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Shetland windfarm - Viking Energy


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these folks seem to know how to do it.

 

http://www.moorsforthefuture.org.uk/node/144

 

This kinda stuff only grows in Shetland where there's a high water content and moor is currently being generated, swathes of Shetland's hill have neither the water content necessary nor are, or have been generating fresh moor for quite some time. Areas like in stilldellin's photo are a prime example of this - they're old moor, literally just sitting there upon which extremely poor quality minimal nutrient absorbing grasses have evolved on their surface. Hence when the surface is disturbed and the current foilage cover destroyed there is no viable source to regenerate like for like foilage from, and the moor is so low in nutrients nothing else can survive. You can of course apply imported nutrients to the moor to make it more suitable for grasses whih there are a readily available source of, however this is not regenerating the original, it is re-seeding anew and will result in entirely different and considerably less suited foilage for the prevailing conditions. The problems with doing this is that such grasses will need feeding and careful management for years stretching in to decades to have a hope of surviving and thriving, and run a high risk of even then still not surviving at all due to their inherent inability to survive the extremes of exposure they sooner or later will be subjet at the altitudes and locations concerned.

 

The complete fail shown in the photo is the proof of how difficult seeding from scratch is on such sites. This is an east facing site, and considered the "lee" side of this hill, typically it is exposed to lesser and shorter extremes of weather than the west facing slope just out of view to the right. Were this the west side, there would be next no black moor to be seen in the photo, only the shingle.

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Why don't all the folks in favour of VE and convinced it's all harmless actually swap properties with the folks who have to live in the path of these monstrosities??  Any takers?   Still no referendum

This seems to be fulfilling the prophecy that once the Viking windfarm came it would open the floodgates for every hill in Shetland to be covered in wind turbines.

Lord Forsyth was not very pleased with the scottish government!   Lord Forsyth of Drumlean:   When I was a Secretary of State—and for as long as I have known—the principle has been that when a jud

^ Well explained Ghostrider and spot on, hey, you're not paid by VE out of that £9.9 million of our money from the CT as a consultant on that Habitat Management Plan are you ? :wink:

Some more pictures of the failed peatland restoration project at Scousburgh Hill, but there again the VE project will be different as there have been great advances in technology and of course the weather ! :-

 

 

http://i1207.photobucket.com/albums/bb479/beenister/sdscous1_zpsdb3bf45a.jpg

 

http://i1207.photobucket.com/albums/bb479/beenister/sdscous2_zps9aca0fdb.jpg

http://i1207.photobucket.com/albums/bb479/beenister/scous4_zps642f40bd.jpg

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ok then challenge the VE experts to attempt to restore that site. would be interesting to see what they could do.

 

who owns the site and why was it abandoned when the trial failed. think what could be learnt. think of the peat slides of last year there must be a need to have a good system to restore bare peat.

 

i agree it is difficult to restore a totally naked site without adding nutrients to the ground.

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Of course, this is so much better when it is elsewhere..

http://i267.photobucket.com/albums/ii294/Geotours/f98c2128-04c9-4e78-a961-a01ff5decce5_zpse3152d48.jpg

 

That's a completely fatuous argument. China is opening at least one coal-fueled power station a week and had air pollution so thick over Beijing earlier this year that they were forced to stop all traffic for a week. China is going to keep polluting on this scale anyway - regardless of whether the Viking windfarm is built - because China doesn't give a damn. It can afford not to, for the time being.

 

One thing is certain though - in the UK our demand for electricity is going to keep going up. It's going to be more expensive to import gas, etc as other countries compete for the same limited resources. As far as I'm aware, although the wind may stop blowing occasionally, it usually starts again.

 

If you're going to troll, at least try a little harder.

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ok then challenge the VE experts to attempt to restore that site. would be interesting to see what they could do.

 

I stand corrected if wrong as I'm just working from memory here, but as far as I can recall the SAC were significantly involved with the work at this site. It would be difficult to imagine who could be more expert on local peatland and what other "expert" VE could have found of similar calibre to hire.

 

who owns the site and why was it abandoned when the trial failed. think what could be learnt. think of the peat slides of last year there must be a need to have a good system to restore bare peat.

