Wind turbines dubbed ‘aliens’ that ‘blight’ the British countryside as efficacy questioned

Onshore and offshore wind farms generated as much as 24 percent of the UK’s electricity in 2020, enough to supply 18.5 million homes, according to the Government. However, Tory leadership hopeful and former Chancellor Rishi Sunak has pledged to “scrap” outgoing Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s plans to relax a ban on onshore wind farms.

He has vowed to uphold former Prime Minister David Cameron’s ban on new onshore wind farm construction.

READ MORE: Brexit Britain leading the way in wind farming

He said last month: “I want to reassure communities that as Prime Minister I would scrap plans to relax the ban on onshore wind in England, instead focusing on building more turbines offshore.”

The Liberal Democrats’ energy spokesperson Wera Hobhouse said that Mr Sunak’s promise showed that “he is completely out of touch with reality”.

She explained: “Any supposed energy security strategy without onshore wind simply makes no sense. 

“Onshore wind sites can be up and running, providing low-cost clean power for bill payers, in around a year.”

In response, ran a poll that ran from 1pm, Thursday, July 28, to 2pm on Wednesday, August 3, asking readers: “Do you think wind turbines are ugly?”

Overall, 2,160 people cast their votes with the majority, 63 percent (1,366 people), answering “yes”, wind turbines are ugly.

Meanwhile, a further 36 percent (788 people) said “no” they are not ugly, while just six people said they did not know either way.

Dozens of readers shared their thoughts on wind turbines in the comments below the accompanying article.

Many agreed that wind turbines blighted the landscape with one reader, username ellwood writing: “They are completely alien, in every way, to the environment they infest.”

Username PauloH said: “They’ve made a complete mess of Cornwall with all the turbines. It used to be one of the prettiest counties in the UK – no longer!”

Username uncivilservant said: “Not only are they a blot on the landscape, they take up valuable land which can be used for better purposes such as housing and feeding people.”

While username Paphian said: “Not only ugly and a blight on the landscape and coastlines, environmentally unfriendly, harmful to birds, bats and marine mammals, they are incapable of being recycled so end up in landfill.”

Other readers were more positive about wind farms, commenting that they are less ugly than alternatives.

Username Gilli Pepper said: “I find them relaxing. Anything that is not natural could be viewed as an eye sore but if they are a benefit to man and nature that is good.” 

Username Norfolkbump said: “They are not as ugly as coal-fired power stations but we all want electricity. A choice has to be made.”

And username Cjjs wrote: “Well they look better than coal or nuclear stations that is 100 percent certain.”

A YouGov poll in September last year found that 62 percent of Tory voters would support an offshore wind farm being built in their area, while just 28 per cent would be opposed.

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