Burnett holds Holyrood briefing over SSE power pylons plan

Alexander Burnett, MSP
Alexander Burnett, MSP

Scottish Conservative Energy Spokesman Alexander Burnett has held a cross-party briefing at Holyrood to discuss upgrades to the electricity transmission network in the North and North East.

There has been local concern at plans, in particular the extension between Blackhillock and Kintore substations in Aberdeenshire.

More than 150 people turned out to a recent public meeting in Monymusk amid fears that views from Bennachie could be spoiled by 165-ft pylons.

MSPs had the opportunity to discuss the plans with representatives from Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN – operating under licence as Scottish Hydro Electric Transmission)

SSE have said that the network needs to be reinforced due to a recent and anticipated growth in renewable energy.

Burnett, MSP for Aberdeenshire West MSP, said: “Given the significant local interest in these proposals, a parliamentary briefing could be beneficial to MSPs whose constituencies or regions cover the area which will be impacted.

“I attended public meetings prior to the election in May, and have since had a significant level of correspondence from constituents in Aberdeenshire West about this issue.

“There is genuine concern locally about the potential impact of pylons on what is a picturesque part of the North East. In particular, the Craigearn, Leschangie and Monymusk Pylon Action Group has identified the area around Bennachie could be adversely affected.

“I felt that a briefing for all MSPs whose constituency or region covers the area that will be affected by the upgrade of the Beauly –Blackhillock and Blackhillock-Kintore lines would be beneficial.

“Although it is important to stress that these proposals remain at a very early stage, the initial meeting was a good opportunity  to raise constituent concerns.”

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