Some people complain about wind turbines from an aesthetic point of view. ‘They’re ugly,’ they’ll proclaim. ‘They ruin beautiful landscapes,’ they’ll exclaim.

Then there are many who find wind turbines majestic, awe-inspiring things. Some of the new designs of vertical-axis wind turbines look like pieces of modern art. Beauty is, of course, in the eye of the beholder. Aesthetic viewpoints are subjective. We’d like to bet, however, that hardly anybody ever looked at a nuclear power plant…

THORP (thermal oxide reprocessing plant). Sellafield, NW England.

THORP (thermal oxide reprocessing plant). Sellafield, NW England.

© Greenpeace/Robert Morris

…and said: ‘You know, that’s beautiful.’ (Not unless they were Areva executives drooling over how much money they were going to rip off from the tax payer.)

Then there are those who complain that wind turbines are a threat to wildlife, that birds are being killed. How many birds are killed by wind turbines? Are there any accurate figures? At the Sellafield nuclear plant in the UK they could give you an accurate figure of how many birds have been killed there by sharpshooters. All they’d need to do is go down to the basement and count the hundreds of seagulls and other birds they have stored in the enormous freezer. These are birds sharpshooters have had to kill because the animals have become radioactive after swimming in the water at Sellafield. The bodies can’t be disposed of because they’re classed as nuclear waste.

You can say what you like about wind turbines but at least you won’t need robots to clean up the dangerous sludge they produce either. That’s because, obviously, they don’t produce any dangerous sludge. Unlike at Sellafield where, you guessed it, they need robots to clean up the dangerous sludge, a by-product of nuclear energy, because you can’t send a human in there to clean it up. Sellafield isn’t the only place – robots are in big demand at the most dangerous nuclear sites.

And what about these poor robots? Will they become radioactive in turn? Will we need another army of robots to clean up the army of robots? Will we then need an army of robots to clean up the army of robots who cleaned up the army of robots? This is potentially never-ending…