Une étude canadienne complète
Policy Comments on Point Petre Commercial Wind Turbine Generating Plant
crash eolienne en 2002
Policy Comments on Point Petre Commercial Wind Turbine Generating
Wind energy has a role; rural communities are in constant evolution, however it may be argued that the environmental and social cost of the development of commercial wind energy is out of proportion to any benefit in the form of reduced emissions. The industrialisation of our least developed landscapes, irreversible ecological damage, loss of amenity and the social division of communities is too high a price for an insignificant and unreliable contribution to our energy supply and a small and uncertain saving of pollution.
Wind power can be a very useful method of generation for installations at substantial distances from the grid. Turbines  may be acceptable where they are not in conflict with the scale and character of the local environment but they must not blight the lives of those living nearby with noise and flicker or endanger residents or visitors; they must not create economic disadvantage through reduced property values; they must not damage the tourist industry or the local economy; and they must not divide communities.
Public planning must ensure that functions relating to land have due regard to the desirability of conserving the natural beauty and amenity of the countryside, and while local policy may be supportive of renewable energy there is a duty to ensure that there is no undue adverse impact on the countryside.
1. CURRENT STATUS OF THE BACKGROUND TO WIND ENERGY
Three premises are commonly advanced explain the benefits of wind energy:
a) that energy is produced without harmful emissions - various oxides of carbon, nitrogen and sulphur - gases associated with global warming and acid rain
b) that the energy is produced without attendant depletion of finite resources of fossil fuels
c) that this energy obviates the problems associated with nuclear power - risk of accident, problems of waste storage
For these arguments to be valid it is clear that wind farms, if developed in sufficient numbers, must effectively and significantly reduce emissions, must measurably slow the depletion of other fuels which may soon be exhausted, or must close a nuclear power station. Let us examine these three premises:
A) CO2 emissions and global warming
Public opinion is beginning to look at the issue and policy makers are starting to examine methods to head off potential dangers. But it is inevitable that governments risk avoiding the more difficult political decisions. If we accept that global warming is a major threat to humankind, we must question Canadian shale/sand strip mining, US policy statements against the Kyoto accords, and recent British cash subsidies to the coal industry. In North America, public policy shuns reductions in emissions from cars (our fastest growing source of CO2 with air travel not far behind). Insulation material is subject to PST and GST (total 15%) while our gas and electricity bills are subject only to GST. And although nuclear power is highly unpopular and carries obvious risks, it generates more than one third of our electricity (Ontario) and produces virtually no CO2; yet there is little discussion of what is to replace our current nuclear capacity as it reaches the end of its working life over the next twenty years.
A government fearful of taking the politically difficult decisions on energy may be tempted to hide behind some green window-dressing; this, in our view, is what the encouragement of wind farms has constituted over the last few years. While support for renewable energy must be encouraged, not all the renewable energy is to come from wind. Other sources are hydro, energy crops, waste incineration and other biomass - and Canada already uses hydroelectric power for some 60% of energy requirements . Even allowing for renewable sources to be the fastest growing sector at 1.8% per annum , and allowing for wind energy to be the leading resource in this sector, it appears not unreasonable to assume that wind may eventually account for between 2.0% and 3.8% (according to the constraints put on the development of wind farms) of total Canadian electricity consumption - these figures fall mainly in line with various Provincial and Federal forecasts used in a Kyoto context. Wind farms could lead to a reduction of between 3.2 and 6.1 million tonnes of carbon emissions per year - between 0.006% and 0.011% of global CO2 emissions. Clearly that will have no measurable effect whatsoever on global warming or climate change.
Bringing this down to more understandable figures, a single 500 kW gearless Enercon turbine, with an annual output of about 1.1 million kWh, generates not only during the day, when it might displace oil- or coal-fired generation, but also at night when mainly nuclear and gas generation are operating. Disregarding the fact that 60% of Canadian power is hydro-electricity (already zero emission), it is logical to assume that this turbine displaces a mix of fuels, rather than only coal or oil. British Department of Trade and Industry figures indicate that an average weighted fossil 80%/nuclear 20% generating fuel mix produced an average of 620g. of CO2 per unit of electricity generated [2b] - the UK has virtually no hydroelectric power.
Thus, calculation shows that this turbine saves about 682 tonnes of carbon emissions each year, or 0.078 tonnes per hour.
The 18-wheel truck doing 100kph on Highway 401 produces a minimum of 0.08 tonnes of CO2 per hour. Given the uncontrolled growth of road traffic, the erecting of turbines may be seen as a futile exercise. How many turbines would we have to build each year to merely to keep pace with traffic growth?
B) Fossil Fuel Depletion
The Director General of the UK Petroleum Industry wrote to The Times in late 1999: "Current known reserves-to-production ratios range from about 50 years for oil and gas to over 200 years for coal." He suggested, too, that undiscovered fields of oil and gas, tar shales and oil sands will extend the availability, albeit with higher extraction costs.
Reserves of coal will probably never be exhausted, because: "coal became obsolete, with huge and useless British and world reserves"  These stocks, however, along with uranium reserves, will assure continuity of electricity supply.
Don Huberts who heads Shell Hydrogen, a division of Royal Dutch Shell, is convinced that new energy sources will soon begin to replace fossil fuels. He wrote in The Economist: "The stone age did not end because the world ran out of stones and the oil age will not end because the world runs out of oil."
Apart from conventional gas reserves, hydrates (compressed methane) found in immense quantities on the ocean floor are alone sufficient to power the world for another millennium. The problem at the moment is how to recover them without releasing the gas once the pressure is off, but a Japanese company is experimenting with new drilling methods at a known deposit 40 miles off Japan's Pacific coast.
The logical conclusion is that there is no rush promote an unpredictable and intermittent energy source like wind, which can never supply more than about 10% of our electricity without causing major disruption to the system as it cuts in and out. If at some period in the future it becomes clear that even this marginal quantity of electricity is vital, then at least wind turbines have the virtue that they can be erected much more speedily than conventional hydrolytic dams, nuclear facilities or even fossil fuel sources.
C) Wind Power and Nuclear Power
Again taking the British situation, the percentage of nuclear electricity has grown during the last decade whilst wind turbines have been constructed in large numbers. In 1990 there were no wind farms and 20% of electricity came from nuclear; in 1997, there were more than 700 turbines and 30% of electricity came from nuclear (in Ontario, a comparable 48% of our electricity was nuclear in the same year  although we have a number of reactors on stand-down ). There is no possibility of wind and other renewables making up such a shortfall in electrical generation. A European Commission report published in April 2000 indicated that over the next 20 years at least 85 new nuclear power stations will have to be built in Europe if carbon emission targets are to be met. As current nuclear capacity ages, it will be replaced either by Combined Cycle Gas Turbine (CCGT) technology or by modern nuclear plants. The political debate may be intense, but the wind industry will play no part since, as the report concludes, renewables will not be able to meet the shortfall.
Since Chernobyl no one has been able to ignore nuclear risks and a limited number of recent problems have underlined them (Indian Point, Sellafield). It is incorrect of the wind industry to use such risks to frighten people into accepting wind turbines that can form no part of the solution. The chairman of the British Wind Energy Association is on the record: "The future can only be renewables and nuclear in some sort of combination".
2. THE SCALE OF DEVELOPMENT REQUIRED
We would suggest that the environmental cost involved in this magnitude of wind energy development outweighs the savings in emissions. At the core of the problem lies the exceedingly small output of even the largest wind turbines, the prominence of the sites necessary if they are to fulfil their limited generating potential and the high numbers of turbines required to generate modest amounts of electricity.
Wind turbine output figures in 1998 confirmed that their average output is about 25% of their theoretical [nominal] capacity - the largest turbines currently proposed for Point Petre have a theoretical capacity of 1.8 MW with an average output of under one half MW. Two of the biggest operational wind farms in Europe are the neighbouring sites at Llandinam and Carno in Wales using 159 half-megawatt turbines [nominal total 79.5 Mw] on several thousand acres. Together, they have an output averaging 20 MW - we will retain 25% as the current, proven baseline .
