13 Nov 2012
Major windfarm applications which go straight to the Scottish Government for permission are being waved through at an alarming rate, new figures have shown.
Since the SNP came to power in 2007, there have been 35 windfarm applications determined by Holyrood because of their sheer scale.
Of those, 29 have been approved, meaning windfarm companies are enjoying a success rate of more than 80 per cent.
It is further proof of the Scottish Government’s determination to build more windfarms, despite widespread concern from local communities, tourism bodies and even defence chiefs.
The statistics were obtained by the Scottish Conservatives following a parliamentary question by MSP John Lamont.
Scottish Conservative chief whip John Lamont MSP said:
“We now have hard evidence about just how pro-windfarms the SNP is.
“The message this sends out to big windfarm companies is: ‘Come straight to us and you have an 80 per cent chance of success.’
“It is bad enough that the Scottish Government overturns rejections made by local council, even after local people have said no, planning officials have said no, and councillors have said no.
“But people will now be asking what kind of scrutiny are ministers giving to these applications?
“Windfarms are intermittent and unreliable, and worse still people across Scotland are genuinely concerned that they are spoiling the countryside they love.
“We know that turbines could damage tourism, as well as having a significant impact on the scenery enjoyed by locals.
“The SNP has to drop this costly obsession with wind energy before it is too late.”