Few dispute the necessity of reducing our energy use and pursuing renewable energy alternatives to fossil fuels, in order to help address climate change. However, there is public disquiet about the proliferation of energy developments in Scotland’s wild land areas.
It is vital that any decisions on the location of these developments rely on the fair and impartial assessment of all pertinent information and points of view.
Unfortunately, in the face of evidence and objections from many different organisations, communities and individuals, the Scottish Government has approved proposals to site colossal wind farms inland, at Stronelairg in the Monadhliath Mountains, and offshore, straddling the firths of the Forth and Tay.
In both cases the Scottish Government chose to ignore the views of its own expert advisers from Scottish Natural Heritage, who made it clear that the impact from these turbines will be very significant. At the very least, evidence of this calibre should trigger public inquiries.
Rather than force objectors to challenge these decisions in the courts, at great expense, the Scottish Government should first ensure they have been exposed to the proper and democratic scrutiny that their scale and potential impact warrants.
Director, Association for the Protection of Rural Scotland
President, Mountaineering Council of Scotland
President, Munro Society
Sir Kenneth Calman
Chairman, National Trust for Scotland
Convener, Ramblers Scotland
Co-ordinator, Scottish Wild Land
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