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Inquiry starts into scale of Allerdale windfarm plans  

Credit:  By Jenny Barwise | News & Star | www.newsandstar.co.uk ~~

An inquiry will be held in Maryport this afternoon to discuss findings of a report looking at the numbers of windfarms – and their locations – across Cumbria.

The council revealed that half of the number of wind related developments had been submitted in Allerdale last year.

The council investigation discovered that 74 wind development applications were submitted to six of the county’s local authorities last year.

Of these, 49 per cent were lodged with Allerdale.

Campaign group, Friends of Rural Cumbria’s Environment (FORCE), added that Allerdale was also host to 62 per cent of the onshore wind turbines in the county, leaving the other five districts with just 38 per cent between them – according to Cumbria Renewable Energy Capacity and Deployment Strategy.

Marion Fitzgerald, FORCE spokeswoman, said that this new information from Allerdale came as “no surprise” since Allerdale also received the lion’s share of new wind energy related application in the past year. She added: “We welcome this investigation.

“It may be that we have a plentiful wind resource in this area, but the line needs to be drawn somewhere before we sacrifice everything else that makes Allerdale a great place to live on the altar of onshore wind.”

Ms Fitzgerald said that she hoped the inquiry, which was launched after Councillor Bill Finlay questioned the high proportion of wind developments in the district, discovers the reason why Allerdale is besieged by wind energy developers.

She added that she hoped steps would be taken to bring the situation under control.

The study, by the council’s scrutiny sub-committee, revealed that 74 wind development applications were submitted to six of Cumbria’s nine local authorities in 2012.

It contains information from Allerdale, Copeland, Carlisle and Eden councils, Cumbria County Council and the Lake District National Park Authority.

Since 2007 there have been 218 wind developments across the area with 94 of them – 43 per cent – in Allerdale, which has 51 operational wind turbines, according to figures from Renewable UK.

The inquiry is expected to conclude in September with a report to full council.

Allerdale’s report was due to be discussed at a Wind Turbine Inquiry meeting in Maryport today.

Source:  By Jenny Barwise | News & Star | www.newsandstar.co.uk

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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