Friday, 10 June 2011


Readers new to what is being proposed in just the Highlands of Scotland are aghast when they see the true scale of what is being fought for:

Take a look at the maps and find out what is being done in our name… Each page can be expanded to make it easier to read.
Highland Wind Farm Activity Report - May 2011

Highland Wind Farm Activity Report - May 2011

Highland Wind Farm Activity Report - May 2011


  1. It's beyond belief that this could happen. Only it is happening. If I ever harboured any hope that it could be otherwise, it was dashed when I corresponded with Rosanna Cunningham (our SNP candidate in the May elections). No way will this Scottish government alter its completely vacuous energy policy.

  2. Well, Republican Rose is now Minister for the Environment and Climate Change. What else were you expecting? Turbines are essential to reverting 'climate disruption', didn't you know. And they provide much-needed jobs in the Highlands. We are re-industrialising our glens, what are you grumbling about. And tourists will be flocking to view Griffin Forest Wind Farm from Ben Vrackie. Haven't you heard they are expanding the car park at Moulin to cope with the influx of hordes of turbines-lovers? Tut-tut. You backward-looking Nymby.

    What I'm struggling to imagine at the moment is the spin they'll have to come up with once the country is bankrupt and the turbines are rusting on the hills. I wonder what the wonderful world of academia will come up with (it's always them providing the impetus). I'm sure they'll us they made the decision that was justified by what was known at the time. Aye right.

  3. Exasperated Planners Shut Wind Farm Down! SSE's Sutherland Wind Farm closed down for a month due to noise issues. Is Highland Council growing Balls?

  4. Well John G we can only hope they have grown a pair. If they do perhaps they can do something about the indoctrination of our school children. Parents out there should be outraged.

    Check out: Primary school children linking arms around a turbine Education packs for secondary schools
    See Greenhouse gas fact sheet - Fox's glacier mint illustration!
    Poor polar bear! I thought I read somewhere their population was increasing.

    Also on 10th June the House of Lords had a worthwhile debate on wind farms. Nearly all were against them. I figure those for them didn't turn up because they couldn't defend the indefensible. See

  5. Lyndsey

    I find it incredible that our educators see fit for the wind energy businesses to pass to schools information that is clearly lies! "Wind energy is set to become less expensive..." yeah - right...

    As for the Hansard link - that is really first class - it is good to see so many of the upper house clued up on the problems associated with wind energy.

  6. John G: It will be interesting to see what SSE's proposals will be to limit the noise problem...

    Ear muffs, anyone?

  7. I find it very sad that on this page every member that has posted has criticized wind power yet NONE has put forward a viable alternative.

    The mindset of those who post is also interesting, for example the criticism of Highland Council. Their energy and environmental divisions will contain personnel knowledgeable in environmental and ecological subjects through both academic qualifications and professional experience, two key attributes that are liely to be absent in those contributing to this page. To tell them that ordinary members of the public know more about issues which they specialise in and are fit to make their decisions for them is, at best, arrogant and at worst deluded.

    I have two simple questions for those that have posted here:
    1) Do any you have any of the following qualifications in an environmental/ecological/engineering discipline - HNC/D, BSc, MSc, PhD?
    2) How many years practical experience do you have in an ecologically/environmentally/engineering orientated job?

    This is the unfortunate thing about the internet - it gives the previous contributors a platform to convey their opinions, however uninformed and irrational, on subjects that in the past one would have had to acquire one or both of the above pre-requisites to access.


  8. John

    If you read back through the six months of discussion on this blog you will find plenty of evidence of suggestions of how to power the UK.

    It's great that you are taking an interest in the subject and obviously reading around, even if the views you find here are not to your taste.

    For what it's worth (and we'll come to my qualifications in a minute, as you have not told us about yours..) I believe we should be investing heavily in a more modern nuclear fleet of generation. This should be supplemented in the short term by gas (exactly as the present wind fleet is proposed to be supplemented)

    In the medium term we should be investing in domestic solar - as the technology there is coming on in huge strides.

    This solution is far "greener" than wind energy, less polluting of the countries where the rare earth minerals are mined for the massive magnets required in each turbine, less polluting of the water courses at their sources in the wind-farms on the fragile peat uplands and not obtrusive in way interms of 400 feet turbines and pylons marching across the last of the wild places in Scotland.