 

The site is owned outright by the Sumburgh Company and the grazings rights are owned by a local Grazings Committee as far as I'm aware. Not hill I have any direct involvement with so can only speculate on the reasoning, but my money would be on either level of investment necessary to establish and sustain foilage exceeded value of results by a margin large enough to make the cost unjustifiable, or simply having exhausted all potentially viable techniques for reseeding and achieved 100% failure it had nowhere left to go.

 

i agree it is difficult to restore a totally naked site without adding nutrients to the ground.

 

Then this becomes reseeding, not restoration. Reseeding no doubt would be viable on parts of the VE site, and possibly on more of it subject to ongoing maintenance and management (initial and thereafter regular maintenance applications of lime, phosphate, potash, nitrogen etc to create and maintain adequate soil quality to support the introduced foilage, erecting shelter where necessary to aid establishment, of a type capable to withstanding extended periods of high winds, all reseeded areas fenced and subdivided in to relatively small plots depending on the success or otherwise of the new foilage in an area, so that grazing can be controlled in such a way as to establish and maintain a robust sward, any areas when initial establishment fails, or rapidly dies back, due perhaps to a winter exposing it to exceptional weather conditions, re-cultivated and reseeded again as ofthen as neessary to effect satisfatory establishment, etc, etc....) for years, probably stretching in to decades.

 

Then, if you take this route, you create an additional enviornmental impact of run off from these reseeded sites, much of the need for regular maintenance applications of lime, phosphate, potash etc, apart from what is utilised by the foilage, is due to what is lost in run off water. Shetland has high rainfall and the leeching rate is equally high, what is applied to the top of hills rapidly reaches the bottoms of them, and accumulates due to the run off being far slower travelling. For a few years no real difference may be noted to a casual observer, but if you regularly apply nutrients uphill for several years, as would be necessary to establish and maintain a satisfactory reseed, you will start to see certain species of plants slowly diminish and eventually become extinct on various sites downhill. Floss and mosses tend to be among the first to be affected, you will also begin to note new varieties of plants begin to establish and colonise areas subject to run off. In effect, to successfully reseed as much of the VE site as possible you will end up making significant changes to the natural fauna in swathes wherever is downhill from any part of the site. By adding additional nutrients to the run off area as a by product of reseeding the hill tops you cannot avoid altering the soil structure and nutrient composition of the soil affected, as is that soil provides what the plants that currently thrive on it require, natural evolution has seen to that, "change the menu" by adding additional nutrients, even only a little different in some cases, and you find the diet no longer suits the resident species which decline, and unless the additional nutrient supply is halted, ultimately die off.

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That's a completely fatuous argument. China is opening at least one coal-fueled power station a week and had air pollution so thick over Beijing earlier this year that they were forced to stop all traffic for a week. China is going to keep polluting on this scale anyway - regardless of whether the Viking windfarm is built - because China doesn't give a damn. It can afford not to, for the time being.

 

One thing is certain though - in the UK our demand for electricity is going to keep going up. It's going to be more expensive to import gas, etc as other countries compete for the same limited resources. As far as I'm aware, although the wind may stop blowing occasionally, it usually starts again.

 

If you're going to troll, at least try a little harder.

 

I thought they were planning to build 363 power stations as opposed to open. Aren't they also building hydro power stations too? Aren't they selling their green electricity to Europe? Are the Chinese building any windfarms?

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ok then challenge the VE experts to attempt to restore that site. would be interesting to see what they could do.

 

I stand corrected if wrong as I'm just working from memory here, but as far as I can recall the SAC were significantly involved with the work at this site. It would be difficult to imagine who could be more expert on local peatland and what other "expert" VE could have found of similar calibre to hire.

 

who owns the site and why was it abandoned when the trial failed. think what could be learnt. think of the peat slides of last year there must be a need to have a good system to restore bare peat.

 

The site is owned outright by the Sumburgh Company and the grazings rights are owned by a local Grazings Committee as far as I'm aware. Not hill I have any direct involvement with so can only speculate on the reasoning, but my money would be on either level of investment necessary to establish and sustain foilage exceeded value of results by a margin large enough to make the cost unjustifiable, or simply having exhausted all potentially viable techniques for reseeding and achieved 100% failure it had nowhere left to go.

