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Ministry of Defence windfarm complaints sink plan  

Credit:  By Jamie Buchan | The Press and Journal | 10 October 2012 ~~

Plans for a pair of wind turbine projects at a northeast village have been shot down by military chiefs.

Two separate green energy schemes proposed for the edge of St Fergus, north of Peterhead, were rejected yesterday by local councillors after complaints from the Ministry of Defence.

Officials said both proposals – for land at Kinloch and an old peat bog known as St Fergus Moss – would cause unacceptable interference to radar equipment at the RAF Buchan surveillance base. Similar objections have been lodged by the MoD against dozens more turbine plans across the country.

In each case, councillors have said they have been left with no option but to reject any schemes which – it is argued – could pose a risk to national security.

Yesterday, members of Aberdeenshire Council’s Buchan area committee voted to reject a bid by Gavin Chapman to install a pair of 260ft turbines on land near his home at Kinloch House.

He said attempts to get specific details from defence chiefs about their objection had failed.

“The Ministry of Defence has been an absolute nightmare for small businesses like us to deal with,” he said.

Mr Chapman said emails sent to the organisation had “not been acknowledged”.

“The MoD’s strategy seems to be to fold its arms, turn its back and avoid eye contact,” he said. “It is high time they were called to account.”

Mr Chapman, who moved to Kinloch six years ago and embarked on a major restoration scheme, said the future of his business relied on diversification.

Committee members voted against a motion by Peterhead councillor Stephen Smith to defer making a decision until a formal response had been obtained from the MoD.

The committee also rejected separate plans for two extra turbines at St Fergus Moss, where a trio of masts are being erected.

The bid by the Edinburgh-based Greenspan Agency was originally discussed by the committee last week, but was deferred to allow time to get an update from the MoD.

An MoD spokesman confirmed that the organisation would not be dropping its objection. “We are concerned with the cumulative impact of turbine developers in the area,” he said.

Councillors were told there were nine green energy schemes – a total of 13 turbines – within 10 miles of the St Fergus Moss site.

Source:  By Jamie Buchan | The Press and Journal | 10 October 2012

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

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