January 10, 2016
Wales

‘Be patient’ over windfarm plans

Robert Doman | News North Wales | 09 January 2016 | www.newsnorthwales.co.uk

Anti-wind farm campaigners are urging people to be patient after decisions against two controversial windfarms were quashed.

But some say Mid Wales “remains under threat” after the County Times reported last week how two high-profile windfarm decisions are to be revisited just months after being made.

Thousands of people formed a huge wave of public protest when they marched on the Senedd in defiance of the proposals concerning potential wind farms in 2011 before a ‘final decision’ was made by the UK Government in September last year.

However, fears two of those decisions could be reversed have already surfaced following a Secretary of State ruling in the days before Christmas.

Campaign leaders say they remain optimistic despite their own worries that the energy companies could now get their own way.

Montgomeryshire Against Pylons campaigner, Jonathan Wilkinson said: “I am telling our supporters to be patient and not to worry unnecessarily.

“The decision process may not have been correct and the developers will be hoping for a different decision.

“The DECC (Department of Energy and Climate Change) will look at these decisions again but I am reasonably optimistic the same decision will be reached and that any mistakes made will be corrected.

“Any other decision would be disappointing but the minister wants to end high subsidies for on-shore wind schemes.

“The primary aim of MAP was to stop National Grid development and they have withdrawn, however temporarily, from Mid Wales,” he added.

RWE Innogy’s 150MW Carnedd Wen development proposal and the RES 90MW Llanbrynmair plans will return to the spotlight having previously formed part of the Powys mega-inquiry.

Both proposals were recommended for approval by planing inspectors before getting the thumbs down from the UK Government, prompting both energy companies to call for a judicial review.

Mr Wilkinson’s fellow MAP campaigner, Digby Davies, has however admitted the current situation is causing concern.

He said: “The DECC will revisit these decisions and work to eliminate any issues.

“It is very important to find out what these issues are and why the Secretary of State has decided to do this.

“Of course, we find it worrying that it is all being kicked up in the air again.”

The move has given RWE Innogy and RES hope their applications may now become reality with previously publishing statements welcoming the review.

Alison Davies, chairman of the Conservation of Upland Powys group said: “We are completely in the dark.

“Our concerns over the result of this inquiry is out of our hands.

“The concern is that Mid Wales is still under threat.

“The move by the Secretary of State to quash the earlier decision and get it ratified in court is something we have to live with.

“We don’t know what the reason is.”

Montgomeryshire MP Glyn Davies, who also campaigned against the proposed wind turbine developments, has said he does not have any concerns and told the County Times: “I am more than hopeful that the outcome will be the same.”

There is currently no date set for redetermination.

The DECC have said: “The two wind farm applications will be redetermined and we would not speculate on the outcome.”


URL to article:  https://www.wind-watch.org/news/2016/01/10/be-patient-over-windfarm-plans/