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Consultation deadline nears for Orkney Council’s wind farm planning proposals

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Next week sees the deadline for comments on Orkney Islands Council’s planning application for a major wind farm development on the small island of Faray.

This will mean it is likely that all three of the planning applications under the council’s Community Wind Farm Project will soon be with the Scottish Government for consideration.  

Monday is the deadline for comments on the Environmental Impact Assessment for a proposed six-turbine development on Faray.

After that it is expected the planning application will be called in by the Scottish Government at the council’s request. 

The applications for the two other wind farms being proposed under the project – one of which would be sited at Quanterness to the West of Kirkwall on the Orkney mainland with the other being at Wee Fea, Hoy – have already been called in by the Scottish Government, again at the council’s request.

Decision expected soon

A decision is expected on the Quanterness plans any day now while the council is being given the opportunity to provide further information in response to comments on the Hoy application.

After the Scottish Government’s officers make their decision, the council will then begin deciding whether the project should go ahead at all.

Each of the proposed wind farms would consist of six turbines measuring 149.9m from the ground to blade tip making them bigger than any other wind turbines in Orkney.

However, the council said the projects would generate significant income and community benefit for the islanders. 

The local authority also says the project would also help make the case for a new interconnector between the islands and the Scottish mainland.

A council spokeswoman said that, as with any project of this size and type, the consultation processes for all three sites have attracted a wide range of views and opinions.

She added that the council has welcomed the time taken by members of the public and statutory consultees to do this.

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