A PROPOSED wind farm at Dunbeath Estate has been refused by the Scottish Government.
Energy Minister Fergus Ewing, decided the impact of the proposed wind farm on the landscape character and lack of safeguarding for nearby wild land was too high. In addition, he said the significant cumulative impacts from other nearby wind farms and adverse visual impact would be too severe.
The original application submitted by Dunbeath Wind Energy Limited was for a 69 megawatt, 23 turbine wind farm on Dunbeath Estate, southwest of Wick. However after several revisions this was reduced to a 17 turbine proposal.
The local planning authority, the Highland Council, did not object to the application. But due to the objection maintained by Scottish Natural Heritage the Minister took the decision to call a public local inquiry. It was held in Dunbeath and afterwards the independent reporter recommended that consent should be refused.
Mr Ewing said: “The significant adverse impacts of this proposed wind farm on nearby wild land and key landscape characteristics in conjunction with the cumulative effects with other wind farms and visual impacts on recreational and road users is too great.”
The decision has been welcomed by the Royal Society for the Proitection of Birds.
For more on this story see Wednesday’s Caithness Courier.