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Guess who rents out the seabed for wind turbines?

Offshore wind farms to generate £100m windfall for Crown Estate - Times Online

The Crown Estate will earn windfall profits of at least £100million a year from Britain's booming offshore renewable energy industry.

The estate, which owns the foreshore and seabed around the UK, has already signed contracts worth tens of millions of pounds with operators of offshore wind farms.

Rents from the siting of wind turbines are only the beginning of a vast new commercial opportunity for the Crown Estate. In addition to a huge expansion in offshore wind power and the development of tidal power, the estate will profit from the laying of subsea cables and an emerging industry in storing carbon captured from coal-fired power stations.

Rob Hastings, the Crown Estate's marine director, said that the group, which manages land and assets owned by the Queen but pays most of its revenues to the Treasury, charges offshore wind operators an annual “rent” of just under 1 per cent of the value of the electricity generated.

The Crown Estate has full ownership of the seabed for 12 nautical miles around the UK and further rights out to the extent of Britain's continental shelf, at 200 miles.

At least someone will profit from them I suppose, though it seems the money will circulate as pointlessly as the blades from the Treasury to the operators to The Crown and back to the Treasury....


Ah yes, and what about the Principality of Sealand.

Are you aware the northern area of the proposed Thames estuary wind farm falls within the territorial waters of the Principality of Sealand?

The Bureau Chief of Internal Affairs for the Principality of Sealand informed me in December 2006:

"We are in discussion with UK authorities concerning this project and thank you for drawing it to our attention"

Bureau of Internal Affairs
Principality of Sealand
(c/o Sealand Post Bag, IP11 9SZ, UK)

Just under 1% of the value of the electricity generated?


Is that the actual nett value of the actual physical measurable electricity actually supplied into the grid, less all production costs including depreciating the capital? They won't make much of a rent, then.

Or is it - as is more likely - 1% of the notional value of the electricity they're rated to supply, at the subsidy-inflated cost, and with most of the capital cost ignored?

God this is so incestuous. The State pays a subsidy to raise the price of something we don't really need, which is therefore produced by another arm of the same State, delivered to the customers who are forced to pay over the odds for it by another arm of the same State, while yet another arm of the same State helps itself to a further slice of our money on top of everything else.

Where's that photo of a snake consuming its own tail?

And all paid for by us suckers, of course.

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