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Last ditch 'legal bid' to halt wind turbines at Batsworthy Cross

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: December 03, 2012

The Two Moors Campaign against Batsworthy  turbines, at Barnstaple

Picture Sam Harmer Ref No 0611-76_01

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A six-year battle by energy giants to build a wind farm on the edge of Exmoor has hit a snag at the eleventh hour, according to campaigners.

In October following a public inquiry plans to build nine 103 metre (337ft) tall turbines at Batsworthy Cross, North Devon were approved by the Planning Inspectorate.

The move came after RWE nPower Renewables had failed to win planning approval several times and appealed the latest knock-back.

The farm would generate enough electricity to power the annual average needs of approximately 8,700 households.

Following the Planning Inspectorate's decision a six-week period followed to allow members of the public time to lodge appeals.

According to protesters, the company's plans must be put on hold after an unknown local resident last week lodged an appeal on a legal point in the High Court.

Caroline Harvey, secretary of the Two Moors Campaign group and a farmer, welcomed the latest turn of events and said the turbines were inappropriate for the area.

She said: "The Planning Inspector Rupert Grantham approved the application for the wind farm at appeal, overturning the unanimous decision of North Devon Council and against the wishes of seven local parish councils, the Exmoor National Park Authority, the Campaign to Protect Rural England and the overwhelming opinion of local residents.

"This is truly the wrong application in the wrong place.

"The inspector's decision to approve the application against overwhelming local opposition shows the Planning Inspectorate's total disregard of the Localism Act.

"But as I understand it this appeal by a local resident only concerns the legality of this decision.

"The person who lodged the appeal believes Mr Grantham erred in law.

"We believe the error he made was granting approval at all."

Protesters argue the development will scar the landscape and disrupt tranquillity. However, Mr Grantham concluded the benefits of reduced greenhouse gas emissions would be long lasting and outweigh the "limited harm" the turbines would cause.

RWE has always insisted the wind farm is appropriately sited and designed.

Last night a spokesman for RWE said he was unable to contact lawyers acting for the company to check if an appeal had been accepted and if the process had therefore stalled.

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  • johndavies  |  December 22 2012, 1:06PM

    Hi sandman What source did you use for those % ???

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  • ILpoppet  |  December 20 2012, 8:40PM

    Hi johndavies your comment "Duh !! I do wish you would concentrate I've never claimed they were inefficient, YOU assumed that." is contradicted by your comment of 3 Dec ("Wind turbines & solar are inefficient..."), do keep up. Thanks for posting up that E On text, a favourite with many NIMBYs who never seem to have read or comprehended it. For the first bit you quote (note the 'large volumes' bit), yes there are some losses, but these are minor. UKERC estimates this loss at approximately 1% of the power generated by wind. So for every 1MWh generated by wind, approximately 0.99MWh of fossil fuel production can be displaced, saving fuel, reducing imports, reducing flue gas emissions, reducing fossil fuel extraction and reducing CO2 emissions. As for the 90% backup (capacity credit) that backup is already there, it is the existing fossil fuel plant that is burning less fuel as a result of adding wind power to the grid. If you can not even admit grasping that reality after all this time, your obstinate adherence to ignorance is even worse than I thought. "Capacity factor is ENTIRELY the measure of effectiveness or merit of a particular generating method & used to calculate 'Secured Total Output' or 'Capacity Credit'" I refer you to my previous comments, asking why, if high capacity factor was at all of value to a wind plant operator, dont they just make the CF high by putting in a much smaller generator? The answer is of course, wind turbine operators are interested in power generation (MWh) not the capacity factor. "I've been doing this for more years than I care (or can) remember." I have seen the state of your memory here where you have to be reminded of your own silly claims. "If you want to learn more …….look it up, don't ask me to improve your education." I doubt there is much you can offer to improve my education. "I repeat - due to the intermittency of wind, their Capacity Factor is low (UK=27%) making it a very 'ineffective' & unreliable source of power. It gives NO energy security." But as you know, wind power generation displaces fossil fuel generation from the existing fossil fuel plant on the grid, a very good thing. The existing grid can handle the variability of wind generation easily because the variability of power demand far exceeds it, both in terms of extent and rate of change. Never mind johndavies, other NIMBYs like what you claim. You can repeat these fallacies to each other safe in the knowledge that no one will question your nonsense. Look, sandman18 is here with some percentages, neglecting, as you did, that these online figures only cover generators on the very high voltage grid, most UK onshore wind farms connected to the local distribution grid. I would not be surprised if none of Cornwall's wind power was covered by this real time data.

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  • sandman18  |  December 20 2012, 4:00PM

    We are not talking about cars !!

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  • kegs23  |  December 20 2012, 3:48PM

    Have to laugh at all the comments about efficiency - how many hours a day do you drive your heavily subsidised and environmentally destructive car (assuming you have one) John D? - If you are anything like most people then around an hour a day - not very efficient use of resources and bad for the environment so I look forward to you giving up on cars as well as wind turbines.

