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Plans for a new wind farm in Aberdeenshire are set to be challenged in court following concerns over the protection of wildcats.
Swedish energy giant Vattenfall received the go-ahead to build a second site at Clashindarroch last year.
However, conservation group Wildcat Haven believes it could endanger the local wildcat population.
It has now pursued a judicial review over the approval granted by Scottish ministers.
Vattenfall’s 14-turbine Clashindarroch II wind farm was approved by Scottish ministers in June last year.
The project is near its other 18-turbine wind farm which has been generating electricity for several years.
Wildcat Haven’s director Paul O’Donoghue described it as “potentially catastrophic”.
He told BBC Scotland News: “Wildcats are known to avoid wind farms, there’s noise and a lot of human activity.
“Wildcat Haven is absolutely pro-renewables, but it’s all about the right development for the right site and this is clearly the wrong development at the wrong site.”
The project is near Vattenfall’s other wind farm
Vattenfall said in a statement: “We design our wind farms so they reduce carbon emissions and protect wildlife at the same time.
“Our wind farm at Clashindarroch has already been generating electricity for over eight years with no negative impact on the wildcat population and we have recently completed peat bog restoration and tree planting to provide further cover for the wildcats to hunt and roam.”
A Scottish government spokesperson said: “Scottish ministers have been served a petition for judicial review.
“As the legal process is ongoing, it would be inappropriate to comment further at this stage.”
[Update: thrown out: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-north-east-orkney-shetland-68246850]
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