Quite a bit in the media recently about the building off off-shore wind farms.  Lots of pros: obviously, a source of renewable energy unlike traditional power stations, without the risk of nuclear.  A boost for engineering, and construction jobs.  A sensible use of the wind power available to us as an island. The cons: huge expense.  The relatively small amounts of energy which turbines create in comparison with traditional energy sources.  Some conservation and aesthetic drawbacks. 

But on balance, I think the pros outweigh the cons.  Like most new technology, I would assume that over time, costs will fall, and our building knowledge and ability will increase.  Depending on how long each turbine remains in working order, and how much maintenance is required, I would also assume that most of the cost is upfront.  As our technology improves, it’s likely we’ll be able to develop turbines with a greater energy efficiency in the future.  And as for the aesthetic issue – well, as always, beauty is in the eye of the beholder.  I think they are extremely elegant – and at least the off-shore sighting gets round the noise issue that troubled many in-land developments.

So let’s hope this is the start of something which will turn out to be a great step forward.  I for one would much prefer to see turbines rather than nuclear power stations.  

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-14412189

Advertisements