A leading environmental charity is celebrating after plans for a 32-turbine windfarm in a Highland beauty spot have been knocked back by the Scottish Government.
The John Muir Trust has hailed a “hard fought victory” for the coalition of outdoors, environmental and community organisations which have waged a five year campaign to stop the proposed All Duine Wind Farm on the western edge of the Cairngorm National Park.
Opponents to the development included the JMT, Highland Council, Save Monadhliath Mountains, the Mountaineering Council of Scotland, the Cairngorms National Park Authority and Scottish Natural Heritage.
Local people also expressed their overwhelming opposition to the development in a ballot organised by the Kincraig and Vicinity Community Council.
Stuart Brooks, chief executive of the John Muir Trust said: “The battle to save this precious area of wild land has been long and hard. We are delighted that the deputy first minister John Swinney has come down on the side of the people and the landscape against the energy giant RWE.
“We are especially heartened by the Scottish Government’s growing recognition of the importance of landscape, which is in tune with the views of the big majority of the population of Scotland and of the Highlands as revealed in two major opinion surveys.”
Mr Brooks added: “We also welcome the minister’s acknowledgement that Allt Duine would have adversely affected the Monadhliath Wild Land Area .
“Coming on top of recent decisions to reject wind farms that would have impacted on wild land areas in Glen Affric and Caithness, this gives us grounds for optimism.
“We would now ask that the Scottish Government demonstrates its unequivocal commitment to the long term future of wild land by rejecting Glencassley and Sallachy, two other major developments on wild land in the Highlands that are awaiting ministerial decisions.”