    It will also be a whole lot less expensive, which means that our fragile business economy will not be saddled with highly uncompetitive energy bills.

    As to my qualifications - I have been a practising Civil & Structural Engineer who moved into major project management.

    Those working at Highland Council are working within strict guidelines set out by European & Central governments and as such they cannot question the efficacy of the proposals from the developers. That is not in their remit. They can only determine what is allowable under planning law. The fact that they have designated large tracts of wild land (the Monadhliath, for example) just shows that they really do NOT know what they are doing or perhaps that they do not care about fragile ecosystems.

    The only people to stand up to these developments have been local residents who form action groups with incredibly little funding, the JMT (where I notice you came to this blog from) and the MCofS. All these organisations have incredibly little funding compared to the huge energy businesses.

  9. John: As to your comment "however uninformed and irrational" I take that as the insult is was surely meant to be.

    I am pleased that you are reading around the subject - However, it is totally clear to me that you have not yet read enough to go around chucking insults about.

    So: What are your qualifications to do this? I am fascinated.

  10. Talk of 'qualifications' is interesting, Alan.

    This piece on Mark Lynas' blog makes for fascinating reading with regard to the fact that in some quarters (i.e. BBC and The Guardian) the willingness to engage in any form of investigative journalism disappears as soon as 'renewables' are involved.

    Mark Lynas is the author of a rather influential book on global warming (entirely on the pro-AGW side), so his stance on this matter is particularly interesting:

  11. Sorry JohnG but that shutdown by HC didn't last 5 mins. One of our members (CWIF) saw some turning so I asked HC what was going on and was told the Temporary Stop Notice had been lifted and replaced by a Breach of Condition Notice. Pity, got quite hopeful for a bit.

  12. Thanks, I think, Brenda. Why am I not surprised. The big battalions of multi-national and global companies against the serfs and the rather less than illustrious Highland Council officers. As to Anonymous, your assumptions reduce your comments to the banal. Many of those objecting to Wind Farms have far higher qualifications than HNCs and the like. There are a great many engineers, economists, ecologists, accountants and barristers most with I suspect a great deal more experience than yourself. Do not denegrate those of whom you have no knowledge. The tone of this blog has always been that of gentlemen and scholars. My apologies to the many ladies who are equally well qualified or probably more so! Living in the Glens and Highlands it never ceases to amaze me the wide variety of skills and ability hidden in our area from architects to ex planning officers, electrical engineers to nuclear physisists. Many of those active in objecting may have come from different areas of expertise but through application are more knowlegdable than many so called experts and last but not least, those that have lived their lives in the Wild Places are oft far better qualified to pass judgement that a graduate with a Bsc and no life experience!
    Let us try to keep the high standard of support for Alan!

  13. Thanks Alan for responding so well to Anonymous John (?) - I see he hasn't replied yet.

    Went to the Clach Liath preliminary exhibition yesterday. Usual situation - held in the hall 'round the back' with no advertising or notice boards 'round the front'. Most people in Dingwall would not have had a clue it was going on. 'They' prefer it that way - no people means (to them) nobody cares. There were more representatives from the deveopers and the PR company (Platfrom PR who seem to do most wind farms up here) than members of the public. Usual inaccuracies and spin. They announced on one of their information boards the farm would generate 40MW of electricity. 'Generate or installed capacity' we asked. 'Installed capacity' came the reply. 'Well you won't generate that then will you' we retorted. 'Some times we will'. 'What would your expected average generation be?' we asked. '35 - 40%' came the reply. Yeah right! When we pointed out that was extremely ambitious of them as many wind farms barely make it over 20 - 25% they replied their newer turbines made the figures higher. Cobblers - they couldn't even tell us what turbines they would be using as it hadn't been decided yet.
    I have grave concerns over the bird attrition at this site let alone the fact it is on full view of the Black Isle.
    Wind power is wrong on so many levels as we have all discussed here so many times. Look at this link I found on the brilliant Wind Watch site

    Depressing reading.

    On the brighter side Lord Reay replied quickly to my email to him regarding the debate in the House of Lords on 10th June. He told me he agreed with all I had said and to keep spreading my views and one day the policy will be abandoned. I hope is right and soon.

