The Anonymous Widower

Chancellor Confirms England Onshore Wind Planning Reform

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on

These are the first two paragraphs.

UK Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng has confirmed that onshore wind planning policy is to be brought in line with other infrastructure to allow it to be deployed more easily in England.

The announcement is the strongest sign yet that the Conservative Party could be poised to reverse its 2015 ban on new onshore wind farms being built in England.

I take a scientifically-correct view of onshore wind, in that I am sometimes against it, but on the other hand in certain locations, I would be very much in favour.

These pictures show Keadby Wind Farm in Lincolnshire.

As the wind farm sits next to two gas-fired power stations and is surrounded by high voltage overhead electricity cables, this is probably a more acceptable location, than beside a picturesque village.

In this page on their web site, SSE says this about the construction of the 68 MW wind farm.

After receiving planning permission in 2008, construction began in 2012 and the first turbine foundation was complete in February 2013. The final turbine was assembled on 11 December 2013 and the project was completed in summer 2014.

If this is typical, and I think it is, it would take six years plus the time arguing about planning permission, to get a new onshore wind farm built.

But supposing, you are a farmer who wants to decarbonise. One way might be with a 10 MW wind turbine and a hydrogen electrolyser, so you had your own hydrogen source to power your tractors and other equipment.

On the other hand, solar panels on house, shed and barn roofs  might be a more discrete alternative.


September 24, 2022 - Posted by | Energy | , , , , , , ,


  1. Even quicker than offshore but its been poorly executed especially in Scotland where the transmission system is always playing catchup and as a result a huge amount of money is paid in constraint costs. To be clear how this plays out is wind gets on the system first whatever the transmission constraints then the ESO work out (well they already know beforehand) that the North to South 400/275kv lines will run out of capacity and thus the energy they thought was in the mix will be have to be constrained off but that needs to be replaced and largely comes from CCGTs. Then next the CCGTs available to ramp up will want top dollar as they are buying the extra gas on the open market at the high rates we are experiencing.

    What needs to happen for onshore is like offshore where there is a pretty good forward visibility of where wind farms will/could be built and the ESO has come up with a transmission system design is an overall plan that deals with transmission. By now we know where the best locations for onshore wind are, we know that there will be a lot of pushback about building them but we know they are cost effective so the planning changes need to just empower developers to get on with it as its for the greater good of the country. Same also need to happen with transmission lines where huge amounts of money are being spent in providing cables because of visual issues but surely its worse to dig up the ground over miles and miles continuously rather than just use pylon routes (actually SSE have a nice single pole design [trident] for 132kV now and im sure they have looked at scaling it upto 275kV.

    As i say if we are to be serious about decarbonisation we have to tackle these issues head on and just get on with it. Ive no time for Truss but she does show a bent for behaving in that way so maybe we will see a change of direction for the good here.

    Comment by Nicholas Lewis | September 25, 2022 | Reply

    • We need to get the grid right and National Grid’s plan for two offshore Scotland-England interconnectors is a good one and should be easy to finance.

      I also like the concept of Remote Island Wind.

      The Concept Of Remote Island Wind

      The trouble is in England, we don’t have many suitable islands.

      I’ve always been a great fan of barraging the Severn and perhaps now with modern technology is the time to do it properly.

      Comment by AnonW | September 25, 2022 | Reply

      • As i say for once the NG have got ahead of the curve with producing the holistic system design to connect up all the windfarms and manage the transmission of the electricity generated. Just need to get on with that. But if onshore is suddenly back in favour then that hasn’t been factored into this so govt need to quickly make up their minds so NG can react now. My take is Truss will just force stuff through and suffer the consequences or reap the benefits.

        Comment by Nicholas Lewis | September 25, 2022

  2. for very local power for that farmer you speak of, or indeed other rural business, could we not return to a design of ‘onshore’ turbine that appeals to many people, a modern version of the windmill, that retains the aesthetic, uses modern materials, offers the farmer additional storage areas … just thinking outloud.

    Comment by PJS | September 25, 2022 | Reply

    • Better design always helps and there are some rooftop turbines, that wouldn’t look out of place on a barn roof. Several farming friends are also thinking about solar panels and one is thinking about a small turbine in a nearby river. Windsor Castle has one of those.

      I’ve also heard of a tomato grower, who has a massive greenhouse, which he heats by a gas-fired combined heat and power boiler. All the CO2 emitted is fed to the tomatoes to make them grow strong and any spare electricity is fed into the grid. We’ll start to see more installations like this, so we can generate our CO2 and eat it!

      Comment by AnonW | September 25, 2022 | Reply

  3. In Ireland land based wind farms are so successful that Ireland is only now building sea based ones. The farmers get paid 25,000€ per year for each and they are not just on hills any sufficiently unobstructed land is suitable. There has been problems with wind farms on peat bogs but this is because they drained the bogs and disrupted natural drainage by building roads.

    Comment by Ben | September 25, 2022 | Reply

    • Thanks! Irish companies are certainly to the fore in developments in the Celtic Sea.

      But then it does seem, that British and Irish electricity companies don’t seem to have any problems with co-operation.

      Comment by AnonW | September 25, 2022 | Reply

    • Looking at some recent photos from my wife’s cousin (he’s an Irish farmer), apart from some turbines 10 miles away across the mouth of the Shannon I can’t see a single wind turbine. Seeing as the local pub advertises that the next bar is New York I’ll think you’ll realise it’s pretty exposed to the prevailing winds.
      Although there are plenty of wind farms in Cork, Kerry, Limerick, Tipperary and Donegal they tend to be quite small generating not more than 15-20MW; that’s 5 to 10 turbines depending on the size of the turbine.
      Sure there has been plenty of land exploited, but reading the Clare Champion and the amount of opposition to further plans, NIMBYism isn’t an exclusively British concept.

      Comment by fammorris | September 25, 2022 | Reply

  4. […] wrote about onshore wind in Chancellor Confirms England Onshore Wind Planning Reform and I think that in the right place they are […]

    Pingback by Denny Bros Completes Solar Scheme At Bury St Edmunds Factory « The Anonymous Widower | November 30, 2022 | Reply

  5. Just to broaden the debate I thought this Daily Telegraph article entitled The sinister truth about bird-killing wind ‘farms’ is worthy of reflection.

    Comment by fammorris | December 7, 2022 | Reply

    • Thanks! I may return to it later. I did hear a story of a guy, who was rearing free range chickens, some of which were around the bottom of a wind turbine. He got less losses in that area. He also kept the foxes away, by broadcasting Radio 5 quietly at night to the chickens.

      Birds though are not stupid and eventually learn to take advantage of their environment.

      I used to have a small horse box and driving around the lanes in Suffolk, several times, a kestrel would be flying as my wing-man, so that if the vibrations of the truck disturbed a vole, he’d see it. I never saw a kill.

      I have seen similar behaviour on the Gospel Oak to Barking Line, where the line goes through Walthamstow Wetlands. One guy told me, he saw a kestrel sitting on the overhead gantry.

      Comment by AnonW | December 7, 2022 | Reply

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