments when they don’t generate.

They are an excellent investment for developers which generate an income no matter what happens – but a poor investment for electricity consumers who pay all these subsidies in their ever-increasing bills.

GM Lindsay

Whinfield Gardens