Let us return to Ontario, which has for the next ten years a forecast peak demand of between 25,000 and 30,000 MW ; taking the wind industry's figure of 10%, wind farms would have to produce some 2,500 MW necessitating some 20,000 "smaller" turbines with a proven track record, or some 5,000 of the much larger ones (example Vestas' V80, 387 feet high - advertising for this machine claims operation at 38% efficiency , a number previously only dreamed of, which would reduce the required number to some 3,500.)
Wind Power Monthly reported in January 2000 that the installed capacity of turbines on a world-wide basis at the end of 1999 was 12,455 MW - the theoretical maximum output of nearly 40,000 turbines, erected over a period of some 30 years . Recalling that the average output of a wind turbine is only 25% of its capacity, all the world's wind machines are on average producing 3,100 MW or well less than half of the installed hydroelectric capacity of Ontario alone (7,300 MW). This achievement was only possible with governments around the world encouraging the construction of turbines with subsidies or tax credits; hence the suggestion that at best wind energy is a barely relevant side-show, at worst a deception that something worthwhile is being done to combat emissions.
3. THE PROBLEM OF INTERMITTENCY
it has to be generated at the same time as it is used,
However, if wind industry production of 10% of our supply is successful, there would be major implications. For example, on August 16, 2002 demand in Ontario peaked at over 25,000 MW. There was no wind. Had we been relying on wind to provide any considerable portion at that point, there could have been widespread power cuts, with consequent work layoffs, school closures, added need for emergency generation at hospitals and other critical sites, etc
Such security, economic and social disasters cannot be permitted, therefore:
enough fossil fuel generating capacity must always be kept on
stand-by ("spinning reserve"  ) to supply the shortfall as and
when the wind drops
4. LANDSCAPE QUALITY OF WIND FARM SITES
It would appear logical that wind farms should be sited neither within such parks and natural areas nor where they would be clearly visible from such areas, yet there is in practice no restraint over where developers may seek to erect wind turbines.
If we, the community, retain only the idea of perceived emission reductions, with no other reference to environmental acceptability, then the system itself will tend to produce developments in environmentally sensitive sites.
The result is that wind developments will threaten much of our remaining natural landscape: whether or not Point Petre is seen as just scrubland or an intrinsic part of the County's rural heritage, any turbines will be visible from a distance extending not just to Picton Heights, but, on a clear day, to the United States.
If between 5,000 and 20,000 turbines are to be built in such locations, there will be hardly any part of our most valued landscape which is not affected. Apart from the turbines themselves, many miles of transmission lines and hundreds of pylons will be needed for connection to the grid.
In 1996 the U.K. Countryside Commission, a government landscape watchdog, warned that England's scenic countryside was in danger of becoming a "wind farm wilderness." The wind industry has responded to concerns such as these by proposing offshore installations [see 6 below].
Few voices question the importance of wild, unindustrialized landscape as a County asset, but anyone with a concern for the environment should consider preserving wilderness areas; this, both from a desire to protect our fragile ecosystems, and from a recognition of their capacity to enrich human life through spiritual and poetic inspiration and through self-sufficient adventure.
The issue of wind turbines has led a section of the "green" movement to dismiss landscape as a secondary concern - "The modern wind turbine is a mighty intrusive beast. It's not into nestling, blending in or any of those other clichés beloved of rural romantics"  - but maybe in an area of tourism, artists and natural beauty, we need a better appreciation of what the loss of "rural romanticism" might mean?
The founder of the National Parks movement, John Muir, wrote: "Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken over-civilised people are beginning to find that wilderness is a necessity and that parks and reservations are useful not only as fountains of timber and irrigating rivers, but as fountains of life."
5. AESTHETIC CONSIDERATIONS
Wind Power Monthly, the magazine for the wind industry and its supporters, has recognised that the reason for the growing unpopularity of wind power is that a heavy industry has tricked its way into unspoiled countryside in "green" disguise: "Too often the public has felt duped into envisioning fairy tale wind "parks" in the countryside. The reality has been an abrupt awakening. Wind power stations are no parks."  The Editor went on to point out that in Denmark turbines are treated within the planning process in the same way as motorways, industrial buildings, railways and pig farms.
6. OFFSHORE WIND TURBINES
From the latest information available (Section 16 below) it is not clear where the finance for this target in a pioneering field might come from. The whole sea is not available for wind turbine development. Water depth has to be less than 40 m and the sea bed nearly flat. Shipping lanes, military zones, pipelines, helicopter flight paths, ferry routes, and fishing grounds are expected to be no-go areas. Uneconomically long distances to grid connections and the absence of local port facilities would also be constraints. There are additional safety and ecological considerations.
Current recommendations by the E-U (enforceable, pending or guideline only) to ensure that coastlines are not damaged by the scale, location or cumulative impact of turbines, include:
special care with the visual impact, specifically including the
How environmentally acceptable turbines at sea turn out to be will depend on their proximity to the coast - particularly those in areas of prime tourism - and the impact of cable landing sites and pylons to carry cable to grid connections. Public opinion appears to be favourable to reducing pressure on land-based sites, but there certainly is no general acceptance of offshore wind turbines - electrical costs will certainly be higher and reliability is not much less unpredictable than that of on-shore developments.
7. NOISE POLLUTION AND HEALTH
The more intrusive blade noise is unavoidable, and increases with the number of turbines installed. Vestas refers to a choice of blades, one set with a sound output at -2.5dB: "For developers almost half the measured sound level means that two V80 turbines with low sound levels can be placed at nearly the same distance to a sound sensitive location as one turbine with a higher sound level". 
While the study of cumulative sound levels, particularly harmonics, is complex, this manufacturer's statement virtually implies that two turbines are twice as noisy as a single one. However, we will not claim here that the increase at any single point is purely proportional to the number of turbines, there should be some attenuation.
Noise levels, particularly the low-frequency 'thump' each time a blade passes the turbine tower, are the subject of much research, and the UK regulatory authority spends more of its budget researching noise from wind turbines than on all other environmental noise problems. "For existing wind farms we are satisfied that there are cases of individuals being subject to near-continuous noise during the operation of the turbines, at levels which do not constitute a statutory nuisance or exceed planning conditions, but which are clearly disturbing and unpleasant and may have some psychological effects." 
The genuine difficulty that developers face is that noise levels cannot be predicted in advance - and the industry has had little success in controlling blade noise. Again from Vestas: "The new design allows the blades to cut so aggressively through the wind that the kilowatt counter runs as much as 17-19% faster than even its highly competitive predecessor. Development work on this turbine has focused on one factor: profitability." Some of these turbines were erected in England in 1999, and it was reported: "Barrow's chief Environmental Health officer said the council was taking action against the noise nuisance." 
Local resident reaction has not always been kind. 
Noise is recognized as a significant cause of stress and stress-related illness in modern society, and health problems have been reported by local residents. What started as anecdotal references to harm from noise levels, has become statistically significant, and while there appears to be little or no clinical proof of causality, research in Denmark and Holland is continuing.
This is particularly apparent from New Zealand Standard 6808  Note to para 1.3 "WTGs (Wind Turbine Generators) may produce sound at frequencies below (infrasound) and above (ultrasound) the audible range" and the statement from the Darmstadt Manifesto: "More and more people are describing their lives as unbearable when they are directly exposed to the acoustic and optical effects of wind farms. There are reports of people being signed off sick and unfit for work, there is a growing number of complaints about symptoms such as pulse irregularities and states of anxiety, which are known to be from the effects of infrasound."
Recent reports from Denmark indicate government buy-back of residential property in an increasing radius from wind turbines, particularly down-wind.
8. RADAR, RADIO AND TELEVISION INTERFERENCE
Turbines also disrupt microwave communications links and for this reason the Swedish armed forces blocked 15 wind farms in Norrtalje and have argued against wind developments on the coast between Stockholm and Uppland. (The UK Ministry of Defence also recently opposed a wind farm, their opposition being confirmed on appeal .)
There is growing evidence that marine radar can be affected by wind turbine generators, and today (21 Aug 2002) it is reported that To day the Belgian media are widely reporting that the Dutch province of Zeeland just over the border is using a special privilege of appeal at the Belgian State Counsel to block the installation of a huge windmill park offshore. The main argument is that this park, being situated in the Scheldt approaches, would present a serious danger to navigation by jamming the radars on the ships. As the Dutch are responsible for a part of this channel and maintain a series of VTS radar observation stations, they know something about this problem. There are anecdotal reports of military aircraft radar being affected, but details are currently classified.
