I WAS interested to read in your article on the approval for an 11-turbine wind farm on the Kintyre peninsula ("Green light for Kintyre wind farm", The Herald, April 16) that the developer, RES (a multi-national with no local links), says that the scheme is within a "proposed area of search" and that it will have no significant effect on local people.
In the current local plan there are "preferred areas of search" and this scheme does not seem to be in one. RES was also told by Scottish Natural Heritage, at the beginning of the application process, that "SNH do not consider this to be an appropriate location for wind development of this scale".
No significant effect? Our house, 1700 metres from the nearest machine, will be seriously devalued. Here's a quote from a major company of surveyors made about another house close by: "Properties are almost impossible to sell in areas where planning applications have been lodged for wind farms and properties for sale in the vicinity of existing wind farms are challenging to sell and, on the few occasions they are sold, sell for much less than the values one would normally expect." Makes a bit of a nonsense of RES's statement, I think.
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This scheme had no local support but did have substantial local opposition. It was unanimously rejected by the local council's planning committee.
In the SNP White Paper Scotland's Future it says that "decisions currently taken for Scotland at Westminster will instead be taken by the people of Scotland". Can Mr Salmond or some other SNP representative explain how that fits with decisions which have been taken, unanimously and democratically, in Argyll & Bute being overridden by Edinburgh?
The proposal will have a terrible effect on tourism, a major local industry. The site is adjacent to a scenic single-track road between the ferry terminals for Arran and Islay. A worse introduction to Kintyre is difficult to imagine.
Argyll & Bute Council is deeply worried about depopulation, and this will put off anyone thinking of moving here to enjoy the views and the wildlife. We moved here five years ago for exactly those reasons and now wish very much that we hadn't. Leaving would be a major economic disaster for us at a time of life when rebuilding finances is no longer possible.
When the whole of Scotland is blighted by these devices perhaps we shall remember that the SNP was the culprit. We certainly shall as we sit in our unsaleable house in a place where we no longer wish to live.