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Last Updated: Wednesday, 19 July 2006, 10:28 GMT 11:28 UK
'Benchmark' turbine plan verdict
Wind farm
SBC has said the decision could encourage wind farm developments
Borders planning chiefs have said a decision to overturn their rejection of wind farm plans near Stow could encourage future developments.

The 33m project has been approved by the Scottish Executive despite being originally refused by the council.

The 19-turbine Longpark wind farm is now expected to be completed by 2008.

Planning manager Alistair Lorimer said he believed the decision would become a "benchmark" by which other appeals against refusal could be judged.

The proposal by developer Wind Prospect was refused consent by Scottish Borders Council last year.

It believed the development would have a detrimental effect on the landscape in the area.

However, Mr Lorimer said the reporter to the executive had taken the view that the plans met enough conditions to be approved.

Take encouragement

He said that its contribution towards national renewable energy targets, allied to the lack of objection from Scottish Natural Heritage, had been vital.

"Obviously, if you like, the developers had ticked two of the boxes that the reporter felt were quite weighty in his considerations," he said.

"As far as the industry is concerned - the developers of wind sites and those who are putting in applications - I think this will be regarded by them as a benchmark."

Mr Lorimer said the outcome must be positive news for developers who could get SNH on board and play a part in meeting energy targets.

"I am sure developers will take encouragement from this decision," he said.




SEE ALSO
33m wind farm receives approval
18 Jul 06 |  South of Scotland
Green energy call for developers
10 Jul 06 |  Scotland
Wind farm application submitted
30 Jun 06 |  South of Scotland
Residents air views on wind farms
12 Dec 05 |  Scotland

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