Last Thursday night over a hundred local residents crowded into Corsock Village Hall to discover what the nearby proposed Blackcraig wind power station would mean for them. As part of its launch GLARE (Galloway Landscape And Renewable Energy) invited experts from as far away as Inverness to share their understanding and expertise on the economic, environmental and social implications of large-scale wind factories.
Neighbours from Dalmellington, where 307 large turbines have been proposed to ring the village, warned the audience that once one wind factory had been successful, applications for others surely follow creating an industrialised landscape or brownfield site where there had only ever been the hills and glens for which Scotland is world famous.
Alistair Emery, the Chairperson of GLARE, welcomed everyone, saying that the aims of the group were to support the use of renewable energy in the global fight to counter climate change but also to research each local application for wind factories on its merits and condense that information so that individual, local residents could make an informed decision about the wisdom of erecting power stations in some of the country's most beautiful, unspoiled scenic areas.
Noting that the GLARE website was now open at www.glare.org.uk and that visitors to the site were welcome to register, make their comments and join in discussions, Mr Emery thanked all the participants for their contributions and promised a series of future events that would keep local people informed.
Watch Press Release
Campaigners opposing wind farm plans across Scotland
have launched a new initiative to promote co-operation between action groups and strengthen the campaign against the massive increase in windpower schemes - more than 400 projects totalling over 6000 turbine-masts are now in the planning pipeline in Scotland alone.
The "Hands Across Scotland" campaign was announced following the successful launch meeting of new campaign group GLARE (Galloway Landscape and Renewable Energy) in a packed village hall at Corsock, twenty miles west of Dumfries. Representatives of campaign groups from Dalmellington (Ayrshire) Mellock Hill (Kinross), Bridge of Cally (Glen Shee) and Glenfarg (Perthshire) spoke at themeeting and vowed to help
GLARE in their fight against the Blackcraig windfarm which is planned for one of the most prominent and widely visible areas of high ground in Galloway
As part of the new initiative, members of action groups all over Scotland will collaborate and pool resources and expertise in areas such as botany, ornithology, hydrology and geology to help scrutinize windfarm planning applications which are often hundreds of pages in length.
Speaking after the launch of "Hands Across Scotland", Dr. Brendan Hamill, convener of Scottish Wind Watch, said "2005 will be possibly the most critical year for landscape conservation in the entire history of Scotland It is vital that action groups help one another to step up their campaigns against these massive industrial estates on the tops of our hills. If we lose this fight, Scotland's landscape will be blighted for generations and possibly for ever.
This is not about global warming - even the windpower companies have admitted that windfarms don't reduce carbon dioxide levels - the whole process is driven by greed and blatant profiteering. The developers are simply desperate to cash in on the subsidy gravy train here in Scotland before it dries up, as has already happened in Denmark and Germany, where the governments have now realised they were sold a pup by the wind-industry."