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Supreme Court says yes to wind turbine

Pensilva’s Cornwall councillor says he is “very disappointed” after three of the UK’s most senior judges upheld planning permission for a controversial wind turbine.

Truro-based REG Windpower’s 1.3 megawatt project at High Down, Redland, was originally approved in September 2009 but has met stiff opposition from objectors.

Three Supreme Court judges – Lords Hope, Brown and Wilson – ruled there may be no further challenges and the turbine may be installed.

They also ordered the objector to pay legal costs.

John Turner, whose Cornwall Council ward includes Pensilva, said: “I am very disappointed that the judgement, which will blight domestic properties close to the site, has gone against the wishes of the community.

“A very compelling case was made to argue for rejection of the proposal but the courts have seen fit to ignore these.

“Wind power generation on land sites is expensive and does not result in a constant source of energy.”

Mr Turner said a single wind turbine situated between an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and a World Heritage Site would contribute little to the grid and would impact significantly upon the landscape, particularly when viewed from Caradon Hill.

“It is particularly galling that it has come at a time when the Government sees fit to reduce the feed-in tariff for solar installations which are far less intrusive on local communities,” he said.

Matt Partridge, development director at REG Windpower, said it was extremely important the UK generated as much safe, clean, renewable energy as possible.

“Wind energy has a key role in reducing the UK’s future reliance on expensive fossil fuel imports – imports that have contributed the lion’s share of recent energy bill increases – so we are extremely pleased that we can proceed with this project,” he said.

The ruling follows a Court of Appeal judgment in July 2011 which reversed a High Court decision quashing the original planning permission.

REG Windpower said they would build a single turbine measuring no more than 80 metres.