County's green campaigns to oppose council's wind farm policy
The county’s green campaigners are joining forces to oppose Wiltshire Council’s new policy of not allowing the building of any wind farms in the county.
Wiltshire Council voted through an amendment to its Core Strategy - or local plan - document on June 26 that effectively bans the building of wind turbines anywhere in the county on health and safety grounds, in case a blade shears off and hits someone.
But green groups from all over the county will meet at the Cause in Chippenham on Saturday afternoon to discuss a briefing paper put together by Sophy Fearnley-Whittingstall of the campaign group Good Energy.
In the report Ms Fearnley-Whittingstall says that Wiltshire’s carbon emissions are 18 per cent higher than the national average and Wiltshire contributes the second lowest level of renewable electricity of all local authority areas in the South West, contributing only 8.9 per cent of the region’s total.
She writes: “Nobody wants wind turbines in the wrong location but, appropriately sited, particularly as part of a community initiative, they have an important role to play in a much-needed renewable energy strategy for the county.
“Onshore wind is the most mature and cheapest renewable technology the UK has.
“The key to public acceptance is community engagement and ensuring that local people benefit from wind farms, either through shared ownership, reduced local electricity prices, community funds or all three.”