Scotlands Conservative Politicians, Step Up To The Plate, & Stop Wind Subsidies!

Rural Scotland’s delight at wind farm subsidy axe

Campaigners say the SNP should be ashamed that only a Tory Government listened to their warnings about the impact of turbines on Scotland’s countryside.

Whitelee Windfarm on the outskirts of Glasgow

Whitelee Windfarm on the outskirts of Glasgow Photo: PA

Rural communities have reacted with relief and delight after David Cameron called time on the SNP’s wind farm march across Scotland’s countryside.

Anti-turbine campaigners praised the UK Government’s decision to exclude new onshore wind farms from claiming a key subsidy from April next year, 12 months earlier than expected.

They said the move, which is expected to stop the construction of many developments not yet given planning permission, was a welcome respite for communities “besieged by subsidy chasers” taking advantage of the SNP’s “open door” policy.

But they said it was to the “eternal shame” of the Scottish Government that it was only the Conservatives who had heeded the concerns of rural Scots, with one prominent campaigner stating: “Thank God for Westminster.”

SNP ministers were furious with the decision, even claiming they may challenge it in the courts, with Nicola Sturgeon describing it as “wrong-headed”, “perverse” and “downright outrageous”.

In a letter to Mr Cameron, she warned the wind farm companies may sue the taxpayer for compensation for planned schemes “rendered useless by this decision.” The industry claimed the move would cost consumers up to £3 billion.

However, the John Muir Trust, the eminent environmental protection group, said it was the “right time” to work out an energy mix that is affordable “without damaging our wild and natural landscapes.”

The funding for the subsidy comes from the Renewable Obligation (RO), which is funded by levies added to household bills. The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) said there will be grace period for projects already with planning permission.

Although energy policy is reserved to Westminster, the SNP government in Edinburgh has used its control over the planning system in Scotland to encourage the construction of thousands of turbines across the countryside.

Alex Salmond, the former First Minister, set a target of generating the equivalent of all Scotland’s electricity from renewable sources by 2020, with the vast majority coming from onshore wind.

Amid growing opposition from local communities, Scotland’s most senior planning officials even warned that the countryside risked becoming a “wind farm landscape”.

But the Scottish Government told council planners they had set aside too little land for wind farms and Scotland now hosts more than half the UK’s onshore turbines.

Nicola Sturgeon was outraged at the UK Government’s decision

Scotland Against Spin, a national alliance of groups and individuals which campaigns against turbines being built in unsuitable locations, said it was “delighted” the Tories had honoured an election manifesto promise to “end the ludicrously generous subsidies for onshore wind farms.”

Graham Lang, the group’s chairman, said: “ Speculative developers from across the world have flocked to Scotland because of the SNP’s open door policy to the wind industry. Scottish communities besieged by subsidy-chasers can at last look forward to some respite.

“Yet to its eternal shame the Scottish Government has ignored the clamour for reform from its own people. There is a terrible irony that the Conservatives at Westminster, not the nationalists at Holyrood, have finally stood up to the wind speculators and put the interests of communities and consumers first.”

Lyndsey Ward said she hoped the decision would stop the construction of 25 turbines near her home just outside of Beauly, in the Scottish Highlands.

She said she was “fairly disgusted” with the Scottish Government as Fergus Ewing, the SNP Energy Minister, had “parroted wind industry propaganda”. She added: “They should be thoroughly ashamed of themselves. Thank God for Westminster.”

Campaigners against a plan to erect 18 410ft-tall turbines in rural Angus, above the Blackwater Reservoir, also welcomed the announcement.

Sue Smith, a spokesman for the Friends of Backwater and Glenisla Against Turbines group, whose husband Maj Gen Martin Smith is Commandant General of the Royal Marines, said: “The removal of obscene levels of financial gain which these subsidies offer should discourage land owners and turbine developers from exploiting irresistible opportunities to make a fast buck, at the expense of local communities and their environments.”

She also praised the UK Government plans to give communities the final say on large wind farm developments south of the Border and attacked the SNP for failing to introduce this in Scotland.

But, speaking at First Minister’s Questions, Ms Sturgeon said the decision was “utterly wrong-headed” and her government would “do everything in our power” to get it changed.

Mr Ewing said repeated the wind farm companies’ claims the move could cost consumers £3 billion, adding: “We have warned the UK Government that the decision, which appears irrational, may well be the subject of a judicial review.”

But Murdo Fraser, Scottish Tory energy spokesman, said: “This is a Conservative Government standing up for communities that the central belt SNP couldn’t care less about.”

He added: “The latest figures show that, with all the wind projects already constructed, those under construction or given consent, we have already met the SNPs 100 per cent target for renewable electricity.”

