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Giant wind turbines not to be banned from Anglesey beauty spots  

Credit:  by Owen R Hughes, DPW West, www.dailypost.co.uk 16 April 2012 ~~

Giant wind turbines won’t be banned from beauty spots on Anglesey.

Anti-turbine protestors have discovered Anglesey council look set not to impose a blanket ban on turbines in Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

The authority is currently preparing new planning guideline for the renewable energy towers with hopes the regulations could halt the proliferation of applications on the scenic island.

But released papers show officers believe there is no evidence to show turbines would have a “significant detrimental” impact within the AONB.

They said this meant there was no basis for a “blanket ban” on turbines within those areas.

Opponents are also concerned that the Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG) does not put restrictions on the height and proximity to homes for turbines.

The council said it would listen to arguments from protestors before any final decision is made.

Anglesey artist Peter Winstanley, who created the turbine picture and has written to Energy Secretary Ed Davey with his concerns, said: “Looking at this SPG we see no restriction on height, they are still considering putting these in Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and there is no restriction on the proximity to homes.

“Our fear is that if one of these turbines is placed then this will set the precedent and there will be an avalanche of applications.

“We cannot see how these will benefit the island as a whole and these are a real threat to tourism.”

He added: “We created the picture as accurately as we could to show people how the 115m turbines would affect the views across Anglesey and Snowdonia to bring this home to people.”

A spokesman for Anglesey Against Wind Turbines said: “Whatever people’s views on wind turbines, I’m sure all residents alike will be horrified to discover that the Council is seemingly prepared to allow turbines of any height to be erected within Anglesey’s coastal AONB.

“This is shocking and completely disregards the “substantial” comments they admit receiving through the consultation explicitly calling for the AONB and a buffer zone around it to be protected.

“We are also extremely disappointed that the council has rejected overwhelming calls for a minimum distance to be applied between turbines and housing.

“If the final guidance goes forward like this it will show that the consultation was a sham.”

An Anglesey County Council spokesman said: “The report providing feedback on the Draft Onshore Wind Energy supplementary planning guidance will be discussed by the Environment and Technical Services Scrutiny Committee on Thursday, April 26.

“As there is a great deal of public interest in this issue, the Chairman of the Committee, Cllr Keith Evans, has agreed to allow Anglesey Against Wind Turbine, Friends of the Earth and RenewableUK to make representations.

“Discussions are also taking place with a view to inviting a representative from the tourism sector to speak.

“This will help ensure that committee members are fully informed of all aspects of the debate regarding onshore wind turbines before they make their own recommendations to Anglesey’s Board of Commissioners.”

Source:  by Owen R Hughes, DPW West, www.dailypost.co.uk 16 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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