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Mini-windfarm proposal could divert Aberdeen planes  

Plans for a small-scale windfarm development on the outskirts of Stonehaven are likely to be thrown out, because the turbines could divert planes trying to land at Aberdeen Airport.

Farmer Hugh Gordon and his family want to build four 256ft wind turbines on their land at Clochnahill, four miles south of Stonehaven.

Local authority planners will recommend councillors refuse the proposals, which would produce enough energy to power almost 3,000 homes, at a meeting next week.

The scheme has attracted objections from 25 local residents, who have raised their concerns about noise, shadow-flicker and potential impact on the landscape and wildlife.

They are also worried about the cumulative impact of windfarms in the area, where two have already been approved and another three are under consideration.

A separate application for three wind turbines at Fyvie has attracted similar concerns from worried locals.

Mr Gordon and his family carried out extensive consultation with the community prior to submitting their application, and four letters of support have been received by the planning authority.

Stonehaven and District Community Council and Catterline, Kinneff and Dunnottar Rural Community Council have also not objected to the proposals.

The British Aviation Authority said the scheme would interfere with operations at Aberdeen Airport, however.

The site lies 18 miles south-west of the aerodrome reference point for Aberdeen Airport and the turbines could “cause false returns” on the air traffic controller screens resulting in planes having to be rerouted from the area.

As a result Aberdeenshire Council planners believe the scheme would be contrary to local policy on renewable energy, which is subject to transportation issues.

The area committee will discuss the scheme at its meeting on Tuesday at Viewmount, Stonehaven, at 9.30am.

The application for three wind turbines near Fyvie could be approved by councillors on the Formartine area committee, also meeting on Tuesday.

Farmer John Sleigh hopes to diversify his business by building the 1.5MW turbines, each standing 262ft high, on a hill by St John’s Wells.

Seven objections have been lodged over concerns of collective impact to the surroundings in light of several similar applications in the area.

A group using the name Methlick Farmers also hopes to build windmills on nearby hills, close to Haddo Estate, near Methlick.

The committee will decide the application at a meeting at the Kirk Centre, Ellon.

By Amelia Whittaker and Andy Philip

thisisnorthscotland.co.uk

16 March 2007

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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