July 21, 2006
Burnham MP attacks County Council plans for more wind farms
Burnham-On-Sea’s MP David Heathcoat-Amory has attacked controversial plans by Somerset County Council to build new wind farms at Brean, Edithmead and East Brent.
The MP spoke out after the council confirmed it had begun to investigate building wind turbines on farmland it owns around the county – just like the scheme proposed at Brent Knoll on the outskirts of Burnham.
It has already drawn up a shortlist of potential sites and the proposal is due to be discussed at the council’s executive meeting on July 26th.
If given the nod, more detailed studies will get underway on deciding the most suitable sites and formal planning applications will be submitted.
Mr Heathcoat-Amory criticised the plans, saying: “This is not the way to treat climate change – wind turbines are expensive, inefficient and intrusive.”
He added: “County farms are widely dispersed, so if this scheme goes ahead there will be few areas of Somerset free of these giant structures.”
But Cllr Paul Buchanan, Somerset County Council’s portfolio holder for economic development, defended the plans: “The council must take action to reduce the effects of climate change resulting from the burning of fossil fuels, and in order to do this we must support the development of secure and sustainable supplies of energy. The most common renewable energy available in Somerset is wind energy.”
“However, alongside supporting the installation of wind turbines, the county council is committed to ensuring that any potential adverse impacts are minimised through careful site selection and extensive public consultation.”
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