Angry locals have formed a plan of action to fight plans for a community wind turbine project in Ferwig.
A second meeting was held at Cardigan golf club last week to discuss the best way to oppose the Awel Deg cooperative’s plans for a 500kw, 67 metre high turbine at Bryn Farm, Ferwig.
A petition against the turbine is now being circulated, and a fighting fund has been launched.
Colin Osborne, who chaired the meeting, said a planning application for the turbine was likely to come before Ceredigion County Council’s planning committee in the autumn, and a response needed to be formed.
He added that a huge amount of data had already been collected, and volunteers were needed to help with several aspects of the campaign against the proposed structure.
Mr Osborne said the potential cash generated by the turbine needed to be weighed against the potential financial loss to businesses which rely on tourism.
He said: “We need to balance what Awel deg promise will come to the area against the negative impact it will have.”
A member of the public stated: “A lot of tourists are just so unhappy about this coming to this area. I have not had any positive feedback from anyone.”
Awel Deg chairman David Gillam was greeted with booing and jeering as he attempted to answer questions on the project fired at him by angry locals.
He stated that studies showed turbines did not have a negative impact on tourism, and that the group may delay submitting their application to consider the turbine’s effect on the golf club.
He said: “If we feel that the damage it will bring to the area is greater than the benefits, then we will reconsider.”
He added that the project would ‘inevitably create jobs’ in the area, and shareholders would decide how the money was spent in the community.
Awel Deg was accused of spreading ‘propaganda’ which had led to the group losing trust.
One local stated there was a need to get as much of the community involved as possible.
He said: “We need to get it out there that people are against it and that Awel Deg’s message is wrong, and make sure everyone has a clear idea of the issues.”
The meeting called for the group to put a balloon at the site to give an idea of the proposed turbine’s height, and proposed a survey of householders.
Mr Gillam said many locals were in favour of the project, but it was possible the group could drop the plans if a survey showed the majority of householders in the area affected were against it.
The meeting agreed to set up an action committee CRAFT – Community Reaction to the Ferwig Turbine, and a fighting fund towards costs.
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