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Opponents to mast plans  

Credit:  by Stuart Gillespie, Galloway News, www.dgstandard.co.uk 15 September 2011 ~~

Plans or a £90million windfarm in the Glenkens have attracted objections.

Burcote Wind want to build as many as 24, 125-metre turbines generating 72 megawatts of electricity at Benshinnie.

But several objections have been raised to the first stage of their proposal, which would involve building a wind-speed mast on the site.

According to documents lodged with the council by Fife-based Burcote Wind, the 70m mast is needed to measure information about wind patterns at the site.

The mast would only be temporary for a maximum of three years.

The Ministry of Defence has insisted the mast is fitted with red lights to ensure it can be seen at night by air traffic. But those lights have led to a number of objections – some from members of the aviation industry. One is from Peter Jackson, who runs an aerodrome at Glenswinton.

In his submission, he says: “Even in the clearest conditions, the proposed mast and its guy wires are extremely difficult for a pilot to see and would constrain and endanger aircraft manoeuvring in the vicinity of the aerodrome, where the pilot’s workload is at its highest.”

Another objection letter states: “The red aviation light at the top of the mast would destroy the ambience during the hours of darkness and is close to the Galloway Dark Skies Park, which is increasingly drawing tourists to the area.

“Tourism is an important source of revenue to the area and Loch Ken and the whole valley below this mast depend on wildlife tourists and those fishing or enjoying water sports on Loch Ken.

“The visual impact of this mast would destroy the holiday setting as well as ruin the landscape for residents.”

A number of the 24 letters of objection also say the mast application should be turned down in a bid to stop the windfarm at the first opportunity.

Scottish and Southern Energy are also looking for permission to build two masts for their 23-turbine Blackcraig windfarm, given the go-ahead earlier this year.

They say the temporary masts are needed to collect data ahead of the permanent masts being installed.

The closing date for representations on those plans is today.

Source:  by Stuart Gillespie, Galloway News, www.dgstandard.co.uk 15 September 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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