The decommissioning of an old windfarm near Llanidloes would lessen the impact on the historic landscape around the site, developers have said.
At a public inquiry in Welshpool yesterday the benefits to the environment of replacing 102 old-fashioned turbines with 38 larger turbines were put forward by expert witnesses for CeltPower. The repowering scheme is one of three under the spotlight at the inquiry.
The other applications are for new windfarms in Llaithddu and Lanbadarn Fynydd, further south.
Objectors fear that the Llandinam scheme will spoil the landscapes of the Caersws Basin and the Clywedog Valley as well as affecting historic listed buildings at Broneirion and Plas Dinam.
However Dr Jonathan Edis said the new windfarm would be a visual improvement.
“It will replace a cluttered layout of busy machines with newer models of a sleeker design. This improvement will reduce the impact of the windfarm on the setting and surroundings of those archaeological monuments on and close to the site itself,” he said.
He said Powys County Council had withdrawn its objection to the Llandinam scheme after amendments including the deletion of the five most northerly turbines proposed.
“By substantially reducing the numbers of turbines, and by replacing them with machines that have a calmer appearance in terms of rotation, the visual effect on the historic environment will be greatly reduced,” he said.
“In particular, the new machines – which due to their size, will require greater spacing – will appear less cluttered than the existing turbines on the site.
“Whilst there will be an increase in the height of the turbines it does not necessarily follow that the overall effects of the wind farm will be greater than that of the existing windfarm.
“The Llandinam repowering should be seen as having a positive influence when compared to the effect of the existing wind farm.”
The inquiry was told that on the site there is an early medieval dyke and prehistoric cairns, barrows and monuments.
“The developer will continue to work with Powys County Council in order to try to achieve the best possible layout,” Dr Edis added.
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