Despite the strong objections from the local council, the Secretary of State proceeded to approve the installation of 22 windmills that is all set to take place at Heckington Fen. Ecotricity claims that it has spent more than four years consulting, planning, and researching all in a bid to gain consent for the development of the largest wind farm known to date.
It is anticipated that the wind farm will not only generate enough clean energy every year to power up more than 40,000 homes, but will also have the ability to generate well over 50MW. The news comes at a time when there is a lot of opposition from the locals with a recent survey of residents of Lincolnshire revealing that more than 90% supported the decision made by the local council.
The head of the Lincolnshire County Council, Councilor Martin Hill said that the council’s policy had always been that they were never to reject the development of all wind farms, but that they had concerns about the unsustainable cumulative effect the project would bring.
The Councilor added that even though they were forced by circumstances to accept the decision made by the government, Lincolnshire had always fulfilled its obligation to provide wind energy. He also added that they understood the need to create renewable energy but at the same time, they could not ignore the effect the wind farms had on their historic and beautiful countryside for what appeared to be limited gain.
The proposal was first rejected last February by the North Kesteven District Council despite their recommendation for approval. The Council rejected the plans on the basis of the harmful way they would affect the historic environment not mentioning the cumulative impact to nearby farm.
The Secretary of State made the final decision because he believed that as a matter of national importance, he could not ignore the fact that the wind energy project would increase the country’s onshore capacity by relatively more than 3%.
Dale Vince, the founder of Ecotricity welcomed the decision saying that Heckington Fen was a great location for one of the best wind farms. He added that the North Kesteven planning department had recommended the plan for approval and that they had received no objections from other statutory consultees like RSPB, Natural England, or English Heritage.