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Decision is in the wind

CAMPAIGNERS against a proposed Greenock wind farm say a Scottish Office Reporter has turned it down — but the Scottish Executive could still approve it.

The Executive has had Karen Heywood's report for four months but has still not made up its mind about it.

Highly-placed sources say she is recommending refusing permission for the 40 million 55-megawatt Greenock wind farm following a public inquiry last spring.

Airtricity wants to erect 22 turbines, each of them 328 feet high, to generate electricity to an average of 40,000 to 50,000 homes.

Bill Riddell, of campaigners Keep Corlic Wild, said today: "The report has been on the desk of the responsible Deputy Minister, Allan Wilson, MSP for Cunninghame North. Airtricity's only hope of overturning this decision now rests with him."

Campaigners are worried that Allan Wilson is a former election agent for ex-Labour North Ayrshire MP and Energy Minister Brian Wilson, who is now Airtricity's United Kingdom chairman.

Mr Riddell said: "I suggest the Scottish Executive should ask Allan Wilson to distance himself from the various applications Airtricity are submitting, now that his buddy Brian Wilson has such a leading position in Airtricity."

A Scottish Executive spokesperson said: "Scottish Ministers will consider the responses received from the consultation process and the recommendations of the inquiry... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  
The Executive has had Karen Heywood's report for four months but has still not made up its mind about it.

Highly-placed sources say she is recommending refusing permission for the £40 million 55-megawatt Greenock wind farm following a public inquiry last spring.

Airtricity wants to erect 22 turbines, each of them 328 feet high, to generate electricity to an average of 40,000 to 50,000 homes.

Bill Riddell, of campaigners Keep Corlic Wild, said today: "The report has been on the desk of the responsible Deputy Minister, Allan Wilson, MSP for Cunninghame North. Airtricity's only hope of overturning this decision now rests with him."

Campaigners are worried that Allan Wilson is a former election agent for ex-Labour North Ayrshire MP and Energy Minister Brian Wilson, who is now Airtricity's United Kingdom chairman.

Mr Riddell said: "I suggest the Scottish Executive should ask Allan Wilson to distance himself from the various applications Airtricity are submitting, now that his buddy Brian Wilson has such a leading position in Airtricity."

A Scottish Executive spokesperson said: "Scottish Ministers will consider the responses received from the consultation process and the recommendations of the inquiry reporter in the context of statutory requirements and planning guidance, before determining the application."

Meanwhile the British Airports Authority said it is still objecting to Corlic because the turbines would affect Glasgow Airport radar. The wind farm could lead to longer flights because of planes diverting around the farm, possibly over areas not currently affected by aircraft noise.

Source: http://www.greenocktelegrap...

JAN 17 2006
http://www.windaction.org/posts/1002-decision-is-in-the-wind
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