Opposing wind turbines is immoral, claims climate change adviser
Opposing wind turbines in your area if you are in favour of them being built elsewhere is not an “acceptable moral position”, according to the government’s climate change adviser.
His remarks came as dozens of large-scale wind farms are being considered across Wales, as the country tries to achieve its net zero targets.
Campaigners say further developments put the countryside at risk and that south Wales already has several wind farms.
Lord Deben, chairman of the UK Climate Change Committee, says it is not “proper” to let other places take the burden of tackling climate change as everyone must help reach the net zero target.
“I think every community has to say to itself, ‘if we don't have this what are we going to have?’
“The issue of wind farms in general is clearly not a moral question.
“It is not acceptable for people to be in favour of wind farms in general, but always wanting them built somewhere else,” said Lord Deben.
“We can't all the time say we’re in favour of things but somewhere else.
“That isn’t an acceptable moral position.”
Welsh plans for net zero
The Welsh government wants to reach net zero by 2050 and aims for 100 per cent of its electricity to come from renewable sources in 12 years’ time.
Under the ‘Future Wales’ plans, 10 areas have been identified as suitable for onshore wind developments: two in north Wales, two in south Wales and six in mid and west Wales.
But communities across Wales are objecting and are coming together to fight what they call “colossal” turbines.
The Campaign for the Protection of Rural Wales (CPRW) say there is currently a “gold rush” for net zero developments, with “unsuitable applications” for pylons and 200m high turbines a concern in many communities.
Dr Jonathan Dean, from CPRW's Anglesey branch, said there had been an alarming number of recent applications.
“I’ve lost count of the number of projects, it’s like a gold rush. I’ve got big concerns [over whether] that it is a good policy, that it is a fair policy.
“I’m concerned for communities who are battling against them [like] David and Goliath,” he said.
Town being threatened
Andrew Thomas, from Cwmafan, Neath Port Talbot, said the peaceful hills above his town are being threatened by the proposals to build 21 turbines.
“At over 200m we’re talking around the size of the Eiffel Tower,” Mr Thomas told the BBC.
“That's absolutely colossal. If you stand at the foot of the Eiffel Tower and look up and then you imagine that on top of a mountain range that is already 350m above sea level.”