An MP has joined residents in their campaign against plans for a controversial wind farm at Graveley.
Andrew Lansley, the MP for South Cambridgeshire, has told objectors to the proposed wind turbines at Cotton Farm he will join MP Jonathan Djanogly for Huntingdon, St Ives, St Neots and Godmanchester in opposing the plans.
Mr Lansley said: “Wind turbines can make a useful contribution to renewable energy, but they must be well sited. The proposal at Cotton Farm would be highly visually intrusive. It would dominate rural and landscape views over the Ouse Valley and views from villages like Graveley.”
Energy firm Npower Renewables wants to build eight turbines on the site of the former wartime airfield at Cotton Farm.
Mr Lansley said a major issue of concern was the low-frequency noise from the turbines which, he stated, should not be located near people’s homes.
He added: “The Scottish Executive supports a two-kilometre separation distance.
However, Cotton Farm turbines would be just 600 metres from the nearest population in Graveley.”
Mr Lansley said: “There are on-shore and, increasingly, off-shore sites for wind farms which are far better options for both efficient energy generation and in terms of environmental impacts.
“It makes no sense to damage the environment in this part of Cambridgeshire, which will be stressed enough with the rate of development we are accommodating.”
Npower Renewables has said the wind farm could meet the average annual electricity needs of between 6,900 and 10,000 homes each year – a figure it says has already taken into account predicted wind fluctuations in speed.
A statement by the firm said: “Not only would the wind farm supply a large number of homes with clean sustainable energy, it would also make a valuable contribution towards reducing carbon dioxide emissions.”
The firm said it would ensure the wind turbines are quiet enough to meet national guidelines.
Mr Lansley said: “The Government’s renewables obligation is distorting the energy market and encouraging speculative bids for wind farms in sites which do not satisfy best overall environmental criteria.”
An application to Huntingdonshire District Council is expected shortly. Campaigners say the 417ft turbines would be the biggest in the UK, standing twice as high as Ely Cathedral.
29 May 2008
|Wind Watch relies entirely
on User Funding