Wind farm plans prompt Powys council internet meeting

Wind turbines Some people are opposed to new wind farms in Powys

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A special council meeting about controversial plans to build wind turbines in Powys will be staged later this month.

Powys council will broadcast it live on the internet on 26 January.

Opposition to wind farms in the county has grown since proposals were announced last year to build a 19-acre electricity substation.

The National Grid has argued that the current network will need upgrading to handle the additional power generated.

Public meetings have been held in opposition to the substation and planned wind farms, and there has been a protest outside the Senedd in Cardiff.

The council said the potential impact of wind farms was causing a huge amount of concern to people in the county.

There are reports that more than 600 wind turbines could be built in mid Wales, in addition to more than 200 already there.

Upgrading network

Last year, the National Grid launched a consultation over the route for a 400,000-volt cable linking planned wind farms in Powys to the transmission network.

The grid intends to build a substation in either Abermule, near Newtown, or Cefn Coch, near Llanfair Caereinion.

Start Quote

Issues surrounding wind farms, Tan 8 and their possible impact on the county continue to be a subject of huge concern to the people of Powys”

End Quote Barry Thomas Powys council chairman

The National Grid has argued that the current network for transferring power is limited in mid Wales, and with a new generation of more powerful wind turbines producing more electricity the infrastructure for delivering the energy requires upgrading.

Powys council's meeting over the internet, a first for the local authority, will be held in Llandrindod Wells.

Council chairman Barry Thomas said: "Issues surrounding wind farms, Tan 8 and their possible impact on the county, continue to be a subject of huge concern to the people of Powys."

The Technical Advice Note (Tan) 8 policy was introduced in 2005 as guidance. It allows councils to decide on wind farms up to 50 megawatts in size.

Mr Thomas added: "The county council is holding a special session on January 26 and the debate will be broadcast live on the internet for the first time so that residents in the county who are interested can listen and watch.

"Powys County Council is committed to open and accountable local government and this innovative move clearly demonstrates that commitment."

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