DC Casebook: Energy development - Turbine allowed in historic mining area

An inspector has concluded that the need to promote electricity from renewable energy sources justifies a wind turbine in Cornwall even though it would appear as a large and incongruous feature in the landscape.

The 1.3MW turbine would have a hub height of up to 50m and a height to blade tip of 80m. It would be located close to the boundaries of the Bodmin Moor and Tamar Valley areas of outstanding natural beauty and in an area of great landscape value that had been designated with regard to the results of a landscape assessment in 1994.

This designation had not been formally or robustly reassessed subsequently, the inspector noted. PPS22 makes clear that local landscape designations should not be used to refuse permission for renewable energy development, she remarked. Although the location was near an historic mining area designated as a world heritage site, she observed that it had not been designated for its landscape importance.

The blades' height and movement would appear as a harmful feature in a pastoral setting but many public views would be screened by the landform, she decided. She concluded that the turbine would have an adverse impact on views from residential properties but its extent would be limited.

The county's target of 93MW of installed electricity generation capacity by 2010 was unlikely to be met, she found. PPS22 supports small-scale energy projects and the drive to increase efficiency should not count against the need for an increased supply from renewables, she judged.

DCS Number 100-064-672

Inspector Jill Kingaby; Written representations


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