Trust urges Energy Minister to protect Wild Land Areas
The John Muir Trust has written to Energy Minister Fergus Ewing asking him to refuse consent to three huge wind farms in Wild Land Areas.
The John Muir Trust has written to Energy Minister Fergus Ewing asking him to refuse consent to three huge wind farms in official Scottish Government Wild Land Areas.
Glencassley and Sallachy wind farms would both be sited on the west side of Loch Shin, within Wild Land Area 34. The two developments would involve 45 turbines, each three times the height of the Skye Bridge, along with over 30km of new access tracks, and other infrastructure.
A third development, Allt Duine, would consist of a further 31 turbines, all located within Wild Area 20, which covers the Monadhliath Mountains.
The letter, from Trust Chair Peter Pearson, points out that the Scottish Government has already rejected Glenmorie wind farm in Easter Ross on the grounds that it would have a detrimental impact on wild land, and states:-
“This refusal sent a strong message to developers that it is inappropriate to bring forward large-scale wind developments in areas now recognised in Scottish Planning Policy as nationally important for their wild land qualities.”
The letter goes on to ask the Energy Minister “to make the same decision and refuse consent for the Allt Duine, Glencassley and Sallachy wind farms, all of which impact significantly on Scotland’s flagship Wild Land Areas.”
Glencassley in Sutherland has been described in sales literature as a “beautiful and unspoiled area of the Highlands”. The estate is currently owned by an offshore company registered in St Helier, Jersey. The application for the development has been submitted by SSE.
Sallachy is situated just north of Glencassley. The estate’s website boasts that it “is set within breath-taking scenery along the bank of Loch Shin.” The proposed development straddles the Sallachy estate, which is owned by a German registered company, and the Duchally estate, which is owned by London-based Mohammed Al Fayed. The developer, WKN, is based in Germany.
Allt Duine wind farm would be built just a few hundred metres from the Cairngorms National Park on the Alvie, Dalraddy, Dunachton and Balavil Estates near Kincraig.
The Scottish Government’s own advisory body, SNH, has objected to Glencassley and Sallachy. For reasons of protocol, it left its sister body, the Cairngorms National Park Authority, to lodge an objection to Allt Duine.