I refer to J. Wills’ letter (Indignant or gloating? SN 10 June 2019) and can assure him that neither I nor any of the Sustainable Shetland members are gloating or are likely to gloat about Viking Energy wind farm.
This has been a sorry tale stretching back over many years and, whatever the outcome, there are likely to be few real winners out of it all. This divisive and rancid project has already done damage to community relations, especially in those areas likely to be most affected by construction works.
No doubt we may yet see squabbling over how the ‘community fund’ or ‘bribe’ is to be shared between communities, some of which are far removed from the wind farm site. I note that Energy Isles appear to favour community benefit for their proposed windfarm to be restricted to Yell only.
Mr Wills is incorrect in his assertion that Sustainable Shetland alone is responsible for preventing the wind farm being built. This has already been pointed out to him in the past.
The only reason that there is now a possibility that the wind farm might go ahead is the classification of Remote Island Wind and it being allowed to bid in the CfD auction. Without a special subsidy large-scale wind farms on Shetland were never going to happen.
However, subsidising Remote Island Wind makes no sense from a value for money point of view, but that seems to be all that we can expect from most of our politicians who are blinded by the usual wind industry spin.
Regarding the use of fossil fuel; due to the inefficiency and unpredictability of renewables like wind and solar power we are unlikely to be able to dispense entirely with fossil fuels for the foreseeable future. In any case, wind farms are definitely not as environmentally friendly as the wind industry would have us believe.
Members of Sustainable Shetland have no regrets about opposing Viking Energy wind farm in every way possible.
This project is all wrong for Shetland and, sadly, this may yet become apparent to more people if the true realities of large-scale windfarm construction materialise.
Chairman, Sustainable Shetland
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