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Banks’ “Ard Ghaoth” wind farm development proposal  

Credit:  www.stirlingobserver.co.uk 25 November 2011 ~~

It gives me a warm glow to read that ever caring developer, Banks Renewables has carried out a market research phone survey about their proposed development.

The site “Ard Ghaoth” – no you won’t find this name on Ordnance Survey maps – is between Drymen and Gartmore, adjacent to The Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park.

If the 20 100m turbines are built on this site they will be clearly visible from every beauty spot in the district including The Queens View, Loch Lomond and Ben Lomond.

How unusual that Banks has canvassed the opinions of people living 18 miles away in Stirling. They are fortunate they will probably only see the turbines if they ascend the Wallace Monument and they certainly won’t hear them.

What about the numerous householders who live within 2km. of the proposed site ?. Our opinions are disregarded and our basic human rights ignored. We do not live in the villages whose councils will be offered financial inducements for turning a blind eye to the visual blight. We are the people who live in rural outlying areas who will suffer greatly from noise nuisance at the time of construction and from the turbines if they are built.

At a recent wind farm conference in Ayr – attended by more than 300 people, presentations were given by eminent specialists in the fields of engineering, power generation, acoustics, health and welfare.

Dr Malcolm Swinbanks, a specialist in low frequency noise and Dick Bowdler a noise consultant and one of the original members of the Institute of Acoustics, both recommended that wind turbines should never be sited closer than 2km. from the nearest residential properties.

Dick Bowdler stated that noise complaints were significant where closer development took place. Undulating land and trees can also affect noise levels.

Dr Chris Hanning, an honorary consultant in Sleep Medicine gave evidence on the problems of wind turbine noise, sleep and health. It was extremely disturbing to hear his prognosis.

We live 1km. down wind from the “Ard Ghaoth” site and have been told by Banks that we have to accept the current ETSU Government guidelines on wind turbine placement, even though these were initiated in 1996 when the height of turbines was half of what is proposed near us.

Dick Bowdler stated that as the trend has developed for higher and higher turbines, the scope for noise nuisance, particularly at night, has also increased.

The most tragic aspect of attending the Ayr conference was hearing the experiences of people from all over Scotland and the UK who have the misfortune to live near wind farms. Why should decent, hard working, rate paying families have their lives ruined by the greed of property developers and land owners and ill judged political policies on power generation?

Fifty per cent of the UK’s wind turbines are already in Scotland – surely the time has come to rein in development that is neither “green” or effective?

NORRIE TOMLINSON

Badivow

Gartmore

Source:  www.stirlingobserver.co.uk 25 November 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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