Britain to Halt Onshore Wind Projects: 'Wind Farm Impacts May Be Worse Than Climate Change'

Hawaiian Electric Co.

In a stunning move the British government announced October 30 a halt to land-based industrial wind projects. “We can no longer have wind turbines imposed on communities,” Energy Secretary John Hayes stated, adding that few if any new industrial wind projects will be approved.

This follows last month’s statement by UK Environment Secretary Owen Paterson that industrial wind projects “may have a worse impact than climate change,” and are causing “public insurrection.” And it welcome news for Hawaii, where the islands of Molokai and Lanai are battling a huge HECO/Abercrombie industrial wind project, the Big Wind/ Interisland Cable.

Referring to wind farms and climate change, Environment Secretary Paterson added that “some of the steps we are taking might actually cause more damage than the original problem itself.” Wind projects, he added, “blight rural lives” and have, among other negative environmental effects, “significant impacts on the rural economy and the rural environment.”

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