Articles filed under General from Europe
Donald Trump has hired one of Scotland's top legal planning experts to lead his court challenge against the Scottish Government's decision to grant the go-ahead to the "monstrous" offshore wind farm planned off the coast of his Aberdeenshire golf resort.
"The IFA have abandoned rural communities with their unbridled backing for giant wind farms across large tracts of the West and the Midlands. Before it is too late, the IFA should also take the opportunity to revisit its tacit support for selected landowners to sign up secretive contracts with wind farm companies, which are imposing dubious confidentiality clauses and promising the sun, moon and stars in return for land rights and options".
Wind farm developers are facing a dramatic escalation of opposition from dozens of MPs who say they will fight every application in their constituencies.
Rhona Weir, now in her 90s, accused developers of defacing the Kilpatrick Hills beside the house she shared with her husband, who shot to fame presenting outdoor TV programme Weir's Way in the late 1970s. However, her stance has put her at odds with others in the local community.
Italian police on Wednesday said they had seized assets worth 1.3 billion euros ($1.7 billion) from a Sicilian renewable energy developer in the biggest ever seizure of mafia-linked assets. The assets, including 43 wind and solar energy companies, 98 properties and 66 bank accounts, belonged to Vito Nicastri, a 57-year-old businessman dubbed the "Lord of the Wind".
Italy made its biggest confiscation of mafia assets in history on Wednesday, including dozens of alternative energy companies worth a total of 1.3 billion euros, police said. A court in Trapani on the island of Sicily ordered the definitive confiscation of assets first seized in 2010 from Vito Nicastri, a 57-year-old businessman, who was deemed a front man for the Sicilian mafia, known as Cosa Nostra.
"We thought we would be attending an informative planning meeting that would discuss the proposed wind turbine for Tetchill. Instead we got an advert for turbines and renewable energy. I was absolutely disgusted."
The row over subsidies for the UK's new nuclear power stations has deepened after it emerged that the £160m-a-year cost of accommodating the giant reactors on the national electricity grid will be borne by all generators, including renewable energy providers.
Dr Sam Gardner, senior climate change policy officer at WWF Scotland, said: "Giving the go-ahead to this offshore wind test centre is the right decision, demonstrating that no amount of bluster from US billionaires such as Donald Trump will hold Scotland back from becoming a cleaner, greener, job-creating nation."
Mr Trump threatened legal action to halt the wind test centre. "I built a masterpiece. I don't want to see it destroyed by windmills. Windmills are going to be the death of Scotland and even England if they don't do something about them. They are ruining the countryside," he said.
Mr Trump had previously vowed not to complete his golf development at the Menie Estate in Aberdeenshire - which is due to include a second course and five star hotel - if the wind farm was built claiming it would spoil views from his course.
Asked if he thought a slightly smaller Atlantic Array would put off visitors, Rob Grove, the owner of Carreglwyd Caravan and Camping Site, Port Eynon, said: "Absolutely not. "I don't think it's going to make a jot of difference.
More than 44,000 Scots have objected to windfarm applications since 2008, according to Conservative Party estimations. Figures obtained from 23 of the country's 32 local authorities show around 34,000 objections were submitted, ranging from an estimated 9421 in Aberdeenshire, to two objections in East Dunbartonshire.
With Japan’s crisis raising new questions about nuclear power, this might seem an ideal time for a company that is a global leader in alternative energy and has a big presence in an energy-starved country, India. But for Enercon of Germany, one of the world’s biggest makers of wind turbines, India is shaping up as a disaster.
Vestas Wind Systems A/S (VWS), the unprofitable Danish wind turbine maker, is fighting an attempt by investors to probe a change in its accounting policy that they say damaged the company's share price.
Julian Smith, MP for Ripon and Skipton, spoke of his worries about the "false economy" created by heavy subsidies for farms. "We are not being honest about the economics of wind farm investment. "The more I look into the economics of wind energy the more I am concerned."
Mr Davey warned it would be much more difficult for Scottish wind farms to provide energy at a competitive price if they relied on subsidies from just two-and-a-half million households rather than more than 23 million homes across Britain.
Cases for and against the wind farm were presented by Navitus Bay Development Ltd and opposition group Challenge Navitus with residents able to ask questions of both sides of the debate.
Steve Scott, area director for the Forestry Commission in the East and East Midlands, said: "We can confirm that the felling had taken place without a licence being in place. We have informed the owners that we intend to issue a restocking notice."
Like its rivals Repower and Vestas, Nordex had been suffering from overcapacities and sinking prices in the sector. Nonetheless, it gave a positive outlook for this year, saying 2013 revenues could reach between 1.2 and 1.3 billion euros on the back of record orders.