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Joy at turbines plan axe  

Credit:  by Mark Smith, Pontypridd Observer, www.walesonline.co.uk ~~

Campaigners fighting the construction of seven wind turbines near Gilfach Goch applauded in triumph after councillors rejected the proposals.

Rhondda Cynon Taf Council voted to turn down RWE Npower Renewables’ application for seven turbines to complete the Fforch Nest Wind Farm.

The area of the proposed wind farm lies across the border of RCT and Bridgend County Borough Council, south of Clydach Vale and North West of Gilfach Goch.

The plans were mainly rejected because of the turbine’s visual impact and the “increased technical encirclement of Gilfach Goch.”

Protestors lined up outside the council chamber in Clydach Vale on February 3 to voice their opinions on the proposal and cheered after the vast majority of councillors voted against the plans.

John Jenkins, of South Wales Alternatives to Turbines (SWATT) said: “We are absolutely overwhelmed at the decision.

“The RCT councillors were very thorough in their analysis of the proposals and rejected them on numerous grounds.

“Their objectivity contrasted sharply with the abject surrender of Bridgend Council, which last year approved their part of the Fforch Nest wind farm with barely a hint of interest or concern for the effect of their constituents in Evanstown.”

Jenny Prothero, Renewables Developer at RWE npower renewables, said: “We are obviously very disappointed that the council has reached this decision.

“We believe Fforch Nest is an excellent site for a wind farm to help Wales meet its renewable energy targets and deliver the low carbon energy we need.

“Fforch Nest alone could generate enough electricity to power 12,800 homes. The site has been identified by the Welsh Assembly Government as suitable for onshore wind farms, and officers at RCT recommended the plans for approval.

“Bridgend Council has already approved four turbines and the access track for the wind farm, and we have worked hard to produce a proposal that has a minimal impact on our site neighbours and the wider environment.

“Following the council’s decision, we will need to time to consider our next steps.”

The majority of county borough councillors, who are given guidelines through the Welsh Assembly Government’s Tan8 scheme when considering individual applications for renewable energy, decided to vote against the measures.

Councillor for the Tonteg Ward, Gordon Bunn, described the application as “a rape on the landscape” and even accused the WAG Tan8 guidelines as “flawed.”

Councillor Aurfon Roberts, who led the rejection of FForch Nest, said: “We councillors are here to protect the interests of our community and have acted with our consciences in preserving their quality of life.”

Source:  by Mark Smith, Pontypridd Observer, www.walesonline.co.uk

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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