Energy plans trigger clash

Formal objections have been lodged by local authorities against two wind farm developments this week.

The Peak District National Park Authority will go to the High Court to challenge plans for a wind farm near its boundary. It will lodge a joint appeal with Derbyshire Dales District Council against a scheme for four 102m wind turbines at Carsington Pastures, between Matlock and Ashbourne.

Carsington Wind Energy Ltd's proposal was approved by a planning inspector in September following an eight-day public inquiry in July. But Peak District planning committee chairwoman Hilda Gaddum commented: "The giant scale of these turbines would have a visual impact well within the national park. This is an important case not just for us but for future applications near the boundaries of other national parks."

Derbyshire Dales leader Lewis Rose said: "While the council has never questioned the desirability or need to promote renewable energy, there is a clear need to carry out a balanced assessment of such proposals."

In addition, Scottish Borders Council has decided to object to plans for a 36-turbine wind farm near the scenic Devil's Beef Tub at Earlshaugh. The council has opposed Wind Energy Ltd's project on the grounds of its landscape impact and adverse effect on habitat.

The objection means that the proposal will have to go to public inquiry before a decision can be made. Neighbouring Dumfries and Galloway Council has also voiced concerns about the plan.


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