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Lääne-Nigula wind farm public discussion gets heated

A public discussion on the proposed wind farm at Piirsalu in Lääne-Nigula municipality, Lääne County brought up plenty of controversy Wednesday evening, current affairs show “Aktuaalne kaamera” (AK) reports.

Enefit Green, state-owned electricity generator Eesti Energia’s renewables subsidiary, announced last year they plan to build the facility. The special plan was initiated by the municipality, and the local residents have been given the chance to get acquainted with three possible locations in the pre-selection.

AK reported that the wind farm will host up to 30 wind turbines. A lengthy discussion on location – Vidruka, Seljaküla, Piirsalu, Jaakna, Luigu and Rõuma were the preferred locations for the municipality – also followed.

Aavo Kärmas, head of Enefit Green, said: “These areas are the closest to the substation, which means if the wind farm needs to be connected to the substation in the future, there will not be that much of a need for additional corridors for power lines. Another reason is these locations are more compact compared to other areas. The final reason is these areas are close to the existing infrastructure.”

Local residents say the plan creates mistrust and misunderstanding on several points. The municipal council was also criticized for not reading sufficient considerations from last year’s decision on the special plan.

Rein Kruusmaa commented that: “It is not as if we are going to build a kennel for a dog. We cannot initiate the plan so quickly. It is a plan for the whole region, for the whole Western Estonia, which has such a significant impact.”

Locals are concerned that wind turbines may be built many kilometers from homes.

As the possible location will not be known until next autumn, the developer cannot say where the specific wind turbines are likely to be located or how many they would number.

Lauri Ulm, Enefit Green spokesperson, said: “Give us a chance to explain. We need to investigate without immediately being challenged and [people] arguing with us.”

The final decision on the establishment of a special plan depends on Lääne-Nigula municipality itself

Neeme Suur, the council’s chair, said: “What was the reason why we initiated the special plan? We cannot just put our hands up and say ‘no’. If someone has a problem with it, do not come here – it is important to make an informed decision.”