British Govt. Minister for Scotland slams Scottish Govt for nodding through controversial new wind farm in Borders conservation area

Fruid Reservoir, Tweedsmuir, Borders near the site of the Whitelaw Brae wind farm
Fruid Reservoir, Tweedsmuir, Borders near the site of the Whitelaw Brae wind farm

The British Government has slammed the Scottish Government for giving the go-ahead to a controversial wind turbine farm in a special conservation area in the Borders.

The planning application to build a new 50-MW wind farm near Moffat in the Scottish Borders was approved by the Scot-Govt – despite the opposition of the local council.

But only after the Greenock-based developer of the Whitelaw Brae wind farm agreed to cut the number of turbines by almost 50% – from the 27 it first proposed in 2012 – to the 14 it submitted in an amended bid in 2015.

Mountaineering Scotland also criticised the approval of 14 turbines – each more than 400-ft high – near the Fruid Reservoir in the Tweedsmuir hills claiming it ignores the impact on tourism in the area.

The application for the Whitelaw Brae wind farm was subject to a public local inquiry which considered all potential impacts including tourism.

The British Govt. Minister for Scotland David Mundell – who is MP for Tweeddale – said: “I am very angry that the Whitelaw Brae wind farm has been given the green light by the Scottish Government.

“Local people and the local authority were united in their opposition to this major development, but, once again, the Scottish Government has chosen to ignore the views of people living there, with their we-know-best attitude.

 “All too often, the Scottish Government are overturning local planning decisions, which is deeply damaging for local democracy.

“My position on wind farm developments is clear in my constituency – enough is enough.

“This is another development that will harm the tourist industry, which is vital for the local economy, and local people will be wondering if wind farm developments will ever end in this area.”

 

13 Dec 2017

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