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Wind energy tears communities apart, but price will be the decider on its future

Western Morning News — November 30, 2013

Wind, a debate in the Westcountry heard yesterday, should be regarded as a new crop for farmers to harvest. Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, better known for his cookery than his commitment to renewable energy but a campaigner on behalf on the rural community as a whole, wants a new approach to wind energy. “We need to be open-minded and creative when looking at the best ways to produce and use it,” he said.

Farmers are, to a great extent, piggy-in-the-middle of the wind farm debate. While many will feel dubious about the efficiency of the technology and concern at the impact on the landscape of monster turbines, it must be difficult to resist the advances of developers offering significant sums of money. Those farmers who have land that is at the margins of profitability for mainstream farming could certainly do with the income such schemes offer.

There are, however, consequences for those who succumb – and not only a boost to the bank balance. The venom with which many opponents of wind turbines view the structures might not be obvious until experienced first hand. Plenty of Westcountry communities have been split, perhaps irrevocably, as a result of fall-outs over wind turbines.   Continue reading here…..

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