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Windfarm on the cards

Another wind farm could be on the cards for North Lincolnshire if a planning application for a test mast is granted permission.

Npower renewables wants to put up an anemometer mast on land on the B1206 between Elsham and Bonby Lodge.

The mast, which would be 70 metres high, would be used to assess whether or not an area might be suitable for wind turbines.

Both Bonby and Saxby-all-Saints parish councils have objected to the mast application.

Their main concerns include the visual impact and the effect on wildlife, especially grey geese which they say have recently returned to the area.

Bonby Parish Council vice-chairman, David Oliver, said the majority of people in the village were against the mast proposal.

“Parishioners are not keen on the idea,” he said.

“The main reasons for the objection is the nature aspect and the visual impact it will have on the area. The devices can get noisy when they are ready for repair.”

Pauline Coyle, of Bonby Post Office, is not in favour of the mast.

“Residents in the village are not happy. People are worried the mast will eventually lead to a wind farm on the site,” she said.

“It is a difficult situation because we all want renewable energy but it is a case of ‘not in my back yard’. I personally don’t think they look too bad, but then you realise they can be extremely noisy and people may not be able to open their windows in the summer.”

Adrian Bishop, general manager of a mast supplier, Wind Monitor Ltd, explained how anemometer masts were used in the first tentative steps towards a wind farm.

“The device is a combination of technology such as a weather vain and a wind speed reader,” he said.

“It is used to measure the wind speed of an area at the correct height.

“The data recorded determines whether it will be a worthwhile investment to build a wind farm on the site.

“A reading must be an average of 7mph or three metres per second to give a company the go ahead for a wind farm.”

NPower renewables said it would await the outcome of the tests before it decides what steps it will take next.

“NPower renewables is currently testing the wind resource in the area and looking at the feasibility of the site,” said a spokeswoman.

“These investigations don’t necessarily indicate a wind farm will be built at this location.”

North Lincolnshire Council’s planning committee will discuss the matter when they meet at 2pm tomorrow at Pittwood House, Scunthorpe.

Members of the public are welcome to attend.

Scunthorpe Telegraph

20 May 2008