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More time to comment on windfarm

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By Abbey Morton
Front
More time to comment on windfarm

THE window of opportunity to comment on a proposed windfarm between Lockerbie and Moffat has been extended.

Those wishing to object or lend their support to the Scoop Hill development by Community Windpower Limited (CWL) will now have until February 12 2021, rather than December 17.

CWL has applied to Scottish Ministers to construct a windfarm consisting of 75 turbines reaching up to 250m in height – the tallest in the UK.

The extension was granted at the request of at least one community council, of which there are five being consulted.

Since the application was made, some locals have expressed concerns about the development and the community engagement process.

Moffat resident Carole Williams moderates a local social media platform in the town and says the formal application has taken some by surprise. She said: “When news of the application hit the platform, people began to contact me looking for more information.

“It was obvious that they were largely unaware of what had gone before.

“Now, with covid regulations and restrictions on public gatherings, we are going to be hard-pressed to organise an information campaign timely enough to meet the February deadline.

“We face a big challenge.

“Not only are we a rural community, but many of our senior citizens are not online, where so much information is disseminated.

“We need to ensure that as many Moffat people as possible are aware of this project and can weigh up its benefits and drawbacks.

“Between construction, operation and decommissioning, Moffat will live with this windfarm for over 40 years.

“It is important that everyone has a chance to evaluate the plan and be able to submit their view based on sound judgement.”

Two consultation events have already taken place in the town, pre Covid – one during the day in July last year and one preceding a Moffat Community Council meeting in February this year.

The turbines will be visible from various points within Moffat and Beattock as well as along the M74 and the service road.

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