Energy company E-On has been made the subject of a planning contravention order and given 21 days to repair a broken wind turbine at Lowca – or enforcement action will be taken.
The wind turbine has not worked for 14 months and site operator E-On had agreed to repair it by the end of February.
The energy company says the turbine has a fault in the gearbox that cannot be repaired on site.
Ian Curwen, press officer for Copeland Council, said: “E-On has encountered problems getting parts for the wind turbine and that’s why it has taken so long to repair it.”
However, E-On has already breached planning approval by leaving the turbine unfixed. A planning condition for wind turbines ensures that turbines at the end of their working life must not be left to deteriorate and must be dismantled within six months of becoming inactive.
Norman Clarkson, Conservative Copeland councillor, believes action must be taken.
He said: “It’s no good putting conditions down and not doing anything when they are not fulfilled. They have gone way over the time limit by eight months. It’s time we took some action.”
There are some residents who disagreed with the wind turbines being built in Lowca from the beginning.
Brian Ennis, chairman of Lowca parish council, said: “We voted against them from the start. This proves our point that wind turbines aren’t efficient. If they were so efficient, why aren’t they being repaired?
“The opinion at the beginning was that we were against them and that opinion hasn’t changed.”
Copeland Council has requested a planning contravention notice. This notice requests information so that the planning department can decide if an enforcement notice should be served.
The company now has 21 days to produce a report and repair the turbine. If E-On do not repair it in this time an enforcement order will be issued and the company will be liable for a fine.
By Sarah Robinson
27 March 2008
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