BLASTED by criticism of Government plans to vastly increase the number of windfarms in its efforts to create more "green" electricity, the Countryside Agency has rushed out a statement saying that the nation's "finest landscapes" will be protected against the march of wind turbines.
This promise should bring a sigh of relief to lovers of the Yorkshire Dales and the Lake District, which electricity generators are believed to have been eyeing up as ideal sites for windfarms because of their exposed fells and moors.
The agency has been leaning on Government for some time to issues some sort of promise to protect outstanding countryside like the Dales – particularly in national parks – and such a promise has now been made by Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott.
"England's finest landscapes will be protected from such damaging developments," said CA planner David Brooke, although he added that the agency was in favour of small-scale developments of windfarms in areas of less fragile beauty.
However, as we reported last weekend, the Countryside Agency is due to be wound up next year. Whether its opposition to large-scale wind generation will continue within a new, yet to be named, quango remains to be seen.