Friday, May 27, 2011

The bottom line

Click away now if you think this one's going to be about the sort of underwear that sucks the wobbly bits  in and presents a slender profile.  Marks and Spencer can help you out there. Off you go.

Ditto if you're looking for pastoral diversions in the small mountain kingdom of Trelystan, a vista of trees and flowers, fluttering blue tits, woolly lambs or ploughs and muck spreaders -  but bear those images in mind.

Me? I've still got my campaigning head on and this post continues in that vein.

Yesterday's Times newspaper had a small supplement which attracted my eye because on its cover was a sexily backlit pylon.  It might be relevant so I read on. It wasn't quite advertising and I'm not sure it was editorial either. Titled 'Mapping British Business Utilities' it addressed some of the issues concerning the development, management and economics facing the nation's utility companies.

What came home to roost - and I don't begin to understand the economics of it -  is that it all comes down to pushing figures - figures of mind-boggling enormity -  around on a spread sheet. I ponder that it's all somewhat anonymous and abstract. The number crunching could be done with concepts or colours instead of energy and water perhaps.

Oh, and don't forget the undercurrent of political ambition either.  The quite laudable policy of moving towards a greater proportion of renewable energy must be achieved at all costs by our political and financial masters with barely a nod to the impact on local communities.

A small thought comes into my head; Gloucester's lines from Act 4 of King Lear: 'As flies to wanton boys are we to th' gods....'

Quite.

6 comments:

Fennie said...

Saw all the people (via the TV news) outside the Assembly building. But I am not sure what the protesters were saying should happen. Bury the lines, scrap the wind farms (or relocate them), or find another route for the pylons. Or some combination of all three. Why can't the existing routes - eg to/from Aberystwyth be reinforced? Anyway good luck!

mountainear said...

That's a good point Fennie. What started out here in Shropshire as 'No way do we want pylons in our landscape' has quickly become a bigger issue as the various groups open the can of worms that is the wind power industry.

I suspect we've had our eyes closed to this for too long - I can't be the only person to have thought what nice green energy it all is and what's wrong with some sculptural turbines on a hill side anyway?

It seems that the WAG's adoption of TAN8 which encourages the large scale development of windfarms in specific areas - hardly mentioning the massivly intrusive infrastructure associated with them - is the root of the problem.

So: review TAN8, rethink on-shore wind generation and only then if there must windfarms and substations let those be sensitively sited and any cables buried.

GeraniumCat said...

Have tried a couple of times to comment on recent posts to say good luck with the campaign, but it tends to turn into a rant about the cynicism of windfarm developers and government both regional and national - I read what I've written and think, can't send that! I do admire the coolness with which you're writing about these complicated and divisive issues - I feel guilty about not tackling it myself when it's so important, but my blog's a refuge from the real world and so I avoid it. A nice irony has just occurred to me, though: I'm perfectly prepared to stand up and protest and write letters to the local paper etc under my real name, it's only under my pseudonym I won't tackle it. I don't feel quite so bad now :-)

Keep up the good work!

Pondside said...

Keep it up, Mountainear - someone will hear...and if you don't make a noise you'll be told 'no one was against this'.

Milla said...

i used that line, or a version of it, in my recent blog, too, without remembering which play it was - they kill us for their sport ...
When your piece started, I glanced at your view and recalled the view I get coming down the lane to our village. Our village is not beautiful - too modern - but surrounded by beautiful fields. COMING SOON! trumpets the sign, 400 mixed housing. Behind it lie the gentle hills. I am feasting on that view which is soon to be obliterated by mixed bloody housing. 20 years of insisting got the co the planning permission. 20 yrs of campaigning got nowhere. Not when Hazel Blears charabanc visited 9 sites spread over a hundred miles in one day and overturned the high court rulings. Mad-den-ing!!So, that's my rant.
As for power - (I always think wind turbines rather noble and solemn) I am reading Solar by Ian McEwan. A startling stat buried somewhere in there which I will mangle as I attempt to repeat it. Something about if solar panels were placed on the Sahara for an hour it would provide sufficient energy for the world for a year. Shocking.

Pam said...

Hi Mountainear, Is there any way we can sign against it online? What can we cyber people do to help?
Sorry I was absent for a while - it was crazy spring :-)