I’m not a fan of green levies, subsidies, or policies. Thus far, all they’ve served to do is line the pockets of companies in cahoots with the state, having the cost of implementing these policies and subsidies passed on to the layman with a tidy profit. Not that there’s anything bad with profit per se, but when the state is used to obtain it I see it no different to theft, and as a consequence I strongly oppose it. Not to mention, implementation thus far seems to have been loss-making windmills erected in the least windy parts of Britain, because not enough land in these areas (largely Northamptonshire – 53 out of 94 proposed sites are in the least windy county alone) is protected from state interference by the National Trust or other private bodies. The only reason I can fathom for this love affair with ill-situated turbines is that they spin, so it looks like they’re actually doing something.
Still, large scale operations like the multi-megawatt farms being erected around the country are at best a mixed blessing. They cost an absolute bomb, require both a 60% subsidy and between a 70% and 85% fossil fuel backup (a practice which makes them less green than fossil fuel plants), and they kill wildlife. Not to mention, the rile up NIMBYs wherever they’re planned – inconsequential, but a nuisance nonetheless. That’s not to say that a desire to harness nature for power isn’t admirable, and whether you’re a believer in AGW or not, just in case it is true, I’d rather effort was made to reduce carbon emissions. On top of this, fossil fuel generation causes uncontrollable pollution (for now), which violates the property rights of those who are affected, in assets or in health. I just think that the solution is microgeneration.