Wind power - burn waste instead

I READ with interest your article on the proposed wind farm developments (August 11), and I would like to bring some important facts to the public’s attention.

HAVING spent a wonderful short break in Great Yarmouth, I visited the Scroby Sands Wind Farm Information Centre and actually admired the 30 or so wind turbines situated about a mile off shore.

Each turbine could be individually controlled from virtually anywhere in the world with a laptop, and each turbine, given a wind of around 30mph, would be capable of generating around 2megaWatts.

For comparison, that is around half the output of the old coal-fired Little Barford Power Station, and around one tenth of the output of the new gas-fired station there.

Full environmental investigations had been carried out before the development of this offshore site, and even the effect of the local seal colony had been considered.

An excellent gain for the environment, and also a massive saving in carbon output that would usually be needed to produce around 60MW of power, for an initial investment, I believe, of around �90million.

However, that site is off shore, and is of no issue to any marine life, and even looks great from the shoreline. But when we are talking about 30 or so wind turbines scattered across Cambridgeshire and Bedfordshire (for a start), then actual people’s lives and livelihoods do start to be affected.

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Now, anybody who suggests that we start building nuclear power stations wants their heads totally examined. For a while, that did look like the only way forward.

I have recently been doing some research on other alternative forms of creating energy and, although not a scientist, I came across a project a few weeks ago that could be of great importance in restricting the siting of wind turbines to offshore or remote windy and unpopulated hills.

Sewage and black-bagged unsorted municipal rubbish, oily sludge, tyres, hospital waste, garden refuse, green waste, and any other form of garbage you can possibly think of (except nuclear). Not forgetting of course all the trillions of tons of rotting, smelling, methane-producing landfill site contents all around the country.

Just say there was a process where all this rubbish could be sorted, all the recyclables sorted and sterilised (no more need to have a green bin and a blue bin and a grey bin – if you have wheelie bins) and then all the organic stuff turned into Syngas (to fire electrical generators) or hydrogen (to be used in fuel cells), or diesel or even jet fuel, and the whole process with no smell, very little land footprint or unsightly high structures (with less than 12 parts per million escaping).

And the process is not incineration, it is gasification (ie temperatures of up to 900 degrees in specially designed sealed units – heated by gas from its own rubbish).

And it only gets better: plastic bags and bottles – gone; landfill site contents – a thing of the past; tyres – gone, oily sludge and waste products – gone; sewage farms – gone; and how about existing gas-powered generating stations – why use fossil gas, when rubbish gas could be used?

And the best thing about it, because of a number of financial incentives, it would not cost your local authority a penny to get it up and running.


Collingwood Road

Eaton Socon