There is one important point that needs to be added to all the exceptionally enlightening letters which have been published over the last week concerning the ineffectiveness of wind farms and the environmental damage caused by them. What everyone sees at the moment as they go about their daily business is only the tip of the iceberg. We currently have approx. 4,500 turbines over 100kw in Scotland (it seems to change on a daily basis) but just as importantly we have over 1700 in the planning process and that number continues to increase.
With proposed turbines of 260m, the tallest in the world, being proposed in East Ayrshire and a single turbine in East Renfrewshire with blades so long the tips will only clear the ground by 9m (the first of its kind in the UK), rural communities and wildlife will be overwhelmed.
The RSPB and Nature Scot have confirmed that blade tips so close to the ground travelling at 200mph is likely to increase the chances of strike to many more species of birds. Unfortunately due to cut backs, they are both now only able to comment on wind turbine applications within protected areas or which concern protected species. This effectively stops our statutory consultees from objecting to the majority of planning applications. It’s a tragic situation.
Aileen Jackson
FURTHER to the wind farm letters of the last few days, I would like to draw attention to the unfair planning system in Scotland which a Scotland Against Spin petition is trying to change. In England developers have to take into account local opinion and local plans. Here we have a system where the developer appeals to the Government if local councils don’t pass the application and one or two Reporters decide the application, ratified by ministers.
The Cornharrow, near Carsphairn, wind farm application for 11 turbines in Dumfries and Galloway was refused by the Government on appeal in 2019, mentioning “enjoyment of cultural heritage”. The Southern Upland Way, which crosses the country, passes close by. It is marketed as one of Scotland’s “great trails”.
A new application was passed on appeal last week for eight turbines.
This time round a Reporter concluded that walkers would have an “intermittent view” of the wind farm. However, he expressed “some doubts” about how well used the stretch of the walking route was. “I encountered no other walkers between Culmark Hill and Benbrack in the course of my site inspection (though admittedly this took place ‘off-season’ in November).”
I rest my case.
Celia Hobbs, Penicuik.
THE Letters Pages have had many letters over the past weeks on the subject of electricity generation versus climate change, and yet we seem to have turned our backs on perhaps the only system that can produce carbon-free energy in almost limitless amounts.
Nuclear power generation has its dangers and needs careful management; human folly, such as building reactors adjacent to tectonic plates as at Fukashima, and careless management as at Chernobyl, have given it a bad name, undeservedly in my opinion. If we look back over the centuries at the deaths caused by coal mining and oil production, both from accidents and polluted atmosphere, then it might be time to change our minds.
John Jamieson, Ayr.

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