This Site is Right!
If you want to see the TCWF approved now, or at appeal, then the most effective thing you can do is come to Follaton House on the 13th at 12 noon and show your support.
see our statement
We are doing the right thing at the right time, in the right place for the right reasons. It's time to stand up and be counted; supporters are in the majority.
"To be truly radical is to make hope possible rather than despair convincing" - Raymond Williams
TRESOC's TCWF proposal demonstrates
- an active and visionary local response to national guidelines
- a well-researched, scientific information base
- a realistic response to rising energy costs
- investment in well-being of local community and future generations
- investment in nature, energy security and climate stability
The extended consultation period ended on 16th January, with 300 letters in favour. There have consistently been a majority of letters supporting TCWF throughout the process since September of last year, that's five months!
HERE'S WHAT TO DO:
- Write/email the members of the Development Management Committee, copying Debbie Crowther, the Case Officer. As South Hams residents, you can even write to all South Hams Councillors to make your views more widely known. Support letters from visitors outside the area will also count in this case, so please encourage friends to write to say they expect turbines to be part of the landscape in a town like Totnes.
SHDC confirm that letters will be accepted right up to the date of the planning meeting.
We understand that Councillors are being phoned at home by some people who are opposed. We are not requesting that you should do the same, but if you choose to please make sure it's during office hours or at a sociable hour!
Face to face meetings are highly recommended.
Download the list:
- MP Sarah Wollaston has a section on her website here. Join the discussion by adding a comment. You can also make an appointment for her surgery. Contact email@example.com.
- Hands-on letter-collecting. TRESOC and TCWF supporter Larch Maxey writes: “Having spent a few rewarding hours garnering 50 or so of the 242 support letters I thoroughly recommend this – its amazing how many people appreciate someone doing the leg work, providing pen and paper and collecting letters from them! Especially now that people may not realise they can still get letters in. Everyone in a household can write their own letter as each one counts! Organisations can also write".
- Please copy us so we can track activity: firstname.lastname@example.org. Please note, we are experiencing technical difficulties with our phone line, if you have an urgent question please call 01803 867431.
CALL TO ACTION
More support letters are needed to ensure that the Members of the Development Committee who will vote on our application understand that:
- The majority of people in this community – people of all ages and income levels – have shown their support of TCWF either by becoming a TRESOC member and/or by writing a support letter.
- TCWF gives South Hams and the local community an opportunity:
- To meaningfully address the District’s challenging renewable energy targets;
- To acknowledge that whilst our local landscape is beautiful, we must make responsible decisions about its appearance – the needs of our children are a priority
- To signal that we want to do our part to address climate change in a rural community with high per capita carbon use.
- Community ownership will ensure that the financial benefits from renewable energy projects will be enjoyed by communities hosting wind turbines, not just big business. Onshore windpower is happening. It is the most cost effective of renewable energy resources available and can be deployed quickly. Developers and utility companies are working with DECC to roll it out. The only question that remains is how much of this windpower will be in community ownership?
- Energy security is fundamental. Recent price hikes announced by the big energy companies will add around £100 per year to the average fuel bill. The average annual energy bill per household in Britain is now about £1,300 (in 2004 it was £522). If this rate of increase is maintained for the next 8 years, then the average fuel bill will be over £3,000 in 2020.
- The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) which carries a 'presumption in favour of sustainable development' requires local planning authorities ‘support community-led initiatives for renewable and low carbon energy’
- TRESOC has a strategy focused on developing local resilience, generating investment in our community and creating jobs. This makes TCWF different and significant. TRESOC is now involved at a governmental level representing careful, planned and managed community ownership of renewables.
- TRESOC upholds one of the guiding principles within the NPPF – 'using sound science responsibly' (we do not practice the use of myths to create a fear of change).
- Health… an article in The New Scientist (October 2012) entitled The sickening truth about wind farm syndrome (download) by Simon Chapman concludes that ‘the unrecognised entity of wind turbine syndrome is psychogenic’ (originates from the mind)
- Noise… the study undertaken for TCWF shows that the predicted noise levels will stay within the guidelines which were set up to protect residential amenity at nearby properties. In the Foales Leigh hearing the Chair of Development Management and the District Solicitor advised Members that they had no grounds to reject the application on noise.
- Birds…TRESOC member Chris Bird, writes a
renewable energy blog.
He interviewed Jack Heslop
who maintains the turbines on Britain's first co-operatively owned wind power project at Harlock Hill (near Ulverston, Cumbria). Jack was aware of only two dead seagulls in 12 years. Chris has also visited turbines in Nottinghamshire, East Sussex and on Eigg – no problem there either.
Other communities are stepping up, surely we can too?
Do we want to be the people who go to the supermarket and buy apples when they have trees in their backyard groaning with fruit? Would you prefer to see a nuclear power plant in the South Hams?
Take a look at Wadebridge - www.wren.uk.com
"We need to go back to the future, take control of our energy use, improve and expand our local supply chains and create a sustainable future for Wadebridge and the surrounding area"
In the context of Cornwall Council’s Green Cornwall programme (who have recently made a loan facility available to The Low Carbon Society (TLCS) to enable council-approved loans to applicants), Councillor Stephen Rushworth, said: "It is important that we start to keep the benefits of energy in Cornwall, and that future developments contribute not only to our developing energy landscape but also to the fabric and strength of our communities through supporting services and developing key community assets."
