Not in my back yard!

The NIMBY. A 90’s phrase coined to label anyone who objects to something being built near them.

“Not in my back yard” is what you’ll hear these dullards screaming when anything which might just make the slightest mark on their middle class lifestyle is proposed.

Take, for example, wind farms.

Now it just so happens that the best areas for wind farms happen to be naturally high ground, and natural funnel shaped valleys really help scoop up the wind and form a jet. Now it also happens that naturally high ground tends to have a slightly higher value because, after all, we all want a view.

Marr, Hickleton and Barnburgh – three villages not too far away, and all three of them full of rather expensive housing are to be “blighted” by “shock horror” the “ugly manifestation” of a wind farm, generating 8 megawatts of electricity (which is enough for around 16,000 homes). The electricity for these three villages is currently produced by the mass of power stations clumped along the Humber Estuary; Ferrybridge, Eggborough and Drax.

Whilst the view on a sunny day can be quite dramatic with the three columns of steam rising up and the artificially produced cumulus clouds heaped up above them, you have to realise that we cannot and must not rely on fossil fuels for the future of electricity generation. We must all do our bit and microgenerate. Whether it is an array of solar panels sat on our roof, or a mini wind turbine, or even just a personal solar charger used to keep our mobile phone running – it all helps towards the big picture.

These people who don’t want the blight of such things are usually the same people who won’t think twice about booking an expensive holiday (thus using carbon by the bucketload and blighting someone else with their noisy aeroplane) or upgrading to the latest flat screen plasma 50″ TV (and just throwing the old one away, thus creating a massive electrical waste nightmare).

These flat plasma TV’s use electricity too, did they not realise that? whilst typing their latest complaint email to the council (using their laptop, using electricity) and sending it wirelessly (using the mobile phone mast they so objected about in 2007) and then printing a copy off for their records (using a printer and ink shipped from China and made using electricity generated in someone elses backyard).

So, perhaps a new law should be introduced?

Anyone who objects to a particular service or facility introduced into their area should be banned from using such services in all areas for life?

The Sheffield Supertram extension, people of Wickersley? – well when you get into your dotage and can’t drive any more you’re not allowed on public transport.

New landfill or waste processing plant? – deal with your own waste.

A new array of wind turbines, or some pylons? – fancy generating your own electricity.

Mobile phone masts? – stop using your bloody mobile phone then.

So in short. Either embrace the technology and the cost that comes with it, and stop expecting everyone else to put up with mess created by your perfect middle class lifestyle.

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