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Power Struggle in Galicia: The Battle for Wind Farm Proposals

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Thornley

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Time of past OR future Camino
Frances x 2 , Norte x 2 , Le Puy x 3 , Portuguese x 2,
Mont St Michel , Primitivo .
Very interesting article in " The Wall Street Journal " on the battle for power in Spain , particularly Galicia .
Comments from business owners near Spain oldest cathedral [ Basilica San Martino de Mondonedo ] on the route to SDC
Comments from Law Professor at SDC University ..... Fernando de Abel Vivela.

Have we had the best vista and ambiance on these ancient paths ?
 
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I’ve always had less trouble with wind(mills)turbines than Donkey-Oaty had. I took the view that like meat-eaters who won’t live next to a slaughterhouse most people seem to want electricity without knowing where it comes from. UK residents might like to reflect on how many photos of Jarman’s Prospect Cottage manage to exclude the Dungeness Nuclear Power Station from the frame
 
Fwiw, here is the link to the article in question, at least I guess that it is the one: Tourism and Manufacturing Fight for the Future of Power in Europe. It is behind a paywall but I managed to read the whole article the other day. Not sure why it says Europe in the headline as I remember it being mainly about a specific project in Galicia. I mainly remember that it said that Spain has no sources of oil or natural gas of its own (can’t remember about coal) which I knew it anyway, and the rest is a version of a discussion that I have read numerous times before and where I will refrain from further comments…
 
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Fwiw, here is the link to the article in question, at least I guess that it is the one: Tourism and Manufacturing Fight for the Future of Power in Europe. It is behind a paywall but I managed to read the whole article the other day. Not sure why it says Europe in the headline as I remember it being mainly about a specific project in Galicia. I mainly remember that it said that Spain has no sources of oil or natural gas of its own (can’t remember about coal) which I knew it anyway, and the rest is a version of a discussion that I have read numerous times before and where I will refrain from further comments…
There used to be lots of coal mining. The last mine in the area I am working (in Asturias) closed in 2018.
 
I also see that the Wall Street Journal published an article with the title Pilgrims, Real and Faux, Clog Santiago Way. Published on Aug. 20, 1999. Pity that it is behind the paywall, too. It might be fun to read it now, some 25 years later. :cool:
 
I’ve always had less trouble with wind(mills)turbines than Donkey-Oaty had. I took the view that like meat-eaters who won’t live next to a slaughterhouse most people seem to want electricity without knowing where it comes from. UK residents might like to reflect on how many photos of Jarman’s Prospect Cottage manage to exclude the Dungeness Nuclear Power Station from the frame
I kind of agree. Once upon a time people reacted furiously to electricity pylons; now we don't even notice them. It is a subjective opinion but I actually find wind turbines quite beautiful, although they might be less obtrusive sitting in the Thames estuary or off the Costa Brava than plonked on top of a Galician mountain. They kill far less birdlife than coal fired power stations, by the way, and tend not to blow up and disperse radio-active dust across the landscape. Galicians often complain that they pay higher utility prices than the rest of Spain in spite of providing proportionately more energy but I don't know if this is true or just a familiar gripe.
 
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All these large man made objects change the context of the landscape.

The high speed rail embankment has totally changed the context of the meseta.

Wind turbines on lots of hill tops will change the context of the landscape.

Large metal sculptures change the context, drawing our eyes towards something man made and away from the natural world.

It's a bit like the proliferation of senda - if you've never come across it before, you won't know what you have missed. If you have experienced what came before, you will understand why they are there, but still regret the passing of a previous way of being.
 
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I kind of agree. Once upon a time people reacted furiously to electricity pylons; now we don't even notice them. It is a subjective opinion but I actually find wind turbines quite beautiful, although they might be less obtrusive sitting in the Thames estuary or off the Costa Brava than plonked on top of a Galician mountain. They kill far less birdlife than coal fired power stations, by the way, and tend not to blow up and disperse radio-active dust across the landscape. Galicians often complain that they pay higher utility prices than the rest of Spain in spite of providing proportionately more energy but I don't know if this is true or just a familiar gripe.
One thing I noticed in my time in Spain last year was how many pylons there seemed to be and how they ran across so many landscapes. There were points where it felt like someone decided that no dramatic view was complete without some cables draped across it.

And I like wind turbines, I thought the line of them along the Alto del Perdon added to the atmosphere of it (and they're also a good way of estimating what the wind at the top of a climb is like!)
 
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There used to be lots of coal mining. The last mine in the area I am working (in Asturias) closed in 2018.
I just walked the Salvador and saw several active mines (and several closed ones) along the way. And while I had assumed that the large plant outside Ponferrada was nuclear, I was told by two energy generation engineers on this last walk that no, it is also coal (the region lacking in enough fresh water to operate cooling towers should have been the give-away to me).
 
All these large man made objects change the context of the landscape.

The high speed rail embankment has totally changed the context of the meseta.

Wind turbines on lots of hill tops will change the context of the landscape.

Large metal sculptures change the context, drawing our eyes towards something man made and away from the natural world.

It's a bit like the proliferation of senda - if you've never come across it before, you won't know what you have missed. If you have experienced what came before, you will understand why they are there, but still regret the passing of a previous way of being.
FWIW, we have no direct access to “nature” and cannot have it. “Nature” is a social concept imbued with our expectations, romanticistations, fears, awe…. it is also treated culturally, always as an economic resource, as a tourist attraction…. There is no nature separate from culture; the two concepts cannot be disentangled. Capital ‘“R” romanticism in poetry, literature, and fine art would be the sine qua non of trying to separate nature from culture and completely saturating the concept in culture. Every single outfitter promising access to the “wild” has developed a saleable image of the wild and a host of tips, tricks and tools for us to explore, exploit and conquer.
At least one does hear repeatedly that the various caminos are not “nature walks” but “cultural walks”.
No cavalier exploiter of the planet am I, but I know that I will never, ever access nature apart from a culturally manufactured view of what it is, and changing landscapes are eternal. Other animals change them too.
Speaking metaphorically and not religiously, there is no “eden”.
 
