SEPA calls for windfarm to be scrapped

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The Scottish Environment Protection Agency has lodged a formal objection against plans to create an eight-turbine windfarm at Hill of Braco near Hatton.

The environmental body says that developers, Edinburgh-based PNE Wind Ltd, have failed to show how the scheme would impact on private water supplies.

And it has also raised concerns about the effect construction of the windfarm would have on peat at the site.

However, SEPA said that it would continue to talk with the developers and said it may lift its objections if more details could be provided.

The controversial development has already come up against strong objections from local residents, while it has also been criticised by the Ministry of Defence.

It says the development could have an adverse affect on radars at RAF Buchan .

Aberdeenshire Council has also received a barrage of complaints concerning the scheme.

And the RSPB has also raised concerns, claiming that the turbines could result in the deaths of hundreds of seabirds.

In a study carried out by the wildlife charity, it reveals that at least 48 herring gulls could collide with the masts annually - around one percent of the breeding population.

Commenting on the latest setback, a spokesman for PNE Wind UK said that the company had worked closely with statutory consultees and the local community throughout the development of the proposals, allowing them to consider a range of comments and feedback while preparing final plans for the windfarm.

He said the company was continuing to work with key stakeholders , including SEPA, to address any concerns they may have about the plans and ensure that appropriate solutions could be found.

The windfarm plans are due to be brought before the Buchan area committee before the end of the year.