Alastair Collin (Scotsman legal page 15 February) takes the lawyer’s view of being concerned for his clients’ (or potential clients’) finances, should they become involved with the decommissioning, restoration and aftercare of wind farm developments which have been sited on their land by a developer. To members of the public however there are more important things to be worried about.
Campaign group, Scotland Against Spin surveyed every planning authority area in Scotland and discovered that although many had insisted on financial guarantees such as Bonds being put in place for the decommissioning of large wind farms, very few had insisted on one for small or single turbine developments, opting instead for a planning condition only. In the case of East Renfrewshire Council, there were NO financial guarantees for any turbines other than their share of Whitelee wind farm. This means in years to come, in the event small operators cannot or will not pay for decommissioning, the tax payer has to foot the bill. This is an environmental disaster for East Renfrewshire as it has by far the greatest density of wind turbines per square kilometer in Scotland (confirmed by Freedom Of Information request to Scottish Gov).
Another catastrophe awaits us in Shetland where the Council has allowed construction of the vast Viking Wind farm to commence without a decommissioning bond having been agreed, leaving them without any negotiating leverage.
Rusting turbines littering our landscape, putting extra pressure on already struggling local authority finances awaits us in the not too distant future.
Scotland Against Spin