September 8, 2016

Dumfries and Galloway wind turbine total approaches 600

BBC News | 8 September 2016 |

The number of wind turbines built, under construction or given planning consent in Dumfries and Galloway is nearing the 600 mark across the region.

The figures are contained in a report looking at updating council policy on dealing with such applications.

It lists more than 450 turbines over 50m (160ft) tall which are operational or under construction at 22 sites.

A further 11 new farms or extensions totalling 138 turbines have also been given planning consent.

In addition, the document lists hundreds of other turbines which are outside Dumfries and Galloway but visible from the region.

Some of the developments listed also straddle regional boundaries.

The local authority is being advised to update its strategy on handling applications for such projects.

It reflects the changing nature of such developments with a move away from smaller scale turbines to larger schemes.

Councillors are being recommended to start consultation on its supplementary guidance on wind turbines.

If they agree, a report on the public’s response would be brought back to the economy, environment and infrastructure committee in the new year.

The study concluded that the very largest turbines – greater than 150m (490ft) in height – could not be accommodated apart from, potentially, in the Eskdalemuir area.

It also found that there was only “limited scope” for turbines between 80m (260ft) and 150m tall in other parts of the region.

The report looked at areas at risk of “significant” cumulative impact due to the number of wind farms already in operation.

It found capacity was “close to being reached” on the Wigtownshire moorlands while there was only “limited scope” or “very limited scope” for more turbines in Annandale, Nithsdale and the Stroan/Ken area of Galloway.

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