 

i agree it is difficult to restore a totally naked site without adding nutrients to the ground.

 

Then this becomes reseeding, not restoration. Reseeding no doubt would be viable on parts of the VE site, and possibly on more of it subject to ongoing maintenance and management (initial and thereafter regular maintenance applications of lime, phosphate, potash, nitrogen etc to create and maintain adequate soil quality to support the introduced foilage, erecting shelter where necessary to aid establishment, of a type capable to withstanding extended periods of high winds, all reseeded areas fenced and subdivided in to relatively small plots depending on the success or otherwise of the new foilage in an area, so that grazing can be controlled in such a way as to establish and maintain a robust sward, any areas when initial establishment fails, or rapidly dies back, due perhaps to a winter exposing it to exceptional weather conditions, re-cultivated and reseeded again as ofthen as neessary to effect satisfatory establishment, etc, etc....) for years, probably stretching in to decades.

 

Then, if you take this route, you create an additional enviornmental impact of run off from these reseeded sites, much of the need for regular maintenance applications of lime, phosphate, potash etc, apart from what is utilised by the foilage, is due to what is lost in run off water. Shetland has high rainfall and the leeching rate is equally high, what is applied to the top of hills rapidly reaches the bottoms of them, and accumulates due to the run off being far slower travelling. For a few years no real difference may be noted to a casual observer, but if you regularly apply nutrients uphill for several years, as would be necessary to establish and maintain a satisfactory reseed, you will start to see certain species of plants slowly diminish and eventually become extinct on various sites downhill. Floss and mosses tend to be among the first to be affected, you will also begin to note new varieties of plants begin to establish and colonise areas subject to run off. In effect, to successfully reseed as much of the VE site as possible you will end up making significant changes to the natural fauna in swathes wherever is downhill from any part of the site. By adding additional nutrients to the run off area as a by product of reseeding the hill tops you cannot avoid altering the soil structure and nutrient composition of the soil affected, as is that soil provides what the plants that currently thrive on it require, natural evolution has seen to that, "change the menu" by adding additional nutrients, even only a little different in some cases, and you find the diet no longer suits the resident species which decline, and unless the additional nutrient supply is halted, ultimately die off.

 

good reply.

 

i cant remember where i read it but there is a method of laying a carpet of growing medium that has seedlings in. its from a few years back now so i cant give you the reference.

 

this is an interesting article

 

http://www.gret-perg.ulaval.ca/uploads/tx_centrerecherche/Lavoie_Ecoscience_1996_01.pdf

 

so yes there are experts in the field of moor restoration.

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I thought they were planning to build 363 power stations as opposed to open. Aren't they also building hydro power stations too? Aren't they selling their green electricity to Europe? Are the Chinese building any windfarms?

 

Possibly. But in the meantime, it's been widely reported in the last couple of years that China's economy is expanding at such a rate - along with their demand for power - that they're opening a new coal-fired power station every week.

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I thought they were planning to build 363 power stations as opposed to open. Aren't they also building hydro power stations too? Aren't they selling their green electricity to Europe? Are the Chinese building any windfarms?

 

Possibly. But in the meantime, it's been widely reported in the last couple of years that China's economy is expanding at such a rate - along with their demand for power - that they're opening a new coal-fired power station every week.

 

Actually, that "one a week" claim was first made in the mid 00's, and I've never seen any verifiable back-up to the claim.

 

It's also never mentioned that China is closing 7-8 inefficient, Mao-era, power stations a week. (this claim has as much back-up as the previous one.)

 

Are the Chinese building any windfarms?

 

They are building more than anyone else in the world.

 

http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2013/03/20/1744741/chinas-wind-power-production-increased-more-than-coal-power-did-for-first-time-ever-in-2012/

 

http://www.businessweek.com/news/2012-02-07/wind-power-market-rose-to-41-gigawatts-in-2011-led-by-china.html

 

Edit: More on Chinese coal plant construction:

 

http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=China_and_coal#Coal_Plants

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@AT, yep, the first article I read re Chinese and power stations was dated 2007 but the other one I read was from the BBC (2012). Apparently they're planning mainly with hydro but are concerned about whether or not they will have enough water (that was some city analyst/economist report on China being they made no mention of wind funnily enough).

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