Wind turbine could be built in countryside

PUBLISHED: 17:00 17 July 2015

Green energy

Green energy

© José Luis Gutiérrez

A 76M-HIGH wind turbine could be built in the Somerset countryside if a planning application is approved – and its neighbours could take a share of the profits.

Planning permission is being sought for the tall structure to be installed to the east of River Yeo Farm in White House Lane, Loxton.

The applicant, Distributed Generation Ltd (DistGen), based in Long Ashton, says it will make an annual donation of five per cent of its income to the parish if the plans go ahead.

DistGen says it will invite the community to have a share in the turbine and become co-owners, so any profits can be shared.

It said: “DistGen is a somewhat unusual commercial organisation in that it was founded to accomplish social enterprise objectives as much as for profit – a primary aspiration was to get a much bigger segment of the general population directly involved in renewable electricity generation by wind turbines.”

DistGen also says it will make an annual donation to Compton Bishop Parish Council, and said: “This is so that members of the local community who cannot afford a financial investment will still benefit.”

The applicant owns a smaller wind turbine in Bere Regis, Dorset, and says it has donated more than £10,000 to the local parish council so far.

DistGen will take some of the profits in order to maintain the site, while another portion of cash will be given to the landowner.

The farm is home to a small riding school, but DistGen suggests profits from the scheme would allow the landowner to expand.

The turbine, which would be fitted with three 26m-long blades, would be expected to last 25 years and bring in £12,000 per year.

In a report on the application Somerset County Council ecologist Larry Burrows said there would need to be protection for bats if the turbine is built.

Members of the public can make comments on the application via the Sedgemoor online planning portal.

Compton Bishop Parish Council have made no comments on the application.

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