RSPB Scotland’s challenge to new offshore wind farms in the Firth of Forth continues, after it decided to appeal a judgement that would reinstate development consent for the projects.
Together the schemes represent generating capacity of 2.3GW. One of the schemes, Neart Na Gaoithe (NNG), being developed by Mainstream Renewable Power, won a Contract for Difference in the government’s first CfD auction. It has been on hold since the RSPB Scotland challenge.
The bird protection charity successfully halted the developments after it argued that their effect on bird populations had not been properly assessed. That decision was overturned in May by a Scottish court, but with the possibility of appeal. Now the charity says it has “a number of serious concerns with the Inner House’s judgment” giving it grounds for appeal. It has decided to start the appeal process by applying to the Inner House for permission to appeal to the Supreme Court.
Anne McCall, director RSPB Scotland, said: “RSPB Scotland continues to fully support the development of renewable energy and the vast majority of projects continue to pose no significant threat to birds or other wildlife. However, we are concerned that this judgment could set worrying precedents for the protection of wildlife across Scotland and the UK.
“In light of our concerns we have decided to start the appeal process by applying to the Inner House for permission to appeal to the Supreme Court.”