  14. May I suggest that Anonymous reads the book "Power Hungry" by Robert Bryce. This suggests a Nuclear and Gas future. A well argued and well researched tome by someone who has been at the centre of the Energy Industry all his working life. I will let you read the book to see if you agree. It is an opinion and the open debate on other opinions is healthy. As Einstein said "It does not take a hundred scientists to prove me right(consensus?), it takes one to prove me wrong!" As to the supporters of wind may I quote from Voltaire "Doubt is not a pleasant condition, but certainty is Absurd"

  15. There's another point to be made re the presumed advantages of having a BSc in environmental science or whatever and it is that often enough such degrees these days are directly sponsored by the Renewable Industry. Falck Renewables for instance put a lot of money (together with the EU) into degrees of this kind at Edinburgh University. This is an easily checkable fact.

    The syllabus, textbooks and teaching in these courses is directly geared to producing advocates for renewables, not dispassionate scientists interested in truth.

    Far from giving genuine expertise in these matters, a degree of the kind Anonymous John thinks give him the right to pontificate and belittle contrary opinion is in effect a degree in advocacy on behalf of the renewables industry.

    'Nuff said.

  16. For Falck's Clach Liath wind farm, read Ben Wyvis. "You may be aware of the scoping exercise currently in progress on the south-east side of Ben Wyvis for 17 turbines of 127m in height. These will be close to the summit of Meall na Speireig (630m) which is at the entrance to the mountains most remote and wildest coire, Coire Mor.GR 495.662, sheet NH46/56 1:25000"
    Why do they call it Clach Liath, a name you won't find on any map? Because if they called it Ben Wyvis there would be a massive outcry?

  17. Lyndsey & JohnG: Forgive my tardy reply to your Clath Liath comments - I have just looked at the OS 1:50,000 map. To name a windfarm with a fictitious place name when it is clearly on the very shoulders of Ben Wyvis - a magnificient 1046m high Munro in a National Nature Reserve (!) is absolutely scandalous. It's no different to lying. But are we surprised by this ruse?

    Every hill walker / Munro bagger should be up in arms over this. It's barely 2 miles from the summit for goodness sake!

  18. I have found "Clach Liath". It is between Swordale Hill and Meall na Speireig. It is right next to Fannyfield Wood. These place names are only shown on the 1:25,000 OS mapping. The whole of the wind power plant will be visible from Ben Wyvis.

  19. Anyone fancy posting a comment? After all 'they' say it won't affect tourism!

  20. Hi Lyndsey
    Have tried to post a comment but the page seems not to be accepting them at the moment. I'll try later.

  21. Well....I was researching the Clach Liath proposal at Ben Wyvis when I came across this that I hadn't even realised was being proposed. The planning application will be going to Energy Consents soon.

    Looks like the access is going through Novar - just as Clach Liath may according to the maps.

    When exactly will the adverse cumulative impact guideline come into play?

    Look on the RHS of website - BBC's Kate Humble presenting a DVD dispelling the wind power myths - what's that about?

    You know sometimes I just feel like giving in - it is such unbelievable madness. The lunatics are truly in charge of the asylum

  22. L:
    I have asked for a copy of the DVD and registered the fact with them that I think it is disgraceful that all the turbines will be visible from Ben Wyvis and that they are trashing the wild land for profit.
    I wonder if my DVD will turn up?

    Having read the scoping document it's good to see the MCofS sticking the boot in.

  23. L
    According to the scoping document, such as it is (its very poor quality) the access will be from the north east at the junction of the 'A' & 'B' roads.

  24. You can find the videos on youtube.

    I got there from this webpage.

    where it is claimed Kate Humble is involved. I haven't watched them all. There might be a section where she's interviewed. She doesn't seem to be narrating the first video, but then again I couldn't stomach more than 2 minutes of that...

  25. I have just watched a couple of them. Stomach churningly glossy PR, laced with the usual half-truths...

    Kate Humble should be ashamed of herself. In fact, photographs of every raptor killed by the turbines should be sent to her.
    She had better get a big album ready.

  26. I know this is preaching to the converted but in case anyone missed this........

    Do you think it will make any difference to those in power?

    Now the energy companies are saying what we have been saying all along.

    The lights WILL go out if we rely on wind power. So stop wasting our money and ruining our country - PLEASE!


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