Developers can sort out most of the television problems, but only at the cost of building a new relay station. Developers, who at first deny that there is a problem, are now being asked to agree to a clause being written into the planning agreement whereby they will finance remedial work if it proves necessary. The other problems may have no remedy in the immediate vicinity of the generating plant (wind farm).
9. GEOLOGICAL AND OTHER ENVIRONMENTAL CONSEQUENCES
The hole normally excavated for a turbine's foundation has a volume of 250 to 1,000 cubic yards - but at the 21 August meeting the developers mentioned that the Point Petre project will not blast, but sink anchor bolts, but, one way or another, this involves the bedrock. The extracted material has to be discarded and replaced with sand, aggregate and cement ; service roads and cable trenches need to be constructed; pylons and overhead transmission lines will have to be erected, reinforced or upgraded to connect to the grid. A recent Dutch study  claims that wind turbines produce significant amounts of CO2 - if the emissions created during manufacture, erection and maintenance are averaged over the lifetime of a turbine, the CO2 cost is 50 grams per Kilowatt hour.
When they have broken off they have planed up to 400 metres (9 Dec 1993, Cemmaes, Wales). At Tarifa, Spain, blades broke off on two occasions in Nov. 1995 - the first in gusty, high winds, the second in only light wind (report, Windpower Monthly, Dec. 1995).
In an article written in January 1996 Professor Otfried Wolfrum, professor of applied geodesy at Darmstadt University, wrote of a significant number of blade failures in Germany, detailing four particularly severe ones where fragments of blade weighing up to half a tonne were thrown up to 280 m.
The civic authorities in Palm Springs, USA, as early as the late 1980s made developers move turbines to a distance of half a mile from the highway for safety reasons.
Apart from the danger of blades becoming detached or disintegrating, there is a risk that lumps of ice can form, and then be thrown significant distances when the wind rises and the blades begin to move. Professor Wolfrum wrote on this subject: "Some ice layers 150mm thick have been detected and their mass has been as high as 20 - 23 kg/m" . He demonstrated that these fragments could travel up to 550 m and land with impact speeds of 170 mph. This has led to "Falling Ice" warning notices at some wind turbine sites.
In April 2000, three UK wind farms were reported as being closed for safety reasons, apparently because of metal fatigue in the turbine towers. The sites in question are at Cold Northcott in Cornwall and Cemmaes and Llangwyryfon in Wales .
The Countryside Agency has called for turbines to be sited away from bridleways - a distance of three times the height of the turbines normally and four times the height of the turbines near National Trails (height to blade tip) - because noise and flicker can startle horses and endanger their riders and because of risk from thrown ice. The British Horse Society has expressed similar concerns.
11. TOURISM, JOBS, PROPERTY VALUES
- A National Tourist Board survey shows that 90% of British holiday makers who go to the countryside do so to enjoy it for its own sake and seek no further attractions like theme parks .
- Denmark has reported a 40% fall in tourist numbers where wind power stations have been established.
- Holland (survey by the University of Leiden in the late 1980s) found that the majority of those questioned felt that a landscape lost its interest as turbines accumulated in it.
- The Welsh Tourist Board's policy on wind turbines reads: "The Board endorses the policies of the Countryside Council for Wales which oppose the introduction of commercial wind turbines and wind turbine power stations in primary designated areas (i.e. National Parks, AONBs, Heritage Coasts and Marine, National and International Nature Reserves). We consider that elsewhere proposals should be considered on their merits, the effects upon tourism being a material issue for consideration."
If wind farms threaten to destroy jobs in the tourist industry, they create few if any compensating jobs elsewhere. A typical turbine requires less than one day's maintenance per year; it is most unlikely that the proposed Point Petre generating plant could sustain anywhere close to 1 FTE.
All the proposed turbines are of foreign manufacture. Creative accounting is used by the wind industry to arrive at employment figures "relating to" wind, but it is difficult to find employees who only work when the wind is blowing - without which, of course, any employment relies upon traditional power generation.
The only visible benefit to the County would be some local labour, excavation and concrete pouring during installation, and the site rent paid to the ten landowners involved. We also understand that many of the Hydro One workers involved in the grid extension will be temporarily brought to the County from elsewhere. Will any benefit be outweighed by a decline in tourist numbers? Tourism has also become an important element of farm diversification, encouraged by OMAFRA, with campgrounds and holiday cottages. What one farmer gains another may lose.
In terms of the impact on house values there can be no doubt. A partner in Durrants, a chartered surveying firm, wrote (May 1998): "I can confirm that the outlook from a property does have a major bearing on its value and if this outlook is tarnished by a wind turbine or any similar structure, the values would be significantly decreased." International property consultants FPD Savills wrote in May 1998: "Any structure that can be viewed as an intrusion into the countryside such as electricity pylons or wind turbines will have a detrimental effect [on property values]. Usually, it will not only effect the value but also saleability which is not necessarily the same thing. Generally speaking, the higher the value of the property the greater the blight will be ... As you go up the value scale, buyers generally become more discerning and the value of a farmhouse may be affected by as much as 30% if it is in close proximity to the wind turbine. Those houses that are within earshot are likely to be affected worst of all."
In Denmark, the National Association of Neighbours of Wind Turbines say that most estate agents estimate a 25 - 30 % fall in property value when turbines are put up nearby. In the UK Lake District, house prices fall by up to 40% if their outlook is affected by a wind power development .
Lastly, while the visibility of wind turbines may reduce the value of a property, noise levels may render it totally unsaleable.
12. THE EFFECT ON BIRDS
There appear to be widely differing opinions on this subject. Industry and government minimize the effects; for example, the European Union Planning Policy Guidance 22 (PPG 22): "Evidence suggests that the risk of collision with moving turbine blades is minimal both for migrating birds and for local habitats."
However, the number of documented reports on unacceptable kill rates has possibly gone beyond being anecdotal, and approaches statistical significance. Some examples:
Tarifa, Spain, significant numbers of birds of 13 species protected
under European Union law have been killed by turbines (Windpower monthly, 2
One point that is of relevance to local planning, is that the County Official Plan encourages wineries. It is our understanding that any changes in nesting and habitat for certain bird species could influence insect populations and negatively impact existing and future vineyards.
13. PUBLIC OPINION
Where surveys have been site-specific the results are very different - we have been unable to find one single survey result giving approval. Opinion surveys are useful tools for pressure groups but not a sensible basis for sound planning, since they are often snapshots of ill-informed opinion. Respondents to surveys about wind can be shown to be ill-informed, believing that wind-generated electricity is cheap or even free, or that wind farms are an alternative to nuclear power stations.
Informed opinion is very much more critical of wind power development. Planning committees in the UK, advised by professional planning officers who have to evaluate every aspect of a proposal objectively, have rejected more than 80% of wind turbine applications. Appeals have usually upheld the planning refusals. Of 2400 MW of wind power proposals up to March 2000, only 200 MW had got through the planning process as planners and inspectors considered the environmental impacts too big and the clean energy benefits too small to permit the remainder .
Former leader of the Labour Party Neil Kinnock wrote in 1994: "My long-established view is that wind-generated power is an expensive form of energy. It can only provide a very small fraction of the output required to meet total energy needs and it unavoidably makes an unacceptable intrusion into the landscape."
In 1998 the Norwegian Government commissioned a report on the experience of wind energy in Denmark in order to inform its own decisions on developing the technology. It noted: "serious environmental effects, insufficient production [and] high production costs."
Finally, we would draw attention to the Darmstadt Manifesto on the exploitation of wind energy in Germany, compiled and signed by over 100 leading academics in fields including Mathematics, Electrical Engineering, Physics, Medicine, Chemistry, Mechanical Engineering and Thermodynamic Science, Land Management, Agricultural Science and Geography. Fearing that young people are "growing up into a world in which natural landscapes are breaking up into tragic remnants" the manifesto undertakes a cost/benefit analysis of wind energy. They state that "wind energy is running a race which is already lost in an economic order orientated towards growth" and conclude that "Wind energy is therefore of no significance whatever either in the statistics for energy or for those of pollutants and greenhouse gases".
