I am referring to the decision by the CnES planning committee to allow 14 turbines, each standing 126 metres (just over 400 feet) tall, to be built inland from North Tolsta, between Tolsta Glen and Diridean.
- is too close to habitation
- breaks the Western Isles Development plan
- carries significant impacts on landscape, amenity and homes
- endangers golden eagles at its northernmost point
To my mind, having observed the saga of windfarms on Lewis over the past decade, it wasn't the popular vote that swayed the planning committee. It was the fact that the scheme and its 42 MW output would provide the electricity needed to make the proposed interconnector to the mainland economically viable. SSE, who have spent this year dragging their feet over the issue, is due to make a decision before the end of December.
As ever, full council is expected to rubberstamp the planning committee's decision later in the week. Oh, the community benefit will amount to a mouth-watering if not eye-watering £294k per annum.