14 Jan 2013
Nearly 10,000 people across Scotland have objected directly to the Scottish Government about major windfarm applications in the last five years.
Figures obtained by the Scottish Conservatives have shown the SNP has received 9,868 protests about developments over 50 megawatts, which are deemed too large for local authorities to pass judgement on.
Some individual applications received in excess of 2,000 objections, while many of the windfarms which were vigorously contested were handed planning consent anyway.
The figures emerged following a parliamentary question by Scottish Conservative MSP Murdo Fraser.
And these will be only a fraction of the overall objections to windfarms, as Scotland’s local authorities deal with the majority of cases.
Since 2008, only 4,051 letters of support were received about the major windfarm applications.
The Scottish Conservatives revealed in November how the SNP waved through 83 per cent of the windfarm bids it received, while the Scottish Government’s fondness for renewables has seen five windfarm applications made a day since 2007.
Scottish Conservative MSP Murdo Fraser, convener of the Scottish Parliament’s energy committee, said:
“Given the sheer number of objections received, the SNP should be left in no doubt about how Scotland’s communities feel about windfarms.
“And this is the thin end of the wedge, because these are people who have been so irked by the treat of looming wind turbines, they have taken the time to formally contact the Scottish Government to protest.
“This figure does not include the thousands more who find turbines unsightly and unnecessary.
“What is more galling is, despite receiving 10,000 objections, many of these windfarms were waved through anyway.
“The SNP’s wind energy obsession has to be curbed, otherwise every vista in Scotland will be at-risk from an invasion of great, white turbines.
“That will have a negative impact on tourism and the everyday enjoyment rural communities get from their surroundings.”