</strong>BELFORD BURN WIND FARM PROPOSAL - PUBLIC EXHIBITION
(HELD AT BELL VIEW BELFORD BY ENERGIEKONTOR (UK) LTD 09 – 14 MAY 2013) RESULTS OF EXIT POLL Votes Cast Daily. Total Results
0905 – 228 Spoiled - 3
1005 - 34 For - 4
1305 - 33 Against - 339
1405 - 51 Undecided - 0
Total – 346 Total - 346
THIS WAS THE LAST OPPORTUNITY FOR LOCALS TO HAVE THEIR SAY, YET AGAIN, WITH A LARGE TURNOUT, THE COMMUNITY HAS DEMOCRATICALLY DECIDED - BY 98.85% - WE DON’T WANT THEM HERE
Click on image to read The Northumbrian article on wind farms. NEWSLETTER
Check out Windbyte & N&N website. They are extremely informative.
The next few months
Both Air Farmers (Middleton Burn) and Energie Kontor (Belford Burn) have said that they intend to take their proposals to Northumberland County Council planning before the end of the year. Until they do, we are in a bit of a ‘Phoney War’ situation. We are marshalling all the evidence to show that the two sites are inappropriate but we are unable to formally object until the applications are submitted.
The met mast refusal
You may have heard that the elected members of the planning committee turned down the Meteorological mast application for Belford Burn, saying, among other things that this area is ‘the jewel in the crown’ of Northumberland and should be treated as such. On top of the great landscape value there is wildlife to consider with Holborn Lake and Moss next door – this site has been designated of international importance for Waterfowl (Ramsar Convention) and is protected in law. It is hard to believe that applications for any 400 ft wind turbines in the same area would be approved.
Increasing uncertainty in on-shore wind power
There is certainly a wind of change blowing through the renewables camp. Countries like Germany who are ahead of us in the rush to produce green energy are realizing that the more turbines and solar cells included in the power generating mix, the higher the electricity bills for the customers, the higher the cost to industry, leading to lack of competitiveness and subsequent job losses. Germany is in the process of building more than 20 new coal fired power stations, so concerned are they about the threat to their industrial future. Wind turbine manufacturers share values are now much lower than they were as investors realize that the party will soon be over. You do not need to be a political oracle to see that at some stage a government is going to realize that there are votes to be gained by bringing down the cost of electricity. They cannot influence the oil or gas prices but they can reduce the extras such as the green taxes that are included in your electricity bill. When this particular penny drops some investments are going to look very poor indeed.
Doubt over the developers
In the meantime we are finding out as much as possible about the two developers. The director of Air Farmers, Jens Rasmussen, is also involved in a variety of other companies http://company-director-check.co.uk/director/908803196 and the published financial position of Air Farmers Ltd makes interesting reading http://companycheck.co.uk/company/06485788. We are unaware of Air Farmers having previously built a Wind Farm anywhere in the UK .
In the meantime we will wait for the planning applications. We are well prepared and ready for the fray. There is a huge amount of support for us locally and virtually none for the developers. We care passionately about this corner of England and, as we all live here and have nowhere else to go, we will oppose the developers by whatever means we can for as long as it takes.
See how the Australians are coping living next to wind farms in this news video by Today Tonight Adelaide.
Middleton Burn Action Group (MBAG) held an open public meeting at the Bell View Centre, Belford, on 23 November which was addressed by Jens Rasmussen for Air Farmers and by Andrew Joicey for opponants of the scheme.
After hearing the presentations, a ballot was held asking people to vote on whether they supported, opposed or had no opinion on the proposal. Of some 80 people at the meeting 70 voted, ALL were against. NONE supported the proposal.All ballot papers were signed and had valid addresses.
In September, two suspicious characters were spotted taking photographs on a farm near Belford, North Northumberland. They were evasive when challenged but it was soon discovered that they were working for a wind development company that is planning a massive wind farm on neighbouring land.
Air Farmers Ltd propose building sixteen 125 metre (410 ft) turbines at Swinhoe Farm. The site, in a prominent position between Holburn and Belford, covers an area that is over 3 km (2 miles) in length and up to 1.5 km wide.
When the size and location of the project became apparent it was obvious that the people of Northumberland needed to be alerted to the threat that the scheme poses to OUR tourist landscapes and OUR businesses.
There is a temptation to feel powerless in the face of apparently well-organised London ‘suits’ and their consultants. It should be underlined that Air Farmers Ltd have only been in existence since 2008 and have yet to get planning permission for, never mind construct, a single turbine.
Whereas here, in North Northumberland, there are now a considerable number of individuals and communities with expertise and a wealth of experience gained from 7 years of fighting off speculative wind developers trying to impose inappropriate developments on unwilling communities.
WE ARE NOT ALONE
By standing together, local communities have now defeated 3 inappropriate planning applications in the former Berwick Borough area (Moorsyde, Toft Hill and West Ancroft).
The latter two were proposed by German-owned energy conglomerates RWE npower and E.ON, companies with huge resources and experience of the wind business. With your help we are confident that we can defeat Air Farmer’s ill-judged venture.