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RSPB Scotland encourages objections to controversial Flow Country windfarm

Last modified: 20 January 2015

Greenshank looking for food in shallow water

Strathy South would be bad news for greenshank

Image: Graham Catley

RSPB Scotland has maintained its robust objection to controversial proposals by SSE for a huge windfarm at Strathy South, in the heart of the famous Flow Country peatlands of Sutherland.  The conservation charity is urging others to make known their opposition to the plans by developers SSE as a public local inquiry looms.

SSE, who also own Scottish Hydro, wants to build 39 turbines on this extremely sensitive location.  The site was inappropriately planted with trees in the 1980s but is surrounded on all sides by some of the most important and highly protected wildlife habitat in Scotland. 

Many other organisations and individuals have now objected to the scheme, including The Highland Council.  The final decision on whether to allow the windfarm to go ahead will rest with the Scottish Ministers but because the Council have objected, the plans must first be scrutinised in a public local inquiry before the Ministers can make their final decision.  A pre-inquiry meeting will be held at 10:00 on Wednesday 28th January 2015 in Strathy Village Hall.  This meeting is open to all and will be an opportunity to agree the key issues to be addressed during the inquiry and set the dates for different topics to be discussed.  It is likely that the inquiry itself will take place in March or April with the venue to be confirmed.

A spokesman for RSPB Scotland said: “It is very disappointing that SSE continue to push for a windfarm on this wholly unsuitable site.  We need renewables, including windfarms, to reduce the damaging environmental effects of climate change but there is no point building them if they are going to destroy the natural environment they are intended to protect.  A windfarm here would not only be very bad news for bird species such as greenshank and hen harrier, it would also undermine efforts to protect and restore damaged areas of the Flow Country peat bogs.  RSPB Scotland will therefore be doing everything we can to stop this destructive development from progressing.  We would encourage everyone who cares about this special place to register their objections with Scottish Ministers and to consider whether they may wish to come along to any of the inquiry sessions.”

More information on the project and details on how to submit your objections to the development can be found here: http://www.rspb.org.uk/whatwedo/campaigningfornature/casework/details.aspx?id=tcm:9-356709

 

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