Noise, visual and other negative
impacts of renewable deployment
94. There are widespread local objections to
renewable generatorsespecially wind farms. These include:
(a) the visual impact of wind turbines (Campaign
to Protect Rural England (Devon) p 252, Penk p 419, Jack p 374,
Bishopton Village Hall Management Committee p 233);
(b) noise from the turbines and their potential
impact on family life and health (Hadden p 325);
(c) effect on value of homes (Hadden p 325);
(d) economic impact on the community (Hadden
p 325); and,
(e) perceived disregard for the opinion of rural
communities (Hadden p 325).
Wind farms can also disturb wildlife (Two Moors p
492 and The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds).
95. Most offshore projects would have less impact
on local communities. But there are particular concerns about
the proposed Severn Barrage. The Environment Agency in Wales said:
"The estuary supports important habitats and a unique ecology
which have strong protection under international law. The construction
of a barrage would have significant impacts on the estuary, for
example on wildlife, flood protection, navigation and the landscape."
96. Although their declared purpose is to
improve the environment, it is clear that renewable energy installations
can also have adverse environmental impacts which the Government
should bear in mind as it weighs the benefits and costs of expansion
of renewable generation.