NE Scotland, Orkney & Shetland

Donald Trump attacks SNH and VisitScotland over wind plans

Donald Trump at the Menie site
Image caption Donald Trump has said he wants to protect the Scottish coastline

US tycoon Donald Trump has launched another attack on wind power.

In a letter to Sir Simon Jenkins, chairman of the National Trust, he said Scottish Natural Heritage and VisitScotland were "pathetic" because they have remained silent on the issue.

It follows his letter last week to First Minister Alex Salmond accusing him of being "hell bent on destroying Scotland's coastline".

Mr Trump objects to plans for a wind farm near his Scottish golf resort.

He has said he will abandon his proposals for a hotel and houses on the Menie Estate in Aberdeenshire if the development is approved.

The European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre is a £150m venture by Vattenfall, Technip and Aberdeen Renewable Energy Group.

The billionaire's previous letter to Mr Salmond said: "You will single-handedly have done more damage to Scotland than virtually any event in Scottish history."

In response to his comments the Scottish government said Scottish waters had great potential for offshore wind energy.

In his latest letter, to Sir Simon, Mr Trump praised the National Trust boss for saying wind turbines were a "public menace" which "wreck the countryside".

'Right place'

He said Scottish Natural Heritage and VisitScotland, the government agencies charged with the responsibility of protecting Scotland's heritage and tourism, had remained "completely silent" on the issue.

He wrote: "It's pathetic."

A VisitScotland spokesman said: "This is a matter for the planning authority and we are confident that they will come to a decision that is representative of the opinions of the local community and those involved in this case."

A SNH spokesperson said: "We have been involved in the planning application for this development right from the start.

"Our advice has recommended that further assessment is required, as the developer's environmental statement doesn't fully assess the likely impacts on several protected areas.

"We recognise the importance of renewable energy development to Scotland's future and its contribution to mitigating climate change; our job is to help the Scottish government and developers to secure the right developments in the right place."

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