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Abandon bid for wind farm, charity is told  

Campaigners have called on green energy bosses finally to admit defeat in their fight to have a wind farm developed on an Amman Valley mountain.They want Awel Aman Tawe to drop its proposals for the turbines at Mynydd y Gwrhyd after planning chiefs refused permission for a second time.

And they say the energy charity shouldn’t try to overturn the latest refusal by challenging it in the courts – an avenue it pursued to no avail the first time around.

Terry Howell, who chairs the Tai’rgwaith Action Group, said: “It is a pity that so much charitable trust money has been wasted.

“It could have been used to support more viable and efficient methods of energy conservation within the communities.”

Awel Aman Tawe originally applied for permission to develop a four-turbine wind farm in 2004.

Neath Port Talbot Council refused the application in 2005, and an appeal was lodged.

In September 2006, an Assembly Government planning inspector upheld the decision, which then prompted a judicial review.

In October 2007, a judge ruled that the appeal be dismissed.

But the charity tried to get permission for a two-turbine development – only for Neath Port Talbot to turn it down this month.

Afterwards, Awel Aman Tawe said it was disappointed by the ruling but no decision had been made whether to challenge it.

Project manager Dan McCallum said: “The community voted in favour of the scheme through a referendum.”

But Mr Howell has challenged this, saying: “Tairgwaith and Gwaun-cae- Gurwen did not vote in favour of the scheme.

“If the surrounding villages had been privy to the photo montages, which were not produced until 2004, the result of the referendum might have been significantly different.

“After four rejections, can we finally hope this project has run out of wind, and that Mr McCallum can accept the decisions of the council and the inspectorate – and most importantly, the wishes of the communities?

Paul Lewis

Evening Post

27 June 2008

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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