Friday, 12 December 2008

Experts not Fans of Wind Turbines

Researchers and the House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee have poured scorn on the idea that wind farms could play a major role in Britain cutting its carbon emissions by 34 percent in 2020 and 50 percent by 2050.

A report, commissioned by the government,  produced by the Committee on Climate Change (CCC), stated that despite the intermittency of wind power supply, wind generation could be a major source of electricity in the UK. The report also stated that new techniques of energy storage would overcome the problem of maintaining a regular supply when the wind was not blowing.

However sceptics of wind power say that as experts have not yet been able to devise effective ways of capturing and storing electricity generated by wind this whole idea was far too ambitious at present. It would also mean a back-up system would be needed, in the form of nuclear, coal or gas fired power stations.

The director of policy and research at the Renewable Energy Foundation, John Constable, is reported as stating that to generate 30 or 40 percent of our electrical energy from wind power would present unmanageable and unaffordable difficulties at the present....wind has a role, but this role will be modest in scale.

The House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee, headed by Lord Vallance of Tummel, said in their report the Government was relying too heavily on wind to help to meet an EU target requiring Britain to generate 15 per cent of its electricity from renewable sources by 2020.

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