British wind energy controversy deepens

Nov. 16, 2012 at 8:57 AM
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LONDON, Nov. 16 (UPI) -- The Guardian newspaper in London said it obtained a letter from the country's energy minister that expresses a lack of trust in wind energy.

The Guardian obtained the letter sent by British Energy Minister John Hayes to the chief executive of the district council in South Holland, along the country's east coast.

The letter is from July, before Hayes was appointed to his current position.

In it, the minister expresses concern over seven turbines planned in the region, saying the site is situated near what he said were some of the last remaining wetland habitats in the region.

Groups supporting clean energy initiatives expressed "disappointment" when Hayes replaced Charles Hendry during a Cabinet reshuffle by British Prime Minister David Cameron. Ed Davey, British energy and climate change secretary, recently defended the government's stance on wind energy amid criticism of Hayes, his deputy.

Hayes, in his letter, adds that wind energy resources "create barely a trickle" of sustainable energy, meaning they "won't replace gas or nuclear power generation."

Davey has since said London remains committed to a goal of getting 30 percent of the country's electricity generated by renewable resources by 2020.

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