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Friday, 6 September 2013

Stop Langford Wind Farm? Give it a rest!

There is nothing like a good, long walk to clear the mind and raise the spirits. Ellie and Sky joined me for a stroll up to Langford water tower, via the brand new wind farm currently in the process of being constructed. I apologise for the lack of focus on wildlife in this blog, but this is an environmental subject that is close to home, and with the extreme fuss made over the wind farm, with numerous 'Stop Langford Wind Farm' posters littering our streets, it got me thinking.


Clearly, all of the evidence is in favour of the wind turbines being built. Enough energy will be produced to power over 11,000 homes, preventing the release of between 18,000 and 43,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide from the burning of fossil fuels. It is a direction the world needs to take.

Turbine in the field
They also produce near to no noise, leaving the visual impact as the only impact that the people of Langford are so strongly opposed to. Which infuriates me for a number of reasons.


Firstly, I personally like their appearance. But then that is personal preference and I can accept that some people may disagree. Some people like pugs, I think they are ugly. But, I wonder why people go to the extent of putting up posters and threatening to move homes because wind turbines are being added to an already polluted and fragmented landscape. I find it difficult to understand that they can put up with all of these, but can not bear the sight of a clean looking wind turbine, a symbol of greener energy and a more sustainable future.

Dissecting our landscape with wires

Telegraph poles and cables run across our vast expanses of green rolling countryside. But then we need these to enable tele-communication and transport electricity. They provide a benefit to us, and we accept them as necessary. 

Light pollution and the turbine

I have never heard anyone who lives in Langford complain about the ridiculously bright lights of the larger town of Biggleswade and the A1. The lights are necessary to enable us to see clearly at night. Yet they are a form of pollution. These street lamps and shop windows violate the light produced by stars that has traveled for millions of years to reach the Earth, they pollute our skyline with reds and yellows. But we accept them around here, because they are part of modern society. 

Buzzard in the Sun (m)
During the walk, I stop and listen to the sound of the skylark, rising high above our fields. Beautiful. My soul is immediately lifted by its upbeat and cheery sound. I am alerted to the buzzard soaring high above by its mewing call, as it circles around the sun. But, if I stop and listen to everything, I hear the not-so-distant hum of cars, lorries, motorbikes and vans on the A1. A constantly subtle barrage of noise that ruins the peace of our countryside. People are only deaf to the noise because of its constancy. Stop and listen. When was the last time you heard total, natural silence, coupled only with the very sound of nature?

A1 ugly

And then the electricity pylons. Only an architect could like an electricity pylon. They are attractive in their lines and symmetry, but are essentially huge metal towers with horrendously long cables running between them. Disgusting.

East Coast rattler

And what is this? A roaring, rattling lump of metal, fueled by electricity tearing through the countryside, no more than 50 metres from peoples homes in Langford. Stop the trains? No, because the trains serve them a direct purpose. They can make do with the trains because the trains get them from Biggleswade to London and back for about £20.

Langford behind the turbines

But these wind turbines are disgusting. The scourge of our landscape. I will consider selling my life-long family home because every time I look out across the farmers fields that have replaced our ancient woodland, every time I look over the high-speed rattling and roaring railway, through the telephone wires and electricity cables running across the land, I see a few large, tall, rather amazingly designed wind turbines harnessing the energy of the wind for electricity. These hideous constructions are built on our doorstep, as the human race attempts to fight the battle against depleting reserves of non-renewable fuel sources so that we can have the railway we want, the lights on at night, and boil the kettle to sit down and watch Strictly Come Dancing at the weekend with a nice cup of tea.

Give me a break. Stop being so selfish, and start opening your mind to the long-term future of our planet. Maybe it is a generation problem, and it is simply those that do not like change, those that accept the negative changes that have already occurred, and think that any more changes to 'their' landscape should not happen. This wind farm is a positive change for sustainability and the environment. They have to go somewhere, and that somewhere may change the view you wake up to in the morning.

Talking of which, I thoroughly look forward to sitting down with a nice cup of tea, and popping a bit of Strictly on the box.

And to make up for the lack of wildlife, here is a photo from my moths at night project I have been working on.

Capturing the flight of moths at night

Thank you for reading ya'll !