Wind power protesters called on the Welsh Assembly yesterday to halt new developments pending an independent study of the impact of turbines on communities across Wales.
Action groups from Anglesey, Powys and west Wales united to raise a petition with 1,338 signatures, presented at the Senedd in Cardiff.
They wanted a moratorium on wind farm and wind turbine developments to allow a cross-party inquiry into the affect of the technology on health, well-being, property values, tourism and the local economy within 15kms of the installations.
Owain Evans, joint chair of Anglesey Against Wind Turbines said there were already planning applications in place for 77 more wind turbines on the island in addition to an existing four wind farms.
He said that 8,000 people had signed their petition demanding a 1500m buffer zone between turbines and homes.
“It is crucial that the Assembly put a stop to these developments temporarily to look in detail of this and how it affects people’s lives.
“The trouble is that despite our petition, the local authority on Anglesey isn’t listening to use.”
The council faced hundreds of protest letters for every turbine being proposed, he said.
Alison Davies, from Montgomeryshire, chair of Conservation of Upland Powys, said: “Our aim is to keep this issue in the public eye so that politicians face to consider it.
“It’s an important issue not just for rural Wales but for the Valleys as well.
“It’s going to have a devastating effect on the communities and landscapes.”
She said that Mid Wales and Shropshire was under threat from more than 800 turbines, bigger than anything built in Wales before.
Proposals also involved the expansion of the National Grid to increase capacity to cope with the energy produced, with a 19 acre electricity hub and hundreds of pylons across the countryside.
“We also ask that all devolved wind turbine installations be subject to the approval of a local referendum in a 5km area,” she said.
The petition was received by mid and west Wales AM William Powell who chairs the Assembly’s petitions committee.
The committee will consider whether to seek an inquiry and the response of the Welsh Government to the demands.
The protesters also repeated their opposition to the Welsh Government’s strategic plan for onshore wind development, known as TAN 8.
That aims to limit large scale wind farms to the seven Strategic Search Areas (SSAs).
These areas were deemed to be the most suitable location for wind development following a thorough process of independent assessment, the Welsh Government said.
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