'Make Honiton an eco town'
PUBLISHED: 02:01 27 August 2008 | UPDATED: 22:15 15 June 2010
WITHIN a few weeks boilers will be lit using much needed fossil energy and discharging heat and more CO2 into our fragile atmosphere. This will literally cost the Earth and result in fuel poverty for those on lower incomes as cold weather intensifies. Yet
WITHIN a few weeks boilers will be lit using much needed fossil energy and discharging heat and more CO2 into our fragile atmosphere. This will literally cost the Earth and result in fuel poverty for those on lower incomes as cold weather intensifies.Yet the recent storms and heavy rainfall are also a reminder that we in Honiton are surrounded by huge amounts of free energy. Unlike Scandinavia and Germany, much of this is wasted because we have not invested in the technology to harness it. Think of the energy that could be created if the rivers, wind and sun could be tapped!The River Otter carries with it huge energy potential; even the Gissage has falls where perhaps small turbines might be placed. The nearby Common and hills around Honiton offer the potential for generating wind power. And almost every house and building could capture some solar, if the panels could be supplied at a reasonable price. And we can ensure that any new build in Honiton, such as the community centre, has this technology built in. Does it?There is talk of eco towns, but why shouldn't Honiton become an eco town? I saw it happen 10 years ago in a small town in Germany, where local green groups had tapped the wind and river and were providing cheap local energy and promoting energy saving. At the very least it should be investigated. By whom? Ideally, government and councils but we have waited too long. There are local green groups, but they need much more support and their ideas should be listened to.May I suggest the town council, development trust, chamber of commerce and voluntary groups form a Honiton Eco Team - perhaps we could become East Devon's first eco town.We have much to gain and nothing to lose but our impossible energy bills and damage to mother Earth.Tony SimpsonAshleigh RoadHoniton