Wind farms good and you should have more of them, Green MP tells Journal

Green Party leader Natalie Bennett said 'cheap, affordable, community owner wind farms were the way forward

A wind farm
A wind farm

Controversial on-shore wind farms are here to stay because they are the cheapest form of renewable energy available, according to the leader of the Green Party.

But Greens would let local communities rather than big business build wind farms – and keep the profits to spend on local services.

The number of on-shore wind farms in Northumberland has sparked fierce debate.

Most recently, Energiekontor UK Ltd’s plans for five 126m turbines at Fenrother, near Morpeth, faced objections with an action group set up to oppose it, submitting a 71,000-word document, backed by more than 1,600 letters.

The scheme was rejected by Local Government Secretary Eric Pickles.

But Green Party leader Natalie Bennett told The Journal more wind farms were needed.

Speaking as she prepared for the party’s annual conference next month, she said: “The reality is that on-shore wind is now the cheapest renewable we’ve got. Off-shore has enormous potential to develop an industry that can then become an export industry.

“We can use the skills and knowledge we have coming out of the dying North Sea Oil industry, and transfer those skills across.

“But on-shore is still cheap, affordable and pretty easy to do.

“The key factor, and what we want to encourage, is community-owned on-shore wind and other forms of renewables.”

If communities were able to able to own and receive the profits from wind farms, to spend on local schools or other services, then there would be far more support for them, she said.

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