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Windfarm developers to appeal weather mast decision

18 Mar 2024 3 minute read
The view towards Glaslyn Nature Reserve. Photo courtesy of Sally George.

Elgan Hearn, local democracy reporter

Windfarm developers Bute Energy have confirmed they will appeal the decision by councillors to refuse planning permission for a weather mast at site earmarked for a major wind turbine development.

At a meeting of Powys County Council’s Planning committee on Thursday, 14 March, councillors voted against the proposals for the meteorological mast which would be 120 metres high, and be sited on the location between the Glaslyn Nature Reserve and Llyn Clywedog for a three year period.

In doing so they went against the recommendations of planning officers who recommended the application should be approved.

The application had been made by Esgair Galed Energy Park Limited which is the development vehicle for Bute Energy, who specialise in developing wind and solar energy parks.

Conditions

Information gleaned from the mast could inform the firm whether the condition at the site is conducive for 220 metre high wind turbines.

Resident from Dylife, Staylittle and Llwynygog which are close to the site have started to campaign against the project and 85 objections were lodged against the weather mast plans.

Bute Energy told the Local Democracy Reporting Service that they are “disappointed” with the decision that councillors made.

A spokesman for Bute Energy said: “This application was for a temporary meteorological mast.

“There are already a number of examples erected across Powys.

“In the report presented to the Planning committee, the planning officer for the application considered that the proposal complied with relevant planning policies.

“While we do appreciate the comments raised by members and objectors, we note that consultees such as CADW, the Ministry of Defence and Powys County Council’s ecologist did not provide any objection to the application subject to certain conditions being met.

“Given these factors, we intend to appeal the decision.”

Danger

At the planning meeting, Cllr Gareth Pugh put forward a motion to object against the weather mast on the grounds of visual impact and danger to wildlife.

Cllr Pugh also said that the weather mast would be “insignificant” compared to the wind turbine proposal that’s being mooted for the site.

Planning professional lead officer Peter Morris had stressed that councillors should only consider the application in front of them and not be sidetracked by the wind turbine proposal.

Mr Morris didn’t believe that the committee had “strong solid reasons” to object against the scheme.

However, by a majority of nine to five councillors ther voted to refuse the mast – with one councillor abstaining.

The Esgair Galed Windfarm wind turbine scheme, which was revealed in January would roughly be situated, northwest of Llanidloes, southeast of Machynlleth and south of Llanbrynmair.

Any future wind turbine planning application would be deemed a Development of National Significance (DNS) and would be processed by Welsh Government planning inspectors at Planning and Environment Decisions Wales (PEDW).

If built the wind turbines would create 171 MW of electricity which would be enough to power between 113,000 and 179,000 households a year.


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Swn Y Mor
Swn Y Mor
3 months ago

Well said and done Cllr Gareth Pugh. I do not know what is going on down at the bay, but they seem to be quite happy with Wales and its countryside being visually raped by enormous wind turbines. As for Bute, take a breath, get on the phone to Plaid Cymru s Carmen Smith see if she can do a passionate speech in defence of massive wind turbines at the house of lords.

hdavies15
hdavies15
3 months ago
Reply to  Swn Y Mor

Industrialisation of the rural landscape is now at a point where it will divide the country. Ironically carpetbaggers are still salivating over the high ground just north and east of Port Talbot while another bunch of international capitalist gangsters have announced the imminent closure of the coke ovens at Port Talbot. Bay regime continues with its crazy policies chasing “glory” saving the world while it can’t really be bothered to save jobs at Port Talbot just delaying the end game that TATA wants. Mark my words those Indian gangsters will close Port Talbot as soon as possible and carry on… Read more »

Sarah Reisz
Sarah Reisz
3 months ago

What’s really shocking here is not the Councillors’ decision to refuse the mast (at least for now). They were representing their constituents. No, what’s really shocking and should deeply concern us all is the failure of the government agencies who are statutory respondees – NRW, PCC ecologist, CADW, MOD etc – to carry out their duty to protect the people and the land they serve. They are increasingly shamefully silent in the face of ‘development’ – whatever impacts that development may have.

Louise Brown
Louise Brown
3 months ago
Reply to  Sarah Reisz

NRW are potentially going to benefit financially. I have evidence that I feel shows they have done works in the Hafren Forest to allow turbines access to the Esgair Galed site. It remains to be seen if NRW is acting in the public interest. They seem unaware of the rare nature of the resource they are negotiating to destroy

Pete N
Pete N
3 months ago
Reply to  Louise Brown

They could not care about what they destroy as long as thry .ake their money Hafren Forest is an area i know fairly well a d aovely area at that . I wonder if they will try the same with Caio

david evans
david evans
3 months ago

Yes, insufficient information on bird deaths under these large masts with 57 wires to hold it up (19each in 3 directions). these masts DO have a concrete base (2.4 x 1.5m) under, and is a pin joint., contrary to the views of Powys CC, just look at the drawing !!

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