14. FINANCIAL LOGIC OF WINDFARM DEVELOPMENT AND VERs.
How can a Canadian project develop a positive business plan? Fiscal incentives are a necessity, including accelerated depreciation, on both capital investment and sales to Hydro One, where the Wind Power Production Incentive (WPPI)  program and other subsidies start to apply.
However, substantial gains can be made from the sale of "pollution credits". This is a developing market with the obvious outcome of promoting CO2 and other GHG emissions. How does it work? A wind turbine electricity producer sells "credit certificates" for tons of CO2, which authorize unregulated pollution by the buyer.
The following information is taken from Vision Quest's web site  (paragraphs re-ordered for clarity):
Verified Emissions Reductions (VERs) are a new product. VERs are the quantified reduction in air pollution, owned by the entity that took the action to reduce the emissions. Vision Quest VERs are expressed as kgs of carbon dioxide equivalent, or greenhouse gases (GHGs).
Around the world, markets are being developed to trade emissions reductions. Already, trades between industrial customers are taking place in Australia, New York and in Canada. As these markets become more common, VER customers could offer their certificates for sale, and if demand increases, could realize gains on their investments.
We (Vision Quest) have industrial customers that purchase Green Energy® (VERs) specifically to offset their emissions. Vision Quest has sold VERs only to industrial customers, on a confidential basis. We have offered VERs into markets in the US, Canada, and overseas.
Vision Quest is now offering small blocks of VERs to customers anywhere in the world: $9.50 Cdn per 100 kg/month ($114 Cdn for 1,200 kgs on an annual basis - one year minimum) or $68 Cdn per 1,000 kg/month ($816 Cdn for 6 metric tonnes annually - one year minimum). For larger volume commercial or industrial blocks, please contact our offices. Vision Quest does sell large blocks or streams of VERs to qualified customer groups.
Various studies have confirmed that all wind energy developments throughout the world are subsidised in one form or another. It has cost anything from 116% to 440% of the price of conventionally generated electricity. And with Natural Resources Canada stating: "the WPPI encourages participation from prospective producers in all regions and is expected to leverage approximately $1.5 billion in capital investments across Canada" it is not surprising that we see a number of developers jumping on these incentives.
15. CANADIAN GOVERNMENT POLICY
At the end of 2000, there was an estimated 137 megawatts of total installed wind capacity in Canada. At present, the provinces of Quebec and Alberta have the largest shares of Canada's wind capacity. There are, however, new government incentives to increase wind power projects throughout the country and as a result several projects are expected to be examined in the near future. In Saskatchewan's Gull Lake, the first phase of the $20 million SunBridge Wind Power Project has begun generating electricity . Three of the 17 wind turbines began generating in August 2001, and the remaining turbines should be operational by June 2002 [unconfirmed?], when total installed capacity should reach 11.2 megawatts.
The Canadian government has agreed to purchase electricity from emerging renewable sources in Saskatchewan and Prince Edward Island, and for the Gull Lake wind project this will mean a taxpayer investment of around $7.9 million over a 10-year period. In June 2001, the Canadian government, the Prince Edward Island provincial government, and Maritime Electric Company, Ltd. announced that an agreement had been signed for the development of a wind farm at North Cape to be constructed by the Prince Edward Island Energy Corporation. The project, which is expected to cost the taxpayer $5.9 million, will generate an estimated 16.6 million kwh of electricity annually.
In December 2001, Canada implemented a Wind Power Production Incentive (WPPI) . Wind projects installed between April 1, 2002, and March 31, 2007, will be eligible for a government incentive payment of about 1.2 cents per kilowatthour of generation. The payment will gradually decline.
Provincial Select Committee on Alternative Fuel Sources:
"Wind power may be able to augment, or partly displace, diesel power sources in remote northern communities"
"Public attitudes will have to adjust to this emerging technology" - this is a quite remarkable statement, implying that any choice by a community is null and void - "The Committee was concerned that the only significant proposal to date for a private wind farm in Ontario was blocked by local planning and zoning concerns" - one can only hope that the Committee will have the democratic decency to accept that a community has the absolute right to decide that certain aspects of local planning are against the communities best interests.
Although specifying Crown Lands, it is stated that the "Ministry of Environment and Energy and Natural Resources shall develop a standardized policy for wind energy development" by 31 December 2002. It would appear prudent for this community to examine Provincial policy before being used as a test-bed or guinea pig for private commercial enterprise.
"The Ministry of Finance shall match the Federal wind power production incentive for new wind power projects" - more taxpayer money being spent.
Local municipal details:
a) "It is the intent of the Plan to maintain the natural and scenic qualities of the rural designation and to preserve its rural character and lifestyle and significant open lands"
b) "Very limited new development will be permitted in rather isolated areas of the County such as Long Point and Point Petre."
Given that our Official Plan is absolutely specific for Point Petre, it defies logic to imagine how an exception can be made that is not incontrovertibly in the absolute interest of the public, or subject to an in depth economic impact analysis, or subject to meaningful, extended public consultation and plebiscite. And the holiday period of July and August is not exactly suited to full, open and public discussion, or investigation, analysis and recommendations by concerned organizations.
The amendment to the Official Plan, as currently requested, would be pure rubber-stamping of private interests. This is contrary to the very principles of public planning - which should be looking for a broad based enquiry into possible amendments of the Official Plan itself. Without this, we indulge in ad hoc planning and ad hoc rezoning, as a blatant exception to public policy which has openly and democratically evolved as in a) and b) above.
The County Weekly of June 19 quoted Councillor Paul Johnson as saying: "This is a Prince Edward County issue in my opinion and not specific to one area. It impacts the entire County"
It should also be noted that a number of notions put forward to justify the amendment/rezoning request appear to apply to a single experimental turbine. Either the request is for a single turbine (this is what the environmental survey by Jacques Whitford refers to) or for 32 turbines, which Mr Whitford did not study. It is contrary to good planning principles to leave any doubt (sound levels, bird protection, electronic interference, etc) as to what is being permitted.
16. EUROPEAN UNION AND U.K. POLICY
The European Commission has been trying for some time to implement a directive on renewable energy. Two proposals had to be abandoned after opposition from member states, industry and environmental groups. Finally on 10 May 2000 the Commission announced its proposals to double the proportion of 'green' energy from 6% to 12% of primary energy supply by increasing the share of renewably generated electricity from 14% to 22% by 2010.
Member states will have to "reduce regulatory barriers" which are seen as hampering renewables development - including establishing a fast track through planning procedures. These "regulatory barriers" were formerly known as safeguards for unspoiled landscape - a respect of nature which has worked against many inappropriate wind farm proposals.
It must be remembered too that there are renewables other than wind, though many of them have a major environmental cost attached just as wind does.
In the U.K., government has a ten-year strategy to ensure, through a rising series of targets, that 10% of UK electricity is generated from renewable sources by 2010. These sources are diverse and include hydroelectricity, on- and off-shore wind, energy crops, waste incineration, landfill gas and other biomass sources.
Electricity suppliers must supply specific proportions of their electricity each year from renewable sources; if they fail to fulfil their obligation, the Dept of Trade and Industry has indicated that a penalty of 2p per unit (~cdn$0.044) will be levied - however with a base price of 2.3p (cdn$0.056) the end result is that if renewable energy cannot be produced for less than 4.3p (cdn$0.10), it is cheaper for the supplier to buy conventional electricity and pay the penalty.
This 4.3p per unit price cap makes significant off-shore wind development unlikely, since the associated costs of off-shore generation - construction difficulties, maintenance, cabling, grid connections - will put the price above that level. The government is said to be considering supplementary support for off-shore wind.
Renewable source electricity  is exempt from the Climate Change Levy (CCL) which came into force in April 2001 adding 0.43p (1 cent Canadian) per unit to the business use of electricity from fossil or nuclear fuel generation.
