Obtaining planning permission for a wind turbine between 15m and 50m in height is getting increasingly more difficult. Pembrokeshire County Council and Pembrokeshire Coast National Park planning officers are now requesting much more detailed landscape assessments for what were, until recently, considered to be relatively small wind turbines. Initial, informal advice was that for a wind turbine under 30m a landscape impact assessment was not required.
This was soon superseded when Pembrokeshire County Council planners commissioned a report to provide guidelines for landscape and visual impact assessment requirements. This report was published in August 2012 and Table 2 contains specific guidance on the levels of assessment required for three categories of wind turbine size – less than 15m – between 15m and 50m – and over 50m. At present most wind turbine proposals are falling within the 15m to 50m category.
Planning for Wind Turbines
In summary, a wind turbine of between 15m and 50m will require the following levels of assessment:-
- Wireframes and/or photomontages for a limited number of key viewpoints;
- A consideration of LANDMAP information and potential the Seascape Assessment of Wales;
- Consideration of the landscape and visual amenity of the are wherein the wind turbine is to be located;
- A Cumulative Impact assessment taking into account all other existing, consented and proposed wind turbines within a 15km to 17.km radius – commonly referred to as the Zone of Theoretical Visibility (or ZTV).
To satisfy the above information requirements ckplanning ltd in association with Ynni Ltd now have their own software and specialist camera equipment which enables us to produce wireframes, photomontages and ZTV’s. We also have the GPS Co-ordinates for every existing, consented and proposed wind turbine in Pembrokeshire.
Our combined planning skills allowed us to meet a short-notice request from Pembrokeshire County Council planning officers for a detailed landscape impact assessment from one of our clients, Mr Chris Downs of Hayscastle, whose application for a Xzeres 442SR Wind Turbine was about to be refused planning permission. Mr Downs has now been granted planning permission for his wind turbine, which will be the second one on his farm.
The level of expert, cost-effective landscape and planning policy assessment ckplanning ltd can bring to your application for a wind turbine in Pembrokeshire will ensure that it is quickly validated and processed in a positive and efficient manner.