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Turbine group to meet with Minister

A Carrick lobby group opposed to the erection of two wind turbines in the borough are taking their campaign to Stormont.

East Antrim MP Sammy Wilson will lead a delegation of representatives from Carrick Wind Watch to meet with the Environmental Minister Mark H Durkan on Monday (November 25).

Wind Watch have expressed their opposition to two separate planning applications for the structures at New Line and Trooperslane in the town, with the New Line residents due to attend Monday’s meeting. A date has yet to be confirmed by the Minister to facilitate a meeting with the Trooperslane campaign group.

The proposals would see the construction of a 30 metre turbine tower close to New Line and a 65 metre structure at Trooperslane, both with a rotor diameter of 30 metres.

In a statement, the group said: “Representatives welcome this opportunity to highlight to the Minister the serious concerns they have with regard to this flawed planning application, such as issues of noise, shadow flicker and turbulence wake.

“These have not been thoroughly addressed and resolved despite numerous objections having been submitted to the Planning Department over the past two years.

“The chairman and committee of Carrick Wind Watch also met recently with members of Carrickfergus Council and officials from the Environmental Health Department.

“This proved to be a very worthwhile meeting and [we] welcomed the outcome and positive actions taken by the Environmental Health department in relation to the aforementioned issues.

“As a result of this meeting, the onus has now been firmly placed on the applicants and on the Planning Department to resolve all outstanding matters in a satisfactory manner before any determinations can be made.”

Outlining his support for the campaign, Sammy Wilson said: “Carrick Wind Watch are only one of many groups who are becoming more and more prominent in Northern Ireland because of the general concerns about the race towards wind energy and the way in which it is destroying our environment.

“The Environment Committee at the Assembly is undertaking an enquiry into wind energy and I would hope that groups such as Wind Watch will be prominent in giving evidence about the damaging impacts which this form of electricity generation is having on environmentally sensitive parts of Northern Ireland.”