Little Raith wind farm is to be investigated by the Scottish Government in 2014, to find out what effect it has on the surrounding communities.
The wind farm, on the outskirts of Cowdenbeath and Lochgelly, is one of ten involved in the investigation, which is in response to campaign group, Scotland Against Spin’s concerns that communities are suffering under the impact of the turbines.
It will be carried out by ClimateXchange, an environmental body from Edinburgh University, and is set to target Cowdenbeath, Lochgelly, Lumphinanns and Auchertool, with the team coming to the area to find out if there any affects from the 14 month operation of the turbines.
A Scottish Government spokesperson said, “The Government has listened and is responding to concerns raised by Scotland Against Spin by funding an innovative multi-site study of the match between the impact of a wind farm, as stated in the Environmental Assessment given during the planning process, and the actual impact once it is operational.
“The project will inform the Scottish Government on the need for guidance to developers of wind farms on how they should measure the potential impacts of their wind farms, and how they should communicate this to planning authorities and those likely to be affected.
“The investigation sites have been selected to give a range of wind farm sizes, locations, landscape type and proximity to population.”
Steven Murray, one of the directors of the environmental community group, Loch of Shining Waters, said there had been noise and health impacts resulting from shadow flicker from the Little Raith turbines, and that he hoped the study could help highlight them.
He said, “There are issues to be answered and if the study is done in an open and transparent manner then it will help, but we are strongly objecting to any expansion of the development.”
And Jonny Kennedy, Managing Director of Kennedy Renewables, who run Little Raith, said he also welcomed the study. “We welcome the news that Little Raith Wind Farm is part of the ClimateXChange study,” he said, “As Fife’s first commercial wind farm we believe we have delivered a project that is best in class which has limited, if any, unintended impacts.
“Kennedy Renewables recognise the importance of the study to the wider renewables sector.
“We look forward to working with ClimateXChange in the new year and we hope the communities who we work with in Cowdenbeath, Lochgelly, Lumphinnans and Auchtertool, engage fully in the study.”
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