It is a year or two ago that I several times drew attention to the inefficiency, wastefulness, and ugliness of the wind turbines a former energy minister foisted upon this island, using virtually all the alternative energy budget available at the time.
I invited whatever authority is responsible to advise us exactly what the cost/benefit of our turbines is – but answers came there none.
However, the 2011 electricity demand (latest figures recorded) in Cyprus was 4.7 gigawatts and It takes around 1,500 wind turbines to produce one gigawatt of electricity.
On Cyprus we have a few dozen almost useless behemoths. These figures speak for themselves.
By comparison, and to present some scale, In the UK the average annual electricity requirement is 36 gigawatts. Significantly, and for the entire EU to hit its much talked about 2050 emissions reduction target, the number of turbines would have to rise from the current 42,000 to half a million.
This would need an unrealistic area of wall to wall carpeting comprising Northern Ireland, Wales, Belgium, Holland, and Portugal combined. Target fulfilment, just for Britain, would cost £1.3 trillion, which is the size of the national debt. The statistics are staggering. And of course they make no ‘green’ sense whatsoever.
Ironically, the Greens, who previously supported wind farms, have latterly drawn attention to beautiful wildernesses and landscapes devastated.
They cite enchanting views blighted, divided communities. They highlight the killing of uncountable numbers of birds and bats, to say nothing of the boosting of carbon-intensive cement production, this all the while richly rewarding landowners, rich investors, and turbine producers.
And for what? We see these increasingly huge follies requiring great amounts of conventional power back-up (parasitic energy) just to keep them turning because of intermittency.
And then they get turned off when the wind is too strong. . . Overall the paltry out-turn of electricity is simply scandalous commensurate with the investment.
Happily we have no offshore turbines locally, but then the gigantic costs of those, with their disappointing reliability, and huge maintenance costs, to say nothing of the decommissioning costs (never spoken about) were at least a disincentive for our Republic.
That said, the UK is the world leader with offshore technology because no other country has been stupid enough to plough so much public money into it.
Wind farms in Cyprus, as elsewhere, are one of the most regressive policy decisions ever made by Governments, glibly providing generation, not of electricity but mainly profit for manufacturers.
Clive Turner, Paphos