The public backlash against wind farms is not surprising.
'It is the inevitable and inexorable consequence of a costly, unpopular and completely pointless policy that is butchering Britain's green and pleasant landscape without having any effect on the climate.
'These green projects are only viable because of multi-million subsidies supporting a few hundred wealthy landowners and a handful of energy companies.
'By opposing wind farms, a growing number of neighbourhoods and communities are protecting both their local environments and their purses from blind exploitation.'
Benny Peiser of the Global Warming Policy Foundation
Please note that the developers are calling the Salcey wind factory:
"Stoke Heights Wind Park"
There is no such place as Stoke Heights, the land referred to in the plan is called Salcey Green and the proposed windfactory location will be next to Salcey Forest.
We also use the term "wind factory" because these developments are made of large concrete bases and steel towers, so factory is a much more relevant term than farm. Therefore, we will sometimes refer to this industrial development as:
"Salcey Wind Factory"
The Planning documents are now available on the Milton Keynes council website..
This link will open a new window and take you to the Milton Keynes planning dept: please click here then enter the Ref No;. 11/01193/FULEIS into the "search" box to find the windfarm planning documents page.
Planning update 3rd Oct 2011
The planning application has been delayed
because Ecotricity’s wildlife surveys are not up to the required standard. Crucial information regarding wildlife is missing from the planning application so Milton Keynes council have used a “regulation 22” request to force Ecotricity to go back to the drawing board and re do their wildlife surveys. The planning decision date which was due to be mid October 2011 will now have to be put back until Ecotricity do the wildlife surveys properly.
The delay could put the planning application back until October next year because key bat surveys can only be done between April and October. Ecotricity’s existing bat surveys have been severely criticised by bat experts and government consultees. Ecotricty’s bird, Great Crested Newt, and Dormouse surveys were also found to be sub standard. Ecotricity may try to “patch up” their deficient wildlife surveys in an attempt to get the planning application through before next October but it will be difficult to persuade Milton Keynes wildlife experts that the missing survey work can be done during the winter months.
A “regulation 22” request for information is a very serious condemnation for Ecotricity who will be unable to appeal the decision, essentially a regulation 22 request means that the information provided by Ecotricity in their planning application is so deficient that the planning application can not be legally regarded as a planning application.
Milton Keynes council will write to Ecotricity this week with a formal regulation 22 request for information. The council will also offer Ecotricity the option of withdrawing their planning application.
Planning update 8th Oct 2011
The Ecotricity planning application is not valid
because the submitted Environmental Statement is flawed therefore the planning application is now suspended until Ecotricity provide the additional information required.
Milton Keynes council have now written to Ecotricity saying that it is of the opinion that Ecotricity's "Environmental Statement should contain additional information in order for it to be an Environmental Statement." A copy of the letter can be found here
Ecotricity will now have to provide the missing information in the following categories:
ENVIRONMENTAL STATEMENT (ES)
LANDSCAPE AND VISUAL ASSESSMENT
PUBLIC RIGHTS OF WAY
The letter to Ecotricity says:
In view of the likely requirement for additional monitoring/survey work – particularly with
reference to ecology and ornithology, I would be grateful if you could give me an estimate
of the likely time it will take to submit the information requested.
SOS will publish Ecotricity's time scale once they have responded to the councils letter. The additional monitoring/survey work required by the council should only be carried out during the summer months however Ecotricity may attempt to persuade the council that it has managed to "patch up" its existing reports thereby avoiding carrying out the additional surveys. SOS will keep you updated.
Planning update 18th Nov 2011
MKC send second information request letter to Ecotricity
On 4th October Milton Keynes council wrote to Ecotricity informing them that their planning application should contain additional information. The additional information required by Milton Keynes council was clearly listed in the letter. A copy of this first letter can be found here
To date, Ecotricity have not written back to the council and have not yet provided any of the additional information listed. Ecotricity have however, telephoned Milton Keynes council and requested further clarification of the information the council has asked for.
Therefore the council have written a second letter to Ecotricity with more details of the information that is required. A copy of the second letter can be found here