An application for a wind farm close to the Devil’s Beef Tub has been revised for a second time, with more turbines cut from the plans.
The Earlshaugh scheme, initially submitted to the Scottish Government in 2008, was cut from 36 turbines to 24 in 2011, and now down to 22.
Ahead of a planning inquiry to decide the fate of the scheme, due to take place in 2014, the developers have cut two turbines from the plans and nine have been reduced in height, from 125m to 100m.
Documents submitted with the latest revision state: “In advance of public inquiry, Wind Energy (Earlshaugh) Ltd is seeking to resolve some of the outstanding issues raised by SBC, SNH (Scottish Natural Heritage) and DGC (Dumfries and Galloway Council).”
It adds that the amendments to the number and height of turbines has been due to ‘careful consideration’ of the objections from the three organisations.
Following a new landscape impact assessment, the developer states: “The assessment concludes that there would be no significant visual effect on the views from northbound road users on the A701, the Devil’s Beef Tub Covenanters monument and adjacent viewpoint cairn or residential properties.”
It adds that no turbines would be visible from either the monument or cairn.
In SBC’s response to the revised plan in 2011, it stated: “The proposed turbines would set an unacceptable precedent for wind farm development in the area which cannot be accommodated.”
It added: “The Devil’s Beef Tub viewpoint would be significantly affected.”
The construction of the wind farm would contribute £4.8million to the local economy, and once operational, £1.37million a year, the developer states.