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FWIW, we have no direct access to “nature” and cannot have it. “Nature” is a social concept imbued with our expectations, romanticistations, fears, awe…. it is also treated culturally, always as an economic resource, as a tourist attraction…. There is no nature separate from culture; the two concepts cannot be disentangled. Capital ‘“R” romanticism in poetry, literature, and fine art would be the sine qua non of trying to separate nature from culture and completely saturating the concept in culture. Every single outfitter promising access to the “wild” has developed a saleable image of the wild and a host of tips, tricks and tools for us to explore, exploit and conquer.
At least one does hear repeatedly that the various caminos are not “nature walks” but “cultural walks”.
No cavalier exploiter of the planet am I, but I know that I will never, ever access nature apart from a culturally manufactured view of what it is, and changing landscapes are eternal. Other animals change them too.
Speaking metaphorically and not religiously, there is no “eden”.
What if I got on a wind only Catamaran and sailed amongst the Barrier Reef .
If I found a beautiful inlet , too close for the sharks [ more on land than water ] and catch a fish whilst diving where has the culture invaded MY nature study on these deserted Islands .
 
What if I got on a wind only Catamaran and sailed amongst the Barrier Reef .
If I found a beautiful inlet , too close for the sharks [ more on land than water ] and catch a fish whilst diving where has the culture invaded MY nature study on these deserted Islands .
In your idea of it in the first place. You are the cultural creature interpreting the space and place through your enculturated lens. It is the quality of being human that makes interpretation and expectation unavoidable. Not to do this would require a lack of capacity to work in the symbolic, not to be human. “Nature” is an idea, not a thing. Whatever is out there when we are not looking/sensing/interpreting, we cannot ever know.
 
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In your idea of it in the first place. You are the cultural creature interpreting the space and place through your enculturated lens. It is the quality of being human that makes interpretation and expectation unavoidable. Not to do this would require a lack of capacity to work in the symbolic, not to be human. “Nature” is an idea, not a thing. Whatever is out there when we are not looking/sensing/interpreting, we cannot ever know.

I left school early because the brothers were perambulating their teachings on my good self.
I was not into Latin or French .
I realised later how important latin was when watching those stupid quiz shows with the kids and grandkids ......the latin meaning of a word "would" have won smart people plenty if only they studied the subject.

If my first meaning of perambulating is incorrect then I apologise , but if one takes the leisure and not strict meaning then old mate you walk for leisure.
My OP was asking if windmills , now spoken about in all sections of Galician society , has lessened the delights of the Camino from what it was years ago.........in the minds of the people replying.
Not sure how many of the 250000 pa go and look at windmills , but I do believe I do know a few that started in Le Puy and took photos of nothing but nature [ cows sheep forests rivers gullies and mountains]
I hope this simple example of nature in their eyes passes the entrance exam .
I was once told there is no such thing as a thing ..........by those same well educated teachers.
Keep well,
 
Something like those non-existent trees falling (or not) in the forest?
No, not at all like that. Something more along these lines:


Regardless, I find it perplexing though that ”nature lovers“ the world over frequently rail against windmills for being “ugly” and would prefer, apparently, to keep the unseen collapsing of mountains, flooding of villages, destructive mineral extraction for batteries, polluting our waters will oil and tailing ponds… etc etc etc to generate the power needed to run the world so that they won’t have to have a passing view of “nature” “blighted” by a windmill farm. We have the same battles regionally here… with falsehoods and conspiracy theories by the bucketload about wind farms.
I am among those who find them to be interesting markers in the landscape, and hopeful indicators for energy production. I am far more concerned, frankly, by solar farms covering over what used to be crop-land for food, but the central concern to my mind is not whether they are a visual disruption.

I do find the linked article interesting, but as a person visiting someone else’s country, I remain agnostic on how those who have rights there should decide to meet their energy generation needs. Where I live, it was an enormous health relief to the population when coal plants were closed and air quality warnings ceased.
 
Notice I gave a like to your reply
Try and get your head around this ......we live in the country that is NOW the greatest gas exporter in the world and this same country is now subsidising household their gas bills.....which have skyrocketed.
NB >>>> We tax payers pay to have gas .

I think the AD HOC measures taken over a few decades by the powers to be without proper due process is now catching up..........sometimes the hardest thing to say is no ........yet it should be the easiest.
Im starting to rant ........
Rose' now beside the BBQ and may I say ...Its called 6 Roses by Benjamin Tallinder [ France ] with no chemicals , only organic .
 
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I am currently staying at my sons home in a small village in Galicia. Over a year ago the plans to put wind turbines around his village were rushed through to avoid the change of law which doubled the distance turbines had to be from houses. The people here have a very simple way of life mainly producing milk.
They are generally poorly educated and still affected by the way the area was run by Franco. This makes them very unlikely to protest about something as life changing as wind turbines. Many of them will suffer a minimum of 45 decibels of noise 24/7 with considerably more according to conditions. Each turbine is also likely to have a red flashing light at its head. There will of course be pylons to carry electricity cables across the country. There has been very little research into the affect on animals in the area, in particular cows and whether it affects milk yields. When we entered Galicia from Asturias about a month ago the windmills were huge and there were dozens of them. They were distracting when driving. Interestingly it seems unlikely that the cost of electricity will be reduced for those afftected by the presence of these unattractive metal monsters.
 
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