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Landscape Matters

Clach Liath Wind Farm Proposals Kicked Out By Highland Planners

Wednesday 13th February 2013

Press Release         13 February 2013         For immediate release

Grossly Unsuitable Clach Liath Wind Farm Proposals Kicked Out By Highland Planners

Third Major Rejection in Two Days Shows Scottish Government Must Change Direction and Protect our Mountains

HIGHLAND Council planners have thrown out proposals to build a huge wind farm on the slopes of one of Scotland’s most beautiful mountains.

The plans to build 17 turbines, each 126.5 metres high, at Clach Liath on the slopes of Ben Wyvis in Ross-shire was deemed so unsuitable that it was rejected without even needing to be put before the council planning committee for a vote.

David Gibson, MCofS Chief Officer, said: “We welcome this decision but it is completely wrong that companies can waste public time and money by putting forward grossly unsuitable applications of this kind.

“We have repeatedly called on the Scottish Government to act but it misses every opportunity and simply appears weak in its failure to care for the Scottish countryside.

“There are real concerns that planning departments, with limited resources, are being seriously overstretched by inappropriate wind farm applications by large energy companies which are happy to industrialise Scotland’s mountains for the sake of their own profits.

“With three dreadful wind farm applications having been rejected by Highland Council in just two days it is time the Scottish Government started listening and changed its direction.

“Scotland needs a national renewables spatial planning policy to decide what can be built where. This would stop unsuitable, speculative planning applications and protect our precious countryside while allowing green energy schemes to be developed in suitable places.”

This week Highland Council planning committee also rejected the wind farm applications for Dalnessie and Glenmorie, both of which would have a severe impact on important mountain landscapes. The final decision on these lies with the Scottish Government and the MCofS calls on it to respect the council’s views.

Ends

Notes for editors

  • Contact David Gibson 07845 919 150 or davidg@mcofs.org.uk or call 01738 493 947 in normal office hours.
  • The MCofS represents, supports and promotes Scottish mountaineering. Founded in 1970 by the Association of Scottish Climbing Clubs, MCofS is the only recognised representative organisation for hill walkers, climbers and ski-tourers who live in Scotland or who enjoy Scotland’s mountains.
  • The MCofS also acts for members of the BMC or British Mountaineering Council on matters related to Landscape and Access. The organisation provides training and information to mountain users to promote safety, self-reliance and the enjoyment of our mountain environment.
  • MCofS has 11,400 members, representing hill walkers, climbers and mountaineers, funded through a combination of membership subscriptions; non-governmental grants; and investment from sportscotland, which supports public initiatives and services in mountain safety, mountain weather information services, mountain leader training and the development and promotion of mountaineering activities. MCofS is a not for profit company limited by guarantee and incorporated in Scotland. Company number SC322717.
  • For further information about the MCofS and for our manifesto, Protecting our Mountains: The MCofS Manifesto on Onshore Wind Farms, see lps.asp