The Glencassley site and Ben More Assynt

The Glencassley site and Ben More Assynt

Scottish mountaineers expressed dismay at the decision of councillors not to oppose the building of two windfarms in a national scenic area.

Highland Council’s north planning applications committee today followed its officers’ advice and said it would not object to the Sallachy and Glencassley developments.

The schemes, involving a total of 48 turbines, will now be considered by the Scottish Government.

The Mountaineering Council of Scotland said the councillors had failed the Scottish public.

Ron Payne, MCofS director of landscape and access, said: “A few weeks ago there was fighting talk from Highland Council saying it would write to the Scottish Government about windfarms.

“Today the councillors have failed Scotland, its people and its most precious landscapes by refusing to oppose industrial-scale proposals that will blemish some of our most beautiful mountain landscapes.

“We are now looking to Scottish Government minister Fergus Ewing to defend our natural heritage and halt these schemes.”

The applications are being made by SSE Generation at Glencassley and WKN Sallachy at Sallachy.

Oliver Patent, head of international development at WKN, who attended the planning meeting said:
“We are delighted by the Highland Council’s decision today.

“We appreciate that the committee has recognised that the project will benefit local communities, the wider Highland region and Scotland as a whole.

“For WKN it is the first key step in making our potential investment into Scotland a reality. We look forward to the Scottish Government making a final determination following this positive decision by the north planning applications committee.”

Iain Thomson, manager of Sallachy Estate added: “This is an excellent decision by the Highland Council today and I welcome the support of the local members that understand the fragility of businesses in this area and the importance of job security.

“This crucial first step in consenting Sallachy windfarm is vital to securing the long term viability of our business and providing opportunities to diversify our operations ensuring security for years to come.”

SEE had not replied to our request for a statement at the time of publication.

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