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Turbine revision doesn’t win favour with council  

Credit:  Peeblesshire News | 1 Nov 2013 | www.peeblesshirenews.com ~~

Members of Scottish Borders Council’s planning committee are expected to rubber-stamp an objection against proposals for a windfarm in Tweedsmuir.

Wind Energy Limited has been attempting to develop a site at Earlshaugh for the past five years.

But objections from the local authority as well as similar ones from Dumfries and Galloway Council and Scottish Natural Heritage have led to reductions in the number of turbines from an initial 36.

A third application for 22 turbines, and nine of them reduced in height, was submitted with the Scottish Government earlier this year.

But the revised bid has still fallen foul of planning chiefs at Newtown St Boswells during the consultation period.

And they are recommending members at next week’s planning committee meeting to issue a further objection.

Planning officer Craig Miller said: “It remains the case that a large windfarm close to the summit of Hart Fell would change the character of the core area and that there were several other points where the enjoyment of the wild land qualities would be severely impaired.

“Given the review and designation of the Tweedsmuir Uplands as a Special Landscape Area with specific management recommendations, even a reduced scheme of 22 turbines would remain significantly detrimental to the landscape character of the area and would justify sustained objection.”

Concerns have also been raised about the cumulative impact the planned turbines would have when viewed with the Clyde Windfarm and neighbouring Glenkerie.

An extension application was also lodged last month to extend Glenkerie.

Mr Miller added: “The reduction from 24 to 22 turbines and the reduction in height of nine turbines by 25 metres will make little appreciable difference in terms of cumulative impact.

“The key issue is that Earlshaugh, by pushing turbine development onto the lower slopes of Hart Fell, would extend human visual impact much closer to the core and higher summits of Southern Uplands and spread it beyond the lower foothills where the Clyde Windfarm currently stands.”

Source:  Peeblesshire News | 1 Nov 2013 | www.peeblesshirenews.com

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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