by Barry Gibson, Huddersfield Daily Examiner, www.examiner.co.uk 17 January 2011
Wind turbines should be banned from villages, a politician has demanded.
Clr Jim Dodds believes windmills should not be allowed within one kilometre (0.6 miles) of homes.
The Denby Dale Conservative has submitted a motion to next week’s monthly meeting of Kirklees Council calling for the Government to ban turbines higher than 100 metres in built-up areas.
If the move were to be successful, it would halt plans like the controversial application for four huge turbines near Birdsedge.
Clr Dodds said: “There are undoubtedly benefits to the environment in the harnessing of wind power, but they must be sited sensibly.
“Noise and ‘shadow flicker’ are areas of concern to residents when turbines are sited too close to their properties.
“Breakdown and missile throw are genuine problems which need to be addressed.
“Some may say it is scaremongering to highlight these latter problems, but a quick scan of the internet provides plenty of evidence of turbines falling over, blades falling off, catching fire and even exploding.
“There are clearly dangers from turbines and my motion calls for a minimum one-kilometre setback from residential property to reduce risks and lessen the impact of the turbines on residents and communities.
“Scotland and other parts of Europe have a two-kilometre setback, so calling for a one-kilometre setback is not unreasonable.”
Clr Dodds and Kirklees Conservative leader Clr Robert Light have submitted the motion for debate at Wednesday’s monthly council meeting at Huddersfield Town Hall.
Clr Dodds called on Labour, the Lib Dems and the Greens to back the proposal.
“I hope we will gain support for our proposals from other political groups on the council,” he said.
“The motion also calls on the council to review its Local Development Framework core strategy following the ongoing consultation to better reflect these concerns over wind turbine siting.
“We must also liaise with other councils and encourage them to introduce similar proposals.”
Clr Dodds has opposed plans to build turbines near villages in Kirklees.
Last month he was part of a successful campaign to block a proposal for two 47.5-metre windmills behind the Kaye Arms in Grange Moor.
The Conservative is also backing Birdsedge residents in their battle against plans to erect four 125-metre turbines in their village.