Council to advise PAC of windfarm noise

Mid and East Antrim Council's Planning Committee has voted to advise the Planning Appeals Commission of an additional reason for refusal over the proposed Feystown Road windfarm, on the grounds of a noise impact assessment.

The six-turbine proposal was previously refused planning permission by the DOE in December 2014. The decision was then appealed, and further environmental information was submitted to the PAC on November 18 2015.

According to a council report, Environmental Health modelled predicted noise limits after planning permission was refused, and found the noise figures were “significantly higher” than those presented in the noise report.

“Environmental Health were not confident that the noise limits predicted by the appellant were robust enough to be able to offer conditions and therefore put forward the additional reason for refusal,” the report states.

Jurisdiction has now passed to the Planning Appeals Commission, but the report states that “parties are encouraged prior to submitting their statements of case to resolve areas of disagreement.”

“When further environmental information is submitted for consideration in advance of an appeal, the PAC expect the Planning Authority to consult with relevant statutory bodies and consider the new information,” it adds.

“This may result in reasons for refusal being withdrawn but also in additional reasons being proposed.”

The report says it would be “remiss” of council not to submit additional evidence. Cllr Stephen Nicholl proposed the recommendation to advise the PAC of the additional reason for refusal, due to “unacceptable adverse impact on the residential amenity,” and was seconded by Cllr Paul Reid.

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