A DECC spokesman said: “If we’d allowed the RO to stay open longer, we could have ended up with more projects than we can afford – which would have led to either higher bills, or other renewable technologies losing out on support.”

Congratulations to Our Friends in the UK….Sanity Begins to Show Her Face!

Residents to be given onshore wind farm veto: Tories vow to ‘halt the spread’ of turbines by preventing them being ‘imposed on communities without consultation’

  • Councils in consultation with residents will have final say over windmills
  • 3,000 are currently awaiting consent and could be affected by new rules 
  • Local Government Secretary says communities ‘should be free to decide’
  • Trade body Renewable UK expresses concerns about new regulations

Residents are to be handed powers to stop onshore wind farms being built, ministers will announce today.

The Tories have vowed to ‘halt the spread’ of unsightly turbines by preventing wind farms from being ‘imposed on communities without consultation or public support’.

Changes to the planning laws will ensure that councils in England and Wales – in consultation with residents – have the final say over whether windmills get the green light.

Powers: The Tories have vowed to ‘halt the spread’ of unsightly turbines by preventing wind farms from being ‘imposed on communities without consultation or public support’. A wind farm in Scotland is pictured above 

Powers: The Tories have vowed to ‘halt the spread’ of unsightly turbines by preventing wind farms from being ‘imposed on communities without consultation or public support’. A wind farm in Scotland is pictured above

It follows opposition by local campaigners and Tory MPs to the spread of new turbines up to 400-feet high, which they say blight the landscape and cause noise to nearby households.

There are more than 5,000 onshore turbines across the UK, of which around half are in Scotland. About 3,500 more have planning permission.

'Long-term plan': Energy secretary Amber Rudd (pictured) said the Government wants to 'keep bills as low as possible for hard-working families'

‘Long-term plan’: Energy secretary Amber Rudd (pictured) said the Government wants to ‘keep bills as low as possible for hard-working families’

But just under 3,000 are awaiting consent, and could be affected by the new rules if the operators cannot prove they have the support of residents who are affected.

Greg Clark, the Local Government Secretary, said: ‘Communities should be free to decide whether they want wind turbines in their local area and, if so, where they should go.’

Currently, at least half of wind farm applications are rejected by local planners due to local opposition or because their location is considered inappropriate.

But many of these decisions are then overturned on appeal by the Planning Inspectorate, on the grounds that Britain needs renewable energy to meet climate change targets.

The changes mean that wind farms will only get the go-ahead if they are included in the council’s local plan for the area, which is drawn up every few years in consultation with residents.

Even if turbines meet the criteria set out in the plan, if there is considerable concern from residents about noise or the local environment, the application will need to be amended.

A spokesman for the Department for Communities and Local Government said the new rules would ‘reassure a local community that… any concerns they have about its impact will be addressed.’

Generous subsidies paid to landowners who allow wind farms to be built will also be cut, under proposals announced in the Tory manifesto. This is expected to be announced soon.

In 2014, 57 per cent of all onshore wind applications were rejected, according to figures published in January.

Local people should have a say on development that affects them
Councillor Gary Porter, vice chairman of the Local Government Association

This compares with only 37 per cent rejected in 2013, and 24 per cent back in 2009.

The rate of wind farms being rejected more than doubled in the last Parliament, amid concerns from more than 100 Tory backbenchers that they blight the landscape and upset residents.

Wind farms will continue to be built offshore, where they are more expensive but they attract far less opposition from voters. Small turbines on farm land will not be affected by the rules.

Britain has a legally-binding target to produce 15 per cent of energy from low-carbon sources – such as wind, solar and nuclear plants – by 2020.

But ministers say there are enough wind farms which have already been approved or applications put in, to meet this target.

Choices: Local Government Secretary Greg Clark (above) said communities 'should be free to decide whether they want wind turbines in their local area'

Choices: Local Government Secretary Greg Clark (above) said communities ‘should be free to decide whether they want wind turbines in their local area’

Exceeding it would pile more costs onto household electricity bills.

Amber Rudd, the Energy Secretary, said: ‘Onshore wind is an important part of our energy mix but we now have enough projects in the pipeline to meet our renewable energy commitments.

‘We have a long-term plan to keep our homes warm, power the economy with cleaner energy, and keep bills as low as possible for hard-working families.’

The wind industry trade body Renewable UK expressed concerns about the new planning rules.

Deputy chief executive Maf Smith said introducing tough new rules for wind farms would ‘tilt the playing field’ towards fracking which deeply concerns residents.

He said: ‘We support local councils taking decisions about local projects.

‘Onshore wind is the most cost effective way to generate clean electricity, consistently enjoying two-thirds public support in all the opinion polls, so councils will want to take this into consideration.

