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More than 200 sign petition against large construction compound required for Viking Energy windfarm

More than 200 people have signed a petition objecting to a large construction compound linked to the controversial Viking Energy windfarm.

The petition, which supports an objection raised by Sustainable Shetland, was sent to the SIC yesterday (Friday) ahead of a planning committee meeting on Monday, when the application is due to be heard.

The application seeks permission to build a temporary compound, measuring 200m x 200m, for a five year period, as well as a new access track at a site to the south of Voe.

Viking says it is required for the construction of its 103 turbine wind farm, which was recently granted permission.

A separate compound had already been included in the windfarm application. However Viking said it needed to increase the size of compounds “to facilitate the expeditious construction of the proposed windfarm”.

The “main’ compound, east of Sandwater, has already been approved. Proposals for a “west” compound, south of Weisdale, are reported to have been withdrawn.

An SIC report produced for Monday’s meeting says the site would be returned to its previous condition once the use of the site has ended.

The planning service said it considers the proposal acceptable in terms location, scale, design and form, provided all proposed and approved mitigation measures are implemented.

These include measures to safeguard the natural and built environment; the visual amenity of the area; protected species, habitats and other important ecological and archaeological features.

Other measures include protecting the water and natural environment from flooding and pollution risks and minimising impacts in terms of soil quality which may arise as a result of construction.

Frank Hay, objecting on behalf of Sustainable Shetland, raised concerns about the siting, site access, and cumulative impact, as well as the impact on peatland and the landscape.

Mr Hay also said he did not have confidence that the conditions imposed would be adequately dealt with,

The petition, signed by 202 people, asks that the planning committee notes its full agreement with the representations made by Mr Hay on behalf of Sustainable Shetland.