Scottish Government reject plans for East Ayrshire wind farm

Anders Povlsen if fighting the Scottish Government's decision to build a windfarm ni Sutherland. Picture: John Devlin

Anders Povlsen if fighting the Scottish Government's decision to build a windfarm ni Sutherland. Picture: John Devlin

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Plans for a 17-turbine wind farm in East Ayrshire have been rejected by the Scottish Government.

Ministers ruled that the proposed Keirs Hill development near Patna was not acceptable because of the height of the turbines, its proximity to historic sites such as the Waterside ironworks, and the impact it would have on nearby houses.

The plans were submitted around three years ago and said the turbines would have a maximum height of 149 metres to the tip of the blade.

Developers said it would have led to local benefits such as an electricity discount scheme in the area and business for contractors in the building and maintenance of the site.

• READ MORE: Floating wind turbines proposed for sea off Caithness

But the Scottish Government said it did not believe Keirs Hill would have “any wider benefit in respect of energy generation and climate change mitigation”.

Economy Secretary Keith Brown refused planning consent and said the impacts outweighed the benefits.

“The Scottish Government’s policy on wind farms strikes a careful balance between maximising Scotland’s huge green energy potential and protecting some of our most scenic landscape and wild land area,” Mr Brown said.

“We have been clear that wind farms can only be built in the right places and Scottish Planning Policy sets out rigorous steps to ensure wind farms are sited appropriately and sensitively.

“I have considered this application fully and recognise the efforts made by the applicant to mitigate the potential impacts of the development.

“However, I have refused permission due to the landscape and visual impact the project would have, including the effect on residential and historic sites in the area.”

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