Friday, 16 September 2011

Assel Valley wind farm #1

This is the first of two posts concerning a proposed wind farm development referred to as Assel Valley, which is currently under consideration by South Ayrshire Council. The proposed development location is a little to the Northeast of Pinmore, buts up against the proposed Tralorg Hill site, and is adjacent to the existing site at Hadyard Hill. Still not sure where it is? Then consult the map below:

View South Carrick Wind Farms in a larger map

Assel Valley is the 'longish' blue shape in the middle of the map. Now, ordinarily, I would publish a picture of the proposed site to give a better feel for the area. However, I will not be doing this for Assel Valley. We will be going one better during the coming weekend, as I will be publishing a post containing direct links to the entire 240 document Environmental Impact Assessment. This will contain pretty much everything you could ever want to know about the development, including all the submitted photomontages, wildlife surveys, noise studies etc. etc. In many ways then, this post should serve as an introduction to the Assel Valley wind farm

The proposal is to erect 17 turbines, with a maximum blade tip elevation of 415 feet (126.5 metres), across a 988 acre (400 ha) site, along with the associated infrastructure including 3 permanent meteorlogical masts. Given the proposed site's proximity to Hadyard Hill, if this development goes ahead we really will be building turbine alley behind Girvan.

The developers, Coriolis Energy have a community Consultation web site set up here. Unfortunately, whilst the environmental statement appears to be available from this site, the site itself appears broken. I was able to download just one document before receiving a series of errors that prevented me from downloading anymore. Some consultation. Admitedly, you can create an account and leave feedback - although how this will be responded to now the planning application has been submitted to South Ayrshire Council I don't know.

So who are Coriolis Energy? I don't know, well actually, I know one thing. The Assel Valley wind farm is listed as one of the projects of FALCK Renewables. Does that name sound familiar? Well, if you read the post titled Constrain This, and read the report commissioned by the Renewable Energy Partnership referenced in it, you may have read that FALCK had the highest constraint payment: £800 per MWh. In the report, it was noted that FALCK Renewables reduced their Constraint payment to £300 per MWh (still twice as much as Hadyard Hill receives per MWh) - but even after this reduction, they still top the charts of wind farm operators receiving constraint payments. I think the motivation of this company is quite clear. Oh, and by the way, FALCK Renewables is an Italian company.

If you know already that you are opposed to the Assel Valley wind farm, you can head over to South Ayrshire Council's website and leave an objection. Just click on this link, then click the 'Make a comment Button', fill in the form and submit it. It's that easy. Well, it would be, if the comment submission facility on South Ayrshsire Council's web site wasn't broken. Please, if you do not want to see this wind farm constructed, continue to try to object via this link - every voice is counted. If you are undecided about this application, please check back with this blog over the coming weekend, when you can read all about it in its gory detail.