72% back Aberdeenshire wind farm proposal

13/06/11

10 June 2011 More than seven in ten visitors to a public exhibition have given the thumbs-up to Burcote Wind's plans for a five turbine wind farm at Meikleton of Ardonald near Huntly.

The green energy firm held community engagement events in Cairnie Memorial Hall and Huntly's Stewart's Hall on Tuesday and Wednesday this week [June 7th and 8th], which were attended by around 65 people.
 
Completed feedback questionnaires showed that 72% of attendees were in favour of the Meikleton wind farm proposal, compared to just 17% who opposed the idea and 11% who were undecided.
 
Burcote Wind chairman Graham Brown said:
"We were delighted by the turnout at our first community engagement events. Although we're still at least a year away from submitting a planning application, we think it's very important to start a constructive dialogue with local people now.
 
"The feedback we got was overwhelmingly supportive of our proposal for a five turbine wind farm at Meikleton, with 72% of visitors saying they were in favour.
 
“We think this is because those people that actually came to view the proposals – including photomontages of how the turbines would appear in the landscape – could see for themselves that the visual impact of the proposal is very low indeed. Because the site sits in a natural bowl surrounded by hills, they would be obscured from most prominent viewpoints.
 
“In addition, 84% of visitors said they supported the provision of a community benefit fund of £45,000 per year, or £1.125million over the lifetime of the wind farm, as part of our proposal.
 
“People in Cairnie and Huntly are clearly concerned about environmental and energy security issues. Our feedback showed that 89% are in favour of generating more of our electricity from renewables, with the same percentage also saying we need to reduce harmful carbon emissions.
 
“And 97% of visitors said it was important for us to reduce our dependence on imported fossil and nuclear fuels.
 
“So it’s clear that many people understand the need for wind farms such as the one proposed at Meikleton, to enable us to generate clean energy from a limitless resource.”
 
Notes to Editors
 
The five 3 megawatt (MW) turbines proposed for the Meikleton site would have a combined output of 15MW. This is enough to:
Power 11,000 homes per year – 11% of all the homes in Aberdeenshire
Cut carbon dioxide emissions by 22,600 tonnes 
Help Aberdeenshire reach its target to produce 100% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2020.
 
Burcote Wind is aiming to submit a planning application to Aberdeenshire Council in the summer of 2012.
 
Burcote Wind is an independent renewable energy company based in Dunfermline, Scotland, but active throughout the UK. The company specialises in onshore wind energy projects from the identification and design stage right through to construction and operation. At every stage, Burcote Wind involves local communities to make sure they get the information they need and reap the rewards from having a wind farm in their area. www.burcotewind.com 
 
For more information please contact:
 
James Tout
Orbit Communications
0131 257 4232/07989 610 276
james.tout@orbit-comms.co.uk 
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