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Death of a red kite

Today is Friday the 13th, and the news is both sad, and predictable. A rare and beautiful bird of prey has been killed by the turning blade of the ugly, pointless wind farm on the Braes of Doune. Red kites were persecuted almost to extinction in the past by gamekeepers, although we now know that they mainly eat carrion. Various reintroduction projects, including the one at nearby Argaty, have worked hard to save the red kite. Now we are killing them in a different, 21st century way.

Like long-distance walking, the opportunity to see rare birds such as red kites and osprey is known to attract environmentally aware visitors. Wind farms are springing up in Scotland because of crazy government subsidies that make them attractive to landowners, while ruining our most precious asset: our scenery. Now we know that they not only could kill rare birds, but actually have done, will the tide of public opinion turn against them before it's too late for other skylines?

I'm not against renewable energy. We have plenty of water hereabouts, and schemes like Cruachan have proved that hydro power can provide electricity when the grid is under pressure without despoiling our countryside. Water power is controllable, unlike wind power which is notoriously fickle; wind power is least likely to be productive when power is most needed - in cold, high-pressure winter weather. So let's have more hydro power and save our scenery, as well as the red kites.


This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on July 13, 2007 12:02 PM.

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