‘The Government will wants to keep the lights on at the lowest possible cost – that has to include supporting onshore wind.’

But Councillor Gary Porter, vice chairman of the Local Government Association, said: ‘Local people should have a say on development that affects them.

‘The local planning system provides a democratically accountable and effective means for councils to consult local people and take decisions based on local planning policies.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3128924/Conservatives-vow-halt-spread-wind-farms-countryside.html#ixzz3dNMTKSYP

Tony Abbott Tells the Truth About Wind Turbines….Wind Pushers Whine….

Tony Abbott launches another attack on ‘ugly’, ‘noisy’ wind turbines

Updated earlier today at 10:10am

Tony Abbott has launched another attack on “ugly”, “noisy” wind turbines, and it appears a trip to an island off Perth contributed to his dislike of the renewable energy generators.

The Prime Minister caused a stir on Thursday when he described wind farms as “visually awful”.

On Friday, when asked if he had ever visited one, he replied he had cycled past the wind turbine on Rottnest Island, off the coast of Perth.

“Up close, they’re ugly, they’re noisy and they may have all sorts of other impacts,” Mr Abbott said.

“It’s right and proper that we’re having an inquiry into the health impacts of these things,” he said, referring to a current parliamentary inquiry initiated by crossbench Senators.

Western Australia built the Rottnest Island wind turbine in a $4 million partnership with the Howard government, of which Mr Abbott was a senior member.

When it was put into operation, the Government expected the turbine to save about $500,000 a year in fuel costs and predicted it would provide about 40 per cent of the island’s power generation.

But Mr Abbott is clearly not a fan of the visual impact.

“Frankly it’s right and proper we’ve reduced the Renewable Energy Target because as things stood there was going to be an explosion of these things right around our country,” Mr Abbott said.

“There will still be some growth but it will be much less than it would otherwise have been thanks to measures this Government has taken.”

Renewable energy lobby groups, Labor and the Greens have condemned the Prime Minister’s “backwards”, “stunning” comments.

Joyce backs PM, Labor ridicules ‘reckless’ comments

But Federal Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce said on Friday morning that the PM had a point.

Find out more about wind turbines

“I hate to say it, but I agree”, he said, speaking on ABC local radio in Tamworth.

“Wind farms are one of those things that everybody likes as long as it’s not in their backyard.

“Once your next door neighbour decides you’re going to have a wind farm you’ll have more calls to your radio station saying that they wish to express their discontent with that than anything else.”

The comments echo those of Treasurer Joe Hockey, who last year described wind turbines as “utterly offensive”.

Earlier this year, the Coalition did a deal with Labor to reduce the 2020 Renewable Energy Target from 41,000 to 33,000 gigawatt hours of electricity.

But some members of the Government wanted the target reduced by more or even scrapped.

Labor’s environment spokesman Mark Butler said it was hard to believe Mr Abbott “could find a less sophisticated argument against renewable energy than the one he offered yesterday”.

“He must have had nightmares last night about that one wind turbine on Rottnest Island,” he said.

The Windweasels Scream in Agony, When Subsidy Tap is Shut Off!!!

Doomed UK Wind Power Outfits Reduced to Idle Legal Threats

brat

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The Guardian (both in its home territory, the UK and in its doppelganger Australian version) is the ecofacists’ megaphone – and is duly lapped up with relish by the intellectual pygmies of the hard-‘green’-left or – as James Delingpole aptly dubbed them; “greentards”.

Both here and in the UK, The Guardian has been the preferred platform for the wind industry, its parasites and paid spruikers to run an endless stream of drivel propounding the magical properties of giant fans – you know, the usual twaddle about wind power being a serious alternative to conventional generation – despite the fact it can only be delivered at crazy, random intervals (see our post here); powering millions of homes around the clock for “free” (see our posts here and here); never harming so much as a bird’s feather (see our post here); and providing such a soothing and peaceful environment for humans that they – like our feathered friends – can’t help but flock towards the nearest wind farm to set up homes and raise their families (see our posts here and here).

No, The Guardian will never be among those accused of helping to bring the great wind power fraud to its inevitable end.

In the UK, The Guardian was caught out pumping clearly misleading and deceptive advertising, for yet another wind power fraud, profiteer – Dale Vince and his wind power outfit, the lamely tagged, “Ecotricity” – dropping all pretence of objective journalism in its quest to profit from spruiking wind industry propaganda:

The Guardian Caught Out Pumping Dale Vince’s Bogus Wind Power Propaganda

Now, The Guardian has stepped in again, in an effort to forestall the inevitable demise of the wind industry, in the face of David Cameron’s clear-as-crystal election pledge to bring the great wind power fraud to and end (see our posts here and here).

