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30 July 2014
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Arnish Lighthouse

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Eastern windfarms

The villagers of Gravir were balloted on the proposed landing station for the Interconnector, which will carry all the power generated by the Lewis windfarms to the National Grid. Of the 82 people approached, 58 responded. 44 of those expressed opposition. I don't think it's a case of NIMBY'ism, actually.

There is one other point that many people appear to forget. The Lewis Windfarm is not just the one from Ness down the West Side to Stornoway. A pretty large development is also proposed, and likely to be approved by the new Executive (more on that later), for the Eishken Estate. From a visual impact point, these 500 ft high turbines will be visible up and down the east coast of Lewis AND Harris. As well as spoiling the best mountain scenery in the Western Isles around the Clisham. I also have to mention that the Park Estate is lined up for a community windfarm, with turbines of a similar size to that in Eishken.

The Scottish Executive looks set to become an SNP minority administration, supported by the Green Party for good measure. What that is likely to lead to does not require rocket science to work out. The Lewis windfarms stand to be rubberstamped by the new administration. I'll refrain from making party political statements.
Posted on Arnish Lighthouse at 16:52


Having seen the plans for the projected Pairc windfarm (SSE) not the community one I can comfortable say that you will be able to see our windmills from your front Window AL, of course a lot still hinges on the outcome of the Beualy-Denny public enquiry fortunately. With regards the ballot, it was on the back of a similar ballot in Marbhig, dont know the exact figures but I think the whole village was opposed to an interconnector with the exception of one person for. Garyvard is due a ballot shortly and I am sure the message will catch on. It seems the committees and councils might not be actually be being representative of the views of their wards. The main point of the ballots though was to allow fair representation. The elderly and single parents and the like cannot really make time to attend public meetings so bringing information to them and letting them make a choice is only fair and dare I say democratic.

Mark from Gravir

Mark, I've spoken to at least one local councillor who voted in favour of the windfarms, saying he was convinced by the arguments in favour more than by those against. However, being a councillor does not mean you go against what your constituents think. BTW he got re-elected.

Arnish Lighthouse from Stornoway

Why don't they build the turbines on top of skyscrapers in London. That wud solve their energy problem. Im all for renewable energy but im not prepared to destroy our landscape to supply the southerners with power. Community based windfarms are the way forward.

lamp from Carlabhagh, Eilean Leodhas

Hmmm, I often think that councillor's and the like make decisions based upon what they feel is right for the majority. If we had ballots over everything then nothing would be decided upon. If however a community organises a ballot because they feel they are not being represented correctly then it would seem right to me that any elected officers would have to change their opinion to represent the majority vote. Regardless of their own personal opinion. Its a tricky mess I guess, but we can all learn from Big Tony and the English labour government about U-turns in policy.

mark from Gravir

I think you are confusing SSE's 57 turbine/ 200 MW plus, windfarm for Pairc with a community development. If SNP election promises are to be honoured then all the Lewis wind farms' should not be permitted by the government without either a public inquiry or a local referendum.

Jack from the lad

As one 'from the south' who was on Lewis whilst working at Stornoway Airport back in '73, I was horrified to read about the proposed windfarm. It will spoil what is probably one of the last unspoilt areas of the UK (even if there have been other structures erected in the proposed area since '73..). What should be happening is that people should be encouraged to use less electricity in the first place. Green energy has its place, obviously, but destroying a 'green' environment in the process of obtaining (efficiently?) 'green' power is not the answer. Being less wasteful is.

Bill from Near Oxford

Quote from Mark "Hmmm, I often think that councillor's and the like make decisions based upon what they feel is right for the majority" What, you want the Council to make decisions based on what is right for the smallest minority????? Jeez, get a life and understand reality.

Marag from Stornoway

I was under the impression that m.p's and councellor's are voted in by the public of each area to be a voice of those members of the public to the people higher up the ladder who make the final choices about our lives. Here it seems more like the m.p's and councellor's are only interested in what they want and keeping in good favour with others around them. It's sad to see that one of them was re-elected even after ignoring what the people he was representing had to say and it makes me wonder if the people here understand that these people are supposed to represent and work for US not the other way round.

tanith from point

Marag, I did say "feel is right" I'd like the councillors to make decisions based upon what the majority want, not on what the councillors feel is right for us. Its called representation, the other way of doing it is erm nearer to dictatatorship, I guess, I reckon nobody fancies that as a process of government.Of course it depends upon who you think of as the majority and the minority, ie the majority of folk on Lewis dont want windmills, but the majority of folk (who outwiegh our majority) would proberbly rather the windmills were here than in their back yards.

Mark from Gravir

Excuse me, but does anyone have a good link to a (very) detailed map of Lewis please? Thank you!

Stuart from South Africa

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