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Rigg windfarm plan withdrawn

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By Lisa Barbour
Annan and Eskdale
Rigg windfarm plan withdrawn

PLANS for a five turbine windfarm to be constructed on farmland near Rigg have been withdrawn.

Airvolution Energy first lodged proposals for the 131 metre high structures, which would be just 27 metres smaller than Blackpool Tower, on land near West Scales Farm to Dumfries and Galloway Council last December.
But the company announced this week that ‘uncertainty’ relating to the Energy Bill has prompted them to withdraw the application.

Airvolution Energy’s development manager Tom Walker said: “I am sorry to say that due to recent government announcements and the uncertainty relating to the current Energy Bill, Airvolution Energy have taken the difficult decision to withdraw the planning application for the West Scales windfarm.
“Airvolution will reassess their options in 2016 in the light of renewable energy policy
changes.”
Furthermore, the company has also withdrawn plans for a controversial seven turbine
windfarm at Hartwood Hill near Hightae.
It was originally envisaged that construction could commence on both schemes as early as next summer with the first electricity generated in early 2017.
And outlining a 25-year operating period, they also said West Scales would generate a
community benefit of £5000 per megawatt – equating to £82,500 per year.
Reacting to this week’s announcement, Gretna and Rigg Community Council chairman
Alex Thomson said: “Some of the money that would have come to the area would have
been helpful to some of the projects we had earmarked, but I’m not really a great fan of windfarms to be honest.
“The developers wanted us to be heavily involved and it’s all right chucking money at
people but it’s not all about money at the end of the day.”
And Isabell Tranter, of Springfield and Gretna Green Community Council, who had
attended some of the liaison group meetings, said she was not surprised that the plans have been withdrawn.
She added: “I bet a few more may fall by the wayside. As community councils it’s a difficult one because we have to go along to these groups just to represent our communities, but in all honesty this is the second one we have been involved with that’s not come to anything. It’s a lot of hours the community councils
give up.”

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