July 26, 2006
Somerset County Council gives green light to investigate wind farms

Somerset County Council has given the go-ahead to investigate plans for new wind turbines to be installed on farms across the county.

The council’s Executive Board gave the go-ahead to the second phase of its Somerset Wind Energy Initiative on Wednesday (July 25th).

It will now choose a wind energy developer who will recommend sites best suited for the turbines which, as reported last week, could include local villages such as Brean, Edithmead and East Brent.

Sites considered viable will be subject to feasibility studies and a consultation will be held with tenants.

On Thursday (July 27th) an advert is being placed in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) inviting wind developers to tender for the Somerset initiative.

The project will see the county moving closer to its target of producing 11 to 15 per cent of electricity from renewable energy. Large-scale public consultation will be carried out before any key decisions are made.

The successful developer is expected to be chosen in January 2007 and will need to demonstrate to the council that they are willing to work in partnership with the council at all stages.

Ian Bright, Somerset County Council’s Renewable Energy Officer, told Burnham-On-Sea.com: “The purpose of the Somerset Wind Initiative is to select a site or sites on County Council owned land for commercial wind energy development where the impact of wind turbines on the environment and visual amenity of the county will be minimised.”

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