Plans for a five-turbine windfarm at Nigg Hill in Easter Ross have moved a step closer with the submission of a planning application for the project, which is expected to cost up to £10million.
London-based renewable energy company Falck Renewables, which has an office in Inverness, wants to erect the turbines, measuring 410ft to tip of blade, on Wester Rarichie Farm, 2.4 miles south-west of Balintore.
The planning application for the development, which would generate 10MW of electricity – enough to supply around 7,500 homes, also includes a site control building, grid connection, borrow pit, construction compound and access roads.
Atmos Consulting project manager Fraser McKenzie, who prepared the environmental impact assessment on behalf of Falck Renewables, said: “We believe this is a good location for a windfarm and most of the area is designated in the Highland Renewable Energy Strategy as suitable for this type of small-scale development.
“While the windfarm will be visible, we consider that an appropriately-scaled development in this location would fit with the landscape character and the elements of large-scale industry already present, such as the yard at Nigg or the oil rig platforms in the Cromarty Firth.
“As well as the opportunity to provide clean, green energy, one of the features of a Falck windfarm is the level of community involvement that is possible through ownership schemes such as Energy4All.”
He said that Falck offered communities the opportunity to buy shares in their local windfarm.
The planning application can be viewed at the Highland Council offices in Dingwall and headquarters in Inverness, Nigg Community Hall, Seaboard Memorial Hall in Balintore, and in Cromarty Library.
8 February 2008
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