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Fight Vow on New Plan for Turbines Site

Furious Afan Valley residents have vowed to fight a proposal to build four 410ft high wind turbines near their homes.Energy firm Eco2 wants to build the wind farm at Corrwg Fechan, Glyncorrwg.

It would be in place of a larger, six- turbine farm which generated fierce local opposition when it was proposed last year.

The news has angered Glyncorrwg Action Group (Gag) members, who say the company promised it would inform them of any development before submitting an application.

Aberavon AM Brian Gibbons has also waded into the debate, calling for residents to have their say in a referendum on the matter.

Action group spokesman Bob Slater said: "We are deeply disappointed to find Eco2 has submitted a planning application without meeting our group.

"We are being kept in the dark over a development that would have wide- ranging effects for Glyncorrwg.

"This firm has rushed in this application without showing courtesy to local people.

"The original exhibition was held in January 2006. What is the rush in applying now, before a second exhibition is held to inform and consult all residents of Glyncorrwg?"

However, an Eco2 spokeswoman said residents had been asked for a meeting.

She also pointed out the scheme's design had been reviewed in line with comments made following public consultation in January 2006, reducing the size of the wind farm.

She said: "Eco2 has submitted a planning application and, as previously promised, has offered to meet Gag and other interested parties to provide information on the proposal.

"This process has not been rushed in any way, and clearly shows how Eco2 has listened to the concerns of local people."

The new proposal had cut the number of turbines from six to four, she said, and increased their distance from the village, thereby significantly reducing any possible impacts on the environment.

She added: "Eco2 is in regular communication with Gag and is currently waiting for them to propose a date for Eco2 to meet with them to discuss the proposal."

Calling for the referendum, Dr Gibbons said most residents he had spoken to were opposed to the development.

"The proposals concerned place wind farms far too close to our communities," he said.

Mr Slater said: "This project will cause maximum damage to the landscape, and will have minimal impact on producing electricity and in reducing carbon dioxide emissions."

And he warned: "We intend to fight this proposal with every means at our disposal."

Newspaper: South Wales Evening Post
Date: 22/05/07