Turbines and towers

Will Self's BBC website article on the British countryside is thought-provoking, and bound to get a strong response from various people.  I agree with him on most fronts.

The idea that the British countryside is natural is nonsense.  Almost none of it is more than a few hundred years old.  The idea that wind turbines and power stations are ugly is also nonsense.

Many rural parts of the UK are exceedingly boring: vast sprawls of tree-free pasture, very little topography, and very little drama.  As Self points out, the giant cooling towers of Drax, Eggborough and Ferrybridge are extraordinary and wondrous structures, especially in the flat tedium of east Yorkshire.  Argue about their purpose by all means, but don't dismiss the elegance of their engineering.

The Stonehenge of eastern Yorkshire.

The same goes for wind turbines.  They may need government subsidy to be built, and they may not be perfectly efficient, but they are feats of construction that often bring visual complexity to the regions they stand in.  Railing against them as barbaric intrusions on an untouched, prehistoric landscape is to understand nothing of the country you live in.

The British countryside: as natural as apple pie.

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