Owen Paterson: green subsidies for wind farms must be scrapped

Posted: October 10, 2012 by tallbloke in Energy, government, Politics, wind

The rumbling from the new environment minister’s office is growing louder…

Wind energy producers: Under a cloud of their own making?

“Soviet-style” green subsidies for wind farms must be scrapped because turbines are blighting local communities, the new Environment Secretary said on Tuesday.

Owen Paterson, who took on the role last month, said wind developers should “stand on their own two feet” instead of asking for money from the state.

He said green technologies such as wind farms might actually have a worse impact than climate change, because they are causing “public insurrection”.

“There are significant impacts on the rural economy and the rural environment, all of which probably weren’t intended when these things were thought up,” he told an event at the Conservative Party conference. “It is not very green to be blighting the economy in one area.”

Mr Paterson said he would write to the Department of Energy with his view on ending green subsidies as part of a Government review of support for renewable energy.

“If you start having subsidies you end up with a Soviet-style system, where politicians make decisions that might actually be better made by the market,” he added.

Mr Paterson said he believes humans are contributing to climate change but “some of the steps we are taking might actually cause more damage than the original problems itself”.

His comments came as Greg Barker, the climate change minister, promised that the Government was dealing with the “never-ending gravy train of green subsidies” to bring down energy bills.

The Conservative minister insisted the party was “not abandoning its green pledges” or “scaling back” its commitment to tackling climate change.

But he acknowledged the green industry needed to “tighten their belts, do more for less and make subsidies go further” to get a better deal for the taxpayer.

  1. caz says:

    At long last the worm is turning.

    As a lifelong carer of the environment I for one am pleased.

    I hate it when subsidies muddy the waters. Did some studies into miscanthus as a furnace fuel and it all made sense financially with all the renewable incentives except the energy produced was no more than the energy required to plant, manage, harvest and deliver the crop to market.. Money to be made though.

    Once rode a spring tide on the Pentland Firth and that convinced me tidal power is the way to go.

  2. Brian H says:

    All progressive politician are sure they’re smarter than the market!

  3. Brian H says:

    typo: politicians are …

  4. Sera says:

    Brain H:

    Is that the Eskimo Galaxy?

  5. Sera says:

    Never mind- I found it in ‘WIKI’ (gawd I hate going there). It looks slightly different in my book- sorry for the OT.

  6. Michael Hart says:

    It’s an amazing photo. Makes you think…

  7. tallbloke says:

    Payback time for all the images of sooty looking clouds coming out of cooling towers…
    Naturally, since the warmies believe that the cloud feedback is positive, this should make them agree to shut down the windfarms immediately.

  8. tgmccoy says:

    Here is a bit about Vestas which in infesting the NE Oregon plateau country with it’s
    Eagle Cusinarts:
    Here in the US we too have government bodies flushing money through the wind shredders.
    Schadenfreude smells good after a rain….

  9. Brian H says:

    I’ve posted lotsa snarky comments about the Invisible Hand’s brass knuckles, etc. But it’s a serious observation: that you cannot avoid paying the real price for something. Indirect costs will pile on, other prices will counter-adjust, and resources will deplete rapidly, if you try. It can get deadly, but in the end the Real Price will be paid.

  10. Zeke says:


    On a proposed wind farm which will devastate the villages of Tetney and Humberston.