Friday, 15 February 2008

Windfarm application

Soaplady pointed out to me that today was the deadline for the windfarm developers to make further representations about their project. This follows an announcement on January 25th that the Scottish Government were minded to reject the application. A final decision is indeed not due today, but in about 2 or 3 weeks' time.

AMEC had their discussion with the Scottish Government earlier this week, describing it as positive.

I cannot gauge which way the decision will go. There have been forceful statements from industry in Scotland, saying that a rejection of this scheme will portray the country as closed for business. Another line was that environmental designations would stand in the way of any economic development. The first line has been borrowed from Donald Trump's proposal for a golf course in Aberdeenshire, and was used to lean on the Government at Holyrood. The second line was toed by Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, who appear to have adopted the Special Protected Areas in the interior of Lewis without realising the full implications. Thirdly, the Comhairle have consistently hailed the windfarm as the one and only solution to their area's economic woes. The word diversification does not appear to feature in their dictionary.

Scottish Ministers have not shown great enthusiasm to the exhortations of the business community in this matter.

As I said, a decision will appear in 2 or 3 weeks' time; sorry I got the timeline wrong.

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