A Drummore resident has warned that Wigtownshire will become a windfarm alley if all the onshore and offshore turbine proposals are approved.
Dr Jackie Paddison, a retired university lecturer, says the Scottish Government’s medium term proposals contained in their ‘Draft Plan for Offshore Wind Energy’ could see 400 turbines stretch right across the mouth of Luce Bay.
The plan highlights possible future windfarm sites in the Solway with the largest stretching from the Mull of Galloway right across the entrance to Luce Bay.
Dr Paddison said: “This wind-farm (SW3) will have approximately 350-400 turbines which will be several rows deep.
“These large structures will be heard several miles away and will have a noise impact on anyone living in the area and of course a visual impact for several miles.
“According to a promotional booklet by the energy company E.ON (at the Robin Rigg site) the maintenance team servicing the turbines is based at Workington, Cumbria and the sub-sea cable is taken to Cumbria to feed into the English grid system. Marine Scotland was not able to give any guarantees that the power produced in the Solway would come to Scotland or that any of the maintenance work would be undertaken from Scottish harbours.
“The question needs to be asked therefore – how is the Solway development going to benefit Scotland?
“The Scottish Government could be forgiven for thinking we like wind turbines here. In Dumfries and Galloway there are at present seven onshore wind farms with another four in the later planning stage and 13 at the early stages of planning. Then there are the applications from individuals (as opposed to companies) totalling about 100 for small groups of wind turbines of varying sizes and 75 per cent of these are in Wigtownshire (most are on the Rhins).
“The things are noisy and particularly the ones that use the older type of technology, they are visually very dominant and I can’t see the point or ruining a lovely part of Scotland when it isn’t necessary. Apart from anything else the low frequency noise produced by wind turbines seems to have negative effects on the health of people that live near them”.
VisitScotland regional director Sandi Hellowell said: “We understand and support the drive for renewable energy and recognise the potential of Scotland’s vast resource.
“We are however concerned about the accumulative effect of wind turbines and the impact this may have on the local landscape and will be responding through the relevant formal planning processes.”
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