ENERGY giant EDF has cancelled plans for a 10-turbine wind farm in the Yorkshire Wolds following the Government’s decision to end subsidies next year.
The move was hailed by campaigners in the East Riding - which has the highest density of turbines in the country - as a victory for common sense.
But trade body Renewables UK said the Government’s relentless negativity towards onshore wind meant Yorkshire now had “a skewed playing field tilted against clean energy and in favour of fossil fuels.”
More than 500 people had objected to EDF Energy Renewables’ plans for the 10 415ft high turbines at High Wood, between Bainton and Tibthorpe, which were due to go before councillors next month. Local tourism operators had warned that allowing it to be built would be an “utter disaster” for the area, which is marketed for its walks, scenic drives and connections with David Hockney.
Chairman of local action group Protecting Our Wolds Environment and Resources Ian Dewar said the decision would be welcomed by “the vast majority of local residents and those with business interests in this part of the East Riding.” However he said it was “by no means the end of the battle to keep the East Riding and the Wolds in particular, free from industrialisation” and they would continue to campaign for the area to be declared an “exclusion zone.”
But RenewableUK’s Head of Communications, Rob Norris, said there had been a “slew of negative announcements from the Government on renewable energy ever since they took office, slashing future funding, even introducing retrospective cuts in financial support, and making draconian changes to planning rules for onshore wind - while at the same time bending over backwards to make it much easier for fracking to go ahead unchecked.”
He added: “As a result, when it comes to energy policy, Yorkshire now has a skewed playing field tilted against clean energy and in favour of fossil fuels.
“This is way out of touch with what most people want. The Government’s own opinion polls consistently show that two-thirds of the public supports the development of onshore wind.”