Thursday, 22 April 2010

Jolie Pretty Parc Éolien at Saint Genou

A short while ago on a not very windy day, we went with our villagers to look at the Parc Éolien at Saint Genou amidst cereal fields, so that we could experience the sound impact on the environment. This wind farm was one of the first constructed in the department of Indre, 36, in the Centre region of France. The young men employed by Volkswind were extremely knowledgeable and able to answer questions in great detail. The 6 éoliennes give 25 millions kWh per year and on average they give electricity to 11ooo people.for heating and lighting.
I am not against wind turbines. I think they are quite beautiful, making less impact on the environment in terms of sound than cars, planes or trains. I'd rather live near a wind farm than an auto route! However, they are expensive to build Saint Genou cost 17 million euros) and 15 years seems to be a projected lifespan. It is a cleaner way to generate electricity than nuclear power, although they are expensive to build and the land has to be strengthened to support them. I understand that there may be other technologies that could be more efficient in producing electricity. Nevertheless, it could take some months or years before the go-ahead is approved for the Parc Éolien at Leigné-les-Bois, not far from where we live.
Most of those who came were pro the wind farm being proposed in our commune. Most of those who are against the idea spoke angrily and vociferously at the public meeting some weeks ago but didn't come to learn more from standing under these immense structures, 100 metres tall and 80m in diameter.
They missed out on an unexpected fine lunch organised by the extremely hospitable company of Volkswind. First a large mixed salad with crabsticks (not keen on those) and smoked salmon. Everyone had an enormous grilled pork chop (I had beef) served with frites and ratatouille (I could eat platefuls) followed by pancakes with a chocolate sauce!
There was plenty of wine and water on the long dining table. No fromage but coffee or tea was enjoyed before the coach party headed home. I would recommend the grill bar just outside Saint Genou where the two proprietors cooked and served efficiently and speedily!
Thankyou to Volkswind and the Maire of Leigne-les-Bois for organising this event. I learned a lot and continue to support the proposals.


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