Raithing on about renewable energy
1. Building wind turbines on land is so passé, so Nineties. The Danes put them out to sea, where there's greater exposure (and more power). The extra cost in construction is more than adequately compensated for.
2. The Scots are directly exposed to most of the North Atlantic, which the Danes are not. (Ever wondered why it's so windy in Scotland?)
3. Wave power is one thing, tidal power is another. Scotland, like Norway, has tidal currents zipping between it's islands and penisulas faster than a man can run -- well, me at any rate. As an example, the Pentland Firth just south of the Orkneys has peak tides of 8-9 knots, sustained 4 times a day, every day. Scotland is also home to one of the largest tidal whirlpools in the world, the Corryvreckan. That puts it up there, in tidal terms, alongside the Canadians and their Bay of Fundy.
4. Government interest. There have been many, many government (both British and Scottish) commissioned reports on the matter. Tidal power alone, neglecting wind and wave, could supply the Scots with 270 TWhr/year (see Bryden, 2004). You'd have to build 20-30 nuclear plants to match that. Why have the British done nothing about it though? Inertia, or more pressing matters: wars in Iraq, maybe?
Call it professional bias, but I do have to wonder why, with this vast supply of inexhaustible energy sitting on their doorstep, neither the Scots or Brits have done much about it. The oil will not last forever, but thankfully neither will Gordon Brown.
But is this Salmond fellow any better?