Published: August 1, 2006
Burnham wind farm protest group wants to work with pro-wind group

How the wind turbines would look on the outskirts of Burnham-On-Sea [Photomontage: KNOll To Wind Farm]

The group fighting plans for a wind farm on the outskirts of Burnham-On-Sea says it wants to work together with FORCE, the pro-wind group, to work out the best locations for wind farms in our area.

Andrew Manning, spokesperson for the KNOll to Windfarm action group, has sent an open letter to members of FORCE (Families for Clean Energy) appealing for them to work with them.

"KNOll to Windfarm calls upon FORCE to work together with us to evaluate sensible locations for Wind farms that meet Government Planning Policy," he wrote.

"Many of our members have young families, and we are all concerned about the long term future of the planet- after all this is the future for our children, and their children, and all the species on the earth. We recognise and endorse the need for our society to become greener-indeed we have set up a Green Action Group with this objective. We also recognise the long term strategic requirement for the UK to not become dependent on other countries to supply our energy needs."

"However, we are also very aware that this should not involve a 'lemming like rush' to accept every proposal to locate alternative energy sources wherever commercial opportunity raises its head; indeed there is a grave danger that commercially focused organisations exploit the genuine concerns and aspirations of our society purely with a profit objective."

Mr manning continues: "In the same way that careful site selection is required for all other forms of energy generation, and indeed commercial property development, the same approach should be applied to wind turbines; this is exactly what the Government's Planning Policy guidelines lays down."

"We should all recognise therefore that some locations may be appropriate for wind turbines and others are not. The site at Inner Farm, Edithmead is one of those sites that is not appropriate; development would have significant negative environmental, economic and social amenity consequences, and would put the Health and Safety of our families at risk."

"Organisations such as FORCE will gain the respect of the greater community, and our support, when they bring considered approaches to proposals, and not blindly support all applications-without such a rational approach they effectively fall into the pockets of those with less altruistic objectives."

The letter ends: "Let's work together to make Somerset a greener place to live, based on careful analysis and reasoned debate, and effective action."

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