EDF Energy and EcoTricity are planning to build 5 & 4 massive wind turbines respectively on the Somerset levels. The plans are to put the 400 foot high industrial power generators on land surrounded by East Huntspill, West Huntspill, Woolavington, Puriton and Pawlett. 5 wind turbines by EDF east of the M5 and 4 by EcoTricity west of the M5. Unlike the windmills of old, these huge machines will dominate the landscape and will have harmful local environmental impacts.
Can wind turbines replace nuclear power? No of course they can't. To provide the same power output than a typical nuclear power station there would need to be 3,000 2MW turbines covering an area of 200 square miles. And when the wind was either to low or to high the power would cease.
In Germany data collected from 18,000 turbines in 2008 clearly demonstrated the issue when the power output from all these turbines, spread across the country dropped to almost zero within a few hours. Power stations cannot react to replace this lost power in anything like the timescales needed. Therefore they produce the power anyway in case the wind conditions vary. So what have we saved? - absolutely nothing. Just provided a death trap for birds, sunk 10,000's of tonnes of concrete into the land and misery for local residents.
A number of European countries are insisting that Wind Farms can only be located at least 2 kilometers from any human habitation because of the problems associated with them.
France imposes a no go area of 500 meters around wind farms. There are no such rules in the UK.
Many of the properties set within the immediate area to the Huntspill Wind Farms will be situated much closer to the proposed Wind Turbines than is recommended and considered safe by many European countries. Are UK lives and quality of life inferior to other parts of Europe?
Are we NIMBYS? Yes, and proud of it. "Those who stand up for their own backyard are reminding us that we live in a small country. If you do not look after your own backyard, who do you expect to do it for you? This backyard belongs to us all." (Quoted Griff Rhys Jones.)
These huge machines are little but a large visual political statement of green intentions. If we have to have them put them offshore or in areas that do not affect local residents. Siting them in the middle of six villages on the Somerset levels is not the place to have them. SO if we are called nimbys for that that then fine.
People live within 500 meters of these proposed turbines. These are ordinary people who have put their life's work and their hearts into their family homes. We are not just taking of their monetary value but of many years of emotional investment and attachment. We are talking about people who have young families, or have renovated homes from little but a shell to a home that anyone would be proud of. Retired people who wish to leave their homes to the offspring. All of this can be taken away from them whilst power companies maximise their profits and neighboring landowners fill their pockets. Am I over stating this? Look at the case of Jane Davis as just one example, there are many others.
Try and put yourself in our position. What would you do if there was a risk - indeed a probability that your castle that you have put your life and sole into will become a worthless shell that neither you or anyone else could live in. Wouldn't you defend it?
Democracy in action? To a point yes. But did you know that it is likely to cost up to £50,000 to fight this? Money that cannot be recouped, win or lose. This is what the land owners are banking on. That despite our valid arguments that we cannot afford to defend ourselves. Is that right?
Come down from the nuclear vs wind farm argument, put aside what is green and what isn't for one moment and put yourself in the position of the people just like you who face the possibility of losing everything with no compensation whatsoever. We need your help.