I received this from George Lindsay. We now have a situation where the international legal basis for wind non-science disappeared in December when the Kyoto Protocol ceased being legally binding and now the Aarhus committee have ruled the UK is acting illegally.
Stand back for wall to wall coverage by the BBC condemning the UK’s illegal pollution of the countryside with bird-mincers. (Who am I kidding?)
Effects of the Aarhus draft decision on planning applications.
The Aarhus Convention Compliance Committee has ruled unequivocally that the UK is non-compliant with Article 7 of the Convention.
That ruling, when confirmed in September, will have a profound effect on planning applications for wind farms right across Scotland. The emphasis in the 2006 Scottish Planning Act was, as much as anything, on the necessity of effective public consultation, and on the opportunity for the public and affected citizens to be able participate in the process. In relation to windpower, this right has been overridden and ignored. This will call into question the legal validity of any further consents. The Ruling means that consents and permissions for further windfarm developments are liable to challenge on the ground that the necessary preliminaries have not been complied with, and that, in effect, the public has been denied the chance to consider and contribute to the NREAP.
Until such time as the NREAP is fully compliant with the requirements defined under National and Community law and International Treaty Arrangements with regard to environmental democracy and public participation, there should now be a moratorium on such consents. The solution for the Government is quite easy; go out to consultation on your Energy Programme, rather than just publishing facile “Routemaps” which support expansion based on scientifically dubious targets which have no foundation other than in politics. Currently, hundreds of turbines have been installed without any consultations on the value of the whole programme being undertaken, never mind finalised. The opportunity to comment on a planning application is not “public participation” since neither Planning Authorities nor Reporters will countenance and discussion, never mind criticism, of “Government Policy”. But the law is there in the Convention to be obeyed, not to be ignored.
The 2020 projection for wind energy in the UK’s NREAP looks to the installation of some 14,890 MW onshore and 12, 990 MW offshore turbines, which represents thousands of turbines yet to be installed in the UK landscape. A staggering amount, but even more staggering if they are done without consultation or public participation.
In view of the many established impacts which follow adoption of wind technology, with its unacceptable negative impacts on people and the human environment, a halt to further consents until recommendations are implemented should now be automatic and would be welcomed. It will give a badly needed breathing space for the required public participation.