ONE can only hope that the Scottish Government and the Energy Consents and
Deployment Unit read and digest Kate Mavor’s reasoned comments regarding
the proliferation of wind farms (“Heritage chief: Too much rush over wind
farms, The Herald, April 25).

Ms Mavor, the outgoing chief executive of the National Trust for
Scotland,makes the point that the impact of change and development in
heritage is not considered enough and in some places they can be a
desecration of the landscape.

There is a need for honest debate regarding the benefits of all types of
energy, nuclear, green, and carbon, and I suspect that we will need to
sensibly utilise the benefits of all three in such a way as to minimise the
effects on the environment and the atmosphere while attempting to cope with
the needs of a demanding and expanding population.

However. it would seem that at the moment the desire is to promote wind
farm energy regardless of the costs involved both in environmental and
financial terms.

There is a proposal under review to place 15 or 20 turbines up to 476ft
tall on a highly visible area of the Cowal hills between Dunoon and
Innellan on a site known as Bachan Burn. The major beneficiaries will be
PNE Wind UK and the Forestry Commission. We can be assured that PNE is not
undertaking this project out of any sense of altruism. It also seems odd
that The Forestry Commission, set up to protect, develop and enhance our
woodlands now seeks to destroy it.

The location of this proposal is one of particular concern to the
inhabitants of the west of Scotland. A visit to the PNE website reveals a
map highlighting areas from which these huge turbines would be visible.
Much of the Glasgow area, all of the middle Clyde, everything from
Dumbarton to Helensburgh, the entire Firth of Clyde from Gourock to Arran
and beyond, Largs, Rothesay, the Kyles of Bute, and north-east Kintyre, and
more besides, all offer clear views of the Cowal project.

Given that the Firth of Clyde is, by common consent, one of the jewels of
not just Scotland, but the British Isles, bringing immense tourist benefits
to the country (including more than 50 cruise liners in 2015, all of which
would pass right under these giant turbines in future years), it is a
matter of grave concern that the Forestry Commission is allowing the land
to be sold for this purpose. The Clyde estuary has already seen
considerable erosion to its natural beauty over the years; Hunterston ore
terminal; Hunterston power station, the West Kilbride wind farm to name but
three examples.

One hopes that our national Government, while seeking to find the best
possible solutions to our energy problems, will take heed of Ms Mavor’s
concerns and apply a modicum of common sense and protect and conserve an
area of natural beauty by refusing planning permission for this monstrosity.

Bob Buntin,
G/F1 Mortland House, Longhill, Skelmorlie.

SAS Volunteer

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