About Me

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Weston Super Mare, Somerset, United Kingdom
Hello and welcome to my blog. My name is Robin Whitlock. I am a freelance journalist with a special interest in environmental issues and renewable energy. I have numerous published articles to my credit and write regularly for a number of renewable energy websites. I am also a writer for Renewable Energy Magazine and a sub-editor for Renewable Energy Focus. I am currently based in Bristol, UK. Besides renewable energy and green issues I have a wide variety of other interests which includes World War 2, mythology and folklore, gardening, railways and lots more besides. You can also reach me on either of my two email addresses, which are: robinwhitlock66@hotmail.com and robinwhitlock1966@gmail.com Thanks!

Hire Me!!

Hire Me!! - Freelance Journalist specializing in environmental issues and renewable energy
Writer for Renewable Energy Magazine
Sub-editor for Renewable Energy Focus
Contributor to Holmes Digital Media websites (Solar Guide, Renewables Guide, Boiler Guide, Builder Guide)
Contributor to Cleversolar blog and Find Energy Savings
Published in numerous national magazines
See below for writing samples

Friday, 29 October 2010

My article on racial prejudice among US troops in Bristol during WW2 is out now!!

Earlier in the year I approached Britain At War magazine, a title I had been reading regularly for some time, with an idea based on a book I had seen a reference to online. The book was on the subject of racial prejudice suffered by black troops in Britain during WW2 and it happened to mention a riot that had taken place in Bristol in the summer of 1944.
This was an intriguing story, but there didn't seem to be too much detail in the excerpt from the book. I therefore did some preparatory research and uncovered enough material to feel confident in proposing the idea of an article to Britain At War.
After a great deal of research, most of it drawn from the memories of local citizens due to the absence of official records, the article has finally been published in the November 2010 edition of the magazine. Complete with colour photos taken at various relevant sites around Bristol by myself. Following an appeal I made in the Bristol Evening Post, around ten to fifteen local people who maintain memories of US troops in Bristol contacted me and told me their stories. The result is a fascinating insight into a saga that would otherwise would have been forgotten, since the authorities at the time were most anxious to cover up the occurrence of dissent in their own ranks. It would have been ideal propaganda material for the Germans if nothing else, and would also have caused doubt among the public about the ability of the allies to invade mainland Europe successfully, for this tale is set among the backdrop of the preparations for the greatest maritime expedition in modern history, the D-Day landings in 1944. You can buy the magazine now in Smiths and all good newsagents, price £4.10.

Tuesday, 26 October 2010

The problem with renewable technology - Part 2 - Wind

This is Part 2 of my renewable technology article, focusing this time on wind power.

The problem with renewable technology - Part 1 - Solar

This is my article on solar power for the website Ask The Experts. It is Part 1 of a two-part article on the efficiency of renewable technology which you can read in full here:


Essentially the article draws upon existing pieces written by the Canadian engineer Professor Vaclav Smil of the University of Manitoba. Smil argues that as a result of the various low efficiencies involved, replacing fossil fuels with renewable technology will not be easy. There are the fluctuations in the solar constant to take into account, the amount of space available on land which can be devoted to renewable energy plants, the efficiencies of photovoltaic (PV) cells which rarely reach an efficiency level of 30%, if that. The conclusion has to be drawn that renewable technology will not save us by itself, but only as part of a universal package of energy measures which may have to include hitherto unpalatable options like nuclear power. The only other option appears to be some form of 'managed collapse'. As will be seen, the same conclusions that apply to solar can also be said of wind power. Further discussion of these topics regularly take place on the Green group of the website LinkedIn among others, and there is also an energy discussion group on Ask The Experts.