Hill-going and wind farms – your views
Friday 25th October 2013
By Dave Gordon, Director for Landscape and Access
Although few wind farms have yet been built in core mountain areas, only around half of those with planning permission have so far been built. And there are a significant number of current planning applications for large wind farms in wild mountainous landscapes.
There is almost no up-to-date evidence on the effect that the spread of wind farms is having on the recreational use of Scotland's hills. Developers and government repeatedly draw on the same few studies, some well out of date, to say that wind farms have no impact on recreation and tourism. Anecdotally, MCofS hears differently. We hear that people are beginning to avoid certain areas, are visiting less frequently, are going to Cumbria or abroad more often. But we also hear people say that it makes no difference to them.
Survey evidence has its drawbacks, but it is stronger than anecdote. So we have designed a very short survey to look at the views of MCofS and BMC members. The easiest way to complete the survey is to go to https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/MCofSwindfarmsurvey . Easy for you to complete, easy for us to analyse. Alternatively, the survey can be downloaded and printed here, and can be posted to: The Mountaineering Council of Scotland, The Old Granary, West Mill Street, Perth, PH1 5QP. The survey will also appear in the November issue of The Scottish Mountaineer.
We need you to respond in large numbers to give us a true picture of what impact wind farms will have. What difference is the spread of wind farms going to make to your use of the hills? Please take a few minutes to help.