UK renewable energy industry warns of legal action over subsidies
The Guardian
Adam Vaughan
2 June 2015

Closing scheme a year earlier than due would amount to ‘wilful destruction’ by the government, climate secretary told

The UK renewable energy industry has warned the government’s new climate secretary that she will face a legal challenge if she oversees the “wilful destruction” of the industry by retrospectively curtailing subsidies.

Later this week, the Department of Energy and Climate Change will announce that the existing subsidy scheme for onshore wind power will be closed a year earlier than it was due to, according to a source close to the process.

Such a move would be a major blow to the industry and go further than the Conservative party had pledged in its manifesto. It had said that it would “end any new public subsidy” in a bid to “halt the spread of onshore windfarms”.

But writing in the Guardian on Monday, a lawyer for the trade body RenewableUK called on Amber Rudd to reconsider – or face legal challenges.

“Minister, please talk to us before you act. We recognise the pressures on you. There are solutions which need not damage confidence in the UK or in your government as one for all of us and not just for a few dangerous, ill-informed and visibly rabid party members,” wrote Marcus Trinick QC, a barrister for law firm Partner Eversheds LLP.

“Please be aware of the dangers of [EU] state aid discrimination and look at what is happening in international energy arbitration across Europe. In such a position we could not afford not to fight, especially if action is taken to interfere retrospectively,” he added.

If the Renewable Obligation (RO) subsidy scheme closes in April 2016 rather than April 2017, as is now expected, onshore windfarms will have to bid for public subsidy under a new subsidy regime known as Contracts for Difference (CfD).

But it is not yet clear if they will even be eligible for the CfD scheme, and Bloomberg Energy Finance has estimated that if onshore wind was not eligible then less than half the capacity of projects in advanced stages of planning would get subsidies.

Maf Smith, deputy chief executive of RenewableUK, vowed to fight the move which he said would appear to contradict the Tory pledge that cuts would only be to new, not existing, subsidies.

“The industry will fight against any attempts to bring in drastic and unfair changes utilising the full range of options open, including legal means if appropriate,” he said.

Ian Marchant, chairman of Infinis Energy Plc and former chief executive of Big Six energy company SSE, warned that closing the subsidy scheme early for onshore wind would have wider ramifications: “If the RO is terminated early without reasonable grace periods in place, not a single energy or large scale infrastructure project in the UK will be safe going forward.”

Dr Rob Gross, an energy expert at Imperial College, said that it was not fair to suggest the RO was hugely over-rewarding onshore wind with too much public subsidy.

“I think this is mainly about the manifesto commitment and being seen to do something to curtail the development of onshore wind. It’s primarily a politically-motivated change,” he told the Guardian.

Rudd said in statement that: “We promised people clean, affordable and secure energy supplies and that’s what I’m going to deliver. We’ll focus support on renewables when they’re starting up – getting a good deal for billpayers is the top priority.” A Decc spokeswoman added: “It’s premature to talk about retrospective changes [to subsidy regimes].”

The government has already laid out the other part of its crackdown on onshore windfarms, using the Queen’s speech to announce that the energy bill will give local communities an effective veto over new ones. Onshore wind is considered by most authorities to be the cheapest form of renewable power in the UK.
The Guardian

Vicky-Pollard-2136549

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The one thing the wind industry will never be pinned for is “consistency”.

Where The Guardian – parroting on behalf of its benefactors – chirps about “wind power being the cheapest form of renewable power available in the UK”, there are plenty from the wind industry’s more deluded fringes that run the claim that wind power is (now) actually cheaper than coal-fired power – see this piece of twaddle from ruin-economy, for example.

Way back in 1984, Christopher Flavin, the President emeritus of the Worldwatch Institute, ran a pitch that in a few years’ time wind energy would not need to be subsidised.

Over 30 years later, and the wind industry the world over still keeps talking itself into circles: one minute it’s ready to take on conventional generators head-to-head; the next it’s wailing about the need to keep the subsidy gravy train running just that little bit longer. The guff from The Guardian entirely true to that insipid form.

In Australia, the wind industry spin-cycle is just the same.

Here, the wind industry, its parasites and spruikers – like The Climate Speculator’s, Tristan Edis (see our post here) – keep telling us, over and over again, how cheap wind power is by comparison with conventional power sources – a story pitched up in order to counter the recent challenge to the Large-Scale Renewable Energy Target and its insane cost to power consumers.

The wind industry’s standard pitch is, however, found to be tinged with a teeny, weeny little internal inconsistency.

Having boasted about the wonders of their product – and its ability to “compete” with the big boys – in the very next breath, these subsidy leeches start wailing – like crazed little brats – at the prospect of there being so much as the slightest interference with a stream of subsidies, so massive that their scale makes Croesus look like a penny-pinching pauper.

