September 2, 2010

Community council lodges opposition to Clatto Hill wind farms

By Cheryl Peebles, The Courier, 1 September 2010

Life in Ceres and surrounding settlements would be disrupted if massive wind turbines were built on Clatto Hill, a community council has claimed.

The possible creation of two wind farms on the hill between Kettlebridge and Kennoway would see 10 turbines built – some towering 100 metres and some 120 metres.

Ceres and District Community Council is fighting the plans by West Coast Energy and farmer Douglas Rennie, claiming they would have a significant negative impact on the setting of the village and others in the area, their landscape and residents.

In the organisation’s objection to Fife Council, secretary Robert Scott said harm to the setting of the area from the turbines – just over four miles south-west of Ceres – would occur when the huge structures were viewed from the east.

He said, “There would certainly be clear views of the turbines from properties in the Craigrothie, Chance Inn, Struthers Barns and Muirhead settlements.”

Mr Scott said the proposals would fail to maintain or enhance the landscape character, would have an adverse impact on the nearby Special Landscape Area, and the visual impact would have an adverse impact on local communities. Mr Scott said he hoped the local authority would consider the community council’s views when determining the planning applications.

He said, “We don’t want these small wind farm developments ruining what is rather nice countryside.”

Mr Rennie is proposing to construct three turbines measuring 100 metres at Clatto Farm on the west side of the hill, while West Coast Energy wants permission for seven 120-metre turbines at Devon Wood on the southern hillside.

West Coast Energy claims that the environmental, economic and social benefits of its proposal would outweigh the “relatively low impact on the immediate and wider environment.”

Mr Rennie’s agent Green Cat Renewables admits his scheme would have a moderately significant landscape and visual impact but concludes that it would be environmentally acceptable.

The community council was previously part of a campaign to prevent five wind turbines being built by EnergieKontor near the village of Gathercauld.

Planning permission was refused last summer.

URL to article: