Andros meeting: investors defensive and equivocal
On 9/2/20, the municipality of Andros organised a public meeting attended by representatives of the five large consortiums currently planning the installation of extensive wind parks on the Cycladic island. Explaining their company’s positions were representatives of ENTEKA for the wind park at Marathia; Greek Wind Power SA for the wind farm near Korthi; ELIKA (Copelouzos Group); Mytilinaios Group for the Rachi-Xirokombi wind farm; and DEI Renewables. The comments of the company representatives as recorded in this video, equivocal, defensive and at times clearly duplicitous, are revealing of the attitudes and intentions behind the investment boom in Greek RES. An extended report posted on the Andros Portal included the following critique:
“It is to Mr. Valtis, representing the Copelouzos company, that we owe the serious argument that school excursions will be organised with bus rides to the wind parks, where the children will sit beneath the wind turbines studying their workings! Furthermore, Mr. Valtis maintained that nowhere on the internet can one find any post alleging a downturn in tourism due to wind farms; on the contrary, according to him they all allege a positive increase! He also claimed it has been proven that inhabitants always change their minds [in favour], once wind farms are actually installed and running.
Mr. Mavros, representing DEH Renewables, attempted to convince the locals that they would experience zero disturbance from the wind generators to be placed at Kallibari and Kambanos. The representative of the Mytilinaios company […] focused on the so-called ‘contributory benefits’ to be collected by the municipality, claiming that beyond the legally enforced 3%, the islanders’ incomes will increase (at least of those few who will lease their property) while the economy of the island in general will benefit from the construction and operation of wind farms. He did not of course explain in exactly what fashion, but benefits there would undoubtedly be. And according to him, there would not be the slightest negative effect on the landscape.
Mrs. Beskou for Greek Wind Power argued that the wind farm would be invisible, and that its nuisance value would be zero, located as it was 3 km from Korthi and 2.5 km from Piso Meria. Regarding the fact that the location selected lies within a Natura area she emphasised the fact that the application procedure began in 1999 while the area was not included in the Natura network until 2010, that a Special Protection Area does not exclude wind farms and that since the company’s interest predates the area’s protected status, there is no reason whatsoever to doubt its legality… Concluding his arguments, the ENTEKA representative maintained that ‘the best form of instruction was a visit to an existing wind farm’.