By David Mackay
Scottish Government officials have been urged to respect the view of Moray
communities and throw out the latest plan for huge wind farm expansion.
The council objected to plans from Fred Olsen Renewables this week to build
29 turbines up to 738ft tall as part of a development christened Rothes III.
The objection is the third time within the last year that the authority has
attempted to block a wind energy plan amid concerns about the effect it
will have on the local landscape – with final decisions about other
proposals near Knockando and south of Forres still to be made.
However, the Scottish Government will make the final decision about all
three projects due to the amount of power that can be generated by them.
Yesterday Highlands and Islands MSP Jamie Halcro Johnston called on
Holyrood to respect local views and throw out the Rothes III plans.
He said: “Not only are local people horrified by the prospect of yet more
giant wind turbines encroaching on this beautiful part of upland Moray, but
they are fearful that the Scottish Government will again ignore the views
of their elected representatives.
“This is simply not acceptable. We should remember that local people will
have to live with the consequences of these decisions for decades, long
after the ministers and civil servants in Holyrood will have forgotten
“We should not expect communities in Moray to have these developments
foisted on them with local opposition simply overruled or ignored.”
Figures released last year showed that the Scottish Government overturned
the original decision from councils to reject turbine developments in four
out of 10 cases.
During Moray Council’s planning committee meeting this week concerns were
raised that wind farm developers were not submitted plans for an area
deemed suitable for development by authority planners.
A Scottish Government spokesman confirmed a public inquiry would be held to
settle the Rothes III proposals.
He said: “A decision will be taken following the consideration of all
“Ministers, as is always the case, will take into account all consultation
responses received alongside any representations received from members of
the public before reaching a determination on the application.”