Scathing attack on wind farm opponents
THE battle for Fallago Rig is escalating as North British Windpower, who want to build a 48 turbine wind farm on the site, clash with those opposed to the development.
Responding to the news that environmental campaigner David Bellamy is joining the 'Say No to Fallago' protest march this Saturday, June 12, Andrew Shaw, North British Windpower managing director, said: "We welcome the news that David Bellamy is championing the cause of the local elites who oppose the Fallago Rig renewable energy project.
"We welcome this because we can finally see some of the truth behind their campaign.
"David Bellamy may well have had a popular TV profile many years ago; nowadays he is one of a small minority who refuse to accept that human activity is a major contributor to climate change. He once described the theory as 'poppycock'. So strong are his views on this subject, he had to step down from a number of environmental charities who no longer wished to be associated with him."
Mark Rowley, spokesman for the Say No To Fallago group, explained why they oppose the development: "Fallago Rig is the straw that will break the camel's back. It will decimate the last remaining unspoiled section of the Lammermuir Hills – if it goes ahead, the Scottish Government might as well convert the hills into a wind factory.
"The Lammermuirs are home to only a small number of villages but the residents, visitors and those who love the area are passionate about protecting such a wonderful landscape. Why should Scottish Ministers tick their renewable energy box at the expense of one of Scotland's most beautiful landscapes? Is anyone ever going to stop and ask "at what cost"?
"We are calling on all residents in our neighbouring communities to join our fight. The wholesale spread of wind farms across the Borders, East Lothian and Midlothian must be a concern for hundreds of communities. If you want to show your support for the preservation of a precious part of the world – then please join us on June 12."
However, North British Windpower are scathing about the protestors calling them a "small, elite band of climate change deniers".
"Over the past six years we have had two Inquiries," added Andrew Shaw.
"At both of these, an independent Reporter, who was an impartial expert, sat and listened to the views of anyone who cared to speak. The Inquiries heard everything from local observations to detailed expert evidence from a wide range of people.
"The local organised opposition were given full opportunity to present their case, and they hired the services of a leading QC to assist them.
"However, they now seem to accept that their case just didn't stack up. They therefore seek to apply emotional pressure by organising walks and media campaigns to sway the Reporter's opinion.
"The time has come to let the Reporter make her recommendation based on rational analysis of fact and evidence alone."
North British Windpower's reason for choosing this particular site is that "it lies within a natural bowl in the Lammermuirs.
"There is an exceptional wind resource, which will make this one of the most efficient wind farms in the UK. The site is already crossed by a major pylon line and the windfarm will be connected directly to the grid; no new poles or pylons will be required.
"There are only six houses within 5km. The nearest village, Gifford, is some 8km distant and supports the proposal. The other local village will have no views of the windfarm."
The Say No To Fallago group say they are "trying to protect the as yet unspoiled core of the stunning Lammermuir Hills, which is threatened by the construction of an enormous wind farm.
"The area is already surrounded by hundreds of wind turbines and the plan to build 48 wind turbines on a site known as Fallago Rig would link the existing turbines, blighting the untouched core of a designated Area of Great Landscape Value."
The 'Save the Border Hills' Walk takes place on June 12, 2010, starting at Penshiel, Cranshaws, Duns at 9.30am.
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Friday 24 May 2013
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