Posted 09 June 2006 - 11:41 AM
I'm not sure I understand your point. The issue under discsussion here is large scale production. Whether its community owned or privately owned is moot, at that scale, 'industry' is the only appropriate description. Small scale, household production is a differennt argument - and sullom voe might be neatly contained, but the industry it represents has an impact from Valdez to sumburgh.
As for 'quantifiable' being a 'good catch all term' - I think you've misunderstood me. The environmental impact of the nuclear industry is quantifiable in the sense that the volume of waste produced or levels of radiation emitted is measurable. The environmental impact of large scale wind farms, less building impact and terrain loss is more to do with visual impact and, by definition more associated with qualitative indicators. I'm not attempting to measure one against the other, merely define terms. Although, for myself, I'd rather suffer visual intrusion than an increase in background radiation.
In terms of measuring the loss of a natural resource against hard economics, I was answering your point specifically in regard to tourism, you've rather moved the goalposts here. A high quality natural environment and a tourist industry are not necessarily the same thing. One might be contingent upon the other but the loss of one or either, in preference to large scale renewables developments, are completely separate arguments.
As for nuclear energy, its hard not to conclude that this would be the preferred option of the windfarm opposition lobby. Its carbon neutral, leaves the wilds free for the ramblers and I hear that Chernobyl, for example, is a veritable haven for woodland creatures these days.