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  • sandman18  |  December 20 2012, 2:12PM

    On the 12/12/2012 the Wind Turbines put out 5.41% 6871mWh of their potential output for a 24 Hour Period (127,224mWh) on the following days they have managed this 13.34% 42.23% 64.68% 41.19% 28.65% 16.72% 28.44% 80.58% (Very Windy today in Scotland) I would not consider this to be a reliable secure form of energy.

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  • johndavies  |  December 20 2012, 12:32PM

    poppet 1 – ( "You have not backed up your claim that wind turbines are inefficient by the way." ) Duh !! I do wish you would concentrate I've never claimed they were inefficient, YOU assumed that. I stated that ( "Modern wind turbines are actually very Efficient, approaching 46%" ) 2 – ( "Any chance of you backing up or retracting your claims on needing to add synchronised spinning reserve for wind power? " ) YES & NO in that order, read this, particularly the 2nd sentence - Memorandum by E.ON Netz to House of lords select committee. Intermittent renewable energy sources incur costs to the power system beyond those of the technology itself. Large volumes of intermittent renewable generation may lead to curtailing of renewable or base load generation at times of low electricity demand and high renewable generation. Moreover, 90% or more of intermittent renewable generation such as wind will need to be backed up by more flexible fossil-fired capacity to help ensure that sufficient generating capacity is available at winter peak. http://tinyurl.com/c5tyhle 3 - Capacity factor. Result !!!! AT last, we finally got you there in the end - ( "Capacity factor of a generator is the ratio of power generated to the theoretical maximum power generation over a year expressed as a percentage." ) Remarkably similar to my definition "the % of possible output, that is actually produced" in my first post !!! (Note; the time scale can be any thing Hr, day. week, mth, yr, ) It is used by professionals to help determine the grid composition for day, week, month & year ahead, in conjunction with Weather forecasts ( to predict demand (& in the case of wind & solar, - supply)), Firm Capacity, Availability factor, (in the case of wind the EFC), etc etc. Capacity factor is ENTIRELY the measure of effectiveness or merit of a particular generating method & used to calculate 'Secured Total Output' or 'Capacity Credit' (often known as 'Firm Capacity'). Here endeth the lesson. You really must understand the terms before discussing things. You'll also need to know about Peak matching, ramp rates, the difference between Dispatchable Plant & Non- Dispatchable Plant. I've been doing this for more years than I care (or can) remember. If you want to learn more …….look it up, don't ask me to improve your education. I bet your teachers must have had a hard time with you. I repeat - due to the intermittency of wind, their Capacity Factor is low (UK=27%) making it a very 'ineffective' & unreliable source of power. It gives NO energy security. Goodbye.

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  • ILpoppet  |  December 18 2012, 8:35PM

    Hello johndavies "In your last 7 posts you have stated I don't understand capacity factor." No, I have pointed out that the silly NIMBY claim you repeat, that capacity factor is a measure of a wind turbine efficiency, efficacy or merit, is flat wrong. You have not backed up your claim that wind turbines are inefficient by the way. Capacity factor of a generator is the ratio of power generated to the theoretical maximum power generation over a year expressed as a percentage. It is commonly used by professionals as a headline indicator of the ballpark generation from a type of generator, when looking at grid composition at a strategic scale, ie lots of generators over an extended period of time. That is the reason that capacity factors are collated and published in DUKES. Aside from professionals, clowns such as REF and wind NIMBYs constantly trot out capacity factors for wind power as some meaningless argument against wind power, your posts here and on other wind power stories for this site being a fine example. Any chance of you backing up or retracting your claims on needing to add synchronised spinning reserve for wind power?

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  • johndavies  |  December 18 2012, 6:42PM

    popet In your last 7 posts you have stated I don't understand capacity factor. Eg- ( "silly wind power capacity factor claims" ) Please give us your definition of capacity factor & its use in power generation.

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  • ILpoppet  |  December 16 2012, 7:33PM

    Hello Johndavies, "You mentioned your mum..." actually you mentioned my mum in your comment of 13/12/12, I was responding to you, keep up. Looking back at this comment I think you were trying to be condescending, but this does rather backfire on you as your comments here and elsewhere on capacity factor display an obstinate adherence to your ignorance. You say you have a FiT solar PV, then you should be aware that FiT and ROC only pay any incentive against kWh generated. Your claimed tiny power output (perhaps a cowboy installer marked you out as a rube and sold you a pup) would only attract tiny support from FiT or ROC. Once again, your claims do not add up. Professional developers, unlike you, are not going to pay to put wind or solar plant in a location where it is "...****p at producing useful power...". Again calling me a Troll when I have held your silly unsupported claims up for scrutiny. I can see that you don't like having your silly assertions corrected but that does not make me an internet Troll, or a ranter. Again, other readers my like to follow the link on your user name where you have also made your silly wind power capacity factor claims.

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  • kegs23  |  December 16 2012, 5:48PM

    Just turning off nuclear power stations doesn't really add up to decommissioning does it - and you are not telling me all that money went to just closing them. None have been taken back down to ground level - yet I keep hearing the nimby wind types demanding that all turbines have to be recycled at the end of their life - odd how they don't demand that for nukes - probably because it will expose what a scam nuclear has been

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