Local MP John Lamont has sought assurances from the Minister for Clean Energy that UK Government policy will not promote large scale onshore wind over other forms of renewable energy.
Speaking in Westminster today (Tuesday 8th January), the MP noted concerns over the number of large wind farms in the Scottish Borders, before seeking an assurance that ‘industrial’ onshore wind would not be promoted by the UK Government over other forms of renewable energy which have less impact on local communities.
During Questions to the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, John Lamont MP said: “I very much support renewable energy but many of my constituents in the Scottish Borders feel we have our fair share of onshore wind.”
“So can the Minister assure me that nothing in Government policy will promote onshore wind farm development over other forms of renewable energy?”
In response, Minister for Clean Energy, Claire Perry MP responded: “That is exactly the point of technology neutrality,” referring to the UK Government policy that as many forms of renewable energy as possible should be allowed to bid for Government support to avoid supporting one type of energy over another.
Earlier on during the session, the Minister had pointed out that the UK Conservative Government was elected on a manifesto pledge that further subsidies for large scale onshore wind projects were not necessary.
The exchange comes after a series of controversial large scale wind farm applications in the Scottish Borders, including the Pines Burn wind farm near Bonchester Bridge which was given the go ahead by the Scottish Government last year, despite being rejected by local councillors.