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Wind farm plans suspended over core strategy 'uncertainty'

An energy developer has suspended its plans for a wind farm at a site to the south west of York, blaming 'uncertainty' about the local planning regime. Banks Renewables put forward plans for the proposed five-turbine Hagg Wood wind farm, which would have been situated on agricultural land to the west of Copmanthorpe, at the start of 2011.

An energy developer has suspended its plans for a wind farm at a site to the south west of York, blaming 'uncertainty' about the local planning regime.

Banks Renewables put forward plans for the proposed five-turbine Hagg Wood wind farm, which would have been situated on agricultural land to the west of Copmanthorpe, at the start of 2011.

Despite being recommended for approval by the City of York Council’s planning officers, a separate planning application for a test wind mast on the site was rejected by its planning committee in June last year.

Now Banks has said that due the withdrawal of the City of York’s key core strategy planning document from the examination process last year, there was "uncertainty over local renewables policy".

It added: "With no clear indication over when the document will be finalised, taking the Hagg Wood scheme forward has become impractical in the immediate future."

Phil Dyke, development director at Banks Renewables, said: "It’s disappointing for us to have to take this decision, but the continuing uncertainty about local renewables planning policy makes it unsustainable for us to continue to take this scheme forward at this time.

"The imperative to generate more of the... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

An energy developer has suspended its plans for a wind farm at a site to the south west of York, blaming 'uncertainty' about the local planning regime.

Banks Renewables put forward plans for the proposed five-turbine Hagg Wood wind farm, which would have been situated on agricultural land to the west of Copmanthorpe, at the start of 2011.

Despite being recommended for approval by the City of York Council’s planning officers, a separate planning application for a test wind mast on the site was rejected by its planning committee in June last year.

Now Banks has said that due the withdrawal of the City of York’s key core strategy planning document from the examination process last year, there was "uncertainty over local renewables policy".

It added: "With no clear indication over when the document will be finalised, taking the Hagg Wood scheme forward has become impractical in the immediate future."

Phil Dyke, development director at Banks Renewables, said: "It’s disappointing for us to have to take this decision, but the continuing uncertainty about local renewables planning policy makes it unsustainable for us to continue to take this scheme forward at this time.

"The imperative to generate more of the energy that we all consume from renewable sources is getting ever stronger, and once the updated core strategy is in place, we will look to work with the council to identify possible locations for renewable energy developments in the York area."

Mike Slater, assistant director for city development and sustainability at City of York Council, said: "Wind turbines are often a very controversial type of renewable energy generation and there are many important planning and environmental matters to consider. In this particular case, in addition to local planning policy position, there were clearly issues about both residential amenity and the future operation of the nearby Rufforth Airfield to consider.

"As an authority we are determined to get a local plan in place as soon possible and investigating the renewable energy needs for York is an element that will be investigated as part of this process, but it’s important that we balance this need whilst ensuring we protect York’s unique environment.

"The council is interested in any development that can deliver growth and prosperity at a local level, and we encourage Banks Renewables to contact the council so we can discuss their proposals ahead of a local plan being implemented. Of course, any proposals would be subject to planning process."

The council's core strategy was withdrawn in May following the approval for an out-of-town retail scheme that the council said had "strategic significance" which necessitated changes to the document. 


Source: http://www.planningresource...

JAN 18 2013
https://www.windaction.org/posts/16704-wind-farm-plans-suspended-over-core-strategy-uncertainty
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