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    The 'green' wind farms powered by...dirty diesel!

    February 6, 2023 - By Graham Grant Home Affairs Editor


      DIESEL was used to run scores of giant turbines on Scottish wind farms, it has been revealed.

      ScottishPower admits 71 turbines had to be hooked up to generators using the polluting fossil fuel due to a fault on the national grid.

      The firm said it was forced to intervene in order to keep the turbines warm when cold weather hit in December.

      Some 60 turbines at Arecleoch Wind Farm in South Ayrshire and 11 at the nearby Glen App Wind Farm were connected to six huge diesel generators.

      Labour MSP Colin Smyth said: 'The SNP and Greens have proven time and time again they cannot be trusted on environmental issues.

      'They laud Scotland's potential for renewables yet don't appear to ensure those already in existence are properly run.

      'This isn't the first problem raised - and there is concern at a lack of openness when problems arise.

      'Whatever the reasons, having to use diesel generators to deice faulty turbines is environmental madness.

      'This level of dishonesty cuts to the very core of the SNP and

      Green Government where their rhetoric on net zero is very different from the reality.'

      The wind farms are operated by ScottishPower Renewables, a subsidiary of the Spanishbased company Iberdrola, which operates 1,183 onshore turbines capable of producing enough electricity to power two million homes. The use of the diesel generators was revealed by a whistleblower.

      The worker told the Sunday

      Mail: 'During December, 60 turbines at Arecleoch and 11 at Glen App were de-energised due to a cabling fault at Mark Hill wind farm.

      'In order to get these turbines re-energised, diesel generators were running for upwards of six hours a day.'

      It emerged last year the chairman of ScottishPower, Spaniard Ignacio Galan, was paid more than £11million in 2021. His huge annual earnings come as millions of customers face being plunged into poverty by rocketing energy costs.

      A ScottishPower spokesman said: 'Due to an external fault on the network, the three wind farms were unable to operate.

      'During the extreme cold in December, in line with manufacturer's recommendations, the turbines' internal temperature were returned to safe levels by six diesel generators for a short period of time.

      'For context, ScottishPower measures the availability of its 1,183 onshore turbines and the percentage of time each turbine is ready to produce green energy; in 2022 this reliability figure was 96 per cent.'

      In December, the Daily Mail told how the expansion of wind farms across Scotland's countryside had become a 'cash cow' for foreign companies.

      Overseas firms vastly outnumber their Scottish rivals during the development phase. Of the 47 major applications lodged for onshore wind projects last year, only eight were from companies based in Scotland.

      It has led to fears communities affected by the rapid spread of unsightly turbines are not seeing the economic benefits.

      Comment -

      'This isn't the first problem raised'


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