With President George Bush still in denial about the effect of US energy consumption on the rest of the planet, it is left to Her Majesty the Queen of England to show the green way forward to Heads of State.
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Having already installed a Hydro-electric plant at Windor Castle, the “Green” Queen has harnessed a stream on the Balmoral estate – where the Royals are currently enjoying their summer break – to produce hydro-electric power.
George Bush would approve of the fact that every volt will be sold, with enough electricity being generated to potentially power The White House.
A water-driven turbine was installed at Balmoral in the Twenties to provide the castle with electric light. However, since the Fifties it has been used to power the estate sawmill. As the mill is no longer in use, staff installed a generator that allows the turbine to be connected to the National Grid.
Mr Peter Ord, the estate”s manager said none of the electricity would be directly used on the estate, which would still take its supply from the grid.
“The turbine will be commissioned this month,” he said.
Ironically, Princess Diana used to complain about how cold Balmoral was because the Royals were obsessive about turning lights off and keeping the heating to a minimum in a bid to lower running costs.
Is there no end to the Queen’s laudable efforts to make her estates generate money?
She will also approve of her son Prince Charles’ latest attempt to save on the water rates at Birkhall.
While the rates for lesser mortals have risen an average of 12 per cent, he pays nothing for his Scottish retreat because the water comes from a natural spring.
Incidentally, the Prince is looking for a gardener to tend Birkhall’s herbaceous borders and its walled vegetable garden (which supplies Camilla’s favourite greens – courgettes fried in butter, and creamed spinach).
But green-fingered candidates should bear in mind that it’s only the boss who’s allowed to talk to the plants.