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Delight as turbine plans kicked out

Auchterarder and Muthill residents have welcomed news controversial plans to erect nine wind turbines just outside of Crieff have been thrown out.

Developer Force 9 Energy’s proposal for the Mull Hill Wind Farm on Abercairney Estate was kicked out by the council’s management committee as the Times went to Press last week but many have welcomed the decision.

Concerned about the visual impact the turbines may have had on surrounding areas and the cumulative impact with the Beauly to Denny power line, many opposed the plans.

At a previous Auchterarder community council meeting, councillors concluded the wind farm would be “highly visible from Auchterarder” and Muthill community council chair Donald Hood said: “I personally believe the Mull Hill wind farm would have had too much of a detrimental effect on the area especially its proximity to the Beauly Denny line. Force 9 Energy say no carbon dioxide or other pollutants will be emitted during its operation but how much is created in manufacture and in the construction phase?”

An Auchterarder resident told the Strathallan Times: “This news will be welcomed by many. Our views, especially to Crieff, would have been ruined. Not only our landscape, but our communities would have been affected. Lots of Strathallan towns and businesses would have suffered as it would have affected tourism. Tourists come to see our unspoiled views and natural scenery.”

However, Development Manager at Force 9 Energy Andrew Smith, said: “Force 9 Energy and the Abercairny Estate are disappointed with Perth and Kinross Council’s decision to refuse planning permission for Mull Hill Wind Farm.

“The Mull Hill Wind Farm is a considered planning application, which takes into account the reporter’s recommendation on the previous Abercairny Wind Farm, who considered the Mull Hill turbine cluster acceptable in terms of visual and cumulative impact. We believe that Perth and Kinross Council in reaching its decision did not place the appropriate weight to this as a material consideration, nor the significant local benefits that the proposal will generate.”

“These benefits are in addition to the contribution the wind farm would make to the Scottish Government’s renewable energy targets and the saving of approximately 25,425 tonnes of carbon dioxide each year (compared to conventional fuel sources).

“We will now be reviewing the council’s reasons for refusal before considering what action to take.”