These targets have run into problems. By December 1999 only 16 nations had ratified the protocol. The US, which has 5% of the world's population and produces 20% of its pollution, shows little sign of co-operating with the target. Meantime, countries like India and China in their race to industrialize are massively increasing their coal-burn. Kyoto perhaps represents an easier target for Canada, thanks to our "dash for gas", our vast hydroelectric industry, and possible expansion of clean nuclear production, but it throws into stark relief the dichotomy of producing credits in Ontario to counterbalance open strip shale/sand mining in Alberta, much of which is for export to the USA.
18. THE PLANNING SYSTEM AND WIND FARMS
Commercial wind turbine generating plants represent a dispersion of technology - like abandoning our merchant marine and returning to sail powered clipper ships. Along the 401 corridor, concentrating our main power generation (i.e. connected to the Hydro grid) in a few places is much less destructive of the general environment.
Because wind energy is uneconomic, its development depends on subsidy. Wind developers have to jump two hurdles before erecting a wind farm - first to secure a subsidized business plan encompassing a guaranteed market and a premium price for the electricity generated, and secondly to secure planning consent.
However, wind energy developments must be subject to exactly the same planning controls as any other form of development. If the government wants to encourage the development of clean and renewable energy, then that must still be planned here in the County as an economically attractive and environmentally acceptable project.
The official Plan for the County imposes a responsibility to preserve the countryside and local government must be encouraged to become increasingly aware of the tourist and amenity value of unspoiled landscape. In most other communities, Development Planning tends to restrict industrial development to specific areas, usually those already industrialized. This makes life difficult for wind developers who seek sites precluded by the local plan. They are required to find "substantive material reasons" why restrictions should be set aside, rezoning allowed and plant installed prior to the approval of Federal or Provincial guidelines. The only plausible reason might be the reduction in fossil fuel pollution, but the reduction achieved by even the largest commercial wind turbine generating plants is so small as to be in no sense "substantive".
Effective planning must, at the very least, ensure that any commercial wind turbine generating plants established in rural surroundings
do not detract from the natural scale and character of the local
and neighbouring environments
We would also draw attention to
a) the proposed wind farm, at a height approaching 400 feet spread over 700 acres would be physically the largest single development ever constructed in Prince Edward County. As a comparison, Essroc covers a total of about one thousand acres, but the building footprint is very much smaller, and the highest roof is at less than 200 feet.
b) the fact that no economic impact study has been carried out by the County (net short and long term tax-base gain/loss, implications for tourism and retirement, employment figures, possible health and environment costs, possible legal liability for clean-up)
c) no statement concerning the cost and impact of the Hydro One connection has been made publicly
19. THE FUTILITY OF SUPPLY-SIDE SOLUTIONS
The Western world is profligate in the use of energy. America has approximately 5% of the world's population and is responsible for about 20% of its energy consumption. Electric consumption has risen five fold in half a century, and is currently rising at about 10% every four years. Traffic growth on the roads and in the air are the fastest growing sources of such emissions.
Globalization is leading to a growth in the economies of formerly poor [underdeveloped, third world] countries which will allow their population of 1.5 billion to acquire the same goods as the rich and consume energy in the same profligate way. It is unthinkable that the countries of America and Europe should deny energy use to others while continuing to abuse energy themselves. And it is equally unthinkable that the technology of the wind turbine is going to supply the needs of the world.
Wasted energy in domestic environments is variously estimated at between 50% and 60%, yet we pay little attention to conserving energy. If every household in Canada replaced the conventional electric light bulb with a low energy bulb, nearly one million tonnes of C02 could be saved. We pay only GST on our electric and gas bills, yet PST + GST on insulation for our homes - a reversal of this fiscal situation might be instructive.
Road traffic is the fastest-growing source of CO2 emissions, with aviation a close second. Yet where is the encouragement to be frugal? Individual and corporate endeavours in this direction should be promoted [in the County, we have a shining example with Essroc using water transport, by far the most CO2 friendly in terms of tons/miles, for 97% of their output].
In the end, there will have to be steep rises in energy prices for consumers who, in Canada, have become used to ever-cheaper (disregarding inflation) energy. There will have to be radical restrictions on private car consumption/use and the end of cheap air travel - these are the two fastest growing sources of CO2 emission.
We are forced to draw the conclusion that the government does not regard greenhouse gases and global warming as a very serious problem - certainly not serious enough to offend voters by making energy use expensive or taxing personal and commercial road and air transport. Instead, we see inappropriate encouragement of wind turbines which, statistically, do nothing significant to tackle the problem, but which are highly visible and, as politicians will note from the wind industry's opinion polls, popular with 70% of the voters. Inevitably, many consumers will see the turbines, consider the problem solved and turn up the thermostat.
20. MEETING ELECTRICITY DEMAND
In Canada, more than 60% of our needs are currently met by hydroelectric projects; this can be extended (see the Churchill 2 project), but as a percentage of total needs may diminish. Nuclear power, currently providing 12%  of Canadian needs, is politically unpopular despite near zero CO2 emissions and is in regression despite Canada being a world leader in nuclear technology and uranium production . Conventional oil, gas and coal fired electricity accounts for 26%.
The most environmentally-friendly solution is Combined Cycle Gas Turbine (CCGT) generation, a reliable source of 500 Mw can be built on 15 acres, at a cost of between $430-$600 per Kw . The Point Petre site covers 700 acres, and will produce a random, intermittent output of less than 8 Mw; scaling this up to 500 Mw would require 750 of the bigger turbines (2045 of the smaller V47 turbines) on 44,000 acres, or about one fifth of the total area of the County - and we would still need the conventional power plant, running on standby  for when the wind is calm.
Erecting a few thousand wind turbines in Ontario is simply fiddling while the world burns - how is the developing world going to meet its generation targets? With dirty local coal? With nuclear? As stated above, wind turbine electricity generating plants are likely to develop a dangerously complacent perception in parts of the public that the problem is being addressed and that they need do nothing further.
Following a study visit to Denmark in February 1998, Asle Selfors  reported that the Danish initiatives in wind turbine farms suffered from "inadequate controls" and "massive and unrestrained funding" which in turn had led to "serious environmental effects, insufficient production, high production costs, high grid costs, and wind farms where there is too little wind". The main advantage of the Danish investment in wind power would appear, he wrote, that it had "laid the foundations of an industry for the production of wind turbines".
Prince Edward County is now being presented with just such a Danish technology proposal.
In February this year, Economy Minister Bendt Bendtsen announced that Denmark will concentrate on competitiveness, instead of a green image and not subsidize installation of new wind turbines from 2004. Installation of wind turbines had depended heavily on subsidies, not only in Denmark, but all over the world.
"I'm of the opinion that Denmark shouldn't continue to subsidize installation of new wind turbines after 2003," Bendtsen said in an interview.
He added that electricity from wind turbines was too expensive, denting Danish firms' competitiveness, and that Danish wind turbine makers have gained from the former government's pro-wind attitude over the past decade and Denmark now hosts some of the world's largest manufacturers, such as Vestas, NEG Micon and Bonus Energy.
And Economy Minister Bendt Bendtsen has scrapped the plans for three more wind farms of 150 Mw each to be installed before 2008. It would surely be logical for Prince Edward County to listen to the country that has more experience in wind turbine development, technology and use per capita, than anywhere else in the world.
Danish experience and expertise concerning the exact same turbines that are being proposed for Point Petre, indicate that we should not be the first small, rural, community - relying on tourism, the arts, culture, heritage and quality of life - to act as a social, legal, political, ecological and environmental test bed for an unreliable and costly technology based on false assumptions and promises. We strongly recommend extreme caution and express our opposition to the uncritical promotion of a technology which will have long-term, far reaching, adverse effects on this community's lifestyle, wellbeing and surroundings for this and future generations.
NOTES and REFERENCES:
 Carbon emissions, Canada: In 1999, Canada emitted 151 million metric tons (mmt) of energy related carbon emissions. The industrial sector accounted for 40% of this, within which the six energy-intensive industries (chemicals, petroleum refining, iron and steel, smelting and refining, pulp and paper and cement) accounted for over 80% of carbon dioxide emissions. Emissions from the transportation sector in 1998 totaled 48.8 mmt. While on-road vehicles are currently the primary consumer of fuel, off-road vehicles' (including activities associated with oil sands mining), contributions to carbon dioxide emissions are projected to grow appreciably in the future. The residential sector carbon emissions measured 20.6 mmt in 1998, while commercial sector carbon emissions were 18.8 mmt.
