MoD wants information on turbine plans

Controversial plans for a 67m-high wind turbine on a Rhydowen farm have been put on hold for another month after a last minute intervention by the Ministry of Defence.

Planning officer Richard Duggan told this week's Ceredigion development control committee that from now on the MoD want details of all wind turbine applications in the county.

"It's not something we can take lightly as it is about safety of aircraft in the air and what would happen if an aircraft crashed into a community," he said.

Cllr Gethin James, who represents Aberporth, said that turbines interfered with radar.

"We have got to take the MoD seriously. There are a lot of low flying aircraft in that area. Wind turbines can also cause a lot of radar interference. The former RAE at Aberporth is about to celebrate its 75th anniversary and I wouldn't like to see anything threatening the jobs there."

Mr Duggan added that the MoD had only contacted the council 24 hours before the meeting and he was also waiting for a response from West Wales Airport.

Some councillors raised concerns that the MoD's intervention could impact on where turbines could be built.

"Where in Ceredigion can we erect turbines?" asked Cllr Towyn Evans.

The application at Maesnewydd was deferred at January's development control meeting for a site meeting where the panel recommended refusal due to the turbine's size.

The family behind the application, who have farmed the land for four generations, claim that income from the turbine will safeguard the farm's future.

Cllr Gareth Lloyd asked that the MoD be pressurised to make their comments in time for next month's meeting.

Committee chairman Cllr Odwyn Davies apologised to the applicants for the delay.

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