This is a post I wrote a while ago, and now seems like a good time to put it back up:
The government has blown (excuse the pun) half a billion pounds subsidising the wind turbine industry. "So what, it's a worthy cause" I hear you say. Well, it turns out that it is anything but worthy and more worryingly, it is a total waste of our tax money. It is alleged that energy companies are receiving subsidies for wind farms that will never make any money, because they have exaggerated the potential of sites with not enough wind.
The government are miles away (or kilometers as our EU friends prefer) from achieving the target of providing 20% of our energy from renewable sources by 2020. Despite blowing (there I go again - sorry) half a billion pounds of our money, the energy companies have failed to provide even 0.5% of our requirements. For a wind farm to be viable it must have a load factor of 30 per cent. But Jim Oswald, an engineering consultant, found that the average across the country was 28 per cent.
Michael Jefferson, policies chairman of the World Renewable Energy Network believes that the subsidies are encouraging energy companies to exaggerate the amount of potential wind energy a farm can supply. Mr Jefferson said: "We should be putting our money where the wind is and that is quite often not where the development pressure is."
In a previous post about nuclear power’s life-cycle emissions it turned out that the life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions for nuclear plants are lower than that of wind farms. Now it turns out that on average these farms are not even financially viable.
For God's sake (and ours) let's stop pandering to the green brigade, and get some nuclear power plants built.