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Lewis and Harris


Contentious £200m Lewis windfarm takes step forward

environmental survey for site on outskirts of Stornoway lodged with Scottish Government

Plans to build a controversial £200million windfarm on the outskirts of Stornoway have moved forward.

The developer – a partnership between Amec and French government-owned EDF Energy – wants to erect up to 50 giant turbines adjacent to a busy tourist route.

Now an environmental survey has been lodged with the Scottish Government, which has responsibility for deciding if the windfarm goes ahead due to the large scale of the scheme.

The proposal sparked fierce criticism after it emerged the community-owned Stornoway Trust signed a deal potentially committing crofters' grazings to the huge development for decades.

Stornoway Trust factor Iain MacIver said: "I am delighted with the recent progress the application has made.

"This application will be respectful and mindful of the impact on the local environment and habitats and this has been foremost in our thoughts as we have submitted the application.

"Our development partners have listened and learned from their previous application and we are committed to engaging and consulting with the local community during this project. I believe the appointment of a community co-ordinator will be integral to this process as we aim to form an ongoing partnership with the local community."

The environmental report covers all aspects of how the proposed windfarm would be assessed from an environmental perspective during the design, construction and operational phases.

It addresses surveys to include noise, visual impact, archaeology, ecology, tourism and hydrology. Bird studies started on the site last spring.

The current proposal follows the Scottish Government's refusal to approve a controversial plan for a £700million chain of 181 huge turbines up the length of Lewis. Depending on the number of turbines which receive planning permission, up to £1.5million is being offered annually in community benefit after electricity starts generating in three or four years.

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moss Posted by moss
24th September 2010ce

Comments (2)

Any problems with this scheme? I'm not up to pace with the latest developments. Posted by Mustard
24th September 2010ce
As a scheme its been going for years, the Stornoway Trust is an amalgamation of villages owning their own wind farms in the future which means a lot of dissent, mostly about grazing Last I heard it was 33 turbines to be put up see news below - theres money in those wind turbines and a lot to be fought over, TMA interest is of course Callanish, and the relation of the wind turbines to the mountains/stones..
John Muir Trust though is obviously more concerned with...

"organisation has campaigned strongly against the building of these turbines, their case rests on the use of ‘wild land’ for industrial purposes, the decline of the rare white tailed eagle, also the cumulative effect of death (by flying into the turbines) of the golden eagle and the viewpoints from three key summits in the area; Beinn Mhor, An Cliseam and Calanais, to quote “ the 33 turbines, each at 145 metres high – taller than the London Eye, will have huge visual impacts” on the stunning wildness of this Scottish island landscape."

moss Posted by moss
24th September 2010ce
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