Wind farms seem to polarise opinion.
I recognise that there are an extreme range of opinions from eco warriors who want to save the world and think that emitting less carbon in Cambridgeshire is the answer to those who just don’t like them towering over the landscape.
The trouble is if you mix in some political mantra, a Liberal Democrat opposition party who have lost their way and finding it very difficult to make any traction politically and a ruling group who want to make a positive difference for the people of Cambridgeshire a fuss is bound to happen.
Just for the record I support carbon reduction, not for political dogma but because it saves us money. Sensible, practical. I think so.
Much has been said on the subject but let me share my views.
All councils are there to serve the people and where ever possible should do no harm. Always difficult with many needs and wants of folk but a reasonable starting point. Sometimes we make decisions for the greater good which are not welcome by individuals but we ought to minimise this where ever possible.
Rural communities and especially Fenland have indicated to local elected members that they have plenty of wind turbines and don’t want any more. Is that a scientific expensive consultation exercise, probably not. Is it feedback from elected members who are in touch with their communities and accountable to them, yes it is.
There seems to be a trend for central government to have a presumption of allowing wind farms to be built. This has meant that local councillors and local people who have rejected planning applications at district councils are having these decisions overturned on appeal. Their seems little defence for local people.
Wind turbines are huge. The one in question is approx 80m high. Taller than Ely Cathedral.
As landlords of the county farm estate WE can decide what happens on our land. That is, the people of Cambridgeshire.
The Liberal Democrat council members who want wind farms building on our 33000 acres of county farm estate don’t live anywhere near where they will be built. Four represent Cambridge, one Ely and one Histon. I’m not sure how often they venture into Fenland but it is a valid question for them to be asked.
There are alternatives to wind farms.
Wind farms are only viable because of subsidy through feed in tariffs. That means we are all paying for them in our bills. When the tariffs end we are stuck with the wind farms for a long time.
The Liberal Democrates claim this will cost the council a million pounds. Any money from future wind farm development had not been built into our budget. What price upsetting so many people?
On balance it seems we should listen to local people and not inflict significant pieces of machinery on those that don’t want it until we really have to and we don’t now. Cabinet is seeking to defer, not abandon, defer allowing any wind farms to be built on council land. We will now be wrapped in process and paperwork by the Lib Dems until their emotions are satisfied but to no avail.
Good use of council money sorting this out?