Updated: Apr 21
When the Scoop Hill Wind Farm project was first announced there was very little coverage. On Wednesday, 24th July 2019 Community Windpower Ltd. (CWL), staged a daytime exhibition in Moffat but it was very poorly attended. When the scale of the project came to light, three neighbouring residents in Moffat Water valley became concerned about its scale and possible impact on the area and its residents. On talking with others, they discovered very few people in Moffat had any idea of what was proposed.
This prompted them to approach the Moffat and District Community Council (MDCC) requesting that they ask Community Windpower Ltd. to hold an evening meeting in Moffat fully explaining the project and allowing the public to ask questions. For internal reasons within the Community Council there were delays in taking action but when the new committee was elected in October, a suggestion was made that the Valley residents should be allowed to voice their concerns at the November MDCC meeting and this was done as part of the normal meeting on Tuesday, 26th Nov 2019. No public meeting along the lines suggested resulted. The informal group of concerned residents continued to disseminate information as best they could.
On 25th February 2020, MDCC met for its normal monthly meeting in the Town Hall. MDCC had invited CWL to attend the meeting, which started earlier than usual to give time for the presentation prior to the normal business. It is estimated 40 – 50 members of the public were present. CWL showed a PowerPoint Presentation and then invited questions.
One member of the public put a question. Then Mr Terence Leigh made the following statement:
“I have one question for CWL and one for the Community Council
Scotland has 4000 turbines in operation. A further 3000 turbines are planned . That is the equivalent of ONE turbine every 2.85 miles across entire land mass of Scotland. The south west of Scotland is already one of the most densely covered areas in the UK.
It is Scottish government policy to use wind energy as their power source of choice. They are following this policy with ferocious zeal and considerable success but it has not come without cost, both to the environment and people.
Many feel that we have reached a level at which further projects are now unduly detrimental to communities, businesses and the environment.
There are many alternative sources of energy existing already and many new sources in late stages of development which are less intrusive visually, less demanding of natural resources, less harmful to the environment and promise to be equally or more efficient than wind turbines.
So I ask: “Do we need yet another wind farm is this already congested area?” Scoop Hill is advertised to be the 2nd largest wind farm in the UK. It is on an industrial scale.
I have no axe to grind with CWL; they are a private company based in England who have seen opportunities to make money in Scotland that didn’t exist in England. Can’t blame them for that but I think we should be clear they are not here out of altruism. They are here to make money not to do us a favour.
They know that there are very few pluses attached to this wind farm, either for local residents or for the environment.
They know too, as we do , that it will have an adverse effect :-
· On visual amenity
· On tourism
· Cause noise pollution with health implications
· Produce light pollution from navigation lights in a ‘dark sky’ area,
· Create blade flicker on sunny days
· Have an adverse impact on wildlife and the environment
They know too that they will be dumping 2000 tons of concrete underground for every turbine erected and 200 tons of steel and composites for every tower and set of blades erected.
There will be new roads.
Disruption to village life during construction and decommissioning .
Unknown consequences to local weather conditions