Developer unveils plans to extend north-east wind farm

Green Cat Renewables wants to add two turbines to the Deuchries wind farm
Green Cat Renewables wants to add two turbines to the Deuchries wind farm

A developer hopes to extend a controversial wind farm on the edge of a north-east village.

Council planning chiefs received more than 75 objections to the proposal to install a trio of turbines on land at Deuchries near Aberchirder.

The plans divided the local community but were eventually approved by the Banff and Buchan area committee in 2014.

Opponents argued it would become an eyesore on the rural landscape, but Aberchirder community council threw its weight behind the idea.

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The three turbines became operational last year and provide power for up to 4,000 homes.

Now the developer wants to add two more to the site.

Green Cat Renewables Developments is hoping to build a duo of 390ft structures on agricultural land adjacent to the original windfarm.

As well as the turbines there would be a pair of substations, a network of buried cables, drainage works and an upgrade for the existing farm track.

In a supporting statement submitted alongside the plans the company described the extension as “modest” and said the design process had tried to strike a balance between environmental impact, engineering requirements and viable energy production.

It would also boost an existing community fund set up to help out local groups based in and around Aberchirder.  The village’s scout group used it to purchase a minibus last year.

The document said: “The principal and acceptability of wind development in this area has already been established, with the consenting of the Deuchries Wind Farm application.

“Since the construction and successful operation of the original development a diligent design process has identified the potential to develop a further two wind turbines within the footprint of the existing development.

“The extension will utilise existing infrastructure as far as possible in order to minimise impacts.

“The operational wind farm has assisted the local community with the creation of a benefit fund, administered by a board made up of local residents.

“The extension development will further bolster this fund allowing larger community interest projects to be considered in future application rounds.”