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Turbine positives outlined

PUBLISHED: 09:00 02 October 2009 | UPDATED: 08:37 01 August 2010

A COMPANY behind plans to build wind turbines on land near Beccles has set out the benefits it says the scheme will bring including producing enough electricity to power 15,000 homes and providing funds for the community.

A COMPANY behind plans to build wind turbines on land near Beccles has set out the benefits it says the scheme will bring including producing enough electricity to power 15,000 homes and providing funds for the community.

Stamford Renewables wants to build four groups of three turbines on land in the parishes of Ringsfield, Weston, Barsham and Shipmeadow.

But there is strong local opposition to the scheme and a campaign group called HALT has been formed to fight the plans.

Stamford Renewables has issued a community brief in which the company highlights Suffolk's tradition of wind power which it says makes the developments at three sites - Devonshire Farm, Granary Farm and Laurel's Farm - “a very appropriate continuation of this historic tradition”.

The document also gives details of how the company says it has addressed local concerns.

It says that when the planned 27MW of wind power becomes operational, the turbines at these sites will produce enough electricity to power the equivalent of 15,000 average UK homes.

From 27MW of installed capacity, the local community would receive at least £54,000 per annum or £1.35m over a period of 25 years, which would be distributed through a charitable trust.

Mike Stamford, chief executive of Stamford Renewables, has said work on green, renewable energy projects should begin without delay.

“Climate change is the enemy not wind power, so help us avoid a catastrophic UK energy crisis in 2016 by supporting the Waveney Wind Turbines,” the document states. “We simply have to build renewable energy faster than we are doing at the moment and time is slipping away from us.”

HALT spokesman Philip Johnson said: “We have read Mr Stamford's first leaflet and we recognise his usual arguments for his proposals. Although we share his concerns about climate change, we believe that the situation does not justify a free-for-all for wind turbine speculators.

“Our position remains that we believe that this development will spoil the tranquillity and quality of life for many households in the area and presents threats to tourism and employment in Beccles and the Waveney valley. People visit the area for its calm and natural beauty, which will be damaged by these industrial installations.

“The impact of Mr Stamford's proposed development on climate change will be too small to be measured and have any effect. The tiny contribution will be far outweighed by the negative impacts on the countryside, ecology and employment.”

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