Anti-windfarm campaigners in Fife say it “beggars belief” that the first commercial windfarm in the kingdom could almost double.
The Courier reported on Wednesday that Kennedy Renewables is taking steps towards increasing the number of turbines at Little Raith farm, near Cowdenbeath.
The site, adjoining Mosmorran petrochemical plant, is already home to nine turbines, and the firm hopes to add another seven.
Graham Lang, the chairman of Scotland Against Spin, said: “This application beggars belief. Widely regarded as one of the worst windfarms in Scotland, Little Raith should never have been built. Its harmful impacts were never properly recognised.
“Since the windfarm began operation, evidence that locals are suffering increasing ill-effects from noise, shadow flicker and air pollution has grown steadily.
“Kennedy Renewables’ answer to these concerns is to suggest seven more industrial turbines, which are even taller and even closer to homes than the existing ones.
“The same contempt is reserved for Fife Council, whose guidance on cumulative impact says the area is at its capacity with wind turbines and presumes against further development.
“(The applicants) … are banking on the Scottish Government rubber-stamping their shameless subsidy-grab, regardless of the suffering it will cause in Fife.
“The need for national planning legislation that affords the people of Scotland real protection against the boundless greed of windfarm developers and absentee landowners has never been more urgent.”
Terry McLean, chairman of Loch of Shining Water Community website, said: “It is an absolute disgrace that Kennedy Renewables is bringing these proposals forward given the damage the existing windfarm is doing to residents’ health and quality of life.
“Once again Lochgelly and surrounding communities will have to deal with greedy developers out to make a fast buck at our expense.”
James Glen, secretary of Lochgelly Community Council, said locals were “in shock” at the news.
He added: “Regardless of where people stand on the issues of wind turbines, the Lochgelly Community Council recognises that the majority of people in Lochgelly are opposed to more turbines in this area, and we will strongly object to this extension.”
Kennedy Renewables have stressed that if an extension is approved, they will be in a position to add to community benefit payments for the already-operational scheme, which will currently provide £1.23 million over the next 25 years.
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