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Councillors to examine wind turbines bid  

Credit:  By Stephen Christie, The Press and Journal, www.pressandjournal.co.uk 29 November 2010 ~~

Plans for a group of huge wind turbines in the north-east which were labelled “unacceptable” by local authority officials will be scrutinised by councillors this week.

Rubislaw (XXXI) wants to build the 240ft structures at Castle of Auchry Farm, near Cuminestown.

The proposal won the backing of the local authority’s Formartine area committee earlier this year, despite planners warning that the area was becoming too crowded with similar projects.

A final decision on the scheme now rests with Aberdeenshire Council’s infrastructure services committee (ISC).

In a report drawn up for the committee, official Victoria Moore said that if planning permission was granted it should be subject to a total of 27 conditions.

These include dismantling the turbines if they fail to continuously produce electricity for the national grid for six months.

Another condition is that all work on the structures should “stop immediately” if any badger setts are discovered on the site.

Ms Moore also says noise created by the turbines, if they are built, should be monitored closely.

Many of the conditions placed on the project are intended to protect the area and residents living nearby, Ms Moore says.

The planner has already raised concerns about the “cumulative impact” of the Castle of Auchry project.

She said: “The main concerns relate to the location of the proposed turbines within an area which is under considerable pressure from new wind turbines.

“Further development would also have an overbearing visual impact upon residences in the vicinity leading to a loss of visual amenity, and have an adverse impact on the wider landscape character of the area.”

Councillors on the area committee ignored this advice, however, and ruled the proposal would not have a negative impact on neighbouring properties.

They also concluded that the proposed location was appropriate and there was room for the development.

The ISC is due to meet at Woodhill House in Aberdeen on Thursday.

Source:  By Stephen Christie, The Press and Journal, www.pressandjournal.co.uk 29 November 2010

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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