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Residents have 'no confidence' in windfarms to provide power  

Credit:  Lincolnshire Echo, www.thisislincolnshire.co.uk 7 June 2011 ~~

Plans to build 22 wind turbines near a small county village have been given mixed reactions from residents.

The firm behind the development, Ecotricity, say the “environmentally friendly” turbines will generate enough power for nearly 39,000 homes – about 14 per cent of all homes in Lincolnshire.

But residents living in nearby Heckington, one of the villages the development will back on to, say they have “no confidence” the Heckington Fen turbines will be effective and that the development will “impose” on their lives.

Doreen White, 67, retired to the Sidebar Lane in the village 16 years ago because of the “wide open countryside”.

She said: “The development is less than a mile away, right on our doorstep.

“We moved here because of the openness of the countryside and now we’ll have this right there. The life cycle of the turbines are apparently only 25 years and they’ll be taking up all the fields which could well be needed for growing food.”

Another villager, Roger Thornton, said: “I seriously object to the development being on our doorstep.

“My understanding is that there are no wind turbines that can produce what firms say they can.”

Plans were first drawn up by the green energy firm in December 2009.

The firm says a similar development at Bicker Fen in the county has already powered 16,500 average homes.

The “clean” electricity would be dispersed through the National Grid.

The turbines will stand at 125m from the ground to the tip of the blade when built and produce up to 2.3 megawatts of power per unit. Not everyone in the village has a problem with the development. One resident, who asked not to be named, said: “I think they look quite interesting on an otherwise barren landscape and if they can help cut down C02 emissions, then I’m all for them.”

The proposal is expected to be submitted to the Department Of Energy and Climate Change later this year, Ecotricity said.

Mike Cheshire, spokesman for Ecotricity, said: “There are lots of elements we looked at before we settled on this site and holding this public meeting gives us a chance to hear what the local residents have to say.

“I have to say that Lincolnshire is a really positive place for wind and renewable energy development already, so things have gone well.

“With quite a few areas in the county having had them already, it makes people more accepting of new developments like this.

“Right now we have plans for 22 turbines, but that could go down once we get on site. Any changes to numbers definitely won’t see an increase in turbines.”

The first of three consultations took place at Heckington Village Hall yesterday, with another planned at Swineshead Village Hall today from 3.30pm to 8.30pm ,with the third at South Kyme’s Coronation Hall tomorrow, from 2.30pm to 7.30pm.

People who are unable to attend any of the consultation events are invited to contact Ecotricity and put forward their views via e-mail at heckington-fen@eco tricity.co.uk

Source:  Lincolnshire Echo, www.thisislincolnshire.co.uk 7 June 2011

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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