In June 2011 I wrote about Falck Renewables’ plans for a huge wind farm on the slopes of one of Scotland’s iconic Munros, Ben Wyvis.
Ben Wyvis, a Munro standing 1046m above sea level, is a National Nature Reserve, a Site of Special Scientific Interest and is also designated as a Special Area of Conservation.
This application is for a wind power plant barely 200m from the boundary of the SSSI & SAC. Interestingly, they have named the plant not after the mountain whose shoulders it sits upon but a tiny spot to the east of the turbines in the forest, whose place name is only shown on the OS 1:25k mapping, Clath Liath: No doubt hoping it would remain a low profile application.
You will note that the first of the 125m high turbines is nearly at the summit of Meall na Speireig and opposite the entrance of Coire Mor, the biggest and grandest of Wyvis’s corries. This surely is a wind farm too far as it is of a far greater height than the existing Novar turbines (see map above) and much too close to a major mountain.
The Mountaineering Council of Scotland fought this application and the good news is that today Highland Council rejected the application. Yesterday Highland Council also rejected Glenmorie & Dalnessie wind farms.
Of course, these three wind farms are of a size which means that they will now go to appeal and Fergus Ewing will have the final say. As an ex member of a mountain rescue team you would have thought that perhaps these iconic wild places would now be safe. But think again. When it comes to wild land’s survival, Fergus Ewing has a track record worse than that of the Black Death.