Article

Coastal wind farm tourism fears

A new report says plans for a wind farm off the coast of north Wales could damage tourism.

The study, by officers of Conwy Council, said not enough had been done to assess the risks of siting 200 turbines 15km off Llandudno.

The council is now due to discuss whether to call for a public inquiry before the scheme goes ahead.

Developers NPower Renewables said wind farms elsewhere on the coast have done little to damage tourism.

The wind farm - called Gwynt Y Mor - would involve wind turbines, offshore sub-stations, inter-turbine cables and an onshore sub-station.

There has been opposition to the plans from some local people - some of whom have formed a protest group called Save Our Scenery.

Protesters claim that as well as being detrimental to tourism, the wind farm would have an effect on noise levels, ecology and coastal defences.
'Wall of steel'

John Lawson-Reay from Save Our Scenery, said: "This is why people come to north Wales, they come here for the view.

"Here we are talking about an area of 50 square miles, stretching 17 miles along the coast from Llandudno to Prestatyn. This is a wall of steel.

"The area covered will be so great it will have a dramatic impact."

A report from Conwy Council's officers expresses concern that the development has potential to harm... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  
The study, by officers of Conwy Council, said not enough had been done to assess the risks of siting 200 turbines 15km off Llandudno.

The council is now due to discuss whether to call for a public inquiry before the scheme goes ahead.

Developers NPower Renewables said wind farms elsewhere on the coast have done little to damage tourism.

The wind farm - called Gwynt Y Mor - would involve wind turbines, offshore sub-stations, inter-turbine cables and an onshore sub-station.

There has been opposition to the plans from some local people - some of whom have formed a protest group called Save Our Scenery.

Protesters claim that as well as being detrimental to tourism, the wind farm would have an effect on noise levels, ecology and coastal defences.
'Wall of steel'

John Lawson-Reay from Save Our Scenery, said: "This is why people come to north Wales, they come here for the view.

"Here we are talking about an area of 50 square miles, stretching 17 miles along the coast from Llandudno to Prestatyn. This is a wall of steel.

"The area covered will be so great it will have a dramatic impact."

A report from Conwy Council's officers expresses concern that the development has potential to harm Llandudno's tourist industry.

But NPower Renewables' development manager, Alastair Gill, said existing wind farms has not had the effect of damaging tourism.

Existing wind farms

The company has already developed a smaller off-shore wind farm off Rhyl and Prestatyn.

Mr Gill added: "The only evidence we have to go on is the existing wind farms that are out there which don't appear to have damaged the tourist industry.

"The surveys we have carried out find that most people don't find wind turbines quite some way out to shore a problem that would prevent them from coming back."

The Llandudno project will not be decided on by the local planning authority - the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is set to judge whether it should go ahead.

Conwy Council may urge the DTI to launch a public inquiry into the plans following a council meeting on Thursday.
----
GWYNT Y MOR WIND FARM
200 wind turbines 8-9 miles off the coast
120 new jobs during operational life
500,000 homes could get electricity from wind power
Source: NPower Renewables

Source: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/...

FEB 9 2006
http://www.windaction.org/posts/1247-coastal-wind-farm-tourism-fears
back to top