Wind turbines are “one huge con”, says a parish council chairman infuriated after one was allowed on appeal on a farm at Longdowns.
Alan Bostock’s original application for a 56.5-metre-high turbine at Polkanuggo Farm attracted 58 letters of objection and a petition bearing more than 270 names.
Both Mabe and Stithians parish councils opposed it, citing its impact on neighbours, as did the Campaign to Protect Rural England.
Although planning officer Hollie Nicholls recommended approval, Cornwall Council’s planning committee refused it by ten votes to one.
However, Mr Bostock appealed and inspector Jill Kingaby concluded any harm was outweighed by its contribution towards reducing carbon emissions.
Peter Tisdale, chairman of Stithians Parish Council, said: “Wind turbines are one huge con which we all need to get a grip of before it’s too late.”
Ms Kingaby said the turbine would make “a small but important contribution” towards increasing energy from renewable sources and she did not believe the turbine’s appearance would be incongruous in the area because there were two already at Roskrow.
Three turbines were “not so numerous as to dominate the landscape”, she ruled.
Many residents had raised concerns about its proximity to their homes and flickering shadows from the blades, but Ms Kingaby said she believed any adverse effect would be slight and described the shadow flicker effect as rare.
“No specific distances are currently required in planning law,” she said in her finding.
“There would be an adverse effect on those within a short distance. However, the turbine would not be so intrusive that living conditions would become intolerable.”
Mr Tisdale said: “There is mounting evidence of the effects of low-frequency noise on health,” and he was also worried about noise monitoring once the turbine was installed and operational.
“Residents will have to complain when noise becomes a nuisance, and only then will they investigate complaints,” he said. “How well, and for how long, this monitoring will be carried out is a matter for speculation.”
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