Ready to write that letter now?
Make sure any correspondence quotes the registration number 23/1990/12/F, and includes your address.
See some examples of submitted letters »
Please note that letters to SHDC will form part of the public record: names and addresses will be visible but email addresses and signatures will be removed. A hard copy file that includes the application and responses will be available for anyone to see at Follaton House.
The National Planning Policy Framework came into force in March 2012 and strongly urges Local Planning Authorities to:
- Support community-led initiatives for renewable energy that provide environmental and financial benefits to the local economy
- The NPPF sets out the government's planning policies and how they are expected to be applied. Section 10 beginning on page 21 deals with meeting the challenge of climate change, flooding and coastal change and, in particular Point 97 addresses the need to increase the supply of renewable and low carbon energy
- An excerpt from Point 97: To help increase the use and supply of renewable and low carbon energy, local planning authorities should recognise the responsibility on all communities to contribute to energy generation from renewable or low carbon sources. They should:
- Design their policies to maximise renewable and low carbon energy development while ensuring that adverse impacts are addressed satisfactorily, including cumulative landscape and visual impacts;
- support community-led initiatives for renewable and low carbon energy
- An excerpt from Point 98: When determining planning applications, local planning authorities should:
- Not require applicants for energy development to demonstrate the overall need for renewable or low carbon energy
- Approve the application if its impacts are (or can be made) acceptable
- South Hams District Council has made it a priority to encourage and enable renewable energy generation where appropriate
The Government is committed to increasing the proportion of energy we use from renewable sources.
Find out about the critical role of on-shore wind power in meeting this commitment from the UK Renewable Energy Roadmap.
Local Climate Change Policy aims to:
- Reduce CO2 emissions
- Promote Sustainable Development
- Encourage the development of appropriate business opportunities, and raise community awareness
The South Hams District Council Climate Change Policy and Strategy, Oct 2007, states that "Climate change according to most commentators is a reality and recent evidence suggests that it is happening at a faster rate that previously expected. People everywhere will be affected by climate change and we here in the South Hams will not be immune.
A recent sustainability appraisal of the District Council's Local Development Framework Core Strategy published in June 2006 said that 'climate change is one of the greatest challenges the district has ever faced' and went on to say that 'the potential negative impacts for both humans and biodiversity are considerable'
Download the SHDC Climate Change Policy and Strategy »
The SHDC team are well aware of the technical aspects of the project, such as:
- Suitable distance from residential properties, a noise assessment has shown that residential amenity would be protected
- TCWF is outside of protected landscape areas such as Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and National Parks
- It is also outside of protected wildlife areas, such as South Hams Special Area of Consultation for bats
- Easy access: in relation to the A381, and to the electricity network which facilitates connection to the National Grid
- Good wind speed
As far as we are aware, TCWF meets the all the planning criteria.
General reasons people often give in support of wind energy:
- It will help in the fight against climate change
- The wind farm will help us reach our renewable energy targets
- It will help our country to produce its own energy
- It will help reduce our carbon footprint
- It's a good location for a wind farm
- The wind farm will help bring jobs and visitors to the area
- I think wind farms are appealing to the eye
- The wind farm will help to raise awareness of climate change and renewable energy
Additional planning points:
- Good wind speed
- Easy access from the main road
- Easy grid connection onsite
- Chance for locals to invest in renewables project of a larger scale
More useful resources »
TRESOC's point of view
We are confident that the majority of local people are in favour of community-owned wind power and we need to assure our elected representatives that this is the case. Since September 2010 we have been working with our developer partner, Infinergy, on community engagement and a range of environmental and technical surveys which are now included in the planning application
We believe the location is the best site for wind power generation in the locality.
TRESOC member, intern and Harberton resident Olly Frankland joined the discussion at www.harbertonford.org about wind turbines with his entry entitled "Tough Decisions in Challenging Times"
- The profitable development of community owned renewable energy
- Using local investment to create a safe, secure, low carbon energy supply
- Generating opportunities for local business and employment.
- 502 members
- Raised £170,000 from the local community with individual investments from £20 to £20,000
- Reached over 11,000 homes with an open invitation to learn more
- Working with a technology partner who has won awards for community engagement
- Proposed a Community Benefit Fund for Harberton and Harbertonford
- Co-hosted site tours, a practical, first-of-its-kind noise workshop, community open days, a photomontage exhibition and kite flying day to indicate the turbine height in the landscape.
What better way for our kids to learn about clean energy… lets have a real example on our doorstep!
• Let’s succeed as an ethical co-op and take co-ownership of two turbines!
• This isn't just about Totnes - we're all in this together!
We're in Stage Three: Letters to voting Councillors
Don't forget to quote the application number, and include your address.
Thank you for all the letters of support so far. We have a giant binder full of them and will post excerpts when we get a minute!
Thank you for all the letters of general support to date for Totnes Community Wind Farm to local councillors and our MP
see excerpts ».
See our current application support letters »
For more information, email us or contact Totnes Community Wind Farm on freephone
0800 862 0309.