Mountaineering Scotland has climbed into the debate over a controversial windfarm earmarked for the Glenkens.
The landscape protection group claims the development would ruin views around the Rhinns of Kells.
Torrs Hill Wind Farm Ltd has lodged an outline bid for 12 turbines below the highest mountain in the range, Corserine.
The machines would be up to 250 metres high – almost 100 metres taller than Blackpool Tower.
According to Mountaineering Scotland, the development would breach a wild area in the Galloway Hills.
Access and conservation officer Davie Black said: “We are concerned about any plans to establish a windfarm in such close proximity to Corserine and the Rhinns of Kells and the visual impact it would have on such a scenic area which is very popular with hill walkers.
“Our main concern is keeping that corridor between the Merrick, the Rhinns of Kells and Cairnsmore of Carsphairn of Carsphairn clear of turbines.
“We have given up on the area behind Cairnsmore because now it’s just a ring of steel.”
He added: “We will consider fighting for this because of the unspoilt views. It’s time to have some consideration for those who want to enjoy the views when up in the hills.”
THWL, a subsidiary of Fred Olsen Ltd, secured planning permission for two turbines at the same location on Olsen’s Forrest Estate near Dalry in 2004.
Spiralling costs becalmed that project but extra grid capacity and bigger turbine technology sparked the new bid into life.
Jeremy Sainsbury, director of local agents Natural Power, said: “As the longstanding owner of the Forrest Estate and a significant employer in the area, Fred Olsen Renewables needs to ensure that any development here is sympathetic to the landscape.
“Whilst preserving the surroundings for the benefit of local tourism, we must also ensure we have access to the resources needed to maintain the viability of our rural community such as access to low cost electricity and, for example, charging points for electric cars.
“We are mindful of this need to future-proof our society in creating plans for renewable energy.”
He added: “Our initial scoping work outlines proposals for the greatest and most efficient energy output. However, these should be considered as a starting point and the design is likely to change as the planning process develops.
“A more defined proposition has still to be created.”
|Wind Watch relies entirely
on User Funding