It’s interesting to see that one oft raised objection to commercial and larger scale Renewable Energy installations is one concerning profit. Perhaps understandably some find it to be a problem that wealthy and/or distant investors are making large profits from a Renewable Energy installation, though I must say that particular problem or issue had not occurred to me, but perhaps there is a way of addressing this problem by sharing the profits locally? For instance on the Oxfordshire/Wiltshire border there is a Solar Power installation which is seeking investors to join a Co-operative, a Co-operative that will reap the profits as well as the benefits of supporting clean and renewable energy.
There’s an interesting article about the Oxfordshire/Wiltshire Solar Power project on the Low Impact website here: http://www.lowimpact.org/blog/2012/Jul/you-can-be-part-owner-of-a-solar-power-plant.htm
Perhaps such a method of bringing Renewable Energy to an area might make it more palatable by being far more inclusive – and of course by demonstrating that just because Renewable Energy makes a profit that does not make the energy it produces somehow less clean.
One thing that often crops up when discussing Renewables is how the larger scale installations seem to be more readily accepted in the countries of, say, Northern Europe than they are here in the UK. Perhaps one reason for that acceptance is that in those countries people are used to having smaller conventionally fuelled Power Stations in their neighbourhoods and towns – often these Power Stations providing piped hot water as well as electricity. Here in the UK we are used to (& generally expect) our power generation to be large scale and remote from where most of us live – perhaps then accepting local larger scale Renewable Energy plants (Solar, Wind, etc) for us in the UK is a bit more challenging than it is for our continental neighbours used, as I say, to having local coal or gas fuelled Power Stations? Could be that this extra level of unfamiliarity might be one further reason for the oft expressed reluctance to embrace Renewable Energy, it being a steeper learning curve, so to speak?
Let us know your thoughts!