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Business faces opposition to wind turbine plans  

Credit:  by Business Week, The Citizen & Gloucestershire Echo | www.southwestbusiness.co.uk 11 September 2012 ~~

Plans to build three wind turbines in Olveston are facing opposition from a local campaign group.

Energy company REG Windpower, which wants to install the wind farm, held a public consultation meeting at the weekend.

But the Olveston Wind Farm Action Group claims that the benefits of the project are exaggerated and that local objection is strong.

Claire Barnard, chairwoman of Olveston Wind Farm Action Group, said that exit polls on Saturday’s exhibition suggested that 90 per cent of those who attended the consultation objected to the plans.

She also claims that the majority of the surrounding population object to the proposals which could see three turbines installed near Ingst, between the M48 and M4 motorways.

Speaking after Saturday’s consultation exhibition, held at Olveston Parish Hall, Ms Barnard said: “The level of support for the action group we got from locals was extremely good.

“Of around 100 people who attended, 90 per cent were against the new proposals.”

She added: “We feel we have a really clear mandate now, with 100 active members and the majority of the 1,000 people who live around here on our side.”

If given permission, the turbines would be 126.5 metres (415ft) high from the ground to blade tip.

The Olveston Wind Farm Action Group’s official objections to the project focus on the size and noise of the turbines and their visual impact on the land.

The group also disputes the relevance of the turbines, which would provide energy for 2,600 homes.

In a statement, the group said: “There are 170,000 homes in Bristol, before you consider the needs of industry and city services.
“The contribution will be tiny compared to the impact on the community.”

Nick Webb, a spokesman from REG Windpower, said that the turbines would contribute to a more reliable mix of energy sources in the area.

He said: “It’s about getting the mix right so we are not too reliant on a single source of energy.”

He added that the site, which sits in the Severn Vale, was ideal and one of only a limited number of possible places to build a successfully operating wind farm.

Mr Webb also dismissed claims that the noise produced by the turbines would be a nuisance.

He said: “The noise created by the cutting-edge turbines is very minimal. Unless you are within 200 to 300 metres of them, they are virtually silent.”

The planned turbines would be no closer than 600 metres away.

Following Saturday’s consultation, REG Windpower said that the public comments will be taken into account before a formal planning application is submitted to the council.

Source:  by Business Week, The Citizen & Gloucestershire Echo | www.southwestbusiness.co.uk 11 September 2012

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

The copyright of this article resides with the author or publisher indicated. As part of its noncommercial effort to present the environmental, social, scientific, and economic issues of large-scale wind power development to a global audience seeking such information, National Wind Watch endeavors to observe “fair use” as provided for in section 107 of U.S. Copyright Law and similar “fair dealing” provisions of the copyright laws of other nations. Send requests to excerpt, general inquiries, and comments via e-mail.

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