Plans to build three wind turbines on the edge of a north-east town moved a step closer yesterday despite being labelled “overbearing and dominating” by planners.
Clean energy company Green Cat Renewables hopes to build the 328ft structures at Shielburn Farm, Newton of Fortrie, near Turriff.
Its application was backed yesterday by members of the Formartine committee, who referred it to Aberdeenshire Council’s infrastructure services committee (ISC) for approval.
Turriff and district councillor Sandy Duncan said the site appeared to be poor agricultural land and the impact on the landscape would be minimal.
He added: “To me it seems like an ideal site for these turbines.”
Fellow Turriff councillor Anne Robertson echoed his comments, saying the proposed location for the turbines was appropriate.
“I would be minded to support it and grant this application,” she said.
Councillors backed the project unanimously, but agreed to refer the application to the ISC, which will consider it in due course.
In a report that went before the committee yesterday, officials had recommended councillors refuse planning permission for the scheme.
It was revealed that the project has attracted six letters in support, six against and a 21-name petition backing the proposal.
Concerns raised include increased noise as a result of the turbines, their proximity to neighbouring houses and lack of financial benefit to the area.
However, the scheme’s supporters say the turbines, which would be capable of supplying power to 3,900 homes, would reduce the region’s carbon footprint and benefit the environment.
Planning official and report author Victoria Moore had said: “The size of the wind turbines proposed for the application site is too tall for the landscape character and identified sensitivity of the area.
“For reasons of their scale the turbines are likely to detract from the visual quality and character of the designated landscape and therefore refusal of this application is recommended.”
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