The planned demonstration against the Allt Duine windfarm on 8th November outside the Council Headquarters, Glenurquhart Road, Inverness, has been called off. The demonstration had been called to coincide with a Council meeting due to discuss the application.
Today (3 Nov) the Save Monadhliath Mountains (SMM) campaign team was informed by council officers that the Allt Duine s.36 application will not come before the Highland Council’s Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey Planning Application Committee, as anticipated.
A spokesman for the campaign said, “SMM believes that the postponement could enable the councillors to visit the site and spend valuable time fully considering the legitimate concerns raised by the Cairngorms National Park Authority, Scottish Campaign for National Parks and others regarding whether the proposed development is appropriate for an important area of wild land and outstanding natural beauty.
SMM campaigners believe that to build a large onshore wind farm in an area of unspoilt wild land, and in an area that the Council wishes to protect, would be devastating and a step too far.”
Formal objections to the Allt Duine proposal have been lodged with the Scottish Government by the Cairngorms National Park Authority, the John Muir Trust, the Mountaineering Council of Scotland, Scottish Campaign for National Parks and key local estates.
Outdoor author, photographer and former President of the Mountaineering Council of Scotland, Chris Townsend, is a spokesman for the SMM campaign.
Chris said: “Backed by over 1000 supporters, we believe that the strength of public feeling against the application should be recognised by Highland Council with an objection. The SMM campaign hopes that the councillors will take this opportunity to pause and reflect on whether the Allt Duine wind farm proposal, in an area that the Council wishes to protect, is appropriate. We hope that the Council is not in negotiation with the applicant.
“Allt Duine is one of 11 wind farms being developed in-and-around the National Park and we believe there is a line in the sand and this is it – this proposal is a step too far. 31 turbines, the majority of which are a massive 410 feet in height, are completely inappropriate for a wild area of outstanding natural beauty. The construction and operation of the turbines will have an irrevocable impact on the landscape, wildlife and ornithology of the area.”
Renowned mountaineer, writer and broadcaster, Cameron McNeish and Chief Executive of the John Muir Trust, Stuart Brooks, are backing the campaign, along with support from over 1,100 individuals and organisations such as Scottish Campaign for National Parks, Walkhighlands and Scotland-Landscapes.