This morning at 11am, hundreds of People Against Pylons from Mid Wales will march in Cardiff Bay. The protest culminates on the sixth day of a trek that will take a few core protesters more than 100 miles from Welshpool to the steps of the Senedd with thousands more.
But why are these people against pylons? The group outlines its reasons on its website, listing damage to the countryside, a flawed consultation, health risks, outdated technology and vested interests. At the crux of this campaign is a plan to install wind farms that need those massive, metal structures known as pylons to connect their electricity to the National Grid.
All of this stems from the Welsh government’s plans for renewable energy to meet the National Grid’s needs. (In policy speak, this is known as TAN 8, or Technical Advice Note 8: Renewable Engery, which can be read in its entirety here.)
To get a full picture of the issue, watch last night’s ITV Wales report here.
Who’s behind the placards?
The campaign has enlisted the local newspaper, Powys County Times, and its chief reporter Richard Jones. Through the blister-inducing trek, Jones has been keeping a journal on the County Times’ website whilst also tweeting @CountyTimes.
Another campaigner against the wind farm plan is @weathergodess, better known as weather presenter Sian Lloyd. She plans to be at the Senedd this morning, too.
Glynn Davies MP for Montgomeryshire is another advocate for the campaign. On 10 May, he spoke out against wind farms in Parliament.
Within Facebook, the campaign has a critical mass of activity on the Montgomeryshire Against Pylons (MAP) Facebook page with more than 600 people “liking” the page. Other pages on the social network include STOP (Stop the Overhead Pylons), Conservation of Upland Powys, and Artists Against Wind Farms.
EPAW (European Platform Against Windfarms) has advertised today’s protests, using a musical collage of images of Mid Wales countryside to elicit ill will towards TAN 8. Another site, Wind Farm Planning in Mid Wales, attempts to collate all the information into one place.
For all of those who won’t be in Cardiff Bay, follow Twitter hashtag #moc24.
What do you think of the planned wind farms in mid Wales?