Anger is building in the outdoors’ world following the recent approval of the plans for Dunmaglass Wind Farm in the Monadhliath. The wind farm is set to be built in one of Scotland’s wildest areas following approval by the Scottish Government; Energy minister Jim Mather is also responsible for tourism which many feel may be damaged by such plans. The decision has attracted a chorus of disapproval from conservation organisations, professional writers and increasingly popular outdoors bloggers, and there is talk of a protest being organised – a ‘Wake for the Wild’.
Both the John Muir Trust and the Mountaineering Council of Scotland had objected to the plans, and Helen McDade of the JMT commenting “Our Vision is that wild land is protected and the wild places are valued by and for everyone. This decision is yet another demonstration of the urgent need for greater protection of wild land. These mountains are entirely unique from other areas of wild land in the UK…. In particular the anticipated death toll of up to eleven Golden Eagles is considered wholly unacceptable.” The Cairngorms National Park and Scottish Natural Heritage – the government’s own body to protect the natural environment – have also been opposed to the scheme.
Cameron Mcneish and Chris Townsend wrote focussing on how taxpayers money is being used to destroy wild places, and how the benefits go to the wealthy – estate owner Jack Hayward is said to be the 125th richest person in Britain.
Andy Howell – a renewable energy supporter – argues strongly that this is the the wrong development in the wrong location. Bloggers’ Darren Christie, Janet Donnelly, Byeways, Alistair and Stef have all posted against the plans. Plans for a protest have been mooted, and Alan Sloman is beginning plans to hold a Wake for the Wild to coincide with this years’ TGO challenge.
Walkhighlands will help keep track of further developments.