[2b] VQ's advertizing of the V80 turbine suggests - "approximately 6 million KW" and "almost 6,000 tonnes", a figure closer to 1,000 than 620. However, there is no indication that this is correctly weighted and not based on "worst case" assumptions regarding fossil fuel usage
 Outlook: Canadian energy consumption is expected to increase at an average annual percent change of 1.2%. Natural gas consumption is expected to grow at a rate of 1.5%, nuclear energy at a rate of 1.7%, coal consumption will grow at an average annual rate of 0.4%, renewable at 1.8%. Canadian carbon emissions are expected to grow at an average annual rate of 0.9%.
In August 2001, Ontario Power Generation commissioned North American's largest wind turbine at the Pickering Nuclear Generating Station. The 1.8-megawatt turbine is supposed to generate enough energy to supply 600 average Canadian homes. The company is also planning a 9 Mw (five Vestas 1.8 turbines) wind farm on Bruce Power's Tiverton site near Kincardine, which is now delayed until early 2003. Ontario Power Generation has committed to increasing its total renewable generating capacity to 500 megawatts by 2005, from a present 138 megawatts.
 Dr A McFarquar of Cambridge University to The Times in 1999
 Welsh Affairs Select Committee on Wind Power
 In Canada nuclear power contributes about 14% of the total electricity supply. In the province of Ontario in 1997 about 48% of the electricity supply was nuclear (along with 27% hydro, 24% fossil, 1% "other"). The other two provinces with nuclear power, New Brunswick and Québec, receive about 21% and 3%, respectively, of their supply from nuclear. (source: Electric Power in Canada 1997, Natural Resources Canada)
 30 March 1994, Mr Ian Mays, Chairman of the British Wind Energy Association, giving evidence to the House of Commons Welsh Affairs Select Committee on Wind Energy.
 "Turbine" is in fact a misnomer for "airscrew generator". Turbines, whether water, steam or gas have three common characteristics: a) a casing is vital to their operation; b) operation at very high speed (rpm); c) and very high electrical generation for their size. The wind "turbine" is designed to produce power at low to moderate wind speeds with commensurate output. Beyond a certain power output (wind speed) structural engineering constraints oblige them to be shut down for safety reasons.
 10-Year Outlook: An Assessment of the Adequacy of Generation and Transmission Facilities to Meet Future Electricity Needs in Ontario from January 2003 to December 2012, IMO (Independent Electricity Market Operator), April 3, 2002
 BERLIN, Aug 6, 2002 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Germany now has 12,000 wind-propelled generators with a total capacity of 10,000 megawatts, Environment Minister Juergen Trittin said Tuesday. The German government has planned to double the capacity of wind-propelled generators to 20,000 megawatts in total by the year 2010. But the development of wind-propelled generators in Germany is not without controversy as they are noisy and expensive. The German government also came under criticism for subsidizing 1.1 billion Euros (770 million US dollars) annually on the wind energy production.
 American Wind Energy Association, "World Wind Industry Grew by Record Amount in 1997", says AWEA web site <www.igc.org/awea/news> (press release, January 30, 1998).
 International Energy Agency, World Energy Outlook 1998 (Paris, France, November 1998), p. 423.
 The Editor, Wind Power Monthly, September 1998.
 Jonathan Porritt, Forum for the Future
 The Energy Technology Support Unit (an agency of the UK Department of Trade and Industry)
 Turbine production depends on the size of the turbine and the wind speed of its site, so estimates vary. But the California Energy Plan of February 2002 is more pessimistic at 20%: "Installed capacity of wind power will increase by 1000MW. But in view of the unreliability of wind, they shall only be counted as 200MW in California's 'dependable capacity'"
 at the opening of the Pickering 1.8 Vestas on August 29 2001, Graham Brown, OPG's Chief Operating Officer noted that renewable energy was not in a position to displace traditional forms of generation, such as nuclear power. "The wind doesn't always blow, the sun doesn't always shine. We expect this turbine will produce some power two days out of three, and should run flat out about 10 per cent of the time."
 Norbye, V.H., 1998: Vann og Energi, 2-98 (Norwegian Water Resources and Energy Administration, (NVE)). "Dyrekjøpte vindkrafterfaringer i Danmark" - "Expensively bought wind power experiences in Denmark"
 Vestas: <http://www.vestas.com/produkter/pdf/ves_V80_usa.pdf>
 Report from the Welsh Affairs Select Committee
 The Westmorland Gazette - and this was after Windcluster, the developing company, wrote a letter to householders about their plans in advance of the application reading in part: "The design and control systems will ensure that there will be no noise nuisance." (March 1995)
 Letter from C. Kerkham to The Daily Telegraph 21 October 1993: "The impact of wind farms on landscape may be significant, but noise is more relevant to those of us living next to this new industry ... We live 350 metres from the nearest turbine and about 750 metres from six or seven others. The "thwump" of the blades and the grinding gears is driving us to distraction. My kitchen chimney amplifies these noises sickeningly ... the house has frequently vibrated with sickening sound waves. At night, these disrupt sleep even when all the windows are closed ... For my family and those in a similar plight ... there is a distressing human cost for this supposedly 'environmentally friendly' electricity. For us, this is no brave, new, clean energy but a rapacious industrial giant."
 Country Guardian, Penlan, Llandeilo Graban, Builth Wells, Powys LD2 3YX
 2001: Canada met 11.8% of electricity needs with nuclear; France, 76.4%, Belgium 55%, Sweden 39%, Switzerland 38%. Conversely, Mexico, China, Brazil and Pakistan are all at less than 2%. Canada has 14 reactors in operation for an output of 10,298 Mw out of the world's 435 reactors, producing 349,479 Mw. We also have idle/unused capacity of a further 8 reactors of 5,136 Mw. Sources: UI/WNA, IAEA
 2001: Canada produced 10,682 tU out of a world production of 34,746 tU, followed by Australia with 7,578 tU. Sources: UI/WNA, IAEA
 Capital costs are US$300-400/KW (upgrade) compared to $500-700 for a Combined Cycle Gas Turbine (CCGT) or A$1000-1250 for new technology coal - Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organization
 USA: Nuclear electricity production costs continue to fall in America. In 2000, North Anna PWR was the most efficient plant in the country producing electricity at US 1.09 cents/KWh. [Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organization]
 This in fact is not quite possible, for various technical reasons (as a "spinning reserve" the turbines have to be kept at certain temperatures, etc) a fully functional, instantaneous standby capability is onerous financially and from a CO2 point of view.
 "Rural land" as designated in the County Official Plan.
 The Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities <http://www.sarm.ca/Rural_Councillor/Backissu/Volume%2036%202001/V36n5_1001/v36n5art15.htm>
 Wind Power Production Incentive (WPPI) program (Draft, February 21, 2002, Natural Resources Canada and Finance Canada): "Selected wind energy producers will receive a maximum financial incentive of $0.012 for every kilowatt-hour produced during the first 10 years of activity of their new wind farms." - valid for Qualified Wind Farms commissioned before 31 March, 2003, with a diminishing scale for subsequent commissioning dates.
 the concrete industry is the biggest man-made source of CO2 on the planet - about 7% of the world's total
 Algemeen Dagblad, 8 February 2000
 Proceedings BORKAS 11, Helsinki, 1994, p219)
 <http://www.windfarm.fsnet.co.uk/brecon.html> and <http://www.landskapsskydd.nu/vind/vind035.htm>
 New Zealand NZS 6808:1998 "Acoustics - the assessment and measurement of sound from Wind Turbine Generators", generally accepted as a solid reference to noise levels, their study and their control.
