Like many people in our region, I am angry and frustrated that the Scottish government continues to ignore the views of local people on windfarms. In recent months, two windfarm applications in our area that had been rejected locally were approved by the Scottish government.
To see local decisions overturned like this is an affront to local democracy. It sends a signal to potential developers that they can ignore local views because they can just appeal to the government anyway. I think wind energy has an important role to play as part of a balanced energy policy, but Dumfries and Galloway is being asked to shoulder an unfair burden. I really fear for the impact on our environment and tourism industry if more and more of our beautiful countryside is covered with turbines.
I started a petition on my website at www.russellbrownmp.com/windfarmpetition and the response has been phenomenal. Almost 2000 people have signed it and I will be presenting it to the Scottish Ministers soon. It has really struck a chord with local people and the government simply cannot continue to ignore us.