Either wind power is economically viable, or it isn’t? If the former, then there’s no need for mandated subsidies and/or massive penalties, at all.

Call us a tad cynical, but STT thinks it all boils down to the quality of the “product” on offer. Break down the terms on which wind power is “supplied”, and the “deal” reduces to this:

  • we (“the wind power generator”) will supply and you (“the hopeful punter at the end of the line”) will take every single watt we produce, whenever that might be;
  • except that this will occur less than 30% of the time; and, no, we can’t tell you when that might be – although it will probably be in the middle of the night when you don’t need it;
  • around 70% of the time – when the wind stops blowing altogether – we won’t be supplying anything at all;
  • in which event, it’s a case of “tough luck” sucker, you’re on your own, but you can try your luck with dreaded coal or gas-fired generators, they’re burning mountains of coal and gas anyway to cover our little daily output “hiccups” – so they’ll probably help you keep your home and business running; and
  • the price for the pleasure of our chaotic, unpredictable power “supply” will be fixed for 25 years at 4 times the price charged by those “evil” fossil fuel generators.

It’s little wonder that – in the absence of fines and penalties that force retailers to sign up to take wind power (see our post here) and/or massive subsidies (see our post here) – no retailer would ever bother to purchase wind power on the standard “irresistible” terms above.

There is NO market for electricity that cannot be delivered on demand – wind power has NO commercial value for that very obvious reason. The “demand” that exists is nothing more than legislated policy artifice – in the absence of mandated fines, penalties and/or endless subsidies the wind industry would have never got going at all.

Any policy that is unsustainable will either fail under its own steam; or its creators will eventually be forced to scrap it. Endless streams of massive subsidies for a meaningless power source fits the “unsustainable” tag to a T.

The wind industry has been telling the world it’s almost ready to stand on its own two feet for over 30 years (see our post here). Now, in Britain, David Cameron, Amber Rudd & Co will give it the chance to do so. We wish it the best of luck.

wind turbine Screggah-wind-turbine-Padraig-McNulty-5-460x345

Shut Off the Subsidy Tap….and the Windweasels Scurry!

Brits’ Wind Power Nightmare to End Soon: Tories Set to Take the Axe to Subsidies

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Contrasting with the delusions that continue to grip Australian’s political betters in Canberra (see our post here), sensible governments are rapidly retreating from the brink of energy market madness.

The Americans are pulling the plug on Federal and State based subsidies for wind power outfits. Its ‘wind power’ states have cut their state based subsidies to wind power outfits (or are well on the path of doing so); and Republicans are out to prevent the extension of the Federal government’s PTC wind power subsidy:

Texans Move to Slam Wind Power Subsidies

2015: the Wind Industry’s ‘Annus Horribilis’; or Time to Sink the Boots In

US Republicans Line Up to Can Subsidies for Wind Power

And David Cameron’s Tories strode to power on the back of a manifesto pledge to slam the door on wind power outfits eager to carpet Britain in 10s of thousands of giant fans, in terms that couldn’t be clearer:

“I want to make it clear that if there is a Conservative Government in place we will remove all subsidy for on-shore wind and local people should have a greater say.  Frankly I think we have got enough on-shore wind and we have enough to be going on with, almost 10 per cent of our electricity needs, and I think we should give local people a say if they want to block these sorts of projects.  The only way to stop more on-shore wind is to vote Conservative there is no other party with this policy. We are saying very clearly we would remove the subsidy and give local people the power to say yes or no. This would end the growth of on-shore wind and if that’s what you care about you must vote Conservative.”

Now, Cameron’s Tories are sharpening their axes ready to bring the lunacy to an end even faster than Brits could have dreamed of, even a month ago.

Wind farm subsidies facing the axe
The Telegraph
Emily Godsen
31 May 2015

Generous taxpayer subsidies will be cut off earlier than expected, effectively preventing thousands of turbines from being built, under plans being considered by Amber Rudd, the energy secretary

amberrudd

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Subsidies that have fuelled the spread of onshore wind farms are to be dramatically curtailed, under Government plans to be unveiled within days.

The Telegraph has learnt that a generous subsidy scheme will be shut down earlier than expected, effectively preventing thousands of turbines from getting built, under plans being considered by Amber Rudd, the new energy secretary.

The proposals, which could be announced as soon as this week, will set out for the first time how the Conservatives will implement their manifesto pledge to end any new public subsidy for onshore wind farms – amid concerns that turbines are unpopular with local communities.

Under current policy, any big onshore wind turbines built before the end of March 2017 would automatically be able to qualify for generous payments through a scheme called the Renewables Obligation (RO), which is funded through green levies on consumer energy bills.

