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Windfarmer defends Broadband ‘gesture’  

Credit:  By Iain Ramage | The Press and Journal | 18 July 2016 | www.pressandjournal.co.uk ~~

A windfarm company has defended its offer of helping facilitate broadband rollout in the Highlands in the face of fierce criticism from campaigners.

Energy firm RES has been accused by anti-turbines activists of a “cynical ploy” by offering use of its masts for mounting equipment to improve internet and mobile phone connections in a remote area near Loch Ness.

Critics claim the gesture is aimed at swaying an appeal in its favour.

RES has contested Highland Council’s rejection of its Aberarder scheme and taken its case to the Scottish Government.

Jim Treasurer, of pressure group Friends of the Great Glen, said: “Any overt inducement like that doesn’t compensate for the environmental impact of the mast and what it constitutes.”

John Appleton, RES’s development manager for the Aberarder project, said: “The community locally had identified that broadband was an issue.

“As part of the development we were able to identify an opportunity to address this and our meteorological mast could have helped facilitate broadband within the Strathnairn area.”

In April, debate on the Aberarder proposal ultimately prompted Highland Council leader Margaret Davidson to declare “enough is enough” because of the cumulative impact of windfarms around Loch Ness.

There was cross-party opposition to the 12-turbine Aberarder project proposed for the south side of the loch, despite a steer from council planning officers that no objection should be raised.

More than 500 turbines are either built or planned within a 22-mile radius of Loch Ness.

Source:  By Iain Ramage | The Press and Journal | 18 July 2016 | www.pressandjournal.co.uk

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

The copyright of this article resides with the author or publisher indicated. As part of its noncommercial effort to present the environmental, social, scientific, and economic issues of large-scale wind power development to a global audience seeking such information, National Wind Watch endeavors to observe “fair use” as provided for in section 107 of U.S. Copyright Law and similar “fair dealing” provisions of the copyright laws of other nations. Send requests to excerpt, general inquiries, and comments via e-mail.

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