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. . . of your mind


The continuing saga of the micro wind turbine in south London (NCE 15 February) brought to mind the engineer's adage: 'If it looks wrong, it probably is wrong.' A wind turbine on a big tent pole surrounded by trees and buildings does look very wrong.

I have worked on dozens of commercial wind farms.

For a typical smallish project, backers won't put up capital costs of say £20M without a year's worth of site wind speed data, measured at up to 80m, plus correlation, analysis and energy predictions, which will cost perhaps £30,000.

The Proven Energy wind turbines mentioned in the article have been successfully used worldwide for years. I welcome the new 'domestic' B&Q models, but I wouldn't install one on my house unless I wanted to make a green statement and lived in a windy location.

Before I made such a move I would invest in energy efficiency measures and solar (thermal) panels.

Microgeneration has a role to play in the energy mix but it will remain expensive compared with large-scale renewable energy.

Peter Hinson (M), EMP2 Consultants, 30 The Fairway, Burnham SL1 8DS

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