The Department of Energy and Climate Change has now confirmed it plans to “reform” the RO scheme. It is understood to be looking at ending the free-for-all by shutting the scheme down early – effectively preventing thousands of turbines getting built. The action follows similar moves taken to curb subsidies for solar farms last year.

After the RO shuts, the only possible subsidies for wind farms will be through a new scheme that is less generous and also much more strictly rationed, with ministers deciding how many projects – if any – are awarded subsidy contracts, enabling them to block further onshore wind if desired.

As well as big wind farms, subsidies for small individual wind turbines such as those popular with farmers – funded through a separate scheme called the Feed in Tariff – are expected to be limited under the plans.

A spokesman for the DECC said: “We are driving forward plans to end new public subsidy for onshore wind farms.

“We will shortly be publishing our plans to reform the Renewables Obligation and Feed in Tariff scheme to implement this commitment. With the cost of supplying onshore wind falling, government subsidy is no longer appropriate.

“We have supported new technologies when they’ve been a good deal for the consumer – providing start-up funding and certainty about future payments to help them become competitive. However, those subsidies won’t continue when costs come down – that’s not value for money for billpayers in the long run.”

Ms Rudd said: “We promised people clean, affordable and secure energy supplies and that’s what I’m going to deliver. We’ll focus support on renewables when they’re starting up – getting a good deal for billpayers is the top priority.”

Government plans to tackle climate change and hit EU renewable energy targets envisage that between 11 and 13 gigawatts (GW) of onshore wind power is needed by 2020.

More than 9.5 GW of projects – about 5,500 turbines – have either already been built or are under construction in the UK. At least 5.2 GW more wind farms – almost 3,000 more turbines – have already been granted planning permission.

Even if not all of these are built there would still be enough to hit the top end of Government plans.

On top of that, there are close to 3,000 more big new turbines with a combined capacity of more than 7GW seeking planning permission.

The DECC spokesman said: “Looking at what has already had planning permission, there is enough onshore wind to contribute what’s needed to reach the ambition set out in the Coalition Government’s renewables roadmap that 30 per cent of our electricity should come from renewables by 2020.”

Many of the projects that already have planning permission would have been expecting to secure subsidies under the RO scheme and it is not clear whether they will still be able to if the scheme shuts early. Ministers may consider offering a ‘grace period’, enabling some of those that already have permission to still get built while blocking off subsidies for those that do not.

One of the biggest factors determining the impact of the proposed changes will be whether or not they apply in Scotland, where the majority of proposed turbines are due to be built.

The Government said last week that it would “consult with the devolved administrations on changes to subsidy regimes for onshore wind farms”.

Nicola Sturgeon, the SNP Scottish First Minister, wants more onshore wind farms and has already demanded a veto on the Tory plans – raising the prospect that subsidies could continue to be paid to new projects in Scotland.

However the Conservatives will be under pressure from their own backbenches to ensure the subsidies are scrapped across the UK.

The Government also announced in the Queen’s Speech last week that it would bring forward legislation to give local communities “the final say” by ensuring large wind farm projects are decided at local rather than national level.

Ms Rudd said: “We need to make decisions on energy more democratic and give our communities a direct say into new onshore wind farms where they live. In future, I want planning decisions on onshore wind farms to be made by local people – not by politicians in Westminster.”

However those in the green energy industry had been most concerned about the pledge to end subsidies, amid uncertainty over the detail of the plans.

Critics of the Conservative pledge, including Tim Yeo, the former Tory head of the energy committee, and Ed Davey, the former Lib Dem energy secretary, have argued that it will actually push up bills as ministers instead offer subsidies to more offshore wind farms that are even more expensive.
The Telegraph

What’s spelt out above is just the accelerated passage of the inevitable.

Britain’s insane wind power policy has been accompanied with all the usual stuff: an unstable grid, with increased risk of widespread blackouts; subsidy-soaked, institutional corruption; spiralling power costs;splattered birds and bats; and divided and angry rural communities.

In those circumstances, David Cameron had little choice but to promise to end the madness. By answering the brewing rage among rural constituents about the adverse impacts of thousands of giant fans on home, hearth and health, he headed off an attack from the UKIP – which had run a solid pro-community stance against the wind power fraud.

And, by decoupling from the Lib-Dem’s deluded love of giant fans (an outfit peopled with wind industry shills like Ed Davey), Cameron dragged in votes from those hundreds of thousands of households and businesses being belted by escalating power bills (see our post here).

And the Conservatives have also seized on a report into the health complaints of those subjected to incessant turbine generated low-frequency noise and infrasound; promising to add adverse health effects as a basis to refuse planning approval, with local communities to have the final say, in any event (see this article from the Daily Mail).

