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Last Updated: Thursday, 23 March 2006, 10:42 GMT
Green strategy 'will be balanced'
Wind turbine
The strategy will determine where wind farm developments go
Highland councillors have expressed confidence that the authority's green energy strategy will address concerns about wind farms.

Campaign groups attending a special meeting on the issue have urged a suspension of any further projects.

Iain Ross, chairman of Highland's sustainable development committee, said a balance will be struck.

The energy blueprint also covers wave projects, hydro-electric developments and biomass plants.

Mr Ross said: "The intention with the strategy is to have a document that will give a strategic framework and recognise all the concerns.

"We will look to try and develop a framework which will alllow good effective deals to be made which will, I suppose, create opportunities but minimise any of the damaging impacts."

Anti-wind farm campaigners have urged Highland councillors to suspend any further schemes.

A number of groups backed the call at the special council meeting held on Wednesday to consider guidelines for future green energy developments.

Campaigners accused officials of misleading councillors into supporting wind projects.

Planning blueprint

The authority said its final strategy on future renewable energy projects will go before the full council in May.

Once the draft renewable strategy has been agreed it will become the planning blueprint for deciding where renewable energy projects go in the region.

More than 500 written representations have been received by the council and public hearings have been held across the Highlands.

The strategy will determine which wind farms get the go-ahead in the future.

The draft plan details 11 areas in the Highlands where there will be a presumption in favour of wind farm projects.

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