Local MP Geoffrey Cox was at Sutcombe Parish Hall last Friday to attend a presentation about Coronation Power’s plans for six giant wind turbines at Wheelers Cross. Mr Cox, who was present at the invitation of the Parish Council, listened alongside County Councillor Desmond Shadrick and local District Councillor Bob Hicks to Mr Vickram Mirchandani, Coronation Power’s Managing Director. Over a hundred people attended the meeting, which was chaired by Margaret Coles, the Parish Chairman, to listen to the presentation and ask questions. In response to questions from the floor, Geoffrey Cox made it clear that he was opposed to the scheme.
The Torridge and West Devon MP said to a packed meeting: “I have consistently resisted large scale wind turbine developments in areas which are so dependent on the tranquillity and beauty of the landscape for its appeal to tourists. These turbines provide profit to the developer but little else to the local communities they disturb.”
Mr Cox, a Member of the EFRA Select Committee of the House of Commons which is soon to publish a report on Climate Change: The Citizen’s Agenda, said: “They are an inefficient and disproportionate use of resources available for the cause of renewable energy, which requires the mass engagement of individuals and communities rather than these white elephants.”
The Select Committee has emphasised the need for support for individuals to become involved in taking measures to improve the energy efficiency of their households and strongly advocated policies to encourage microgeneration as one of the most promising means of tackling climate change. The MP, who is a member of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Microgeneration, has championed the increased use of microgeneration technologies locally and last year held a renewable energy fair in Winkleigh which attracted over five hundred visitors during the day. T
Geoffrey Cox urged residents “to remain vigilant” concerning the application which would occupy a 67 hectare area of land between Bradworthy, Sutcombe, and West Putford. Each of the six turbines which Mr Mirchandani said were proposed, would be 75 metres tall and visible for many miles within the surrounding countryside.
2 July 2007
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