Any policy that is unsustainable will either fail under its own steam; or its creators will eventually be forced to scrap it. Endless streams of massive subsidies for a meaningless power source fits the “unsustainable” tag to a T.

The wind industry has been telling the world it’s almost ready to stand on its own two feet for over 30 years (see our post here). Now, in Britain, David Cameron, Amber Rudd & Co will give it the chance to do so. We wish it the best of luck.

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Government-induced Climaphobia Strikes Again!

Tom Harris explains why the climate promises are a joke

Harris is an engineer with a special interest in Climate studies and GHG agreements. Here he explains the hypocrisy of the Lima “promises” on reductions in emissions.

It’s like any agreement with a leftist agenda, the words hide the intentions. In any international “promise” on GHG no verification, no enforcement–window dressing.

http://www.torontosun.com/2015/05/23/harpers-climate-pledge-is-hot-air

Harper’s climate pledge is hot air

Canada has no way to ensure developing nations keep their commitments

Tom Harris, Guest Columnist

First posted: Saturday, May 23, 2015 07:00 PM EDT | Updated: Saturday, May 23, 2015 11:51 AM EDT

In announcing the Stephen Harper government’s new greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction targets earlier this month, Environment Minister Leona Aglukkaq said Canada will “work with our international partners to establish an international agreement in Paris that includes meaningful and transparent commitments from all major emitters.”

But Canadians are being tricked.

Any GHG emission reduction pledges made by developing countries in Paris later this year will almost certainly not be enforced.

Written in bureaucratese, the convoluted first sentence in last December’s “Lima Call for Climate Action”, the United Nations’ last major climate change agreement, indicated exactly that.

It reads: “The Conference of the Parties, Reiterating that the work of the Ad Hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action (ADP) shall be under the Convention and guided by its principles…”

The ADP are the back room negotiators who are drafting the text for the big climate deal to be signed in Paris in December.

The “Convention” refers to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), signed by former Canadian prime minister Brian Mulroney and hundreds of other world leaders at the Earth Summit in Rio in 1992.

And the ADP’s work will adhere to the UNFCCC, including its critical Article 4: “The extent to which developing country Parties will effectively implement their commitments under the Convention will depend on the effective implementation by developed country Parties of their commitments under the Convention related to financial resources and transfer of technology and will take fully into account that economic and social development and poverty eradication are the first and overriding priorities of the developing country Parties.”

So, under any treaty based on the UNFCCC (which all UN climate agreements are), developing countries will keep their emission reduction commitments only if we in the developed world pay them enough and give them enough of our technology.

Also implied in the article is that, even if we give them everything we promise, developing countries may simply forget about their GHG targets if they interfere with their “first and overriding priorities” of “economic and social development and poverty eradication.”

Developed nations like Canada, on the other hand, do not have this option. We must keep our emission reduction commitments no matter how it impacts our economies.

It is not as if the UN has been hiding this “firewall” between developing and developed nations.

It has told us repeatedly in UN climate change agreements in Copenhagen, Cancun, Durban and Lima that, “development and poverty eradication”, not emission reduction, takes top billing for developing countries.

Actions to significantly reduce GHG emissions would entail dramatically cutting back on the use of coal, the source of 81% of China’s electricity and 71% of India’s.

As coal is by far the least expensive source of electric power in most of the world, reducing GHG emissions by restricting coal use would unquestionably interfere with development priorities.

So, developing countries simply won’t do it, citing the UNFCCC in support of their actions.

Some commentators have speculated that tougher requirements will be imposed by the UN on poor nations over time as they develop.

The only way this can happen is if there are substantial revisions to the UNFCCC treaty.

China, India, and other developing countries have clearly indicated they will not allow this to happen any time soon.

Chinese negotiator Su Wei summed up the stance of developing nations when he explained that the purpose of the Paris agreement is to “reinforce and enhance” the 1992 convention, not rewrite it.

Canada withdrew from the Kyoto Protocol in part because it lacked legally binding GHG targets for developing countries.

So why is the Harper government supporting a process that will result in our country being stuck in another Kyoto?

— Harris is Executive Director of the Ottawa-based International Climate Science Coalition, which opposes the hypothesis carbon dioxide emissions from human activities are known to cause climate problems

Tom Harris, B. Eng., M. Eng. (Mech.)
Executive Director,
International Climate Science Coalition (ICSC)
P.O. Box 23013
Ottawa, Ontario
K2A 4E2
Canada

Good to See Sanity Returning to Britain….

