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Officers' wind-farm verdict sets community opinion to one side  

The views of community councils, a neighbouring local authority and 131 residents have been cast aside with plans for 16 wind turbines on Mynydd y Betws likely to be given the go-ahead.

Councillors from Betws, Cwmaman, Llanedi, Ammanford and Llandybie have all objected to the proposal, as has Neath Port Talbot Council.

However, the application, which also covers an anemometer mast, electrical sub-station and control building, electrical connections and access roads, has been recommended for approval.

But county planners look set to have the chance to undertake a site visit before making a final decision.

Fears cited by objectors include potential ground instability caused by disused mine shafts, visual amenity, noise, the impact on commoners and the inadequate community benefit on offer.

Neath Port Council Council has objected on the grounds that the proposal would, by virtue of its scale, location and cumulative impact with that of the East Pit opencast site, create an unacceptable visual intrusion to local areas, particularly Brynaman, Tairgwaith and Gwaun cae Gurwen.

The Council for the Protection of Rural Wales has also voiced concern, stating that it would oppose any onshore wind power proposal which would have a significant adverse impact on the landscape of rural Wales.

Planning officer David Poulter, who recommended the plans dfor approval in his report, said: “In view of the public interest and to allow members to view the proposal at first hand, to assess its impact, it is recommended that a site visit to be undertaken.

“Should the committee accept the recommendation the visit will take place on June 19.”

South Wales Guardian

6 June 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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