8 Aug 2012
The SNP has told a Scottish council it cannot put a block on windfarm submissions, despite being inundated by the applications.
Moray Council asked the Scottish Government for a moratorium due to the sheer amount of applications it was receiving, and the workload it was placing on its planning department.
Aberdeenshire and Fife Council have also requested a break from considering the applications, but in the letter to Moray today, the SNP stated planning departments must encourage windfarm bids.
It comes two months after local government minister Derek Mackay wrote to all councils instructing them to set up areas for preferred development, providing even more encouragement for windfarm firms.
Scottish Conservative energy spokeswoman Mary Scanlon MSP said:
“This dictatorial approach by the SNP is unacceptable in a democracy.
“People voted for local councillors in May to make local decisions, but the Scottish Government is stamping all over this.
“When it comes to issues of renewable energy the SNP will do anything to force through its policies, completely ignoring the very legitimate concerns of local people.
“Planning departments not just in Moray, but across Scotland, are under severe pressure because of often speculative applications for windfarms, even if they are in areas the local authorities have specifically said are unsuitable for development.
“The SNP is fuelling this rise in windfarm applications with its obnoxious orders to councils, and it is causing huge concern in communities across the country.”