The network of wind turbines for London (Insight, 21 May) is a striking vision but I have severe reservations about the practical implications.
First, I think the developer of the idea has greatly under-estimated the issue of aesthetics, expecting only ‘some argument’. I think there will be a great deal more than that, as the image shown with the article suggests the turbines would have a dramatic visual impact on the city.
We all know the objections encountered when trying to site even a single wind turbine. I would suggest that in a project that is trying to erect more than 6,000 individual installations, hundreds at the very least will be controversial to someone.
The only way to construct such a network quickly would be to press on regardless of objections, which rather detracts from the idea that this would be a popular source of clean energy.
Second, the maintenance regime for 6,600 turbines, no matter how technologically advanced, would be challenging to say the least. The turbines would be exposed to the elements and potential damage, both accidental and deliberate, far more than, for example, the network of cellular telephone masts.
Finally, I agree with your correspondent P Field and his observation that the project would only be viable if installation costs could be kept to a minimum.
In such a complex project working in a dense urban area I suggest they are likely to be high, undermining the economics of what is undoubtedly a bold idea.
The network of wind turbines for London is a striking vision but I have severe reservations about the practical implications.