Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Vale of Tears...Energy project threatens disaster


The city of St Asaph in north Wales is surrounded by flood waters. Photograph: Paul Ellis/AFP/Getty Images


With parts of the south of England still suffering the devastating effects of flooding, it’s worth pointing to George Monbiot’s latest article on the subject, and highlighting his main point. That is; that one of the main factors has been the steady removal of tree and hedge cover in the uplands, to accommodate agriculture's insatiable demand for pasture and growing land. Throughout the world, the evidence is there. The removal of trees will alter the water table, increase the flow of precipitation run off and the soil will basically crumble as the roots which bind it together are lost. Soil will be washed off the land,silting up water courses and altering river flow downstream.

With this in mind, it’s worth pointing out that here in north east wales, The Vale of Clwyd has been recognized by the UK Insurance assessors, as being THE most ‘at risk’ area in the whole of Wales for devastating flood risk. In fact The Vale with Skegness and Boston on the East coast of England, has been recognized as one of the most at risk areas in the whole of the UK. I have written about this before but given the threat to The Vale, it’s certainly worth banging on about it; the risks of flooding are about to be made worse by the construction of a huge German owned wind farm in Clocaenog Forest. A development which will involve a massive amount of clear felling, the construction of new tracks within the forest, the inundation of the fragile peat and bog surface area with hundreds of thousands of tons of concrete etc etc.

Homes in St Asaph where a 91 year old pensioner died in the floods last year.

In short, the German global Energy giant RWE, aided and abetted by UK and Welsh government planners, are cooking up the perfect storm to threaten the already at risk Vale of Clwyd from future flooding. The scheme will almost certainly get the go-ahead from the loaded planning inquiry-currently taking place in Denbigh-despite the fact that the power companies have yet to agree on the infrastructure  to carry the electricity produced-usually 25/30% of the promised output- to the English border and all points south.

It all adds up to a black comedy of ineptitude, ignorance and greed. Let’s call it ‘Carry on Flooding’. We can but sit back and watch the terrible events unfold.

Further articles on the subject

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