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Chamber and committees

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee


Moraig Lyall submission of 9 June 2021

PE1864_BB - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Currently in Shetland the construction of one of the largest wind farms in Scotland is underway. This project is an issue that has divided opinion and relations in the islands since its conception more than 10 years ago and is as controversial now as ever.

At no point has there been a comprehensive consultation with the population e.g. a public enquiry or a referendum, to determine whether this has the backing of local people or whether it is in the best interests of the community, the natural environment or even the efficient provision of the national need for energy.

If, prior to permission being granted by the Scottish Government, an enquiry been held clearly there would still be ‘losers’ in that there would still be folk who were against it proceeding, but at least everyone would have had an equal opportunity to put forward their position and they would know that they were in the minority. As it is, those who oppose the wind farm are left with the feeling that while they believe the majority of local people agree with them, that this project is—

• hugely out of proportion to the needs of the community and the size of the islands,
• devastating a tranquil and unspoiled landscape, and
• an inefficient way of producing energy for the central belt of Scotland and beyond, and will do nothing to address fuel poverty here in the islands.

They have no way of testing that belief, however, and even if found to be true it is of little consequence now the thing is half built and the damage done.

And now several other wind farm projects are being done on the back of it. And all the associated infrastructure of pylons and substations and cabling in addition to the turbines themselves are going to litter the landscape.

It is my clear belief that had a proper consultation been undertaken and the community fully involved from the start that the outcome would have been different and that the whole process would have been much shorter, less divisive and have led to an outcome much clearer and more acceptable to the community.

Empowerment is a buzzword thrown around these days but much needs to be done to ensure that it is not an unfulfilled promise dangled in front of people. Meaningful transparent independent consultation is essential where the outcome is accepted whether it matches the government thinking or not.

Throughout this process I have been a mere onlooker but am aware of how much of a David and Goliath situation this has been with grassroots campaign groups with very limited resources and expertise up against the financial and commercial might of huge companies. Ensuring that sufficient support is given to campaigners to make their case and ensure a fair hearing in these scenarios in future is vital.

For these reasons I fully endorse the aims of this petition. 



Related correspondences

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Scottish Government submission of 1 June 2021

PE1864/A - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Alec Kidd submission of 2 June 2021

PE1864/B - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Christopher Shaw submission of 3 June 2021

PE1864/C - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Helen Braynis submission of 3 June 2021

PE1864/D - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Elaine Nisbet submission of 5 June 2021

PE1864/E - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Victoria Boyle submission of 3 June 2021

PE1864/F - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Iain Milligan submission of 4 June 2021

PE1864/G - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

John Logan submission of 4 June 2021

PE1864/H - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Janet and Michael Holley submission of 4 June 2021

PE1864/I - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Tracey Smith submission of 4 June 2021

PE1864/J - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Matthew Reiss submission of 4 June 2021

PE1864/K - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Jerry Mulders submission of 4 June 2021

PE1864/L - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

William Jackson submission of 5 June 2021

PE1864/M - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Caithness West Community Council submission of 7 June 2021

PE1864/N - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

J W Ponton submission of 7 June 2021

PE1864/O - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

George Herraghty submission of 7 June 2021

PE1864/P - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Ian Miller submission of 7 June 2021

PE1864/Q - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Greta Roberts submission of 7 June 2021

PE1864/R - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Sue Hall submission of 8 June 2021

PE1864/S - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

June and Ed Hall submission of 9 June 2021

PE1864/T - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Alison Johnston submission of 9 June 2021

PE1864/U - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Andrew Chadderton submission of 9 June 2021

PE1864/V - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

James Tanner submission of 9 June 2021

PE1864/W - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Amanda Rofe submission of 9 June 2021

PE1864/X - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Howard and Grace Goldstein submission of 9 June 2021

PE1864/Y - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Trevor Procter submission of 9 June 2021

PE1864/Z - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms

Citizen Participation and Public Petitions Committee

Petitioner submission of 9 June 2021

PE1864/AA - Increase the ability of communities to influence planning decisions for onshore windfarms