EADT article: "Untold damage" to Suffolk Coast if windfarms approved, says council", by Jason Nobel Local democracy reporter, PUBLISHED: 11:30 15 January 2020
Scottish Power Renewables have submitted plans for two windfarms, which also includes a cable route overland through Thorpeness and Leiston, as well as three substations in Friston.
Suffolk County Council's cabinet on Tuesday afternoon said it backed the principle of renewable energy projects, but could not support the scheme as it had not been developed thoroughly.
Among the issues raised were the visual impact on the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, impact on tourism, the severe effects on the village of Friston, doubts about the planting mitigation, noise and disturbance on communities and road networks.
Richard Rout, Conservative cabinet member for environment, said: "These proposals, if approved, would together provide enough clean electricity to power approximately 1.5 million homes.
"There is also a positive economic impact associated with these proposals. The operation and maintenance facilities associated with the windfarms would provide tens of millions of pounds worth of investment in the region.
"However, as a local authority, our first consideration must always be our residents. Yes, these projects could bring crucial renewable energy and economic benefits but this must not be delivered at any cost.
"We must cherish our AONBs and safeguard them from the impacts of development as much as possible. As this report makes clear, we do not believe that these proposals from Scottish Power Renewables do that.
"We must continue to raise with government our very real worries around the lack of a co-ordinated approach to energy projects on and around the Suffolk coast."
The objections have been welcomed by the council's opposition Labour and Liberal Democrat, Green and Independent groups.
Penny Otton, Liberal Democrat, Green and Independent group leader, said: "I am really pleased to hear the comments from the cabinet members.
"There would be a significant impact on the current tourism industry, particularly in the area of the AONB.
"These are nationally and internationally recognised as part of the tourist industry of Suffolk and I think it would be an absolute disaster to put that in jeopardy."
The cabinet welcomed the principle of the development but formally objected to the location of the substations and development around Friston.
The Planning Inspector will receive all representations on the issue by January 27, although is not expected to make a final recommendation to the secretary of state until the end of the year or early 2021.
"We are the guardians of this beautiful area, and we have an important role to play in balancing the needs of addressing the immediate climate threat, with protecting the North Norfolk countryside and community. We need to find smarter ways of working together for the benefit of all.''– Cllr Sarah Burikofer, North Norfolk District Council Leader. - see the video
Campaigners fear new £1bn energy project is 'terrifying prospect' that would destroy Suffolk countryside.
Scotland has missed out on hundreds of millions of pounds of work in the creation of one of the country’s biggest offshore wind farms to overseas firms, the Herald can reveal.Unions are furious at what they see as “the scraps off the table” that Scotland has received in the work on the £2 billion Neart Na Gaoithe (NnG) wind farm off the Fife coast, awarded by EDF, the French state energy giant.