 Paul Brown Environment correspondent Thursday May 31, 2001 The Guardian
Attachment: The Darmstadt Manifesto: A Paper on Wind energy by the German Academic Initiative Group, Press Release dated 1 September 1998
[At today's press conference at the Bruningstrasse Press Club in Bonn the Initiative Group presented the Darmstadt Manifesto on the Exploitation of Wind energy in Germany. The manifesto, which was originally signed by more than 60 college/university lecturers and writers (subsequently another hundred or more signatures have been added), demands the withdrawal of all direct and indirect subsidies in order to put a stop to the exploitation of wind energy. (It claims that) the exploitation of wind energy promotes the type of technology which is of no significance whatever for the purpose of supplying energy, saving resources and protecting the climate. The money could be put to far more effective use in increasing the efficiency of power stations, in ensuring effective energy consumption and in funding scientific research into fundamental principles in the field of energy. Many citizens, both male and female, are greatly concerned to see the progressive destruction caused by the ever increasing number of wind 'farms'. This destruction affects both the countryside and our towns and villages with their surrounding areas whose characterisitc appearance reflects their development throughout the history of civilisation. The Darmstadt Manifesto is directed in particular at politicians, those concerned with our cultural well-being, environmental organisations and the media.]
Our country is on the point of losing a precious asset. The expansion of the industrial exploitation of wind energy has developed such a driving force in just a few years that there is now great cause for concern. A type of technology is being promoted before its effectiveness and its consequences have been properly assessed. The industrial transformation of cultural landscapes which have evolved over centuries and even of whole regions is being allowed. Ecologically and economically useless wind generators, some of which stand as high as 120 metres and can be seen from many kilometres away, are not only destroying the characteristic landscape of our most valuable countryside and holiday areas, but are also having an equally radical alienating effect on the historical appearance of our towns and villages which until recently had churches, palaces and castles as their outstanding features to give them character in a densely populated landscape.
More and more people are subjected to living unbearably close to machines of oppressive dimensions. Young people are growing up into a world in which natural landscapes are breaking up into tragic remnants. The oil crisis in the 1970s made everyone very aware of the extent to which industrial societies are dependent on a guaranteed supply of energy. For the first time the general public became aware of the fact that the earth's fossil fuel resources are limited and could be exhausted in the not too distant future if they continue to be consumed without restraint. In addition came the recognition of the damage which was being caused to the environment by the production and consumption of energy. The loss of trees due to pollution, the Chernobyl nuclear reactor accident, the legacy of the ever accumulating piles of nuclear waste, the risks of a climatic catastrophe as a consequence of carbon dioxide emissions have all established themselves in the public consciousness as examples of the growing potential threat.
The real problem of population growth and above all the resultant phenomenon of escalating land use and consumption of drinking water supplies is however being pushed aside and being considered instead as a marginal phenomenon. With few exceptions it is not the subject of any political action. On the contrary, the public interest is becoming even more limited, focusing less on energy consumption as a whole and concentrating its fears and criticisms predominantly on the generation of electricity. Admittedly nuclear risks do doubtless exist here. However electrical energy plays more of a minor role in the balance sheet of energy sources. In Germany three quarters of the energy consumed consists of oil and gas. But it is precisely these energy sources whose resources will be exhausted the soonest. If it were really a question of concern for future generations then immediate, decisive action to protect supplies of oil and natural gas would be imperative. Instead petrol consumption continues unchanged, and the idea that we are leaving nothing for our great grandchildren is dispelled with the vague presumption that there will one day be substitutes for fossil fuels. On the other hand hard coal and brown coal, which are the main primary sources of electrical energy, are available in such abundance world-wide, and in many cases in deposits which are as yet unexploited, that electricity production is guaranteed, even with growing-consumption, for centuries, possibly even for a period of over a thousand years.
With regard to the exhaustion of energy sources for fossil fuels the development of electricity production using wind bypasses the problem. Although Germany has taken the lead in the expansion of wind energy use, it has not been possible to date to replace one single nuclear or coal-fired power station. Even if Germany continues to push ahead with expansion it will still not be possible in the future. The electricity produced by wind power is not constant because it is dependent on meteorological conditions, but electricity supplies need to be in line with consumption at all times. For this reason wind energy cannot be used to any significant degree as a substitute for conventional power station capacities.
Insufficient attention is also being paid to pollutant levels. Whereas until a few years ago it was chiefly the coal-fired power stations' sulphur dioxide emissions due to poor filtering which caused problems, it is now mainly road traffic which is polluting the forests' ecosystems with nitrogen oxides and nitrous oxide. Added to which the effectiveness of power stations is improving with technological progress and as a result the level of pollutants given off per unit of energy is decreasing. The latter is also true of carbon dioxide emissions, with the result that electricity production in Germany is today responsible for only a fifth of the greenhouse gases emitted.
The energy capacity of wind is comparatively low. Modern wind turbines with a rotor surface area the size of a football field make only tiny fractions of the energy that is produced by conventional power stations. So with more than five thousand wind turbines in Germany less than one per cent of the electricity needed is produced, or only slightly more than one thousandth of the total energy produced. The pollutant figures are similar for the same reason. The contribution made by (the use of) wind energy to the avoidance of greenhouse gases is somewhere between one and two thousandths. Wind energy is therefore of no significance whatever both in the statistics for energy and in those for pollutants and greenhouse gases.
At the same time we must take into account the fact that economic growth always brings with it, to a greater or lesser extent, an increasing energy requirement - despite all the efforts made with technology towards greater efficiency in the transformation and consumption of energy. This means that because it makes such a small contribution to the statistics, wind energy is running a race which is already lost in an economic order orientated towards growth. At present total energy consumption in Germany is growing about seventy times(!) faster than the production potential of wind energy.
The negative effects of wind energy use are as much underestimated as its contribution to the statistics is overestimated. Falling property values reflect the perceived deterioration in quality of life - not just in areas close to the turbines, but even all over Schleswig-Holstein. More and more people are describing their lives as unbearable when they are directly exposed to the acoustic and optical effects of wind farms. There are reports of.people being signed off sick and unfit for work, there is a growing number of complaints about symptoms such as pulse irregularities and states of anxiety, which are known to be from the effects of infrasound (sound of frequencies below the normal audible limit).
The animal world is also suffering at the hands of this technology. On the North Sea and Baltic coasts birds are being driven away from their breeding, roosting and feeding grounds. These displacement effects are being increasingly observed inland too. From the point of view of the national economy the development of wind energy is far from being the "success story" it is often claimed to be. On the contrary, it puts a strain on the economy as it is still unprofitable with a low energy yield on the one hand and high investment costs on the other. And yet, as a result of the legal framework conditions which have been set, private and public capital is being invested on a large scale - capital which is not least unavailable for important environmental protection measures, but also ties up purchasing power. This in turn leads to job losses in other areas. The only way in which the Investors can realise their exceptionally high returns is by means of the level of payment for electricity produced by wind which has been determined by law, and which represents several times its actual market value, and by taxation depreciation.
For more than twenty years now German politicians have been under pressure to react to urgent problems concerning the environment and preventative measures, and have been promoting a seriously erroneous evaluation of wind energy. This has allowed the use of wind energy to become established in the view of public opinion as some sort of total solution which supposedly makes a decisive contribution towards a clean environment and a guaranteed supply of energy for the future, and also towards the evasion of a climatic catastrophe and the avoidance of nuclear dangers. This false picture raises hopes and results in a general acceptance of the use of wind energy which is strengthened further by the fact that people are not expected to make any savings. The negative effects of the wind energy industry in our densely populated country are suppressed, scientific knowledge is ignored and there is a taboo on criticism. Only a few people are willing to break away from these political and social trends. After fighting for decades with great commitment for the preservation of our countryside the majority of the large organisations for the protection of nature now stand idly by watching its destruction. Together with groups of thoughtless operators, a policy orientated towards short term success was able to clear the way in the following manner: as a result of amendments to planning law and the law on nature conservation, our countryside is almost unprotected against the exploitation of wind energy and is therefore left at the mercy of material exploitation by capital investment. At the same time the people who are directly exposed to this technology which is hostile to man have to a large extent been deprived of their constitutionally guaranteed right to a say in the matter of the shaping of the environment in which they live.
