Campaigners fighting major plans to create pylons linking windfarms in Mid Wales to the National Grid in Shropshire have found an unlikely ally – Prince Harry.
The prince voiced concerns about the visual impact of windfarms during his tour of America.
His comments came after he attended a reception in Denver and his views are apparently shared by his father the Prince of Wales.
It comes just weeks ahead of the start of a public inquiry into plans to build windfarms across Mid Wales. The first session of the inquiry will be held at the Royal Oak in Welshpool on June 4.
National Grid wants to build a 400,000-volt electricity line across the Shropshire border to feed electricity generated from the proposed windfarms into the national power network.
Its planned route will run from an electricity substation at Cefn Coch, west of Welshpool, via Llansantffraid, south of Llanymynech and Oswestry, to Lower Frankton where it would join the main grid.
Glyn Davies, MP for Montgomeryshire, who is leading the fight against the pylons linking windfarms in Mid Wales to the electricity network in Shropshire, welcomed Prince Harry’s views.
He said: “I am very pleased with Prince Harry’s views. We all acknowledge climate change is a huge issue, but onshore windfarms are not the way to go. There is a lot of outrage among people.”
He has previously described the scale of the scheme as ‘outrageous’ and said he was determined to fight it. The event in America on Friday was hosted by Beverley Simpson, British consul general for Colorado, New Mexico and Wyoming.
Susan Reilly, chief executive officer of Renewable Energy Systems Americas, said after speaking to the prince that she had to reassure him about the benefits of wind turbines – just as she’d done with his father.
She said: “Prince Harry said he was worried about their visual impact, I told him that I had met his father some years ago and when we discussed windfarms he shared his concerns.
“But as with Prince Charles, I pointed out that we need to strike a balance between their visual impact and the need for renewable energy for future generations.”
The prince’s grandfather the Duke of Edinburgh reportedly raised other concerns about the renewable energy source in 2011, labelling them totally reliant on subsidies.
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