On Tuesday, October 21, 2014 wind farms in the UK generated more power than nuclear power plants. According to the National Grid, the power increase was due to high winds and faults in nuclear plants. The surge came shortly after the wind farms hit a milestone the previous Saturday when the wind farms generated 6,372 MW of energy.
Wind farms are very controversial in the UK. Polls show that the public is in favor of them until they show up. Then they become a polarizing issue between local communities and national governments.
The European Wind Energy Association says that the controversy is because of “an ideological opposition amongst some politicians and governments now in power to interventionist policies in support of renewable energy but it is also of course a result of a challenging economic climate, in which questions are being asked about the apparent cost to consumers and taxpayers of supporting ‘green’ technologies. The latter is relevant to most markets across Europe and worldwide. While concerns are always raised at local level about the visual, noise or environmental impact of projects, in a time of austerity and cuts, developers can find themselves under increasing pressure to demonstrate greater economic benefit to communities who host wind farms and to bring jobs and investment benefits to national economies.”
The wind farms generating more power than nuclear plants is only temporary, according to the BBC. Windy conditions boosted the output from turbines when eight out of fifteen of the UK’s nuclear reactors were offline. The reactors were down for various reasons including planned outages, an aging reactor, and for maintenance.
Jennifer Webber, a spokeswoman for RenewableUK, the trade body, told BBC, “Wind power is often used as a convenient whipping boy by political opponents and vested interests. All the while, it’s been quietly powering millions of homes across the UK and providing a robust response to its vocal detractors.”
Linda St.Cyr is a writer, blogger, activist, and short story author. She writes about news, sustainability, green energy, food, celebrities and much more. Often she is busy being vocal about feeding the hungry, sheltering the homeless, and shedding a light on human rights violations all over the world.