I was very surprised by the articles “No to offshore wind park” and “Yes to onshore plan” (CP, 04-05-12), as letters of objection to wind farms, particularly onshore, usually considerably outnumber letters of support.
Had the letters of support been read, it would have been seen that 450 of them were on identical photocopied forms, distinguishable only by a handwritten sender’s name and address added to the forms. More than ten per cent of them had no legible name, so should not have been accepted. It is clear the forms were not initiated or composed by those who signed them.
By simply counting the number of comments on each side, the author of the article has drawn a conclusion that is very one-sided. Had the 450 photocopies been counted as one, as would be a petition, the percentage quoted for the second consultation would have been 85 per cent opposed, not 81 per cent in support. Moreover, the headline would have read “No to onshore plan” as the majority of all comments received for the application would have been objections.
I cannot accept the value of a comment, be it in support or objection, is proportional to the number of times it is photocopied, or a considered objection based on material planning considerations from a resident at risk of giant industrial wind turbines within a few hundred metres of their home equates in value to a comment of approval from a more distant Island resident merely signing a photocopied document.
From Dr J. V. Yelland, Newport