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Plans for wind turbines on Welsh common lodged with government inspectors

15 Aug 2023 3 minute read
Image by Steve from Pixabay

Elgan HearnLocal Democracy Reporter

A formal planning application has been submitted to Welsh Government planning inspectors for a wind turbine development that is mostly in Blaenau Gwent.

Earlier this month Cenin Renewables lodged plans with the Planning and Environment Decisions Wales (PEDW) to build five wind turbines with a maximum blade tip height of 180 metres, as well as an on-site sub-station underground cables and associated works at Manmoel Common.

The site is near Ebbw Vale with part of it over the border in Caerphilly County.

The proposal is classified as a Development of National Significance (DNS), which means both Blaenau Gwent and Caerphilly council are consultees rather than decision makers, with the Welsh Government deciding the application.

Inspectors will look at all the information provided in the DNS application and eventually give advice to the Welsh Government on what decision to make.

A Welsh Government minister will then announce the decision.

PEDW case officer Nina Kinsey confirmed that the application had been formally accepted by PEDW .

Ms Kinsey explained that the local planning authorities will now be “required” to display a notice on the site or near to the land for 30 days.

The applicant’s agent Natural Power Consultants Limited, explained the proposal in a planning statement.

Natural Power said: “The site lies within registered common land and is located primarily on an area of upland.

“Each turbine would be rated at up to five Mega Watts (MW), with a maximum installed capacity of 25 MW.

“It anticipated that the proposed development could generate around 61,320 megawatt hours (MWh) of electricity per year.

“This is equivalent to the annual electricity needs of 19,250 average UK homes or approximately 59 per cent of households in Blaenau Gwent.”

The development will have a 50 year operational life span.

Natural Power said: “By its very nature as a renewable energy development, the proposed development contributes toward international, UK and Welsh goals of net-zero greenhouse gasses emissions by 2050.”

Four of the five turbines would also be located in a “Pre-Assessed Area” (PPA) where there is a “presumption in favour” of wind energy development in the Welsh Government National Development Framework

National Power added: “The Welsh Government has already modelled the likely impact on the landscape and has found the PPA’s to be capable of accommodating development in an acceptable way.”

The agents also claim that the development would also provide an economic benefit to the area.

Plans

National Power said: “If approved, the development will require a construction programme that will see both opportunities for employment and procurement of supplies to the construction project which will provide a boost to the local economy.”

National Power added that this would continue once the turbines are built due to the need for regular maintenance of the site.

Last November senior Blaenau Gwent planning officers revealed to councillors that there were five wind energy developments in the pipeline for the county borough which will be dealt under the DNS system.

Plans for eight wind turbines with a maximum blade height of 180 metres at Mynydd Carn y Cefn between Abertillery and Cwm are already being considered by PEDW and were discussed by the Blaenau Gwent Planning Committee in February.

The other three wind farm proposals that could materialise soon are:

Mynydd Llanhilleth Wind farm at land east of Abertillery and southeast of Llanhilleth – submitted by Pennant Walters Ltd;
Abertillery Wind Farm at land between Abertillery and Abersychan submitted by RWE Renewables UK;
Wind Turbines North of Rassau Industrial Estate – submitted by Infinite Renewables Ltd.


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riki
riki
7 months ago

we need to ruin our countryside as we are in a climate emergency. welcome to welsh politics plaid and labpr

Mdr
Mdr
7 months ago
Reply to  riki

Where would you like to build the coal power station then?

Moron

Linda Jones
Linda Jones
7 months ago
Reply to  Mdr

Tidal power is a far more efficient and less damaging way to generate electricity than wind power. At the moment Wales produces far more electricity than we use, we are the fourth biggest exporter of electricity in the world. Baffling why we meed to destroy our countryside with wind power. Who gains? Follow the money I suppose

Gareth Westacott
Gareth Westacott
7 months ago

Wales already has more than its fair share of wind turbines. Built them in the Cotswolds or Penines.

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