Page last updated at 16:54 GMT, Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Debate on onshore wind turbines in Lincolnshire

An opponent of the growth of onshore windfarms in Lincolnshire has denied that his opposition stems from "nimbyism", during a Westminster Hall debate on 6 November 2012.

The Conservative MP for Sleaford and North Hykeham, Stephen Phillips, said he was in favour of "diversifying" energy in the UK, but claimed that "the balance has swung so far in favour of uneconomic technology".

Earlier this year, Conservative-run Lincolnshire County Council approved new restrictions against the building of wind farms in the county.

It voted unanimously and issued a statement advising district councils not to grant permission if wind farms failed to meet strict criteria.

However, planning decisions would still rest with the seven district authorities in the county.

Mr Phillips said that "if energy companies spend enough on appeals they will always win against local residents".

He was supported by his Conservative colleague Martin Vickers, the MP for Cleethorpes, who said there should be more of a focus on offshore wind rather than onshore wind.

Responding to the debate, Communities and Local Government Minister Don Foster said the government was "committed to safeguarding the natural and local environments".

He insisted that that the National Planning Policy Framework made it clear that local councils should designed their planning policies to ensure that the "landscape and visual impacts are addressed satisfactorily".

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