Plans for a 30-turbine wind farm in the Highlands have been turned down by the Scottish Government.
Energy Minister Fergus Ewing refused to grant planning permission for the proposed development at Spittal Hill, Caithness, saying that the impact on the landscape and nearby homes would be too great.
Spittal Hill Windfarm wants to erect 30 turbines on the site, most of which would be 110 metres-high.
The wind farm would have had a generating capacity of 77.5 megawatts.
Mr Ewing said Scotland has “enormous” green energy potential and that the Government wants “the right developments in the right places”.
A total of 1,546 objections to the windfarm were put forward, with 1,268 letters of support.
Local planning authority Highland Council objected to the application, while a public inquiry was held in the area last May, after which the independent reporter appointed by ministers recommended consent be refused.
Mr Ewing said: “Scotland has enormous potential for renewable energy that is delivering jobs and investment across Scotland, and I am determined to ensure communities all over Scotland reap the benefit from renewable energy – but not at any cost.
“And we will ensure a balanced approach in taking forward this policy, as we have in the past and will in future. The Scottish Government wants to see the right developments in the right places, and Scottish planning policy is clear that the design and location of any wind farm should reflect the scale and character of the landscape and should be considered environmentally acceptable.
“The impact of this proposed wind farm on the landscape, and the impact it would have on the homes of those who live closest to it, is too great.”
|Wind Watch relies entirely
on User Funding