A Local Government Minister has confirmed Wind Turbine planning application refusals have gone up since the government changed its planning guidelines last year. The announcement came during a Westminster Hall debate earlier today.
Kris Hopkins told MPs that 68 applications had been rejected, compared to just 56 that had been approved in the 12 months since the guidance was issued.
The figures were disclosed by the Conservative Minister in a bid to allay fears of an “alien invasion” to rural areas, sparked by a “gold rush” to claim a portion of the £1.2 billion worth of annual subsidies for wind farms.
Geoffrey Cox MP, who introduced the debate, said: “Communities have come to me in desperation because of what they see as the alien invasion of their homes, their familiar landscapes – some of the most exquisite and beautiful in the country, business owners who make their living from the tranquil and unspoilt fields and pastures of Devonshire.
“These people feel that their interests are being harmed. And these people feel that they are not having a voice.”
Mr Cox warned that large industrial wind turbines were threatening to become “a prominent and dominant feature in the landscape”.
But Mr Hopkins insisted the new guidance was having a positive effect.