Windfarms spinning out of control, claims CPRE

Burton Wold wind farm outside Burton Latimer. Five other turbines are ear-marked for the site.
Burton Wold wind farm outside Burton Latimer. Five other turbines are ear-marked for the site.

NORTHAMPTONSHIRE has been named in a new report by the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) highlighting the proliferation of onshore wind turbines.

CPRE is calling for a locally-accountable, planned approach to onshore wind development, which it says is intruding into some of the most tranquil areas of England.

Despite assurances last year from former secretary of state Chris Huhne that the Government would not ‘wantonly plant windfarms across the countryside at random’ or let the ‘market loose upon the countryside’, CPRE says many communities are faced with a steady stream of applications.

Shaun Spiers, CPRE chief executive, said: “CPRE accepts onshore wind in the right places as part of the mix required to meet the UK’s carbon reduction targets, but we are seeing more and more giant turbines sited in inappropriate locations.

“Communities feel increasingly powerless in the face of speculative applications from big, well-funded developers, and this risks undermining public support for the measures needed to tackle climate change.”

Northamptonshire has 13 operational turbines over 30 metres high, with a further 46 granted permission and 32 in planning, CPRE said.

Mr Spiers added: “The Government must take responsibility and set out far more clearly a framework for meeting the country’s energy needs while protecting our matchless countryside.”

CPRE says the plan must recognise landscape capacity, and cumulative impacts of wind turbines.