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14/06/13 09:57

Wind farm development in the Highlands

Planning decisions announced for two proposed wind farms.

Finance Secretary, John Swinney has today granted planning consent for a proposed wind farm at Tom Nan Clach, north-east Tomatin. The decision was made on the same day that planning consent of Glenkirk wind farm, north-east Tomatin was rejected.

The proposed Tom Nan Clach wind farm, which will be developed by Nanclach Ltd, is expected to have 17 turbines and have a generating capacity of up to 39.1MW. The farm could power the equivalent of more than 18,000 homes in the area.

Mr Swinney found that the impact of the proposed Glenkirk wind farm on the landscape and the visual aspect was too high. The original application submitted by developers Eurus Energy UK Limited was for a 102MW, 34 turbine wind farm on Balnespick Estate. However after several revisions this was reduced to a 26 turbine proposal.

Finance Secretary John Swinney said:

“The Tom Nan Clach wind farm will create jobs both in its construction and during its lifetime, as well as having the capacity to supply more than 18,000 homes with renewable electricity.

“Wind farms, like Tom Nan Clach, will help us achieve our 500 MW target which could be worth up to £2.4 billion to Scottish communities and rural businesses over the lifetime of those projects. And with more than 600 MW at different stages of development and planning, the future for community and locally owned energy across Scotland looks brighter than ever.

“The Scottish Government wants to see the right developments in the right places and Scottish planning policy is clear that the design and location of any wind farm should reflect the scale and character of the landscape and should be considered environmentally acceptable.

“The significant adverse impacts of the proposed Glenkirk wind farm on nearby wild land and key landscape characteristics in conjunction with the cumulative effects with other wind farms and visual impacts on recreational and road users is too great.”

Notes to editors

  • The Scottish Government has determined 83 energy applications, including consent for 57 renewable applications: 32 onshore wind, 1 offshore wind, 19 hydro, 4 wave and tidal and 1 biomass plant; and 18 non-renewable projects since May 2007. The Scottish Government has previously rejected 8 energy applications since May 2007, all of which were onshore wind farms.
  • The Scottish Government’s Energy Consents and Deployment Unit is currently considering another 44 applications of >50MW capacity generating stations, including 42 renewables: 2 Hydro, 4 Biomass, 36 Onshore wind, plus 2 non-renewable Hydro. In addition to this there are 11 active applications for overhead lines, and 0 pipeline applications