Miliband's wife in wind turbine 'test case'

Reports that the wife of Labour leader Ed Miliband is representing a wind farm company in a 'test case that could lead to hundreds of turbines' being built close to heritage sites feature in today's newspaper round-up.


The Times (subscription) reports that Justine Thornton, a barrister specialising in environmental law, is advising Barnwell Manor Energy, "which wants to build four 400-ft-high turbines on land in Northamtonshire belonging to the Duke of Gloucester, the Queen’s cousin". According to the newspaper, the case is being "watched closely by the wind power industry because it is expected to set a precedent on how much protection heritage sites have from visual intrusion of turbines".

The Telegraph reports that the European Commission "is to order Britain to end wind farm subsidies". According to the newspaper, officials have told ministers "that the current level of state support for renewable energy sources must be phased out by the end of the decade".  The commission is "preparing to argue that the onshore wind and solar power industries are ‘mature’ and should be allowed to operate without support from taxpayers", the newspaper says. The newspaper quotes a Conservative minister saying: "I never thought I’d say this but the commission is absolutely right about this".

Britain’s wind farms "are expected to generate a record amount of electricity today as heavy storms are forecast", the Independent reports. According to the newspaper, "Britain’s growing fleet of wind turbines can in theory generate 10.4GW, or 14 per cent of total capacity, but too much wind can force shutdowns to prevent damage".

The Financial Times (subscription) reports that Heathrow airport is to ask local residents whether they would prefer a third runway or an alternative plan to increase the number of flights at the UK’s biggest airport. According to the newspaper, Heathrow will launch a consultation on whether it sticks with its current plan for an extra runway to the northwest or instead back a plan by former Concorde pilot Jock Lowe to extend the airport’s existing northern runway.

The Guardian reports that housing charity Shelter has said that it is seeing a "stream of cases" of families unable to cope with mounting rent or mortgage payments. According to the newspaper, rising bills and high housing costs are pushing many household budgets "to breaking point", with one in 11 people worried they will not be able to afford their rent or mortgage this month.



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