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Letters / High price to be paid by UK fishing communities

At present our governments in Scotland and Westminster appear to have been persuaded by environmentalists to pay large subsidies to companies for the development of wind farms to produce so called environmentally friendly energy.

However, in an act of apparent NIMBYism, the Westminster government do not appear to have granted many wind farm developments on England’s green and pleasant lands; but appear to have encouraged them to be built elsewhere.

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Both of our governments in Westminster and Edinburgh appear to be on a quest to build wind farms offshore (out of sight, out of mind); this involves selling or leasing off vast areas of our country’s fishing grounds (i.e. offshore real estate) to private companies often with owners based in distant ​lands for the development of those environmentally friendly (?) wind farms.

Perhaps in Scotland’s case this may be a fund-raising exercise for future SNP governance plans, who knows?

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However, the wind farms will still have a high dependency on the oil industry to produce oil lubricants and oil derivatives like plastics, plus the annual replacement of the lubricants required for each wind farm generator.

These details raise many questions about the environmental credibility of this so-called green source of energy that still need to be answered, like how much of our countries fishing grounds are to be sold off and covered with anchors and chains to hold the offshore wind farms in place, thus excluding UK fishing communities’ access to valuable fishing grounds.

How many thousands of miles of expensive (plastic covered) copper cables will be required to be laid on the seabed, to transfer the generated power to where it is required?

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Has the carbon cost of the production of the wind turbines, the copper cables and the steel for the anchors and chains that will be required, running in various directions from each windmill to hold them in place; been included in the environmental and financial calculations, plus the windmill’s replacement roughly every twenty years?

How long after the government subsidies are stopped will the developers keep investing in running the offshore wind farms and what will the future cost of the electricity have to be; to recoup the cost of the construction, maintenance, renewal, and continued operation of those wind farms?

What effect will the infrasound from those offshore wind farms have on marine life?

There is a very high cost to be paid by UK fishing communities all around the UK coastline for those offshore wind farms, both financially and environmentally.

The wind farms if they must be built, should be built in and around the industrial areas where the electrical power is mostly required; this would minimise the natural loss of generated power travelling through thousands of miles of (plastic covered) copper cables.

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Ironically, it appears that environmental campaigners will not be satisfied; until a large proportion of our nations fishing grounds are under foreign ownership and the wind farm pollution of our marine environment is complete.

Thus, helping to wipe out more of our island nation’s valuable assets; a natural source of food and the fishing communities that source it often at high personal risk from the apparently forgotten and unappreciated asset of the bounty of seafood; presently provided by our nationally owned, natural environment of the seas and the seabed around our nation’s shores.

The auction of our fishing grounds for the construction of these offshore wind farm developments should be halted or dismissed until competent answers are provided for these important questions.

William Polson
Whalsay

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