The Evidence

Horses and Animals

This submission from the British Horse Society gives their view on the separation distances between turbines and horses:


This youtube video shows documentary evidence, from the developers, of expected increased noise levels at 1300ft (400 metres) from turbines. The situation in this video is no very different to what might happen to the nearest residents in Sibsey, and along the Hobhole.

This video is taken close to a turbine and you can clearly hear the whoosh as each blade passes the column:

This statement from the Renewable Energy Foundation relates to a study in The Netherlands on the noise of Wind Turbines:


The Stump, Old Leake Water Tower, and St Margarets Church. Their heights are shown to scale with a 120 metre wind turbine.

ONE-and-a-HALF TIMES The Stump – 83 metres

FOUR TIMES the Water Tower – 29 metres

FIVE TIMES St Margaret’s – 24 metres


Have a look at these videos from youtube

Catastrophic failures in Denmark:

On Fire in Palm Springs:

Failure on Bodmin Moor, from the Western Morning News:


Part of a wind turbine blade weighing more than half a ton snapped off and crashed into a field during high winds. A chunk of the 18 metre (59 feet) long blade sheared off at the Cold Northcott windfarm on Bodmin Moor at about 9am yesterday. Peter Townsend, from the nearby village of St Clether, spotted the damaged blade on the 36 metre (118 feet) high turbine as he was driving past. He said: “I couldn’t help but notice it as I was passing, because a big bit of the blade was missing. It was lying a fair way from the turbine in a field, so it must have flown quite a way after it snapped off. “Some of these turbines are very close to the road and footpaths, and my house isn’t far away. “I don’t like the fact that this can happen, because it’s very dangerous.”

Efficiency and Reliability

2008 28th February Dalton McGuinty the premier of Ontario says:

“Wind turbines: We are investing heavily in those, but again, those are an expensive form of electricity and they’re not reliable, because sometimes obviously the wind does not blow”.

2008 28th February Power grid narrowly averted rolling blackouts

Operators of the state power grid scrambled Tuesday night to keep the lights on after a sudden drop in West Texas wind threatened to cause rolling blackouts, officials confirmed Wednesday.

At about 6:41 p.m. Tuesday, grid operators ordered a shutoff of power to so-called interruptible customers, which are industrial electric users who have agreed previously to forgo power in times of crisis. The move ensured continued stability of the grid after power dropped unexpectedly.

Dottie Roark, a spokeswoman for the power grid, said a sudden uptick in electricity use coupled with other factors and a sudden drop in wind power caused the unexpected dip. As a result, grid officials immediately went to the second stage of its emergency blackout prevention plan.

“This situation means that there is a heightened risk of … regular customers being dropped through rotating outages, but that would occur only if further contingencies occur, and only as a last resort to avoid the risk of a complete blackout,” the State Operations Center said in an e-mail notice to municipalities.

Known as the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, the quasi-governmental agency that manages the power grid must ensure that power generation and power use remain constantly in balance. Otherwise, the whole grid can go dark, and the result is a systemwide blackout.

According to ERCOT, those interruptible customers who lost power Tuesday night had it restored by 9:40 p.m.. The interruptible customers are generally industrial businesses that pay less for electricity in exchange for an agreement that they will let ERCOT cut their power during shortages.

Some wholesale energy prices also spiked Tuesday evening — especially in West Texas. ERCOT also reported that the drop in wind power led to constraints on the system between the north part of the state and the west.

Kent Saathoff, vice president for system operations at ERCOT, said Tuesday’s event illustrates the inherent challenges associated with using wind power. Because the wind sometimes stops blowing without a moment’s notice, engineers at ERCOT must remain nimble enough to respond to resulting instability on the grid, he said.

“There is a major workshop going on at our office right now to discuss these very issues,” Saathoff said.

Although he said the emergency event was rare, it is not unprecedented. On April 16, 2006, for instance, a much more serious shortage prompted rolling blackouts across much of Texas. ERCOT officials at that time also ordered power curtailments for the state’s interruptible customers.

That 2006 event was prompted largely by scorching heat coupled with a shutdown of several generators for spring maintenance. This time the shortage was prompted largely by a near-total loss of wind generation, as well as a failure of several energy providers to reach scheduled production and the spike in electricity usage.

ERCOT reported that wind power production plummeted Tuesday evening from about 1,700 megawatts to about 300 megawatts. A single megawatt is enough electricity to power 500 to 700 homes under normal conditions.

The emergency procedures Tuesday night added about 1,100 megawatts to the grid over a 10-minute period, according to ERCOT.

Some critics have said that wind power, although providing a source of clean energy, also brings with it plenty of hidden costs and technical challenges. Besides requiring the construction of expensive transmission lines, the fickle nature of wind also means that the state cannot depend on the turbines to replace other sorts of generators.

“This is a warning to all those who think that renewable energy is the sole answer [to the state’s power needs],” said Geoffrey Gay, an attorney representing Fort Worth and other North Texas municipalities in utility issues. “We can’t put all our eggs in one basket when it comes to any form of generation. We need to consider the cost and the reliability issues, in addition to the environmental impact.”


This document from Kentish Weald Action Group is full of good information and contrasts the irresponsible and inaccurate data from BWEA – the wind industry information source, with the more mature and considered information from e-on who are experienced builders and operators of wind farms.


reviewed 4th May 2009