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Turbine plans are rejected by council  

Credit:  South Wales Evening Post, www.thisissouthwales.co.uk 5 April 2012 ~~

Upper Afan Valley residents have failed to persuade councillors to give a proposed wind farm the go-ahead.

Councillors at the planning and control committee approved recommendations to refuse a wind farm of 15 turbines.

The proposal submitted by Gamesa Energy UK planned for the turbines to be built on Mynydd y Gelli, near Abergwynfi.

As part of the deal, the community is set to benefit from a £3 million cash fund over the lifetime of the wind farm.

Around 25 residents attended the meeting in support of the scheme. A petition of support containing 146 signatures was handed into the council and 102 letters in support were also sent. A letter was sent to councillors before the meeting from the Llynfi Afan Wind Farm Supporters Group.

Signed by resident Carl Griffiths, it said: “There are more than 100 letters of support with a mere five against. Of those five, only three actually live in the area.

“Let’s just think about what the council tax payers of Neath Port Talbot could do with the money that would be wasted going to appeal.”

Five letters were submitted opposing the application. They stated it would destroy the beauty of the valley, affect tourism and would be overpowering for residents.

Cymmer councillor Scott Jones said he would not be voting as he as said he would oppose any future Afan Valley wind farm proposals.

But he added: “I would like to thank the developers for their extensive consultation over the past few years and for their openness and transparency from day one.”

Cimla councillor John Warman said the five people who opposed the scheme should be considered.

“Are we choking these communities?” he asked.

Twenty-eight councillors supported the refusal. There were two abstentions.

Project manager Lee Watt said they were disappointed with the decision.

“We believe that this project represents a considerable opportunity for the local community and we remain committed to working closely with them to deliver significant community benefits from this project,” he said.

“We are now evaluating our next steps.”

Source:  South Wales Evening Post, www.thisissouthwales.co.uk 5 April 2012

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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