[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="500" caption="Pentland Road"][/caption]
Not often mentioned on this blog, although very much on the radar for the past couple of years. And I use the word 'radar' advisedly. Four times, Comhairle nan Eilean Siar have debated this windfarm, consisting of 6 windturbines off the Pentland Road, some 5 miles west of Stornoway. The Scottish Government had previously called in the planning application, as there were objections from air traffic control bodies. It now appears these difficulties have been overcome, with the advent of improved technology. The other minor difficulty, namely that this area of the island, just south of the Barvas Hills, is a habitat where golden eagles live, appears to have been conveniently overlooked.
Scottish Ministers have indicated the plan no longer requires their final approval, and a one-page sheet of paper, advising approval, has been circulated to councillors. This proposal predates the last Council elections in 2005, and quite a few of the councillors currently in office were not at the time the Pentland Road scheme was first launched. Neither are they, therefore, fully conversant with all the pros and cons of the scheme. None of this material is included on the single A4. Hardly surprising - each time I'm in Stornoway library, I need stilts to step over the mountain of paperwork that is the Eishken planning application, and this one (about 1/6th the size of the Eishken project) can't be much less.
I don't think it's an exemplary exercise in democratic accountability. I do think it is a blatant demonstration of this Council's rubberstamping policy where shorebased windfarms in the Western Isles are concerned.
Source: Hebrides News