UK’s Wind Industry in Meltdown: Cameron to Flush-Out DECC’s Detritus

SWITZERLAND-WEF-DAVOS-CAMERON

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The wind industry’s current form reminds STT of Simon Pegg’s character in ‘How to Lose Friends and Alienate People‘, Sidney Young – blunt, gormless, and ready to pull out all stops to ensure every one who counts hates him.

Now that they’ve lost the grip on the game in countries where they thought they had things sewn up, they’ve been reduced to abusing those who have the ability to make or break them. STT thinks they’re just working through the 5 stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance (see our post here).

David Cameron has just won an election promising to end all subsidies to on-shore wind power:

UK Elections: Brit’s Deliverance from its Wind Power Disaster

In the US, ‘wind power’ states have cut their state based subsidies to wind power outfits (or are well on the path of doing so); and Republicans are out to prevent the extension of the Federal government’s PTC wind power subsidy:

2015: the Wind Industry’s ‘Annus Horribilis’; or Time to Sink the Boots In

US Republicans Line Up to Can Subsidies for Wind Power

In Germany, consumers and industry are fed up with escalating power prices:

German’s Top Daily – Bild – says Time to Chop Massive Subsidies for Wind Power

And, on Vesta’s home turf, Denmark, the government’s brewing and massive legal liability to wind farm neighbours has resulted in a full-blown moratorium on planning permits for new wind farms:

Denmark Calls Halt to More Wind Farm Harm

brat

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The response from the wind industry has been just what you’d expect from a bunch of immature brats, that couldn’t survive for a second without a massive and endless stream of subsidies filched from taxpayers and power consumers. Here’s yet another childish wind industry outburst – this time from Britain.

Cameron Puts Wind-Farm Opponent at Junior U.K. Energy Post
Bloomberg Business
Alex Morales
12 May 2015

Prime Minister David Cameron named a vocal opponent of onshore wind farms to a junior post in the U.K. energy department, reinforcing his Conservative government’s effort to halt the spread of turbines in rural areas.

Andrea Leadsom, who has campaigned against “intrusive wind farms” in South Northamptonshire constituency in central England, will report to Amber Rudd, who was named as the Cabinet minister in charge of energy on Monday.

The two will work to balance Britain’s growing energy needs and stricter pollution rules against the demands of rural voters who voted overwhelmingly for the Conservatives. Some of those voters have raised concerns about the spread of wind farms that they say blight the landscape under the previous two governments, which encouraged the technology as the cheapest way to generate low-carbon electricity at scale.

“Whilst renewable energy has an important part to play in providing energy for our 21st century needs, we have got to stop building incredible insensitive and intrusive wind farms on top of local communities,” Leadsom says on her website. “In the future, I want to see a proper consultation process and the opportunity for communities to say no.”

Rudd, who was promoted from a junior ministerial role to lead the Department of Energy & Climate Change, worked with the Liberal Democrats in the previous coalition government and stuck closely to the government script encouraging all forms of energy, especially renewables and nuclear power.

If Rudd’s appointment reassured the renewable energy industry about the continuity of government policy to cut carbon emissions, Leadsom’s elevation is a reminder of the manifesto promise Cameron’s party made to halt subsidies to wind developments on land.

Before the election, those promises prompted Ecotricity Group Ltd. Chief Executive Officer Dale Vince, a donor to the opposition Labour Party, to call the Conservatives “an existential threat to the renewable energy industry.”

Leadsom’s appointment was announced on the Twitter feed of Cameron’s office. Her role hasn’t yet been defined, and so far she’s the only junior minister to be named at DECC. Previously, two ministers Rudd and Matthew Hancock, served as junior ministers at the department.

Hancock was moved to a role at the Cabinet Office in charge of civil service reform.
Bloomberg Business

Just a tiny whiff of panic from the wind industry’s parasites there. And just what you’d expect from Ecotricity’s Dale Vince, when he wails about the Conservatives being “an existential threat to the renewable energy industry.” We’ve covered Dale Vince’s faux claims to be the environment’s best friend:

The Guardian Caught Out Pumping Dale Vince’s Bogus Wind Power Propaganda

Although, this time around, we can’t fault Vince’s analysis: Vince and his cronies are doomed.

Cameron’s Tory-Only line up gives him the chance to follow through on the clear-as-crystal promise to “halt subsidies to wind developments on land”.

It’s that humungous policy shift that spells the beginning of the end for the wind industry in Britain.

The promise to allow communities to reject wind farms adds nothing, in practical effect – a bit like stabbing a corpse, really. Without an endless stream of guaranteed subsidies, rent-seekers like Dale Vince will disappear in a heartbeat; the wind industry will die a natural death.

With Britain turning on the wind industry, pretty soon it’ll have no “friends” left to alienate anywhere at all.

Andrea Leadsom