Worst-case scenario that could soon become reality

Hebden Bridge.

STEVEN Beasley wrote a very entertaining and imaginary "scenario" (October 22) in which the electricity goes off if the wind drops.

He finishes by asking us (the Greens) for answers. Happy to oblige, so here we go.

I recently acknowledged in these pages that wind power has limitations, but – for goodness sake – the power doesn't go off when the wind stops blowing! Germany has over a third of the world's wind energy, Holland has lots more than us, and they're doing just fine.

Some people (a minority, according to the polls) don't like wind farms. However, coal and oil cause lots of carbon emissions, and old-fashioned pollution, and they are also going to run out.

That said, of course no-one is suggesting closing ALL the coal generators – not yet anyway. And we need other sources of renewable energy besides wind. As for jobs – sorry to repeat myself – but wind power is a net creator of jobs. There'll be fewer people on the dole in a future Green world!

Since Mr Beasley was kind enough to share his vision of the future, allow me to describe ours.

The global temperature has risen by five degrees, and up to 50 per cent of species are facing extinction.

Hundreds of millions more people are without sufficient water or food to survive (on top of the millions we currently allow to die because we can't share our resources). Sea level rise threatens small islands, low-lying coastal areas (Florida) and cities such as New York, London and Tokyo

Agricultural yields have declined by 15-35 per cent in Africa, and entire regions are out of production altogether (such as parts of Australia).

Scary? Well, none of that is imaginary. It's taken verbatim from the Stern Review (2006) which is accepted by the Government and all the main parties.

Where the parties disagree is on the action necessary to combat this. We urge everyone to make a start by signing up to the 10:10 initiative – for details see www.1010uk.org

Maybe we can manage without Disney World, but surely most of us want to keep Norfolk above the waves!


Green Party Parliamentary candidate, Calder Valley