Billionaire businessman Donald Trump has personally written to Scotland’s First Minister objecting to plans to build an offshore wind farm near his luxury golf resort.
In the letter to Alex Salmond, the US tycoon described the wind turbines – to be located 2km from his golf course – as “disastrous and environmentally irresponsible”.
A planning application for an 11-turbine wind farm off Aberdeen Bay was submitted to Marine Scotland last month.
The European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre is a £150 million joint venture by utility company Vattenfall, engineering firm Technip and Aberdeen Renewable Energy Group.
The Trump Organisation filed its objection to the planning application on Wednesday.
Mr Trump’s £750 million development on the Menie estate on the coast is nearing completion after work began a year ago.
In the letter to Mr Salmond, he said: “Unfortunately, instead of celebrating the start of something valuable and beautiful for Scotland, this ugly cloud is hanging over the future of the great Scottish coastline.”
Mr Trump, who issued a statement criticising the development when the planning application was lodged last month, said he had been “repeatedly promised” that wind farms would not be “destroying and distorting Aberdeen’s magnificent coastline”.
He said: “Despite repeated assurances from Vattenfall and others that the turbines would not be visible from my site, the current application indicates otherwise. In short, this wind farm should not be built, or alternatively, be relocated. If not, you should ask yourself if any other international developer would ever risk investing in Scotland after my experience and all the promises that were made to me.”
A Scottish Government spokesman said: “Mr Trump’s letter refers to the position five years ago, when he was submitting his Menie planning application in 2006 – before the current administration took office – and therefore we have no knowledge of what was said then. What this administration can say is that the Menie application was determined properly, according to Scotland’s planning law and procedures, and it will be exactly the same for this development proposal. Ministers will assess every planning application on its merits taking into account the views of consultees, interested parties and the public.”