As all efforts to influence those with political responsibilities have been without success, the signatories of this manifesto see no other solution other than to make their concerns public. In view of the serious harm threatening our countryside, which has evolved through history and which is the foundation of our cultural identity, we appeal for an end to the expansion of wind power technology which is pointless from both an ecological and an economical point of view. In particular we are demanding the withdrawal of all direct and indirect subsidies to this technology. Instead public funds should be made available on a larger scale for the development of more efficient technology and for the kind of research into basic principles which is likely to provide real solutions to the problems of producing energy in a way which is environmentally friendly and lasting. We issue an urgent warning against the uncritical promotion of a technology which will in the long term have far reaching adverse effects on the relationship between man and nature. We are particularly concerned about a change of attitude, which is more difficult to perceive as it is evolving slowly and which gives us less and less ability to recognise how important it is for man to live in an environment which is predominantly characterised by nature.
LIST OF SIGNATORIES:
Prof. Udo ACKERMANN (Design) Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Karl ALEWELL (Economics)
Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Rudolf ALLMANN (Mineralogy) Prof. Wilhelm ANSER (Electrical
Engineering) Prof. Dr. Clemens ARKENSTETTE (Biology, Agricultural Science, Physiology)
Dr. paed. Joachim ARLT (Science of Art, Landscape Aesthetics) Prof. Dr. rer.
nat. Benno ARTMANN (Mathematics) Prof. Dr.-Ing. Eckhard BARTSCH (Geodesy, Landmanagement)
Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Bruno BENTHIEN (Geography) Dr. jur. Manfred BERNHARDT (District
President) Prof. Dr. jur. Dr. jur. h.c. Karl August BETTERMANN (Jurisprudence)
Prof. Dr. agr. Dr. agr. h.c. mult. Eduard von BOGUSLAWSKI (Agronomy) Prof. Dr.
rer. nat. Reinhard BRANDT (Physical Chemistry) Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Günter
BRAUNSS (Mathematics) Prof. Dr.-Ing. Stefan BRITZ (Mechanical Engineering) Prof.
Dr. Dr. phil. Harald BROST (Institute of Colour, Light and Space) Prof. Dr.
med. Joachim BRUCH (Industrial Medicine) Günter de BRUYN (Writer) Prof.
Dr. phil. Dr. h.c. Hans-Günter BUCHHOLZ (Archeology) Prof. Dr. rer.nat.
Karl Heinz CLEMENS (Electrical Engineering) Prof. Dr. phil. Dietrich DENECKE
(Geoscience) Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Dietrich von DENFFER (Botany) Prof. Dr.-Ing.
Frank DÖRRSCHEIDT (Automatic Control, Electrical Engineering) Prof. Dr.
Wolfgang DONSBACH (Science of Communication) Prof. Thomas DUTTENHOEFER (Design)
Prof. Dr.-Ing. Rudolf ENGELHORN (Energy and Thermodynarnic Science) Dr. techn.
Hans ERNST (Electrical Engineering, National Economy) Prof. Dr.-Ing. Horst ETTL
(Mechanical Engineering) Prof. Dr. Hermann FINK (English Philology, American
Philology) Prof. Dr. Hans Joachim FITTING (Physics) Prof. Dr. med. Marianne
FRITSCH (Internal Medicine, Rehabilitation) Prof. Hans Jürgen GERHARDT
(Electrical Engineering) Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Gerhard GERUCH (Physics) Prof.
Dr.-Ing. Bernhard von GERSDORFF (Electrical Engineering) Prof. Ph.D. H. S. Robert
GLASER (Biology) Prof. Dr. Gerhard GÖHLER (Political Seience) Prof. Dr.
theol. Hubertus HALBFAS (Religion) Prof. Dr. Erwin HARTMANN (Physics, Medical
Optics) Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Jürgen HASSE (Geography) Dr. rer.nat. Günter
HAUNGS (Technique of Precision Measurement) Prof. Dr.-Ing. Horst HENNERICI (Mechanical
Engineering) Prof. Ulrich HIRT (Mechatronics) Prof. Wolfgang HOFFMANN (Economical
Information) Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Lothar HOISCHEN (Mathematics) Prof. Dr. med.
Dr. rer. nat. Hans HOMPESCH (Hygiene, Micro-Biology, Pathology) Prof. Dr. Dr.
h.c. mult. Rudolf HOPPE (Inorganic Chemistry) Prof. Dr. Peter KÄFERSTEIN
(Thermodynarnic Seience, Energy Economics) Prof. Dr. Dipl. Phys. Günther
KÄMPF (Physics) Prof. Dr. phil. Thomas KÖVES-ZULAUF (Archeology) Dr.
Christoph KONRAD (MdEP - Member of European Parliament) Prof. Erhard Ernst KORKISCH
(Area Planning, Landscape Architecture) Prof. Dr. Dietrich KÜHLKE (Physics)
Prof. Dr.-Ing. Bert KÜPPERS (Electrical Engineering) Prof. Dr.-Ing. Josef
LEITENBAUER (Mining Academy) Prof. Dr. phil. Otto LENDLE (Archeology) Prof.
Dr. rer. nat. Wilfried LEX (Information Science, Logic) Prof. Dr. Horst LINDE
(Architecture) Prof. Dr. techn. Wladimir LINZER (Thermodynarnic Science) Prof.
Dr. rer.nat. Jörg LORBERTH (Chemistry) Prof. Dipl.-Ing. Horst LOTTERMOSER
(Mechanical Engineering) Prof. Dr. h.c. Manfred LÖWISCH (Industrial Law)
Prof. Uwe MACHENS (Electrical Engineering) Dr. Heike MARCHAND (Physics) Prof.
Dr. sc. phys. Dr.-Ing. Herbert F. MATARÉ (Physics, Electronics) Prof.
Dr. Krista MERTENS (Science of Rehabilitation) Prof. Dr.-Ing. MOLLENKAMP (Mechanics
of Fluids) Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Hans MÜLLER von der HAGEN (Chemical Technology)
Prof. Dr. jur. Reinhard MUSSGNUG (Jurisprudence) Prof. Dr.-Ing. Kurt NIXDORFF
(Mathematics) Prof. Werner A. NÖFER (Design) Prof. Dr.rer. nat. Wolfgang
NOLTE (Mathematics) Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Paul PATZELT (Chemistry) Prof. Dr. rer.
nat. Siegfried PETER (Technical Chemistry) Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Nicolaus PETERS
(Zoology) Prof. Dr. Dr. Hans PFLUG (Applied Geosciences) Prof. Dr. Thomas RAMI
(Physics) Prof. Dr.med.Ludwig RAUSCH(Human Medicine, Radio Biology, RadiationProtection)
Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Michael von RENTELN (Mathematics) Dr. phil. Karl Heinrich
REXROTH (History) Prof. Dr. Hans Erich RIEDEL (Physics) Prof. Wilhelm RUCKDESCHEL
(Mechanical Engineering) Dr. med. Rolf SAMMECK (NeuroAnatomy) Dr. phil. Monika
SAMMECK (Psychology) Prof. Dr. Hans SCHNEIDER (Jurisprudence) Prof. Dr. Helmut
SCHRÖCKE (Geosciences) Prof. Dr.-Ing. Herbert SCHULZ (Electrical Engineering)
Prof. Dr.-Ing. Kurt STAGUHN (Art Paedagogy) Prof. Dr.-Ing. Klaus STEINBRÜCK
(Mechanical Engineering) Prof. Dr.-Ing. Rudolf STEINER (Technical Chemistry)
Dr. h.c. Horst STERN (Television Journalist, Ecologist) Botho STRAUSS (Writer)
Prof. Dr. rer.nat. Günter STRÜBEL (Geosciences) Prof. Dr.-Ing. Manfred
THESENVITZ (Mechanical Engineering) Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Josef WEIGL (Botany)
Prof. Dr. med. Hans-Jobst WELLENSIEK (Medicine, Micro-Biology) Prof. Dr.-Ing.
Herbert WILHELMI (Thermodynarnic Science) Prof. Dr. phil. Walter WIMMEL (Archeology)
Gabriele WOHMANN (Writer) Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Jürgen WOLFRUM (Physics)
Prof. Dr.-Ing. Otfried WOLFRUM (Geodesy) Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Peter ZAHN (Mathematics)
Members are always encouraged to contact us with suggestions as to content - both on our web pages and in our research library and archives in Picton Ontario.
We are continually expanding our collections - donations would
be sincerely welcomed
Ce site a été crée par Jean-Louis Butré.Ce site est protégé par Copyright©. Contacter le webmaster.