For over a year now Scottish Power Renewables has not seen fit to provide the many communities around the site of their proposed major wind farm at Mynydd Mynyllod with an update on the scheme.
This plan to build 25, 475ft (145m) turbines, on the ridge and slopes of this mountain, which lies between Corwen and Bala, has effectively blighted the area for the past three years. However, once again, SPR’s website contains a ‘development and planning’ timeline which is inaccurate. It states that they will be submitting the application for the Development Consent Order this winter, but the consultation needed to reach this stage has still not been carried out. They clearly think nothing of the concerns of hundreds of local residents who want to know what, if any, ‘progress’ is being made, particularly in the light of the recent Government decision to cut subsidies to onshore wind farms.
STEMM members, some of whom also sit on SPR’s Community Liaison Panel, have also contacted the Spanish owned energy company, but have not received a response to their enquiries. The same is the case with local residents who have used what is supposed to be a ‘Have you say’ section on the energy giant’s website. It seems this is the internet equivalent of banging your head against a brick wall!
Although all enquiries should, at this Pre Application stage, be directed at the developer, STEMM contacted the Government body, National Infrastructure Planning (NIP), when it became obvious that SPR was not going to reply. These emails also met with silence, until this week when there was finally an apologetic response. This is far more than has been received from SPR.
And this is it…..The application now looks as though it will be submitted in Q2 (April/May/June) of 2014. The Senior Project Manager, James Innes, has stated that the delay is due to issues regarding the Grid Connection, and that SPR is unable to confirm the exact date for submission of the application. However, he did mention that by March 2014 he would be in a better position to provide the ‘anticipated submission date’.
So, after many attempts by a number of local residents, we finally dragged some information out of SPR. However, not only have we yet even more months of delay, but SPR have informed NIP that the Community Liaison Panel was informed of the grid connection issues and that the date for submission would only be confirmed once this issue has been resolved! Now, if that had been the case, would this group have been contacting SPR for OVER a year trying to find out what was going on so that this information could be passed on?
SPR has scored something of an own goal with this communication blackout. After this, how could anyone believe that they would be even remotely interested in the views of local residents?
These lovely images which show aspects of the beautiful landscape that STEMM is fighting to protect were taken by keen local photographer, Pauline Wheeler of Corwen.